I am 49 and the Doctors have been telling me that I have been premenopaul for the last 9 years. I have gone thru just about everything on your list. except night sweats but it's not over with yet. I found out that I now have Endometriosis after some shots and a few months from now I will have a hysterectomy done. but they need to shrink the uterus first. that's what the shots are for. but the hot flashes are suppose to get worse with the shots (by the 2nd one) and the hysterectomy, and to be honest that scares me more then the surgery does. I have had 3 c-sections so they tell me that my recovery time will be longer. I found this article very interesting and helpful, thanks for the great advise. I wish all women who are going through this a calm, cool and happy journey. God Bless
I am a breast cancer survivor, and my oncologist told me to avoid soy as much as possible. Its phyoestrogens can feed estrogen-receptor positive cancer cells, and can interfere with some breast cancer medications that block estrogen.
In addition, soy adversely affects thyroid function, so if you are hypothyroid, you should avoid soy as well.
But - as in all things, check with your doctor before adding soy or eliminating soy from your diet, because those decisions should be based on your individual situation.
By the way, chemo put me into menopause 13 years ago, at the age of 46. I survived menopause without the addition of any Hormone Replacement Therapy, or any over the counter menopause treatments - because many of the OTC products contain soy and/or black cohosh (which is also not good for breast cancer).
It wasn't the end of the world! I managed my hot flashes by dressing in layers,cutting back on caffeine and spicy foods, and keeping a bottle of ice water with me at all times. Taking a few sips of ice water minimizes the hot flashes & lessens their duration - without drugs. Caffeine & spicy foods can trigger hot flashes.
11/17/2011 11:22:27 AM
Thanks for the informative article and thanks especially for the tip off about soy and estrogen. I've been avoiding soy, though I love tofu, because of my concerns about estrogen, but it's good to have expert advice. I also avoid dairy products, though I love milk, cheese, etc . . ., because of estrogen concerns. Perimenopause has been a horrible experience. Recently I made the connection between eating poorly and killer periods. I cut back drastically on sugar and fat and wow, what a difference. I would have done that years ago if only I'd known how much difference it would make in how I feel. It's not easy, I really miss sugar, but it's worth it.
"Some women mourn it as the end of youth and fertility. Others welcome it as a time of freedom and new opportunities. " And some of us just think of it as an enormous pain in the arse. Actually, it's interesting that the article suggests looking to your mother's or grandmother's experience to see how you're likely to fare. My mother and grandmother would both periodically get the feeling -- beyond all logic and everything they knew to be so -- that their husbands were running around on them. The feelings would go away when their hormones subsided. I thought I was safe, having no romantic attachments -- until the day I found myself sitting at work so firmly convinced that something terrible had happened to my cat that I had to call home and have my roommate check on her! I've had it a couple of times since, usually around the same time I get hot flashes and/or mood swings.
Good article. Glad I read it just to remind myself about how to eat during this stage in life.
7/7/2011 6:44:13 PM
I just wish I knew how to tell if I am in menopause or am postmenopausal. I had a hysterectomy 13 years ago but kept my ovaries and at 58, I just don't know. No symptoms, except some breast tenderness, which could simply be my previous period-tenderness. I seem to have PMS at times, so wonder if my ovaries are still functioning. Oh well. Not a big deal, I guess. Glad I have escaped the unpleasantness so far.
7/7/2011 11:37:19 AM
While there is some excellent information in this article, zinc is not a precursor for progesterone. It may be a cofactor, meaning that zinc is required for the hormone to work, but it's not the same thing. And too much zinc can alter taste, and we don't need that! And in general, I'm always amazed at how pretty much every affliction known to humans can be addressed with a "correct" diet, usually full of veggies and pretty much lacking in anything interesting, certainly alcohol is discouraged.
Yes, "My Own Private Summer!" LOL I feel exactly like I were standing in the sun in Jamaica!
Last winter I stood outside with my dogs in the dark, wearing a tiny silk nightie, it was 13º I felt great! My 4 siberian huskies were with me and they thought I was a rock star! Now it's in the 90's everyday and I am using my huskies as a heat guide... AC vents rock! we take ice cube breaks and lots of calm resting. I make low cal frozen treats and frozen dog treats... I eat frozen cranberries and blueberries...
My husband thinks I am also a bit cranky but no more than a husky on a hot day! LOL poor guy, he's out numbered.
I thought it was interesting that the food recommendations didn't include the usual "eat a ton of carbohydrates" advice. I read recently that the lowering of estrogen levels is a major contributor to that "middle-age spread" weight gain.
I am nearly 55 and still buying tampons. Lots of food cravings, water retention, hormonal whackiness, foggy brain, etc. Thankfully no hot flashes, night sweats or sleepless nights. It is weird. Not at all what I expected. I guess there is no "text book" menopause.
I am glad Becky stated how different menopause is for everybody. I had a rather late menopause at age 55 and after reading all the articles, I was really dreading it. Then it finally happened and it was just nothing--I just quit having periods, that's it. I worried about nothing! I asked my older sister if she had any of the famous symptoms--none. Please don't be mislead into dreading the worst, just be knowledgable and prepared just in case. For many, menopause is really just a non-event. No, I didn't do anything special to avoid symptoms, I was taking no hormones, was overweight, not exercising, eating poorly, and not following any of Becky's good advice. It is just that there are a lot of people who experience a symptom free menopause, whether they do anything to deserve it or not.
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