Emme Menopause

5 Great Festive Foods Linked To Reducing Menopause Symptoms

Sue Bedford (MSc Nutritional Therapy)

Lifestyle factors, specifically diet, can play a significant role in the reduction of menopausal symptoms whilst also supporting healthy aging

Over the festive period it can be easy to be tempted to eat rich, sugary foods that you would not normally consume and these can play havoc with our hormones.

Menopausal symptoms are reduced significantly when women eat a nutritious diet

According to a new study published in the journal menopause, women who reported eating more fruits and vegetables had a substantial reduction in menopause symptoms as compared to those who ate fewer servings of fresh produce on a daily basis.

A diet strong in pro-inflammatory foods (items that produce inflammation) has also been linked to an increase in physical symptoms of menopause, as well as poorer bone mineral density, according to several studies (BMD).

Some good choices of foods to pop into our shopping trolleys this festive period

Oily fish such as Salmon- Omega 3 fatty acids are known for their anti-inflammatory properties, and the finest sources of these fatty acids are oily seafood like salmon. Omega 3 fatty acids have been linked to lower triglycerides and blood pressure, which is good news for women’s heart health. Omega 3 fatty acids have also been researched for their ability to relieve depression and anxiety in women in their forties and fifties. Why not enjoy a walm salmon fillet flaked over a delicious green salad?

Magnesium can be found in abundance in dark chocolate. Magnesium is an important mineral that helps with mood, sleep, bone health, and bowel motions, among other things. The darker the chocolate the less sugar it contains. Remember to eat in moderation and limit yourself to one or two squares as a sweet treat- why not make some healthy dark chocolate and avocado mousse or dip some berries into dark chocolate?

Berries are nutritional superstars when it comes to anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Berries not only promote brain health in middle age, but they may also help to lower blood pressure. Because oestrogen’s cardioprotective effects fade with menopause, it’s critical to focus on heart health. Especially since cardiovascular disease is by far the greatest cause of death among women. The high antioxidant levels in berries  help to support a healthy stress response, which is also important for a restful night’s sleep.

Pack your plate with sprouts this festive season! Sprouts and other cruciferous vegetables are fantastic when it comes to helping reducing symptoms of the menopause. Sprouts are a cruciferous vegetable (along with cauliflower, broccoli etc) and contain a special phytonutrient known as DIM (Diindolylmethane). Cruciferous vegetables also may decrease the risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women by supporting healthy oestrogen levels. Why not make a sprout salad with chestnuts?

Turkey – Not only is turkey a great lean protein meat it is also packed full of important nutrients. Turkey is great for helping to balance out vital hormones too, as it helps to keep post-meal insulin levels balanced out for longer.

There is also a great combination of tryptophan (an amino acid) and B vitamins to be found in turkey

This combination has a balancing effect on blood sugar levels which in turn helps to calm the nerves and prevent hypoglycemia and low moods. Tryptophan cannot be made by the body but is a natural precursor to serotonin (known as the happy chemical) – an important chemical and neurotransmitter in the body.

Serotonin is used to transmit messages between nerve cells, it is thought to be active in constricting smooth muscles, and it contributes to wellbeing and happiness, among other things.

Wishing you all an incredible Christmas full of cheer and love.

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