Embracing Menopause, becoming Ageless, Hormonal Balance

I heard a podcast recently about menopause, and how this can be the beginning of a new phase in our lives. That actually women in their 60’s and 70’s have better sex than ever.

Yep, my mother told me this when she was in her 70’s sex was the best. I had to smile when she said this to me years ago. She said no more worries about getting pregnant, the kids are all grown up now and so on.

How we can be getting older without aging, we need to monitor our thoughts about aging. I don’t do things based upon my age, I do what I enjoy.

What does my age have to do with it? I love to dance, hike, run, lift weights, walk etc, so I do them all.

People say to me, why do your sprint, do plyometrics, lift heavy weights ? You don’t need to do that now at your age.

I do it because I love how moving my body, lifting heavy things, and running makes me feel, not because I have to. Pick something you love to do and do it.

Lifting weights as we age, helps keep our bones strong. Sprinting helps my fitness level, heart, and mood.  Also those things when I do them I’m in my happy place.

I have always thought of age as just a number, I feel ageless.

The human body has two different ages, chronological age and a biological age. Chronological age refers to the actual time we have been alive, while our biological age refers to how old we seem.

There are tests online to find out your real age, not when you were born. You can find a test to take here http://www.realage.com

It is our lifestyle, since we were very young, the way we eat and move. Years of an unhealthy diet and not moving can hugely effect us as we age.

Exercise can help us with our mood, and getting rid of toxins, a good sweat, and then slow movement for the stress hormones will help us all feel better.

Food is enjoyable, social, and can be medicine for the body. I try to eat the majority of the time as close to nature as possible. Organic if I can, wild seafood, lots of fibrous veggies and good fats, and a controlled amount of starchy carbs.

Changing, our diet as we approach menopause to make it as nutrient dense as we can with less sugar, and processed foods as possible.

Also changing our thoughts about menopause, trying to think of it more like a new stage in our lives, like a new beginning.  If we can get our minds around that way of thinking it can be an easier transition for us.

We do believe our thoughts, our thoughts are very powerful how we view a situation.

Don’t get me wrong the drop in our hormones can make it rough, with the hot flashes and lack of sleep, brain fog, mood swings, sometimes we don’t even recognize ourselves, with the moods like who is this person.

There our herbs and bio identical hormones to help with that, it is the drop in estrogen that causes hot flashes. Wine, spicy foods, and even coffee can make hot flashes worse for some women.

I’m so glad I changed my diet when I was 40, and dropped the extra weight and started exercising more regularly. Because the typical american diet, of lots of processed foods, all the cakes, chips, donuts, hydrogenated oils, to much sugar and alcohol can really disrupt our hormones.

Which can cause more symptoms at menopause and peri menopause, which can then make menopause more challenging, with more symptoms.

Unstable blood sugar can cause us to be on a hormonal roller coaster.

The decline of estrogen as we approach menopause is a big reason why we get hot flashes, depression, brain fog, anxiety. Without enough estrogen we have greater muscle loss, thinner bones, larger amounts of fat, especially at the waist line, and weight gain, for some.

Because of the decline in the estrogen and all our hormones it is especially important to eat healthfully, exercise, and possibly talk to your doctor about estrogen or hormone replacement.

If we go into peri-menopause and menopause with an optimal diet and exercise regularly, it can help to offset and weight gain. We are all so different so it depends on your unique body.

I think when I started getting heavily into running, lifting weights, and walking. That it really helped me go through menopause, without to many symptoms, and weight gain.

I do remember the hot flashes though very clearly, I was reading a new book called THE Estrogen Window, by Mache Seibel, MD. In the book he talks about women who still could get hot flashes into there 60’s, ha! Like my age. Here is his website www.drmache.com he also has www.askdrmache.com  you can ask a question of him . If you click on the resource button at the top of his website you will find his links.

I could swear a few weeks ago I was having hot flashes, and thought nah…can’t be. So at least I know I was not nuts, or imaging things, that it was totally possible. Some women that tried to get off estrogen at my age even had a recurrence of hot flashes, yikes!

Women tell me they feel their life is over, that losing there periods, they feel old and not sexy anymore. I think that is a mindset issue or society, telling us we are old.

I believe with age comes wisdom, we come into our power, and our sexuality. We can embrace the journey as a new phase in our lives, and know we are all beautiful and sexy at any age, as age is just a number.

My Dietary Balance guidelines in a nutshell:

  • Minimize sugar, alcohol, and refined carbohydrates (e.g, soda, cookies, chips, white bread, candy, white breads and flour, crackers, crisps, donuts, scones etc…)
  • Have some protein at every meal, or snack (e.g, meat, fish, eggs, chicken, turkey, bison, liver, protein powders, whey, hemp, pea, rice etc..)
  • Eat plenty of high fiber foods, (e.g, such as fibrous vegetables, broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, all leafy greens, spinach, kale, etc… there are more) I eat 2 fists at my meals about. You can start there and adjust for YOU, up or down according to your goals.
  • Fruits low sweet ones, to your tolerance. (e.g, apples, all berries, grapefruits, pears) most menopausal women may only tolerate 1-2 serving a day.  A serving 1 medium size, or 1/2-2/3 cups of berries, and adjust up or down to YOU. There are other fruits of course higher sugar fruits such as banana, cherries,  mango etc..they are good after a strength training workout especially.
  • Starchy Carbs, (e.g, sweet potatoes, rice, oats, white potato, quinoa, winter squash, acorn, butternut squash, etc…pumpkin. ( I love pumpkin post workout 2/3 a cup in a shake or muffins, or pancakes I would make, once in awhile. Serving sizes start with a cupped handful, after a workout, and with dinner for sleep. Or just dinner, as the starchy carbs help relax you, and lowers cortisol for better sleep.
  • I also consider, cucumbers celery water based free foods. There are larger lists. Basically less processed food, off a tree, from the sea, grown in the ground is a great start.

Eating simply, protein, fibrous veggies and some starch and minimizing processed foods, and sugar is the big one, will help with menopause.

A good recipe, fingerling potato and sweet potato together in a pan, bake for about an hour, drizzle with olive oil, celtic rosemary sea salt, and maybe herbs de france spice.

I love sweet potato cut in quarters, 1 tsp coconut oil, and put in a frying pan, and sprinkle on pumpkin pie spice, toss to coat them about 1-2 min. Take them out of the pan after coated with the spice and this lets the spice bloom. then bake at 400’ for about 25-30 minutes, delicious . You can use parchment paper on the baking sheet for easy fast clean up.

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