6 Tips to Naturally Reduce Symptoms of Menopause
You can relieve some menopause symptoms naturally. Here’s how you do it.
Menopause is a natural period in a woman’s life marked by a variety of not-so-comfortable side effects. While it may not be possible to avoid symptoms like hot flashes and moodiness completely, you can minimize the effects with natural remedies for menopause.
In this article, we answer the question, “how can I reduce the effects of menopause naturally?” Read on to discover science-backed natural strategies to ease menopause and perimenopause symptoms.
What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Menopause?
Menopause is the time when a woman’s period ends. It officially begins once you have gone without a menstrual cycle for 12 months. Most women experience menopause between 45 and 55 years of age (1). In the months-to-years leading up to menopause, you may experience perimenopause. During perimenopause, you begin to experience the symptoms associated with menopause.
The most common menopause and perimenopause symptoms include:
- Hot flashes
- Mood changes, such as anxiety, irritability, or depression
- Urinary incontinence
- Irregular periods
- Night sweats
- Weight gain
- Sleep difficulties
- Low sex drive or vaginal dryness
The Most Effective Natural Remedies for Menopause Symptoms
There are things that you can do to mitigate the worst menopause symptoms. Here are six natural strategies for menopause relief.
1. Add Phytoestrogens to Your Diet
You may have heard about the naturally occurring estrogen-like compounds found in certain foods. Soy products, such as tofu, tempeh, and soy milk, are well known for their high phytoestrogen levels.
In a study published in the journal Menopause, high soy consumption was found to lessen the severity of night sweats and hot flashes in women who were early in their menopause experience (2).
Soy is not the only food with high levels of phytoestrogens. Flaxseeds and beans are two sources that you can find in most supermarkets. Simply up your consumption of beans and add flaxseeds to smoothies, cereal, or other recipes.
2. Exercise Often
Staying active is key to feeling your best during menopause. Exercise is known to increase energy, support weight loss, improve sleep, lessen stress, and keep bones strong (3). Choose a physical activity that you enjoy, such as gardening, jogging, or doing yoga, and aim to do it a few times per week.
3. Eat More Fruits and Veggies
Weight gain is one of the most common and frustrating menopause symptoms. Fruits and vegetables are high in fiber and low in calories. This combination makes you feel full longer, a helpful tool when you want to lose weight.
4. Cut Down on Caffeine and Alcohol
Alcohol and caffeine are two dietary triggers that can exacerbate night sweats, trouble sleeping, mood swings, and hot flashes. Try to minimize your consumption of coffee, soda, and alcohol. And when you do indulge, we recommend doing so in the first half of the day to limit the impact of these compounds on sleep.
5. Try Acupuncture
Researchers at the Wake Forest School of Medicine and Duke University School of Medicine conducted a year-long study to answer the question, “can acupuncture relieve menopause symptoms?” (4) Menopausal women with vasomotor symptoms— like hot flashes— received clinical acupuncture for six months and no acupuncture for another six months.
The women in the study experienced up to a 36.7% reduction in menopause symptoms and an improved quality of life both during and following acupuncture. The benefits continued for more than six months following the end of treatment.
6. Drink Plenty of Water
Sufficient hydration may lessen bloating and dryness, two common menopause complaints. We recommend exceeding the recommended eight glasses per day, aiming for 10-12 glasses daily. Additionally, drinking two glasses of water 30 minutes before eating might help you consume fewer calories. Fewer calories can slow menopause-related weight gain.
What Is the Best Supplement for Menopause Symptoms?
Natural supplements are a valuable asset during perimenopause and menopause. When setting out to find the best herbs or supplements for you, you should first identify what uncomfortable effects you want to alleviate. Here is a list of the top menopause supplements based on the menopause symptom that they might help.
- Weight gain: Conjugated linoleic acid, green tea extract, or garcinia cambogia
- Bladder difficulties: BetterWoman*
- Hot flashes: Black cohosh, flaxseed, or DHEA
- Bone loss: Calcium and vitamin D
- Mood: Ginseng or St. John’s wort with black cohosh
- Low libido: DHEA
- Memory troubles: Better Memory* and Better Memory PM*
Natural therapies can mitigate some of the worst effects of menopause. Whenever you start any new wellness regimen or all-natural supplement, it is a good idea to speak with your doctor. You want to be sure you know potential side effects.