Women who are looking to do something to balance their hormones at home have some options and things they can do. Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) for women who are nearing or experiencing menopause has both strong opponents and supporters. Some women report weight loss and other report that HRT is a lot like an anti aging therapy. From bioidentical hormone therapy to other natural remedies, there are alternatives in the world of womens health and different menopause solutions.
How is bioidentical hormone therapy different from traditional HRT?
The big deal about bioidentical hormone therapy is that it uses compounds that are chemically and biologically identical to the hormones that are produced in the body. A woman’s hormones are not made anywhere else and if women need HRT, they need to get hormones that have been manufactured in a lab. The compounds used in non-bioidentical hormone therapy either come from synthetic sources or from animals. One source of Premarin is from getting a pregnant mare’s urine.
Other than the bioidentical hormone therapy compounds, none are exactly the same as what a woman’s body produces and is often metabolized into different forms of estrogen.
Both traditional HRT and bioidentical hormone therapy can be very helpful for many women. Others look to natural solutions to try first. Here are a few that can be tried at home.
- Lose weight. When people have too much fat on their body, it can produce estrogen on its own. Women who get to and stay at a healthy weight will not be as likely to produce too much hormones. A number of the methods people use to lose weight lead to being healthier overall. Eating less fat and processed food combined with leading a more active lifestyle can only lead to better health and that will help with the symptoms of menopause. If you are already a healthy weight, you should still add more activity to your routine.
- Up your intake of cruciferous vegetables. Vegetables such as bok choy, cauliflower, cabbage, Brussel Sprouts and broccoli are loaded with indole-3-carbinol (I3C). This breaks down in the human body into diindolylmethane (DIM. GThis can be very helpful for regulating the estrogen levels in a woman’s body. New research shows that these compounds may also prevent some cancers, such as breast cancer.
- Eat foods with phytoestrogens in them. These include soy products, sunflower seeds, bean sprouts, flax seeds, peas and garbanzo beans. Plant based compounds like phytoestrogens are used by the body to regulate hormone levels. There has been some controversy regarding soy but natural soy products such as tofu, edamame, soy sauce, miso and tempeh are good, healthy sources of soy.
- Consider using herbs. There are a number of herbs that can help with menopause symptoms, PMS issues, mood swings and even infertility. For some women, the shatavari herb has been found to be helpful in alleviating all of these symptoms. If you are interested in using herbs, you should talk to the people at your local health food store or seek out a herbalist. Although they are natural, supplements and herbal remedies can impact different people in different ways so it is important to take care when using them.
- Use belly breathing techniques. In recent studies, women, who took 15 minutes, two times a day and spent that time actively working on belly breathing techniques, were able to reduce incidents of night sweats and hot flashes. These women also reported a better sense of well being. Spending some time meditating every day can also reduce the amount of stress hormones in the body and that can help with the symptoms of menopause. Meditation can also help improve a woman’s overall health and well being. The healthier a woman is to start with, the easier it will be to deal with menopause.
The average age of a woman hitting menopause is 51. There are also women who are as young as being in their 30s or as old as being in their 60s who start menopause. Generally women should expect to reach it between 40 and 58. This has not changed in hundreds of years, even with changing life expectancies. If you are experiencing it, you can get help.