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Optimal Nutrition for Menopause

BY Promoted Content

28th Sep 2023 Wellbeing

Optimal Nutrition for Menopause
Many see menopause as something to fear, but it is a natural process and an opportunity to take stock of your health and improve it. 
One of the best ways to do this is by paying attention to your diet and ensuring you are getting all the nutrients you need to move into the next phase of life with grace and ease. 
Finding the optimal nutrition for menopause is a personal process and depends upon your overall health, lifestyle, genetics, and any symptoms you may be experiencing. However, some foods deserve an honorable mention, as we will discuss below. But first, let’s take a look at how your diet can affect your hormones and why that is important during menopause.

Diet and Hormones

Menopause occurs when estrogen and progesterone levels fall, causing menstruation to become irregular and eventually stop. The average age at which it occurs is 51, but it can vary greatly and depends upon both genetics and lifestyle. Diet might play a significant role and could also determine how likely you are to develop menopausal symptoms and other age-related diseases. 
This is because diet and nutrition have a major impact on your hormones, including estrogen and progesterone levels. Here are some of the best foods to include in your menopause diet and one you’ll definitely want to avoid. 

The Best Foods for Menopause

1. Healthy Cholesterol Sources
Believe it or not, cholesterol is essential for healthy hormones. It forms the basis of all steroid hormones, including estrogen and progesterone. It is also necessary for making vitamin D from sunlight, which is crucial for bone health and osteoporosis prevention. 
Although cholesterol is an important nutrient, high-fat sources should be avoided as they increase the risk of heart disease. Stick with healthy cholesterol sources, such as avocado, fish, and chicken instead.
2. Super Soybeans
Soybeans contain chemicals called phytoestrogens, which act like estrogen in the body. Some people believe they can help to reduce menopausal symptoms by mimicking the activity of this hormone. 
The jury is out, and evidence relating to soy and menopause is mixed. However, it is a super healthy food in its own right and a great source of plant-based protein. There are plenty of soy products to choose from, including edamame beans, tofu, and tempeh. 
However, one word of caution is that people with estrogen-sensitive conditions should consult a doctor before increasing their soy consumption significantly. 
3. Say "Yes" to Yams
Yams contain a chemical called diosgenin, which can be used as a basis to create steroid hormones in a lab. Some have hypothesized that they may be beneficial during menopause for this reason, although clinical research is lacking. 
Even so, yams are a great source of complex carbohydrates and may be beneficial for maintaining metabolic health. They are a staple food in Okinawa, Japan, a group of islands well-known for its above-average life expectancy. 
4. Marvellous Maca
Maca is a root vegetable that is popular in South America and is becoming well-known worldwide. It has adaptogenic properties, making it a great way to help your body adjust to stress, and it is also promoted as a hormonal balancer. In fact, research has shown that maca has some very tangible benefits for menopause. 
Fresh maca is not widely available, but you will easily find it as a powder you can mix into soups or smoothies for a convenient way to boost your health. 
5. Keep Your Gut Happy with Probiotics
Probiotic foods help to maintain gut health, which is key for hormonal balance, and a whole host of other benefits. They work by enhancing the population of helpful microorganisms that live inside the human gut. 
Some examples of probiotic foods and drinks include yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, and kombucha. Look for fresh (unpasteurized) versions, as these will have the most benefits. 

What to Avoid

Processed Foods 

Processed foods are the enemy of hormonal health and should be avoided as much as possible. Moreover, they are often loaded with unhealthy fats, salt, sugar, and artificial additives that increase the risk of chronic disease. 
Eat homemade food with simple ingredients wherever possible. Include plenty of fresh veggies, lean protein, and healthy fats. 
If you do not have time to cook from scratch every night, consider making large batches of your favorite dishes and freezing the extra portions so you always have a healthy ready meal at hand. Your body will thank you later! 

The Bottom Line on Nutrition and Menopause 

Menopausal nutrition is complicated, and the above are just a few examples of some foods to include and avoid in your diet. Remember to consult a doctor or dietician before making significant changes, and use common sense to create a meal plan that works for you and your budget. Visit Premium Jane for more tips on healthy eating and unique supplement ideas. 

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