Wouldn’t it be so great to sail through period-free years without hot flashes, brain fog and other hormone-triggered arghs? A decrease in estrogen after menopause can wreak havoc on our bodies, causing everything from dry mouth to achy joints. Ob-gyn Vanita Suri, M.D. and gynecologist Sergey Solskyy, M.D. weighed in with some easy tips for some of the most common symptoms associated with "the change."
Dry mouth? Salt Your Sips
Estrogen increases saliva production, so it’s no wonder 45 percent of women notice mouth dryness when this hormone begins to drop after menopause, says Dr. Suri. “Dry mouth can cause bad breath, gum sensitivity and even swallowing problems.”
To erase that parched feeling instantly, mix a pinch of Himalayan salt ($26.99, Amazon), which contains 84 minerals and trace elements that help fluid absorption, into a tall glass of water and sip.
Achy joints? Stroll Around the Block
Progesterone reduces joint swelling and raises the pain threshold, so when hormone levels drop during menopause, two in three women feel more stiff and sore.
An easy Rx: Head out for a 10-minute stroll, which can cut achy symptoms by 84 percent for three hours. Scientists at Northwestern University in Illinois say gentle motion flushes trapped fluids out of joint tissues, plus it prompts the release of natural pain-killing hormones (endorphins).
Menopot? Eat Eggs for Breakfast
Estrogen stalls belly-fat formation, so when estrogen levels plunge during menopause, 70 percent of us notice our waistline expanding. To sidestep a menopot, or the pot belly that develops as a result of the change and shed up to 17 pounds this year, simply add two eggs to your daily diet. University of Connecticut scientists say that eggs offer an ideal mix of nutrients that pinch-hit for estrogen, firing up metabolism in abdominal cells.
Hot flashes? Try This Extract
Siberian rhubarb extract is a plant estrogen that heightens your brain’s ability to control body temperature, says Dr. Solskyy.
Additionally, two studies show that taking 4 milligrams daily could relieve you of 75 percent of your hot flashes in four weeks. We like Life Extension Menopause 731 ($21.94, Amazon), though you should always ask your doctor before supplementing.
Feeling foggy? Turn on Some Music
Listening to your favorite tune will kick-start the release of energizing beta brain waves, sharpening your focus and concentration faster and more effectively than a cup of coffee!
Can't sleep? Take Some Melatonin
Taking 3 milligrams of melatonin ($7.64, Amazon) nightly eases anxiety, night sweats and a host of other menopausal miseries for 90 percent of women in 12 weeks, as this sleep hormone helps your brain react calmly to estrogen dips.
This story originally appeared in our print magazine.
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