Many symptoms of menopause can be diminished through watching diet and nutrition. While menopausal women may not be able to completely erase all symptoms associated with the reduction of estrogen in the body, certain foods can make these symptoms better or worse. Overall good nutrition may be beneficial to lessen the discomfort often experienced during menopause, but specific symptoms can often be alleviated with certain types of foods.
Foods That May Ease Symptoms
A healthy and balanced diet goes a long way to improving overall health and may actually help a woman’s body to better cope with the changes experienced during menopause.
Foods and beverages made with soy lightly mimic the effects that estrogen has on the body to help reduce symptoms caused by lower estrogen levels during menopause.
Fruits and Vegetables:
Certain fruits and vegetables contain phytoestrogens that also provide a slight estrogenic response in the body. These foods also contain boron, which is essential to healthy bones and helps the body to hold estrogen. A few of the fruits and vegetables that contain both boron and phytoestrogens include:
- Plums, Prunes
- Strawberries, Red Raspberries
- Apples, Pears
- Broccoli, Cauliflower
- Sweet Potatoes
Ground flaxseed or flaxseed oil contains beneficial lignans that help metabolize hormones and also act like phytoestrogens in the body. Flaxseed also contains healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Whole flaxseed may be difficult to digest, so women should be sure to grind the seeds before consuming.
Foods rich in Vitamin E can help reduce the severity of hot flashes, dry skin, and vaginal dryness. Natural food sources include deep green leafy vegetables, nuts, such as almonds, peanuts, and hazelnuts, broccoli, sunflower seeds, papaya, and avocado.
Getting enough calcium can help you to sleep better at night, which is often difficult during menopause. Diary products, dark leafy greens, and fortified foods can help you get enough calcium.
Foods That May Increase Menopause Symptoms
While certain foods can help to alleviate symptoms commonly associated with menopause, other foods can make symptoms worse. Some foods to reduce or avoid include:
- Fatty foods
- Refined Carbohydrates
- Spicy Foods
- Hot Foods and Beverages