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Five Quick Fixes to Manage your Menopause Symptoms

I don't believe in "quick fixes" for health and fitness related goals but due to the fast paced nature of the world we inhabit, I'm going to give you my five quick fixes for managing your menopause symptoms. 

I have daily communications with women all over the world through the Sexy Ageing Fitness APP for Menopause and through the feedback in the Sexy Ageing Podcast where women are requesting my top tips to "fix" this symptom or that symptom of menopause.

Here's the thing - we are all unique beings and the menopause journey is as unique as our DNA. Yes, 4 out 5 women will experience symptoms related to menopause including hot flashes, night sweats, sore joints, brain fog and anxiety. But even these symptoms will be at varying degrees. To formulate a "one plan to cure them all" would be completely naive. 

However, there are some simple health hacks that can make a difference and some of these are not exclusive to women in menopause but also for the post menopause life, which is the rest of your life! So think of these as your top tier longevity practices.

1. Drink more water - I know, yawn. Personally, as I live every day in perimenopause, I have found this small, but vital, health hack quite a challenge and especially on the days that I don't engage in vigorous activity. When I've had a sweaty workout, I can get the minimum amount of water consumed without any issue. But, those gentler days are forgotten. I can get to 2.00pm, and I might have had only 2 glasses of water, or 500ml. NOT GOOD ENOUGH! Fluctuating and decreasing amounts of oestrogen create challenges for our body to retain moisture. You'll see this in your skin, hair and nails. The minimum amount of water needed, 2-2.5 litres/day, will  help with brain clarity, reducing hot flashes, reducing urinary urgency and bladder infections, relieve menopause cramps and headaches, all upsides.

2. Review your dietary needs: as outlined in a previous blogpost on Nutrition in Menopause, your gut is changing as you age. Plenty of high quality protein, low GI carbohydrates, fruit and vegetables, fibre and healthy fats. Stop counting calories and ditch the restrictive diets and replacement shakes. The focus is on providing your changing body with the highest quality, nutrient dense foods you can. And real food, not from a packet or from meal replacement supplements. 

3. Move your body! Everyday. Find something you love that elevates your heart rate and your soul. In the interest of long term proven health benefits and weight management, prioritise strength training (see blog on this). Exercise helps your symptoms by raising your energy levels, increasing endorphins (mood boosters) and lowering stress. The stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline have a lot to answer for when it comes to menopause symptoms such as insomnia and weight gain.

4. Add magnesium: there are a lot of supplement companies reaching out to women in menopause to alleviate you of your symptoms. I'd hate to think you'd be wasting your money. If there is ONE supplement you are going to take, I'd go with magnesium glycinate. It's been shown to relieve joint pain, sleeplessness, anxiety, muscle cramps, PMS and headaches. 

(I can recommend Nature's Help for a magnesium supplement and magnesium topical oil - use TRACY15 for 15% off your order)

5. Have sex - boom, there it is! Use it or lose it and it's true that vaginal tissue shrinks and dries with the cessation of the reproductive years. Keeping the blood flowing through orgasm is a very enjoyable hack. If dryness is stopping you from enjoying sex, then recommended lubricators and vaginal moisturisers can help, as can vaginal oestrogen.

 There are so many more lifestyle changes you can make to help you manage your menopause symptoms, but I think this is a good place to start! 

Tracy Minnoch-Nuku (B.Ph.Ed, MBA, Menopause Fitness Specialist) is a women's health and fitness expert, author of My Menopause Memoir, host of the Sexy Ageing podcast, and Founder of Sexy Ageing - a suite of digital resources to support and educate women in menopause. 

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