Have you ever thought of using foods to improve menopause symptoms? During premenopause, or the time before menopause strikes, your estrogen levels significantly decrease, increasing your risk for many diseases like cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis and cancer. Not only that, but as your estrogen levels drop so do your progesterone levels, leading to unwanted weight gain, most notedly in the abdominal area. Here are 7 foods to improve menopause symptoms that you should give a try today!
1. Flax Meal
Flax meal is one of the best foods to improve menopause symptoms that you should add to your diet ASAP! Flax meal contains omega-3, as well as the phytoestrogen lignan. Omega-3s are anti-inflammatories, thus helping prevent inflammation associated diseases such as heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel diseases. Phytoestrogens are very helpful in reducing hot flashes, breast cancer risk, as well as the maintenance of bone density.
Quinoa is an important food to eat lifelong! Quinoa is a whole grain that is high in protein, fiber and vitamins and minerals. It has several health benefits including blood sugar regulation, weight regulation and GI regulation. Quinoa also aids in the prevention of several chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and breast cancer. Quinoa is a great food for premenopausal women because it can reduce hot flashes and can also help maintain bone health.
3. Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt contains probiotics which are healthy bacteria that your body needs. Probiotics are especially good for menopausal women because they help your body break down and absorb nutrients from your food. They also help increase your immune function and help prevent yeast and urinary tract infections.
Salmon is an excellent source of Vitamin D which is particularly important for women of menopausal age because Vitamin D is required for calcium absorption which helps prevent bone loss. Get out in the sun as often as you can and eat Vitamin D rich foods such as wild-caught salmon, fortified foods and egg yolks. Since most of us don't get enough Vitamin D through sunlight and food alone, it might be a good idea to talk with your doctor about starting a Vitamin D supplement!
When it comes to hot flashes, almonds might do the trick! Almonds are high in Vitamin E which has been shown in some studies to reduce hot flashes. Vitamin E is also an anti-inflammatory which helps protect your cells from disease causing free radicals. A handful of almonds a day might just do the trick!
6. Dark Chocolate
You read that right - chocolate! Dark chocolate, of course! Dark chocolate is rich in magnesium which too aids in bone mineralization and thus bone health. Magnesium has also been shown to help reduce hot flashes, aid in sleep and also balance mood.
7. Leafy Greens
Leafy greens are great for menopausal women because many of them are a great source of calcium and magnesium. Along with Vitamin D as mentioned above, calcium and magnesium are essential for proper bone health. Your hormone levels change during menopause, increasing your risk for for osteoporosis, therefore, eating foods rich in all of these vitamins and minerals is equally important! Start each meal with a dark green salad or sauté some spinach with a little bit of garlic, mushrooms and onions for a healthy addition to any meal!
While menopause symptoms can affect some greater than others, by eating a healthy diet you can combat these symptoms and make this particular time in your life a little bit easier. Include these healthy foods in your diet and menopause doesn’t have to be so bad! What do you do to tame your hot flashes? Have any foods helped improve your symptoms?