Fight back against menopausal aches and pains

Sufficient exercise is a vital part of treating menopause. Photo: www.nhs.uk

More than half the women who suffer from menopause experience joint stiffness, muscle pain, and general discomfort.

Menopausal aches and pains can be caused by several factors, and may also lead to various other issues.

Here are a few important things to take note of in order to minimise the aches and pains:
Protective Effects of Oestrogens: Oestrogen helps protect the cartilage in the body, which is the padding between the bones and joints. Oestrogen does this as it has great anti-inflammatory properties. Thus joint pains might become prominent during menopause, as the decrease in oestrogen levels will leave the cartilage unprotected against inflammation.
Sleep Disorders: Having trouble sleeping is never fun, but when you have to deal with uncomfortable menopausal symptoms this might become an even bigger issue. Not only do menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats cause sleeplessness; the sleeplessness caused thereby may lead to increased aches and pains. A vicious cycle indeed!
Dietary Adaptations: In order to treat these aches and pains, some steps need to be taken. The first step is getting your diet in order.
It is recommended that your diet be altered by decreasing your consumption of red meat, sugar, dairy, and saturated fats. Eat plenty of fresh leafy greens, and ensure you drink enough water.
Exercise: Sufficient exercise is a vital part of treating menopause. You might not feel like going for a 5 km run with all the menopausal symptoms dragging you down, but even going for a walk around your neighbourhood can do you a world of good. Just getting your blood flowing and joints moving can make you feel a lot better.
Some of the best exercises to do during menopause include: Yoga, stretching, swimming, cycling, aerobics and walking.
Supplements: Even with the right diet you may still feel that menopause is bringing you down. Look for healthy, natural supplements that contains wild yam and phyto-oestrogens (plant-derived oestrogens) to help increase oestrogen levels.
Lizel Britz 072 243 7707

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