Symptom-Free Menopause, Naturally!
By: Dr. Michael Morsillo, B.Sc., N.D.
Peri-menopause, typically lasting several years, is a time of immense change and transition. During this time, most women will feel like they are on a hormonal roller-coaster ride, with drastic fluctuations in estrogen and progesterone levels. When these hormones are shifting, some women will experience intense mood swings, irritability, brain fog, hot flashes, insomnia, anxiety, rapid weight gain, etc. Women often find themselves feeling overwhelmed, faced with numerous quick-fix supplements, while also being encouraged by their doctor to take hormone replacement therapy (HRT).
I have often wondered why some women will experience such severe menopausal symptoms, while others will seamlessly transition into their menopausal years. This process is much more complex than simply imbalanced estrogen and progesterone levels, and there are multiple factors governing the symptoms and severity of peri-menopause. If your symptoms are becoming more pronounced, this is a clear sign that a holistic treatment approach to menopause is required.
Detoxification is an important part of holistic menopause treatment. If cells and tissues are overwhelmed by toxin accumulation, they will not produce or interact with hormones effectively. The liver is the most important organ of detoxification, especially since it recycles old hormones to make way for new ones. From our food, air, and water, we constantly come into contact with chemicals that look, feel, and act like estrogens. These estrogen mimics will trick our bodies into believing there is estrogen overload and not enough progesterone. One way to kick start a detox plan involves fresh organic juices that include liver-friendly ingredients such as lemon, beet, carrot, garlic, endive, raddichio, dandelion greens and parsley. In our Naturopathic clinic we assemble very specific detoxification plans that are tailored to an individual’s specific needs, for optimal liver and hormone function.
Hormones are a lot like dominoes, if one of them topples over, you can be sure that all of the other hormones are going to be affected by this. A complete hormone assessment is always necessary for menopause since hormones are all dependent on one another. For example, adrenal and thyroid hormone balance is crucial at this time and I think this makes the difference between women who easily transition through menopause and those who suffer severe symptoms. At our Newmarket Naturopathic clinic, we perform specialized blood/urine/saliva hormone profiles to get a comprehensive look at your overall hormonal balance.
Our diet is one of the most important areas to address when it comes to menopause. What we use to fuel our bodies will have a direct impact on our overall health, and about twenty-one times per week, we make a statement about how well we want our cells, organs and hormones to function. For optimal hormonal function, our diet should include organic foods that have high nutrient and fiber content, and have low impact on our blood sugar levels. More specifically for menopause, our diet should also include a high amount of phytoestrogens. Flaxseed is an excellent source of phytoestrogens that modulate estrogen levels. Two tablespoons of flaxseed will help with menopausal symptoms like hot flashes, breast cancer prevention and even bone loss.
Michael Morsillo is a naturopathic doctor who is passionate about helping others achieve their optimal level of health. Michael maintains a clinical practice in Newmarket, where he focuses mainly on cancer, anxiety, depression, hormone concerns, detoxification, and weight loss.
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