Perimenopause symptoms can be prove to be difficult, but there are natural treatments to help cope with this stage of life. Many of these treatments involve life changes, such as exercising or changing of diet. For some women, however, periomenopause can occur gradually, with little to no symptoms. For others, perimenopause symptoms are more noticeable.The process of menopause can be divided into three different parts: perimenopause, menopause and postmenopause. Perimenopause refers to the time period before menopause actually starts. Perimenopause causes are natural and coincide with the aging process. (1) Natural perimenopause treatment includes a healthy diet and lifestyle along with herbal supplements and treatments to help remedy unwanted symptoms.
The major hormones that are involved in perimenopause, menopause and postmenopause are estrogen, progesterone and testosterone. During perimenopause, ovarian function and estrogen production begin to become erratic. Perimenopause causes a woman’s cycle to become unpredictable. Some women may start noticing perimenopause symptoms in their early 40’s. And when the ovaries stop making a high percentage of the body’s estrogen, a woman enters menopause. (2)
- Irregular periods
- Hot flashes and night sweats
- Insomnia and changes in sleep quality
- Gradual weight gain and increased abdominal fat
- Changes in sex drive
- Vaginal dryness
- Thinning hair and dry skin
- Changes in breast tissue
- Mood swings
- Heart palpitations
- Migraines and frequent headaches
- Poor concentration
1. Eat a Healthy Diet
Changing what you eat very well may improve your life in many aspects! And, to be sure, perimenopause treatment includes eating a healthy diet full of fresh, whole foods. Processed foods are often full of hormones and additives that can wreak havoc on your body. Why put it through more unpleasantness by consuming a poor diet? Instead, choose foods that will help promote the ease of perimenopause symptoms. Once you change your diet and can stick to these changes, you will likely see not only a decrease in your symptoms, but improvement overall in your quality of life. Foods that are helpful during perimenopause and menopause include organic fruits and vegetables, high-fiber foods like nuts and seeds probiotics, omega-3 foods and lean proteins.
2. Use Supplements and Herbal Treatments
Certain herbs and supplements can help reduce the severity of symptoms associated with perimenopause, including hot flashes, insomnia, and anxiety. Adaptogen herbs can help balance your hormone levels and help your body better deal with stress. There are numerous herbs and supplements available to help ease unpleasant symptoms associated with out-of-whack hormones. For example, you might try maca or American ginseng, black cohosh, red clover, raspberry leaf, and St. John’s wort. (3) You can learn more about these herbs and supplements (and what they can do to help diminish perimenopause symptoms) in the sections below.
How Maca Root Can Help Reduce Perimenopause Symptoms
Maca can help increase progesterone and the luteinizing hormone, which is what stimulates ovary function. Additionally, maca is said to stimulate estradiol and can suppress the stress hormone, cortisol. Maca may also help improve your concentration and decrease nervousness.
Black Cohosh, Raspberry Leaf, Red Clover, and St. John’s Wort for Perimenopause
Black cohosh helps ease perimenopause symptoms by reducing night sweats, vaginal dryness, moodiness, and and hot flashes. And if you have a heavy menstrual flow, raspberry leaf may be able to help correct this. It is believed to help strengthen the uterus. Red clover, meanwhile, can help ease hot flashes as well as treat breast pain. And St. John’s Wort can help ease anxiety, depression, and may help ease intense PMS symptoms.
If you aren’t exercising, it may account for the severity of many of the symptoms you are experiencing. That applies to most situations in life, of course, and not just perimenopause. But it just so happens exercising indeed can help relieve certain perimenopause symptoms. Exercising on a regular basis can help manage perimenopause symptoms by lowering stress levels, boosting mood, balancing hormones and helping you maintain a healthy weight. Aim for aerobic and strength-training exercises at least three times per week to improve sleep quality and reduce inflammation. (4) While it may be difficult to start a new exercise regime, you will likely find that, overtime, you feel better, have more energy, and that your symptoms have diminished.
4. Get Enough Sleep
We’re all busy and running through life at a million miles per hour. It’s all too easy to forgo sleep to keep up with life demands. Or, as is the case for some people, there is plenty time for sleep, but it doesn’t come easily. Either way, sleep is an important part of perimenopause treatment. Your body needs sleep to restore energy, balance hormones and keep cortisol levels under control. Aim for 7-9 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night. That’s right–if you wake several times during the night or toss and turn a lot, you are not getting quality sleep. This can affect or worsen your perimenopause symptoms. If you suffer from insomnia or other sleep problems, try using lavender essential oil, writing in a journal or taking a warm bath before bed to help prepare your body for a peaceful night’s rest. (5)
5. Lower Stress Levels
Perimenopause can cause sleep problems, anxiety, fatigue and depression. Manage your stress levels to help beat unwanted symptoms. Try natural stress-relievers such as exercise, meditation, reading, volunteering or taking a walk in nature. Additionally, changing your diet may help reduce stress levels. When you’re not eating the right foods, your body isn’t as well-equipped as it could be to cope with stress. There is an undeniable connection between your gut and your brain. Furthermore, to it’s important that you spend time doing things you enjoy to help keep your stress levels low and naturally boost your mood.