Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Can normal menopause be delayed?

Normal menopause is a natural process in women lifecycle that cannot be reversed, stopped, or delayed. The common psychological perception among many women is that it they will be able to delay the menopause, they could also delay natural body and mind aging process altogether. This idea stems from our preconceptions about menopause — that once woman goes through “the change” and becomes postmenopausal that she is officially an old lady.

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While that perception is absolutely ungrounded, it is quite strong, and many women are desperately looking for the efficient ways at least to delay the menopause. While these ways are to be discovered yet, you can definitely lessen the chances of entering menopause prematurely and minimize the symptoms of perimenopause and menopause when they arise. By taking care of yourself nutritionally, hormonally and emotionally, you can better maintain hormonal balance and ease many of the disruptive symptoms that arise during this transition.

Here are several practical recommendations on how you diminish the risk of entering early menopause and lessen the negative impact of menopause symptoms.

  1. Stop Smoking. Stop smoking to delay onset of early menopause. Smoking restricts blood flow while causing blood pressure to increase to make up for this restriction. Smoking also affects the reproductive organs by prematurely aging eggs contained in ovaries.

There are many different aerobic activities you can do to stay active. Examples of these activities include swimming and running. If you have the money, you could also invest in exercise equipment for your home so you don’t have to go outside.

  1. Limit Alcohol and Coffee. Several recent studies showed that excessive alcohol and caffeine consumption may escalate the early menopause, possible by 2-3 years. While there is no need to eliminate these substances completely, it is recommended to decrease coffee consumption to 1 cup a day, and alcohol consumption to up to several shots a week.
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  1. Adjust your Diet. When it comes to nutrition, the best thing to do is to enjoy a balanced diet. Be sure to eat a varied diet that will expose you to the vitamins and minerals your body needs to maintain its healthy status. While this will not delay the onset of menopause per se, it will ensure a healthy and timely occurrence of this natural event in a woman’s life. Aside from seeking to maintain a balanced diet, there are a few items to focus on that will help to ensure a healthy delay for menopause onset.

It’s also a good idea to start taking vitamin E supplements if you want to try to delay menopause. Vitamin E mimics the properties of estrogen, the main hormone that suffers decreased production as a result of menopause.

Vitamin D keeps grabbing more headlines these days, and it’s also important for maintaining a woman’s reproductive-related health. Vitamin D is actually made naturally by the human body through prolonged exposure to sunlight. Its absorption is aided chemically by the presence of calcium, and in that sense, the two go hand in hand. If enough natural sunlight exposure is not possible to obtain, look no further than the readily available vitamin D fortified milk. Soy milk is also an excellent option.

Riding on the back of vitamin D, be sure to include more calcium in your diet. It works to maintain strong bones, which are sometimes a victim of menopause. It also may delay menopause onset. It’s easy to get both vitamin D and calcium at the same time with the consumption of fortified milk.

Magnesium is also important to keep in mind. This is found readily in nuts such as cashews, peanuts and almonds. Keep these nuts around as a snack, and you’ll be sure to have your fill of magnesium. Not only does magnesium help with menopause symptoms, it may even help to delay menopause.

Eat foods containing phytoestrogens such as soy and whole grains. Menopause is evident when the hormone, estrogen decreases dramatically. Keeping up estrogen levels in the body by intake of phyto estrogens will stimulate natural hormone production, thus putting off perimenopause.

  1. Take Natural Supplements. There are supplements that can help a woman with the symptoms of menopause. One of these supplements that have been proven to help with the many different symptoms is Zoft Balance Gum. The Zoft Balance Gum is a blend of natural extracts such as Black Root Extract (Cohosh), Dong Quai Root, Wild Yam Root(Mexican) and Damiana Leaf. These extracts are incredibly powerful and have been used for hundreds of years all around the world to help relieve women from the stress and the pain that is associated with menopause.

Another extract helping the body cope with menopause is Dong Quai Root, it is a very important Chinese herb and known as a great nourishing blood tonic that will help to make the menstrual cycle more regulated. It has been used for hundreds of years in the Asian community to help balance hormones in females which alleviates the symptoms of menopause as well as pre-menstrual tension. The Dong Quai Root also has an antispasmodic quality that will help relax your muscles.

  1. Exercise Regularly. Exercise regularly to keep the blood flowing and immune system normal. Proper body function through exercise increases the body's hormone production naturally. Estrogen production, as well as serotonin levels, is kept normal for longer than usual.

  1. Hormone Replacement Therapy. If you know your mother had an early menopause then it may be worth speaking to your doctor so that HRT can be prescribed at the first signs of your menopause. However, HRT is quite intrusive health related procedure, and you may be experiencing some undesirable side effects, so it should be used after proper consideration and detailed discussion with your primary physician.

  1. Accept Yourself. Embrace your body's changes. Menopause symptoms may come on slowly, although you have successfully delayed early onset menopause. Do not be ashamed of an occasional hot flash or mood swing. Realize that it is part of being a woman and you are simply entering a new phase of life with many benefits.

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Ongoing Research

A group of researchers at Harvard have found a small reservoir of cells in mice that are capable of replenishing the ovaries when the mice are sterilized. It may be that this reservoir of cells isn't present in humans and only further research will be able to confirm this, however the head of the research group is optimistic. If it is found that there are cells within the body that can stimulate the production of new cells within the ovaries then many fertility problems could be solved. It would also be a way to delay menopause because the reservoir cells could be harvested in early adulthood and returned to the body at the first signs of menopause so that new eggs are produced and the ovaries don't shut down.

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