There is a time in a woman’s life when she enters the next phase of her life, menopause. With the cessation of the menstrual cycle, there are many other symptoms such as hot flashes, irritability, weight gain, impacting bone health, and many hormonal changes. It occurs a year after a woman’s final period. Although it is a natural transition, women may have to endure uncomfortable symptoms as they eventually make it to this transitory phase.
With dwindling of Estrogen levels, it may lead to unwanted weight gain, higher cholesterol levels, and increased risk for chronic diseases. But instead of fearing this transitory phase of your life, you should welcome it with gusto and fight the symptoms with nutrient-dense foods. As Hippocrates once said famously, ‘let food be thy medicine, medicine is thy food.’ The right foods can indeed nourish your body and help you keep fit and healthy.
Vitamin D and omega-three fatty acids are two nutrients that you need most during this period. Omega 3 fatty acids offer the right kind of fats to ease out menopause symptoms such as night sweats. Vitamin D or the sunshine vitamin is increasingly turning out to be the top vitamin to keep chronic diseases at bay, including diabetes and cancer. Adequate amounts of the vitamin are necessary to maintain bone health.
Women who are peri-menopausal or menopausal load up on calcium to improve their bone health. Still, it is the culmination of vitamins such as calcium, magnesium, vitamin K2, and of course, Vitamin D that can boost your bone health. Salmon is a good source of vitamin D and omega-three fatty acids and can be a potent addition to your diet plan. Also, prepare it any way salmon is right down delicious! A bonus.
Cruciferous veggies are a powerful way to boost your estrogen levels. But many women avoid it, especially women who suffer from thyroid problems giving all cruciferous veggies, a blanket ban status. It has a host of phytonutrients that can balance the estrogen amount in the body. The right levels can reduce your risk for breast cancer.
If you are afraid these veggies can affect your thyroid health, cook it properly instead of having it raw as a salad. If you thought that it was only milk that can improve your bones, well, it is not the case. Green leafy veggies and cruciferous veggies like broccoli are, in fact, fantastic for your bone health. And a plateful of broccoli several days a week can even keep menopausal weight gain at bay.
Eggs are another source of vitamin D-rich food, but they are also full of other nutrients such as iron, which many women lack. Besides that, egg also reduces cholesterol levels. And hence reduce your risk for heart disease and also the risk for obesity.
It helps that eggs can be cooked any way you want and still end up tasting delicious. Baked, boiled, scrambled, have it anyway your heart desires. It will not only provide your body with all the essential nutrients and satiate your hunger pangs.
Many peri-menopausal and menopausal women avoid carbs to stave off weight gain. But they need those good carbs to keep their blood sugar levels stable, feed the good gut bacteria, and provide your body with the essential B vitamins. Whole grains offer your body the required amounts of plant protein that helps balance your energy levels and is instrumental in maintaining your metabolic health.
So, whether to have soy or avoid soy? Well, that’s a debatable topic. The world seems to have mixed views on the same. At the same time, research offers conflicting news. It is interesting to note that parts of the world like Japan, that consume the maximum soy, of course, the natural kind, are not only able to sail through menopause but also reduce their risk of breast cancer in a significant way.
The humble bean has both its detractors and fans. But when it comes to soy, do as the Japanese do. You should pick edamame, tofu over soybean oil, or soy milk, or genetically modified soy derivatives. Soy contains isoflavone compounds that have the potent power of reducing the growth of hormone-dependent cancers, such as breast, ovarian, and prostate cancers.
Include these potent foods in your diet and transition to the next phase of your life with health and happiness.