During the menopause alcohol can increase the likelihood of hot flushes because it raises the body temperature. It can also become a go to, seeming to offer comfort when struggling with the physical and mental changes you may be going through.
Mood elevation is only temporary and can often be followed by a crash. It can also aggravate the hormonal imbalance. Try reducing your intake at this time.
Coffee is a great mood lifter, boosting mental focus and alertness and athletic performance. It can even protect against Type 2 diabetes and decrease the risk of depression, but the less you consume the better!
Avoid sugary milky coffee drinks which can cause bloating and limit caffeine consumption to about 300mg a day. Have once a day when you want to be most alert.
The imbalance of hormones during your period can lower your blood sugar meaning you can crave foods with high sugar and fat content. Try and maintain a healthy balanced diet with all the food groups.
Eating low GI carbs and protein will help you feel fuller longer and curb cravings by stabilising blood sugar levels.
Avoid the quick fix of sugar as it will only make you crash and crave more sugar which will also lead to more bloating, water retention and weight gain.
Every year there is a movement to stop the clocks going back, but for now in the UK the changing of the clocks is here to stay.
We are not machines and the effect on our bodies can be disruptive and a shock to the system. This sudden change disturbs our sleep/wake circadian rhythm and it can take a while to adjust.
Our routine stays the same but our melatonin levels take a while to catch up with the early sunset. Plus it’s pretty depressing looking out the window at 4pm and it’s already dark!
You can help your body gently ease into the new rhythm by eating at the time you would have eaten before, an hour earlier, and going to go bed earlier, in line with the old time, and gradually adjusting.
Don’t panic if you are waking up early, as you can use this time to meditate, chant, do some deep breathing exercises, yoga, stretching or even start on your emails. For larks this can actually be an advantage!
Weight-bearing exercise is essential for combating osteoporosis as it is good for bone density.
It can also increase levels of testosterone which boosts the libido.
Cardio is great for weight loss, and heart fitness, but avoid high-intensity during this time as this can aggravate the stress hormones.
The sex hormones are the driving force of our libido and during menopause they diminish. You can combat this by rebalancing the hormones with whichever means feels right for you — be it HRT, bio-identical hormone replacement, vitamin and minerals supplements, or adaptogenic herbs such as Maca and Siberian Ginseng. Sometimes a small dose of testosterone can also help.
Do you ever find yourself struggling to remember the name of something, or with your working memory, the ability to calculate the tip in a restaurant, for example?
Hormonal rebalancing through HRT or herbal medicine can combat this, as well as a diet rich in essential fatty acids such as oily fish, nuts and seeds.
To beat those hot flushes, cut down on caffeine as this can trigger hot flushes and anxiety.
Try calming herbal teas instead such as chamomile, fennel and mint.
Meditation can train the body to not trigger the fight or flight response.
Once it is triggered it is very difficult to pull it back. It also promotes feelings of well-being and harmony.
I am happy to share that some of my advice on keeping healthy in the winter months was recently featured in two articles on winter health and wellness in Iceni Magazine and Amor Magazine.
Some of the tips include increasing your Vitamin D intake, arranging your space to encourage feelings of wellness, and many more.
I am delighted to announce the release of the second edition of my book Body Cycles on Kindle and Issue, just in time for Christmas and New Year inspiration!
If you are interested in an alternative to the yearly diet narrative and want a new way of maintaining your health all year-round take a look here.
Many thanks to everyone who attended my sold-out talk at 12 Hay Hill on stress and professional burnout! I received great feedback from the audience and truly appreciated the support provided from Hay Hill. It's a lovely club.
It is always a rewarding experience to discuss and provide strategies for those who need to manage stress.
Ahead of my talk on How to Recognise Burnout and Reduce Stress, I have been thinking a lot about the role that food plays in protecting our body from external and internal stressors, and reducing (or promoting) inflammation. This is why this week I want to talk about the importance of eating enough FAT, and how you can add more good fat to your diet by eating this week’s featured ingredient: WALNUTS.Read More
An update from Covent Garden, London on what I have been up to in the first months of 2017.
I talk about my travels to Europe and Africa, the changing seasons, and getting ready for Summer.
Don't forget to subscribe to my Youtube channel to be the first to watch my upcoming video on Summer Health Tips.