Linwoods Health Foods ambassador highlights importance of nutrition throughout menopause
NEW Linwoods Health Foods ambassador and regular contributor to TV’s This Morning, Dr Zoe Williams, has revealed how nutrition and holistic methods can help those going through the menopause and relieve some symptoms, for World Menopause Day on 18th October.
She said: “Peri-menopause and menopause is a hot topic and, as people become more comfortable in openly talking about their own experiences and symptoms, it is fitting that Linwoods has launched the Menoligna blend with people going through menopause firmly in mind.”
“Peri-menopause [the time surrounding menopause] can last for several years and not only impact the body physically, but also have an often-untold effect on mental health. In years gone by there’s been a real stigma surrounding this natural, but often distressing, time of life which has prevented those suffering from seeking medical advice, but it’s imperative to speak to a GP for advice if you’re struggling – and I hope that as more high-profile women speak out about the topic, that’s exactly what people will do.
“HRT is a highly effective medical treatment which is safe for the vast majority of those experiencing symptoms. It can alleviate the all too well-known symptoms like hot flushes, night sweats and low mood – but there are also a whole host of holistic methods out there, available to everyone, including those that cannot take, or do not wish to take, HRT. Nutrition is high up on that list for me, and there are a few simple tweaks that can be made to diet and lifestyle to help during the process.”
Crank up the calcium
“Menopause means lower oestrogen levels, and this can increase the risk of osteoporosis, which is weak and thinning bones that may fracture more easily. Similar to kids being taught to drink milk for growing bones, it’s equally important during the menopause to take in that magic ingredient – calcium. Bone bolstering, calcium-rich dairy products, leafy green veg, seeds and salmon are ideal.”
“Magnesium is calcium’s essential sidekick, as the mineral helps with calcium absorption. It has also earned a reputation as being ‘nature’s tranquilliser’. The miracle mineral does it all – it can assist with sleep trouble, combat irritability, and even aid with low mood. Rich food sources include quinoa, oily fish like mackerel, cashew nuts and dark chocolate.”
“These fats work wonders in your body, supporting hormone balance, cardiovascular health, weight management and even emotional wellbeing, according to some studies. Omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to decrease the frequency of hot flushes and the intensity of night sweats. The healthy fat can be found in fish such as salmon, mackerel and fresh tuna as well as vegetarian sources like flaxseeds and chia seeds.”
“Phytoestrogens are naturally-occurring plant compounds that mildly mimic the oestrogen produced in the body, and may help reduce menopausal symptoms. Phytoestrogens offer a natural food-based option which is safe and available to everyone, even those who can’t take HRT. Great food sources include broccoli, cauliflower, dark berries, chickpeas, tofu, flaxseed and soyabeans.”
Make time for your mental health
“Menopause impacts the mind as well as the body, yet this seems to be discussed less often, likely in part due to the stigma that still surrounds menopause. The changes in hormones can affect mental health directly as well as indirectly because of the physical symptoms which can also contribute towards low mood, irritability and fatigue. Self-care – including talking with others going through the same experiences and being physically active – is really important. And, of course, if you’re really struggling with your mental health during the process, please do speak to your GP.”
“Whilst nutrition is vital during the menopause, finding the time to ensure we’re taking in all these key nutrients can be tricky. Linwoods’ Menoligna is a healthy seed blend specifically developed with the menopause in mind, featuring a host of vital vitamins, minerals and added Lignans. All it takes is a 30g serving sprinkled on soups and salads, stirred into yoghurt or blitzed into a smoothie for optimal health benefits.”
Linwoods Health Foods’ Menoligna is a plant-based blend of milled, sprouted flaxseed and milled chia seeds, with added flax lignans, as well as other vital vitamins and minerals. It is specifically formulated with those experiencing peri-menopause and menopause in mind.
Lignans are naturally occurring phytoestrogens found in flaxseeds. When combined with vitamin B6, lignans can help regulate hormones – which may help to reduce tiredness and fatigue. The blend also contains plant-based calcium as well as vitamins D3, K2 and magnesium. This combination can help maintain healthy bones which is especially important to prevent conditions like osteoporosis. Additionally, the Menoligna blend is packed with many other nutritional benefits including omega-3 (ALA), protein, fibre, Co-Q10 and other vitamins.