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Menopause diet (What to eat during the menopause)

There are certain lifestyle changes you can make to ease menopause symptoms such as frequent exercise, light clothing and reduced caffeine and spicy food intake to help ease night sweats, and relaxation techniques like yoga to help improve mood fluctuations.

What we eat also has a huge effect on our overall health and is important to keep in mind during the menopause. The changes that happen in the body at this time will result in your body needing certain nutrients more. The following food groups are important to include as part of a balanced diet.

Carbohydrates

These provide the energy and fuel the body needs to function. These energy levels need to remain high for menopausal people as the hormonal changes can result in feelings of exhaustion. A balanced diet should include whole-grain cereals, wholemeal pasta and starchy vegetables (sweet potato) that are high in fibre and essential vitamins.

Calcium

When you enter menopause, your body produces less oestrogen. This lack of oestrogen subsequently increases the risk of osteoporosis - a condition where the bones are more prone to breaking due to the thinning and becoming weaker. During the menopause, it’s important to keep calcium levels up to help protect against the condition.

Not only is calcium vital for bone health, but it can also help keep blood, muscles and nerves in working order. Good sources include dairy, canned fish, green leafy vegetables and tofu.

Omega-3 fatty acids

Healthy fats can help with symptoms like vaginal dryness and hot flushes. They are also anti-inflammatory and can help reduce the risk of both heart disease and type 2 diabetes. You’ll find omega-3 fatty acids in oily fish, avocados and nuts and seeds.

Phytoestrogens

A chemical called phytoestrogen that has a similar structure to oestrogen. Experts believe the chemical tricks the body into thinking it is producing more oestrogen than it is.

Phytoestrogens are possibly the most studied food in relation to menopause. They are plant-based chemicals that mimic oestrogen, and they are found in many foods such as soy, lentils, flaxseed, sesame, fennel, beans, chickpeas, and some herbs and spices (sage, cinnamon, etc.).

Vitamin D

Vitamin D and calcium are vital for bone health. Vitamin D is especially important during menopause as the body needs it to absorb calcium.




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