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Menopause & Mood Swing Support

Menopause is the result of a reduction in hormonal production in the ovaries. The change is not abrupt, but occurs over a few years and can last a decade, and is the normal and natural transition for women from potential child-bearing years to the next stage of life, the archetypal grandmother, crone or wise elder role. It begins with peri-menopause, the years prior to menopause when physiological changes occur.
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Menopause / Mood Swings Info

Menopause literally translates to "end of monthly cycles" (or end of monthly periods i.e. menstruation), it comes from the Greek word pausis (to stop) and the root men- (month). Menopause usually occurs in women in their late 40s or early 50s. It signals the end of the fertile phase of a woman's life.

Menopause is the result of a reduction in hormonal production in the ovaries. The change is not abrupt, but occurs over a few years and can last a decade, and is the normal and natural transition for women from potential child-bearing years to the next stage of life, the archetypal grandmother, crone or wise elder role.  It begins with peri-menopause, the years prior to menopause when physiological changes occur.

Hormonal changes produce physical and emotional symptoms which can be severe enough to disrupt daily activities and negatively influence a woman's sense of well-being. In addition, women who have some sort of functional disorder affecting the reproductive system (e.g., endometriosis, polycystic ovary syndrome, cancer of the reproductive organs) can go into menopause at a younger age than the normal timeframe. The functional disorders often significantly speed up the menopausal process and create more extreme physical and emotional issues than would otherwise be experienced during menopause.

Menopause is not uniquely human and has been observed in other mammals. There are some fantastic natural health remedies that can help with menopause.

The underlying causes of many peri-menopausal and menopausal problems is depleted nutrition.  At this stage of their lives women may have spent two or three decades expending much of their energy and inner resources on childbearing, breastfeeding, juggling childrearing and workplace commitments and coping with significant life stressors along the way.  By the time they reach their menopausal years their body’s nutrient reserves are often very depleted.

Oestrogen dominance is one of the primary causes of hormonal dysregulation in women.  Maintaining the balance of progesterone to oestrogen is essential for healthy function.  One role of progesterone is to counter the effects of oestrogen in the body, protecting against cancers of the reproductive system and other toxic effects of an over-abundance of oestrogen.  Increasingly women are experiencing a ratio of oestrogen to progesterone that is excessive.  It is in this context that we talk about oestrogen dominance. 

During peri-menopause when ovulation happens less frequently, ovarian progesterone production declines.  Oestrogen production also declines, however the relative ratio of oestrogen to progesterone in the body often remains high.  The main factors influencing this unhealthy ratio are dietary and environmental oestrogenic toxins.

Oestrogen deficiency is usually related to a low level of oestrogen’s precursor, progesterone.  A reduction in oestrogen production typically occurs in women approaching menopause, when ovarian hormone output decreases.  

Another important factor in menopausal hormonal dysregulation is adrenal and thyroid gland dysfunction.  Reduced progesterone output is one outcome of exhausted adrenals, making stress an important contributing factor in oestrogen dominance. As well as being a precursor to oestrogen production in the body, progesterone is also the hormonal precursor to other important hormones including cortisol and testosterone.     

Restoring the body’s biochemistry with the right balance of essential mineral compounds is the first step to improving cellular, tissue and organ function.  Omega 3 essential fatty acids are also a crucial element in healthy hormonal activity. 

Sage has traditionally been used for temperature balance, and motherwort is a calming nervous system tonic.

5-hydroxytryptophan, the direct precursor to serotonin, may help relieve symptoms by increasing the serotonin production. It is the intermediate step between tryptophan and serotonin.

Theanine, an amino acid found in most teas, can decrease the effects of menopause. In some studies sufferers reported effects that were comparable to “having a massage” or “taking a hot bath”.  Supplementing with Vitamin B6, zinc and magnesium can also alleviate the symptoms associated with menopause.

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