Health and Vitality in the Menopausal Years Women's Health Expert, Lisa Leger, reveals the principles of nutrition and natural medicine that help women go through the changes of life with energy and grace. Find out how natural remedies are replacing the old hormone approach to menopause. or Women's Health Expert, Lisa Leger, outlines the natural way to go through menopause with energy and grace. Find out how to surge through the menopausal years sexy, happy, and synthetic hormone-free. A quick review of perspectives on menopause from practitioners who advocate treatments other than the classic HRT .
Lisa Leger, B.A.
Natural Health Consultant
Pharmasave Health Centre, Parksville
a natural biologic process, NOT a disease
Permanent end of menstruation (12 months of not having a period)
Loss of ovarian follicular function
In West, average age of 51.4 years
Can occur between 30s & 60s
Age of menopause has not changed over the past few centuries
Years immediately preceding menopause
Signaled by changes in menstrual cycle regularity/ appearance (Still having periods, cycle lengths changing, some menopausal symptoms beginning).
Hormone picture can be similar to PMS: high estrogen, low progesterone.
Optimum time to consider lifestyle modifications
Hormone Changes in the Peri-Menopausal Years.
Is the problem lack of Estrogen?
Or is the problem too much Estrogen?
Research by UBC Endocrinologist, Dr.
Jerilynn Prior shows that estrogen levels are
very high during the peri-menopausal years.
Better Living With Chemistry?
is not a cure, it just masks the problem by imposing a fake cycle.
side effects can be PMS symptoms.
depletes B vitamins which promote energy, better mood and help with stress.
depletes magnesium which relaxes the muscles and reduces cramps.
Better Living through Chemistry?
“ Hormone Replacement Therapy” (HRT)
(which should be more accurately called “Hormone Substitution Therapy”)
Which is not a cure
Just postpones menopause
General Recommendations for Every Woman
Do some research and try things.
Eat healthier food.
Get involved in a sport or exercise class.
Chart your cycles and record what you try so you can assess the results.
Look into adrenal support, thyroid involvement, blood sugar control.
Take control of your body.
Take control of your life.
The Owl Was a Baker’s Daughter: Obesity, Anorexia Nervosa, and the Repressed Feminine
Binging on Dairy = seeking nurturance from the Mother (goddess, maternal figure, security)
“ Killing me softly with ice cream, shortening my life with each bowl…”
Other books: Addiction to Perfection, The Pregnant Virgin, Conscious Femininity
Some Popular Positions
Suzanne Somers – Bio-identical Hormones
Susun Weed – Herbs and Nutrition
Susan Love – Integration
Jerilyn Prior – Natural Progesterone
Lisa’s Position: Treat the Peri-Menopause like PMS
Look into adrenal support, thyroid involvement, blood sugar control
Hormonal Levels at Various Cycle Phases
Estrogen Excess/ Progesterone Deficiency
Cold body temperature
Weight gain -hips
Excess facial hair
Jerilyn Prior – Estrogen’s Storm Season
Add Progesterone to balance out the excess estrogen.
She uses Prometrium instead of Provera
She likes topicals in general over pills because they bypass the liver and lower doses are required.
and/or Reduce Estrogen
Natural Medicine uses:
Botanical Remedies (herbs)
Natural Progesterone Support
Natural Progesterone (Bio-identical)
Bio-identical vs. Modified Hormones
Study in 2003 on Prometrium
No negative impact on indicators of heart disease (blood pressure, cholesterol, dilation of blood vessels)
What is bio-identical?
Bio-identical hormones are the hormones that can be naturally found in our bodies
May also be termed “natural”
Does not necessarily mean that it is not synthesized in a lab
Many different types
Estradiol: Strongest of estrogens
Main estrogen released by ovaries
Primary estrogen of menstrual cycle
Responsible for endometrial build-up
Estrone: Second most potent estrogen
Most abundant estrogen after menopause
Can be made from androstenedione (adrenal glands) or estradiol
Can be converted to estradiol or estriol as needed
Estriol: Weakest out of the most common estrogens
Still strong enough to produce effects
Made from estrone
Levels are highest during pregnancy
Likely the safest
Reduce Estrogen: Liver Detoxification
Estrogen is broken down in the liver.
Other estrogen stimulated disorders (like fibroids and endometriosis) are associated with sluggish elimination (constipation, congested liver, deficient kidney, bad skin).
Support liver with bitter herbs, milk thistle and liver detox combos.
Help liver emulsify fats with Lipotrophic factors (especially if gall bladder has been removed or cholesterol is high).
Reduce Estrogen: Intestinal Cleansing
Estrogen is removed from the body via the intestines.
Promote elimination and avoid constipation.
Ensure healthy bacterial environment by supplementing with probiotics (acidophilus).
Reduce Estrogen: Indole-3-carbinol
Chemical found in cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cabbage, brussel sprouts, turnips)
May help to reduce risk of estrogen-promoted cancers
Facilitates conversion of estrogen to less-cancer promoting forms
Typical Japanese diet provides about 112 mg I3C daily
Western diet is much lower
Increase as much as possible through dietary means
May try supplementing if cannot tolerate foods
Phyto (from plants) estrogens
Similar in chemical structure to naturally produced estrogen
Help estrogen dominance or deficiency symptoms
Appear to decrease risk for heart disease (May lower LDL & TG
Benefits osteoporosis (Inhibit bone resorption)
Botanicals that Support Estrogen (Isoflavones)
Other Herbs in Female Formulas
Dong Quai – uterine tonic
Burdock, Dandelion – liver tonics
Passion Flower, Lemon Balm, Hops – nervines with sedative effect.
Most popular, well researched (6 German clinical trials of Remifemin)
accepted by medical authorities
Found to improve menopausal symptoms, hot flashes, premenstrual syndrome
There are warnings not to use if you have a history of estrogen-dependent tumors or endometrial cancer, but its not estrogenic.
Actually works on the cardiovascular system.
May cause nausea, vomiting, headache & hypotension
Use with caution if allergic to salicylates
Klimakt-Heel – hot flushes, night sweats, palpitations, mood swings, exhaustion, nervousness, insomnia.