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Menopause can be a trying time for many women with; hot flushes, night sweats, irritability, weight gain and sleeplessness being just some of the undesirable and often uncomfortable and distressing manifestations. Menopause commonly occurs between the ages of 45-55, but the onset and variety of symptoms is very much dependent on the individual. Many factors can influence our hormone production which triggers menopause, including genetics, diet, and metabolic and lifestyle factors, and, although this is a natural process, it can feel like anything but!
Symptoms can last from a few months-to a few years and have the potential to disrupt the quality of day-to-day life. Many menopausal women take herbs that support the body naturally, bringing it back into balance. Menopause is a part of every woman’s life, and the use of herbs has been common practice in supporting this natural process for centuries.
Also known as Salvia officinalis, sage is a well-known herb used for its aroma and taste in culinary dishes. Sage is also widely used to help support temperature balance in the body during the menopause transition. A tonic for the nervous system, sage has a calming effect – it is supportive during nervous exhaustion and supports clarity of thought, focus, and vitality.
Also known by its Latin name, Dioscorea villosa, this herb should not be confused with the yams found in your kitchen. Wild yam is a different species that is known for its active ingredient, diosgenin. Wild yam has traditionally been used to help support menopause and hormonal balance. Wild yam has been used to support the management of temperature fluctuations that are associated with low oestrogen, as well as supporting fatigue, and mental clarity and focus.
Cissus quadrangularis (Synetrim®CQ):
A member of the grape family, Cissus quadrangularis has traditionally been used in Ayurvedic traditions. Weight management is a common challenge during menopause as the natural decline in oestrogen may lower muscle mass and slow down the metabolism. Cissus quadrangularis, as Synetrim® CQ, supports effective weight management by helping to block the absorption of dietary fats, carbs, and sugars, supporting healthy fat metabolism, and supporting the management of emotional eating.
Ziziphus jujube is a frequently used herb in traditional Chinese practice that supports the nervous system. Ziziphus helps to calm and sooth a tired mind, supporting those who have difficulty getting to sleep and who need to focus on healthier sleeping patterns. “Worry mind” can bring on temperature fluctuations; Ziziphus supports the management of these worries and balanced temperature.
All women experience menopause differently. Before using natural or complementary remedies to support your body cope with symptoms, it is recommended you discuss the best approach for you with your healthcare professional. Keep in mind that dietary or herbal supplements may have side effects or interactions with each other, or with other drugs.
Along with taking helpful and supportive natural herbs, a healthy lifestyle, including a wholefood diet, good quality sleep, and exercise, is also important in helping to manage the symptoms of menopause.
Why do many menopausal women take herbs?
Many menopausal women take herbs because they believe that these natural remedies can help support their bodies during the menopause transition with symptoms such as temperature fluctuations, irritability, weight issues, and sleep.
Are there any other natural remedies or practices that can help with menopause symptoms?
Yes, there are other natural remedies and practices that can support a woman with menopause symptoms, such as incorporating mindfulness and stress-reduction techniques, sunlight exposure (especially early morning), regular exercise, consuming a diet rich in animal-based foods, and using techniques like acupuncture or yoga, which some women find beneficial.