Many people are familiar with the symptoms of menopause, such as hot flashes, insomnia, and mood swings. The biological transition to menopause is a significant health milestone for women with effects that extend far beyond reproduction.
Menopause carries a stigma because it is perceived as a time when a woman is no longer fertile, growing old, and less attractive. It’s important to know that menopause is a long-term hormone deficiency and can affect women at any age.
There are some women who experience forced menopause, which means that they will become menopausal immediately after having their ovaries removed. Alternatively, women who undergo heavy drug treatments such as chemotherapy or radiation treatment will experience ovarian damage, leading them to go through menopause.
Toni Carroll, CEO, and founder of the luxury nutri-cosmetic brand, My Beauty Luv, explains that the world has a limited view of symptoms that encompasses menopause, including brain fog, memory loss, fatigue, and muscle aches.
“Women try a variety of methods to stay young and delay the ageing process, but the truth is that we all get old in the end. The goal is to do it gracefully,” said Carroll.
Cardiovascular disease risk factors have been discovered to be linked to menopause transition, according to The Journal of The American Menopause Society's Progress Report on Women's Health at Midlife. According to the research, the MT's course was associated with, among other things, higher cholesterol levels, insulin resistance, and incident hypertension.
The misconceptions, coupled with lack of knowledge, do not make it easy to accept and embrace this period like any other in our lives, like puberty, Carrol told IOL Lifestyle.
There is a range of options, which include hormone replacement therapy, food supplements, diet and exercise, and complementary therapies to manage the transition, a sentiment Carroll deeply believes in. “While some products do have their merits in hormone management, there are those which merely perpetuate the myths that have come about due to menopause symptoms not being spoken about.”
Although exercise hasn't been shown to lessen menopausal symptoms like night sweats and hot flashes, however, regular exercise can enhance your quality of life, reduce stress, and help you maintain a healthy weight.
Carroll asserts that there's no way of knowing exactly when your menopause will hit. All you can do is pay close attention to your body and look for changes. It's important to keep in mind that each woman will experience symptoms differently.
“Men go through similar changes, but there's no hype or stigma around it. The only thing we need to do is normalise these changes and educate ourselves. Growing old is not a bad thing. It's about optimally managing the change like everything else.”
Read the latest issue of IOL Heath digital magazine here.