Nutrition for Menopause

A nutritious diet and a diligent fitness regime are all it takes to get through the discomfort of menopause.

Fifty is a good number as it makes you feel older and wiser. Women who hit this magic figure know what makes them feel good, sad, happy or simply indifferent. Yet, this does not equip most women to handle some of the physiological and psychological problems that come with menopause. After puberty, this is the most drastic physiological change for a woman, which is what makes it so difficult to deal with.

Menopause is a time during which the levels of a woman’s reproductive hormones – oestrogen and progesterone – decline to the point where menstruation ceases. The average age of the onset of menopause is 50 and hormonal changes begin to happen anything up to 10 years before periods cease completely. Many menopausal symptoms occur as a result of avoiding levels of oestrogen and progesterone, particularly if levels of these hormones fall suddenly or ‘out of sync’ with each other.

It is because of these hormonal changes that the woman’s body often starts behaving against her wishes. During this period she feels weaker, fragile, vulnerable and less desirable, and coupled with these are physiological problems such as osteoporosis, hot-flushes,-night-sweats and even heart problems. Hence, it is important to be aware of your body, emotions, and its needs.

One of the easiest ways to get through these trying times is to follow a fitness regime that involves not only exercise but also a nutritious diet. Foods rich in phytoestrogens include soybeans and soy products, apples, carrots, yams, green beans, peas, pomegranates, potatoes, red beans, brown rice, whole-wheat, rye, sesame seeds, legumes, flaxseed, and pumpkin seeds. A nutritious diet also takes care of other symptoms of menopause, caused by falling oestrogen levels, such as thinning hair, brittle nail, dryness, dullness and loosening of skin.

One of the main problems that many menopausal women face is weight gain. You may feel that your eating habits have not changed or that you’re even eating less, but find yourself gaining weight, especially around the hips and abdomen, After menopause, this weight usually goes away as metabolism reestablishes, but in the meantime, keeping blood sugar level during the day by eating small meals helps. The key is to avoid overeating at night as metabolism peaks earlier in the day, and to cut down on carbohydrates, and have protein with each meal. According to experts, exercising for about 30 minutes, five to six days a week is enough to cause substantial difference in bone health. It improves coordination and strengthens muscles, which reduces the risk of falls, improves the cardiovascular system, emotional well being, besides controlling menopause-related weight gain.

Exercise boosts serotonin levels and can also stimulate endorphins. It burns energy, which can help you sleep better at night and bums calories, which helps with the weight gain associated with per menopause and menopause.

What is important is to realize that menopause is a natural process of the body, it is not a disease and it does not make you any less of a woman. Hence, a careful diet and a diligent exercise regime can reduce the discomfort associated with the process.

Nutrition for menopausal women

� You should consume at least 1,500 calories per 1500 calories per day.
� Fats, oils, sweets should be consumed sparingly.
� You should take two to three servings of milk, yogurt and cheese per day.
� Meat, fish, poultry, dry beans or eggs should fee included in your daily diet
� Vegetables are very important for a balanced diet
� Bat fruits at least two to three times everyday.
� Bread, cereal, rice, pasta are recommended.

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