God knows women dread the idea of approaching menopause. What with the weight gain, hormonal changes, mood swings, hot flashes and lack of energy…there are very few reasons that would cause a woman to feel happy about the fact that they are turning 40-something. The only good thing I can think of is the oodles of sex I can enjoy without having to worry about unplanned pregnancy. But then again, with a dipping libido, that’s not much of a consolation either. However, not all is as bleak as I am making it out to be. I can be a regular wet blanket on certain days, but there are ways to deal with menopause. Here are some tips for a healthy menopause diet. Make sure you pay real close attention ‘coz they are going to make your life a whole lot easier.
1. Pump in Calcium
As you grow older, the body’s need for calcium increases. Women over 50 need to beef up their calcium intake from 1,000 milligrams to 1,200 mg per day. This is because at this age calcium isn’t absorbed too well by the body due to decrease in production of estrogen.
2. Eat Something Fishy
Menopausal women are more likely to suffer from heart disease. To keep these at bay, adopt a healthy menopause diet and aim to include at least two servings of fish every week, preferably sticking with the healthier variety of fish, such as trout or salmon. For those that don’t eat meat and fish, you may want to consider fish oil supplements.
3. Ease Bloating
Although medical experts aren’t really sure what triggers it off, there seems to be a connection between fluctuating hormones and bloating. An overwhelming number of women complain about this problem post 50. Cutting down on the amount of processed carbohydrates and salt in your diet will help ease the bloating. At the same time, stock up on whole grains, fruits, and vegetables which are rich in fiber.
4. Go Easy on the Red Wine
This is one of those tips for a healthy menopause diet that you aren’t going to like too much. Although red wine is hailed as a heart-friendly drink, for menopausal women it is also linked to increased rates of breast cancer. Aint that a bummer! In addition, red wine (and other alcoholic drinks) can cause hot flashes in women. However, against your better judgment, if you insist on having red wine, try to make a spritzer out of it.
5. Aye-Aye Soy!
A lot of women might feel that soy tastes a bit like Styrofoam, but remember this the next time you are turning your nose up on it. Soy foods such as soy nuts, soy milk, and tofu give you the much needed relief from hot flashes, not to mention the fact that it’s rich in calcium as well.
6. Iced is the Way to Go
You love your morning cup of tea – I don’t blame you at all. I myself am partial to a steaming mug of coffee when I wake up. But this might be a good time for you to say bye-bye to it and switch to something colder. Women in their menopause are cautioned from starting their day with a hot drink since it is believed to trigger hot flashes. Caffeine in tea and coffee could also exacerbate the problem. In this scenario, one of the best tips for a healthy menopause diet is to switch to cold drinks, such as iced tea or decaf iced coffee.
7. Choose Your Diet Wisely
The diet that has worked for you for the last ten years may not have the same effect on your body once you hit menopause. This may require a bit of homework and resorting to the good ol’ fashioned trial and error method but look for different diets – especially those that are designed for women your age. As the needs of your body changes, you need to constantly reinvent your diet to get best benefits out of it.
Women all over the world will agree when I say menopause sucks. Sure, it frees you from the headache monthly periods and cramps, but it’s a bit of a trade off isn’t it, when you look at the other monstrous problems lined up for us after 50.
But these tips for a healthy menopause diet are going to help you deal with this difficult time. Besides, nothing gets us down so easily. We are all tough girls, aren’t we?
Top image source: weheartit.com