Many of us dread the menopause. It affects everyone differently, but with common symptoms like hot flushes, sweating, insomnia, anxiety and fatigue, who’s looking forward to it?
Weight gain can be the most daunting prospect, but it’s just one area that a healthy and balanced diet can help tackle. It’s well known already that eating (and not eating) certain food types can make the menopause a good deal easier… Here are our picks of what to avoid, and what to get more of as you approach your best!
Keep your blood sugar levels stable by sticking to fresh fruit or nuts between main meals.
Tiredness can affect us at all ages, but is far more severe for some during the menopause. Usually, fatigue is caused by a sharp spike and then a dip in your blood sugar levels, so avoid snacking on sugary or highly processed foods.
There are plenty of foods well known for triggering night sweats and hot flushes, or at least for making them worse. Stimulants like coffee, spicy food, chocolate and alcohol can be hard to avoid, but steering clear (where possible!) in the evenings is certainly sound advice.
On this blog, we’ve already covered the changes that a diet can have on your mood. But during the menopause, these changes are especially acute.
Ensuring that you get enough protein and amino acid is vital to a balanced, healthy state of mind. Oats, legumes, turkey and cottage cheese are all great sources of both, and they should lead to a boost in serotonin – that means better focus and a deeper sleep!
Many fear that gaining weight during the menopause is inevitable. Both men and women need fewer calories as we get older, so putting on weight will certainly happen if you don’t change how you eat. Straight forward eating less sounds like an easy fix, but can be tricky to keep up. Instead, a healthy, balanced, low-calorie diet plan could be the easiest way to bring down your calories while still feeling full up.
Cutting back on sugar, avoiding high-fat foods and going for complex carbohydrates like brown rice and wholemeal pasta, are all simple ways to stay feeling full for longer.