Hot flushes. Mood swings. Weight gain. Weakening bones. Ba ba bing.
You’ve all experienced various levels of premenstrual tension. Maybe you were one of the lucky ones who just shed a dainty tear at a toilet roll TV advert featuring puppies, a day before you came on. Maybe you had furious migraines, got horribly bloated and HATED everything (except chocolate), for at least a week prior to hemorrhaging your pants off. At both extremes, you were controlled, or at least ‘altered’ by them hormones.
Menopause = PMT x 1000
Yet despite experiencing these periods, on average 450 times in our lifetime, we still find it extremely hard to step outside of ourselves and recognize that what is happening is not necessarily how we ‘normally’ feel.
We’re not normally so tearful, nor are we normally so angry, nor do we normally feel, in simple terms, quite so bloody shit. But it is real in that moment and we have to strive to control our tongues and/or our tears.
So when ‘normal’ leaves the building; when there is virtually zero control and when your whore is moaning BIGTIME, what do you do?
Ask your mum?
I asked my mum (apparently we often meno very similarly to our mothers). She told me she was a complete bitch for a year; she couldn’t really recall anything about the hot flushes and/or sweats – she lived in a very hot country at the time, so there was no gauging it. That wasn’t amazingly helpful.
I KNOW I am affected by this meno-bitch; simple logic tells me that. But I struggle to sieve out my normal truth from my whore-moaner. How can I tell if my despair, or my sudden anxiety, or my snappiness is unjustified or not? My hormones make everything feel so convincing and real, that I can’t.
But what I can do, and what I suggest you do too, is to do everything possible to minimize these symptoms. Embrace this challenging time, grab this whore by the hair and ‘own’ her.
Help yourselves as much as you can with your mind, your diet and (for some) HRT.
HOT FLASHES. I live in a (currently) cold country, so I absolutely DO notice my hot flashes. A very good, old friend of mine explained how she dealt with these infernos. She looked at them as empowering, she was in awe of what her body was capable of – going from 0-60 in seconds, furnace boiling, suddenly soaked in sweat, and then, just as quickly, it’s passed. It’s incredible; it’s something top magicians couldn’t do…okay it’s also embarrassing, inconvenient and causes way more laundry. But be little fascinated by it, because it is pretty amazing.
DIET: there are several foods and drinks you should avoid to minimize the flushes, as well as some foods that help to balance your hormones naturally. With balanced hormones, you are more likely to keep control of weight gain too.
What NOT to eat and drink.
- caffeine – one of the WORST for hot flashes, moodiness and sleep problems
- alcohol – ditto
- spicy foods – can contribute to more hot flashes, but they’re no where near as damaging as caffeine, alcohol and
- sugar – cut out sugar and you’re fighting fatigue and weight gain
- refined carbohydrates – high carb foods contribute to fatigue and moodiness
What TO eat and drink
- water, plenty of it – this helps; decrease bloating, vaginal dryness and dry skin
- fresh fibrous fruits, nuts and vegetables – you need much more calcium now, so go for lentils, almonds, sardines and dark green leafy veg
- whole grains – oatmeal, quinoa, barley, brown rice – all provide B vitamins which help boost energy, manage stress, and keep the digestive system functioning.
- soy and flaxseed are thought to mimic estrogen, (this isn’t proven) which can help with mood swings.
- vitamin D – if you don’t live in a sunny climate, and don’t eat a ton of mackerel or tuna every day, then get some Vitamin D supplements. You should take 1000-2000 international units daily. Vitamin D is essential for calcium absorption (which is essential for bone density) and helps with depression and anxiety.
So all in all, this whore-moaning meno is far more manageable if you DO accept what’s happening and help yourself as much as you can.
Roll with the punches girls and, hopefully, you won’t do the punching.