So there I was enjoying a dinner out with my husband and some friends, when this wave of warmth overwhelmed me. What the heck?? Why am I all of a sudden hot with a side of slight nausea? Is this my first hot flash? How can it be, I am only 45…
And for those who know me, I am always cold..so this was weird for me.
Hormones are a funny thing, they sneak up on you when you are least expecting it. Well with my background in holistic nutrition, I set on a mission to help my body work naturally through this natural change and lessen, if not eliminate the symptoms.
First step was to talk to my Mom and ask when she started menopause as we can take the same timeline as our moms did. Well when I told her ‘I think I had my first hot flash’ she laughed. Gee, thanks Mom!! Second step was to make an appointment with my Naturopathic Doctor to do a saliva hormone test. Why did I chose to see a naturopathic doctor and do a saliva test and not my family doctor with a blood test? With my background in holistic nutrition, I knew that most medical doctors do not do saliva tests. Saliva tests are more accurate to the levels of hormones. Blood tests only measure the total hormone levels and is not an accurate reflection of the hormones available in the body.
After getting the results, it showed that there were some unbalances between the good estrogen and the bad estrogen. I needed to make the estrogens come into balance.
So I looked to the liver. Our liver is the powerhouse of our body. At any given moment it carries out 36,000 different functions, (WOW), one being the balancing of hormones. Keeping our liver healthy will aid in keeping our hormones balanced. I looked to food first, with some supplementation.
Some great liver friendly foods:
- Lemon water (morning routine)
- Apples, greens, artichokes, beets
(check out the Roasted Beet Salad post under Quick and Easy)
- Dandelion Root Tea
I also researched acupuncture to help with hormone balancing. This is an alternative health modality that I have never pursued before. Acupuncture is the based on Traditional Chinese Medicine, where tiny needles are inserted at specific points on your body to help balance the energies. Used mostly for pain relief, acupuncture is now widely used for a diverse range of conditions. So I thought, why not give it a try, can’t hurt. (Oh, other then the needles ). After a few sessions, I noticed a huge improvement. Along with my lifestyle changes, I had not had any other hot flashes, my interrupted sleep was no longer and my cycles had less symptoms of bloating and breast tenderness. I was feeling great!
I was not just going to go into the next stage of my life feeling like, ok this is it but I am going to go into it as ‘THIS IS IT”!! I am going to embrace it and work to be the best version of me yet!!
Note: These are the things that worked for me and of course they are other regimes that will help as well. I urge everyone to be their own advocate for health and research to see what is best for you.