Is it hot in here?
While your hormones are on a roller coaster, there really is no magic “fix” but there is a lot you can do to make this time more manageable.
If your hot flashes are mild, try managing them with these lifestyle changes:
Keep cool. Slight increases in your body’s core temperature can trigger hot flashes. Dress in layers so that you can remove clothing when you feel warm.
Open windows or use a fan or air conditioner. Lower the room temperature, if you can. If you feel a hot flash coming on, sip a cold drink.
Watch what you eat and drink. Hot and spicy foods, caffeinated beverages and alcohol can trigger hot flashes. Learn to recognize your triggers and avoid them.
Relax. Some women find relief from mild hot flashes through meditation; slow, deep breathing; or other stress-reducing techniques. Even if these approaches don’t quell your hot flashes, they might provide other benefits, such as easing sleep disturbances that tend to occur with menopause.
Don’t smoke. Smoking is linked to increased hot flashes. By not smoking, you might reduce hot flashes, as well as your risk of many serious health conditions, such as heart disease, stroke and cancer.
Maintain a healthy weight. If you’re overweight or obese, losing weight might help ease your hot flashes.
Focus on cooling foods: melon, bean sprouts, tofu, white ocean fish, celery, apples, asparagus.
Avoid caffeine, alcohol, refined sugar and grains, spicy or greasy foods, food colourings, antibiotics, hormones, preservatives, and additives.
Include phytoestrogens, including organic soy and freshly ground flaxseeds daily.
Limit red meat to 2-3 serves every week.
At least 3 meals a day. Focus on the quality of your nutrients, not on calories.
Cut down on refined and high glycemic index carbs as found in processed and packaged foods.
Include plant or animal based protein at each meal.
Eat a variety of coloured fruits and vegetables daily.
Add in some healthy fats – oily fish, avocado, nuts, seeds, olive oil etc at each meal.
Sage tea has been shown to help reduce hot flushes. Enjoy chilled.
Mind and body approaches
A growing body of evidence suggests that certain techniques can help ease hot flushes, including:
Hypnosis. Can help reduce both the frequency and severity of hot flashes.
Mindfulness meditation. This type of meditation has you focus on what’s happening from moment to moment. Although not shown to relieve hot flushes, it might reduce how much they bother you.
Acupuncture. Some studies indicate that acupuncture might reduce the frequency and severity of hot flushes.
It is always best to consult with an accredited health practitioner (like me!) before taking supplements. People often assume that “natural” products cause no harm.
However before you spend a small fortune, you want to know:
Are they are the right supplement for your needs?
Are they going to be in a therapeutic dose to actually give you a result?
Is there any risk of potential interaction with any pharmaceutical medications you’re taking?