Did you know that Menopause is not something that just happens to us in our 50’s when we have our last period?
We actually begin to experience a sequence of hormonal changes prior to menopause called “perimenopause” which can begin as early as 35 years old, and is often experienced in our 40’s.
This sequence of hormonal changes is effectively a recalibration of the brain and body and includes a shift to low progesterone and high and fluctuating oestrogen.
During this time we can start to notice a variety of symptoms including weight gain without having changed the diet or exercise routine, new or increased mood swings, night sweats, sleep disturbances, changes to the monthly cycle and more.
If you’ve been gaining weight and are unsure why, have noticed feeling more anxious or depressed around your cycle (or more irritable!), and find you wake up during the night and have trouble getting back to sleep… this could be why.
Perimenopause is actually a normal and natural process that all women go through and the symptoms can be improved by making a few simple changes to your eating and lifestyle habits.
On the flip side it can also be worsened by our eating and lifestyle habits.
It’s important to note that as the body goes through this recalibration process it can bring us to a crossroad in life to either improving our health or causing a decline our health by increasing our risk of disease (i.e. dementia, autoimmune disease, inflammation, cardiovascular disease).
The good news is there are things you can do to reduce the impact of these new symptoms and make the transition easier plus set your future self-up for success is her later years.
Some of the key things to focus on are:
Increasing your nutrient intake by eating a well-balanced diet rich in vegetables, fruits, lean proteins, some whole grains and healthy fats to reduce cravings, regulate blood sugar levels, reduce inflammation, boost memory and mental clarity plus improve overall mood.
Reducing your intake of alcohol as it can spike oestrogen and histamine levels causing insomnia, hot flushes, inflammation and brain fog. Ideally not drinking all together would be better as even a moderate intake can increase the risk of breast cancer.
Calming the nervous system by spending time in nature, getting some sunshine, doing Yoga and practising belly breathing will help with improving sleep, conserving energy levels and reducing neurological symptoms such as anxiety and irritability.
If you would like some help with better managing peri-menopause then perhaps a nutrition consultation would be of benefit to you.
At the end of the appointment you'll have a personalised plan that has been tailored to your dietary needs and lifestyle habits with easy to put in place changes and tasty recipes.
To find out more visit: https://www.louiseellennutrition.com.au/nutrition-services