Some pre-menopausal women may experience problems maintaining their weight. According to Dr. Northrup, this is because your body is actually trying to hold onto fat, particularly in the abdominal area. Fat secretes estrogen—a valuable hormone during menopause.
Dr. Northrup has devised a "hormonal balancing program" to create physical and emotional well-being. Increase Your Intake of:
Reduce Your Intake of:
- Herbal supplements: such as dong quai, chaste berry, black cohosh, licorice root (see the Menopausal Symptoms Chart for a complete list)
- Flaxseed: lignans, fiber and Omega-3 fats (such as fatty fish)
- Bioflavonoids in fruits and vegetables: cherries, cranberries, blueberries, bilberries, whole grains, grape skins and red clover)
- Green tea
Also Keep in Mind:
- Smoking: Dr. Northrup recommends quitting.
- Aspartame (found in some diet sodas)
- Highly glycemic foods: white bread, white rice, sweets and candies. Eating them during mid-day instead of the evening helps your metabolism.
- Refine and high-glycemic-index carbohydrates
- Grain products
- Red wine and alcohol
- Eat at least three meals a day.
- Focus on portion size, not calories.
- Eat protein at each meal.
- Eat a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables daily.
- Eat healthy fats each day.