How a Nutritionist Can Help Improve Menopause Symptoms
Going through menopause, or “the change,” is often difficult for many women due to the wide array of menopausal symptoms they may experience. Did you know, however, that your diet can be a significant factor in reducing these uncomfortable symptoms? Let’s take a look at how visiting a nutritionist can help you improve menopause symptoms. (1)
How food can affect your menopause symptoms
Food can, directly and indirectly, affect your menopause symptoms. If you are a younger woman, it is important to take control of your diet before entering perimenopause, which is the stage before the onset of menopause.
When your dietary intake mainly consists of carbohydrates and sugary foods, your insulin levels sky-rocket, causing a hormonal imbalance. Since menopause is the result of changes in your hormone levels, it is of vital importance to ensure that you curb improper eating habits to stave off early perimenopause.
When you are suffering from anxiety, depression, or insomnia, the effect of a hormone imbalance intensifies and makes your menopausal symptoms worse. In fact, it can even lead to many serious health complications. A prolonged intake of carbs can ultimately result in conditions such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes or insulin resistance, as well as polycystic ovarian syndrome. These conditions are difficult to manage effectively during menopause. Fortunately, controlling your sugar intake and following the correct diet can alleviate many of the symptoms almost immediately.
Whether you are perimenopausal or menopausal, it is also important to ensure that your calcium intake is sufficient, that you drink enough water, and that you limit your alcohol consumption. (2)
There is a lot of information online about proper eating habits and how they affect the symptoms of the change. It is crucial to remember that your physiology, medical history, and lifestyle is unique. As such, the severity of your menopausal symptoms is also unique. There may be general guidelines on how to use your diet to find relief from certain symptoms, but don’t always solve your particular problem, if at all.
Visiting a nutritionist is the perfect way to get a complete and custom solution to menopause-related issues. Dieticians usually prescribe a diet that is compatible with your lifestyle and easy for you to follow. They may also make additional dietary recommendations to help you sleep better, while simultaneously increasing your energy levels during the day.
One of the more obscure reasons to schedule a visit to a nutritionist is that it is an effective way to give structure to your diet. Furthermore, it also provides an element of accountability. Knowing that a professional has recommended a diet that is custom-made for you nearly guarantees a positive outcome, and can make you feel more motivated to stick to a specific eating plan.
How to find a nutritionist in your area
It is important that you find a nutritionist in your area who is suitable to your needs and requirements. A sports nutritionist, for example, may be able to help you, but may not have adequate experience in the dietary needs of menopausal women.
One way of finding a nutritionist in your area is to ask female friends or relatives if they ever visited a nutritionist that helped them minimize their menopausal symptoms by adjusting their diet. Online review sites can also assist in finding professionals that specialize in such issues as perimenopause and the change.
There are many websites that have built-in features aimed at helping you find a nutritionist or dietician that is right for you. Using these websites is incredibly easy, and allow you to filter out professionals that are located elsewhere or specialize in areas that are not applicable to you. You can also check out online directories and websites of nutritionists in your area. Read their “About Us” sections to find out if their services will meet your needs.
Be sure to come prepared to your first appointment
In order to get the best results from your visit to the dietician, you have to make sure that you can provide them with sufficient information to enable them to determine your dietary needs. A nutritionist must acquire many facts and details about your particular case, including menopausal symptoms and overall health.
While you are following a special eating pattern, you also have to ensure that you keep track of the positive and negative changes in your symptoms, moods, and energy levels. Before your very first visit, prepare sufficiently by keeping a record of your symptoms, sleep, current diet, and how you feel.
You’ll be amazed to see how many midlife issues can be resolved by changing your dietary habits. Start the process of finding and booking regular visits to a dietary professional today.
Vergo is an interactive program that gives women the tools to understand their Menopause.
- The Vergo iOS symptom tracker (emailable to your healthcare provider)
- The Vergo QuikTrak symptom tracker (the refillable pdf version, also emailable)
- Vergo’s Interactive Education Program, Journey Without a Roadmap: Understanding Menopause
- Curated guides to the biggest questions and hottest topics around menopause symptoms and treatment options
- Must-have information on male menopause: There’s an Andropause? (an overview of what your guy could be going through)
- Terminology Cheat Sheets
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- Kelly, R. (n.d.). Irish Nutrition + Diabetic Institute. Retrieved from https://www.indi.ie/fact-sheets/fact-sheets-on-women-s-health/541-nutrition-and-the-menopause.html
- Wylie-Rosett, J. (n.d.). The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Retrieved from https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/81/5/1223S/4649806
- Retrieved from British Nutrition Foundation: https://www.nutrition.org.uk/healthyliving/lifestages/menopause.html