The Vitamin-D Deficiency Crisis

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Our Vitamin-D levels are lower than ever before due to our increased use of sun protection and can decrease even more in the winter when there is less sunlight.

Vitamin-D is crucial for bone and skin health and can help stop diabetes developing as it aids the function of the pancreas, which controls blood sugar.

Links have also been found between Vitamin-D deficiency and heart disease and cancer. An oral spray of Vitamin-D3 is an easily absorbable supplement.

Good Mood Foods No. 5 - Fermented Foods

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Fermented Foods contain high levels of probiotics, which top up the healthy bacteria that naturally live in our intestine.

They are known for aiding in digestion, boosting the immune system and cleaning the gut. They’re a key contributor to the health of the gut-brain axis and have a calming effect on the body, specifically helping with aggression.

Fermented foods containing probiotics include: kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, pickles and live yoghurt.

Good Mood Foods No. 3 - Salmon

Salmon is packed with Omega-3 fatty acids, which is a proven mood booster.

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Omega-3 plays a vital part of our body’s cell manufacturing, making our hair shiny and skin plump and glowing.

If you cannot afford fresh salmon, tinned salmon is a great alternative as well as tinned mackerel and sardines. Sardines have the added benefit of high levels of calcium due to their edible bones.

An Asian-Style Diet Can Help Menopausal Women

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Plant or phytoestrogens, typically found in an Asian diet, may help keep your hormones in balance by mimicking the oestrogen hormone.

A high intake of phytoestrogens is thought to explain why hot flushes and other menopausal symptoms rarely occur in populations consuming a predominantly plant-based diet.

You can increase your intake of phytoestrogens by eating more: organic soy milk and soya flour, linseeds, tofu, tempeh and miso, pumpkins seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, celery, rhubarb and green beans.

Sleep Patterns While Peri-Menopausal

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No matter how nutritious your diet is and how much exercise you get, your health will suffer if you don't get enough restorative sleep.

It's not only the quantity of sleep you get that matters; the quality of your sleep is also important. To maintain optimal hormonal balance, aim for at least seven hours of high-quality sleep per night.

Inadequate or poor-quality sleep has been shown to decrease fullness hormones, increase hunger and stress hormones, reduce growth hormones and increase insulin resistance.

Hanging Out for That Large Glass of Wine

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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.

Good Mood Foods No. 1 - Coffee

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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.

I Need Chocolate Now!

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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.


How to Cope With the Clocks Changing

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.

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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!