Although the word menopause often brings a bit of dread for most women, this natural process doesn't have to be overwhelming! There are a lot of great tips and tools for managing this season of women's health, and we have them all right here for you.
MENOPAUSE AT A GLANCE
- Signals the end of a woman's menstrual cycle and fertility years
- A natural part of the aging process for the female reproductive system
- May involve symptoms that can be soothed with oils and supplements
- Differs for each individual woman
During menopause, your body drastically reduces its production of reproductive hormones, and your periods gradually stop. Our goal is to be cycling and menstruating for as long as possible, since that is the natural state of female bodies. However, menopause is a normal, natural part of our body's aging process.
When it comes to finding relief from menopause symptoms, the hardest part is often the emotional and physical side effects that the decline in hormones can bring. Transitioning through menopause may mean dealing with uncomfortable symptoms, such as weight gain, low energy, low sex drive, and changes in your mood; however, we have tools in our toolbox to help our bodies through this process!
Although menopause might feel inconvenient and hard at times, taking conventional hormone replacement medications can cause many unwanted side effects. A wiser option is to naturally manage symptoms through a healthy diet, exercise, stress reduction and natural supplements.
THE ESTROGEN-PROGESTERONE BALANCE
Estrogen and progesterone are two of the key players when it comes to hormone balance and menopause.
Estrogen is a key component of a healthy heart and immune system, and it plays a role in energy and mood as well. As you age, your estrogen levels begin decreasing, leading to menopause, which marks the end of the reproductive years.
Progesterone levels also affect a wide range of other body systems, so when the ovaries don't make as much progesterone, you may experience things such as migraines, mood instability, bone density decline, skin issues, and changes in bleeding.
The balance of these hormones is important for ALL WOMEN. No matter the age. Even those who've had a hysterectomy!
Ok but what about estrogen? Where does she come into the picture? I'm glad you asked…
Estrogen has to first attach to a cell, then it grabs hands with the progesterone. If the progesterone is not there, the estrogen begins to inhibit the chemical process that is supposed to happen and it can begin a process of mutation.
Bottom line? Both estrogen and progesterone are important. Both are needed. BUT they are needed in a balance of each other.
MENOPAUSE-SUPPORTING OILS & SUPPLEMENTS
If you determine that you need some support through this natural process, how do you get it?
This is usually where conventional HRT comes in. However, many of these hormones are made with horse urine, medroxy-progesterone acetate, and other synthetic progestins. These are VERY different from what is found in plants or in your body. Plus, their long term effects have some dramatic risk factors.
Natural hormones are easily recognized by the body. It says, “Hey! I know you! And I know exactly where you need to go to help me.” This is why we love phyto-progesterones like the ones in these products!
- EndoGize: EndoGize is a daily women's hormone support supplement powered by essential oils, minerals, and herbs, including ashwagandha root – a well known herb for hormone balance and stress reduction. EndoGize also contains DHEA, a hormone precursor for estrogen and testosterone, DHEA is naturally made in the body, but levels decline as we age. These ingredients work synergistically to create a formula that supports a healthy endocrine system for women.
- FemiGen: FemiGen is a twice-daily supplement that combines whole-food herbs including wild yam, damiana, and dong quai with synergistic amino acids, and clary sage, fennel, ylang ylang, and sage essential oils. FemiGen specifically supports the female reproductive system through estrogen balance and helps maintain and nourish the reproductive system from development through menopause.
- PD 80/20: PD 80/20 is a daily supplement that contains pregnenolone and DHEA, two substances produced naturally by the body that decline with age. Pregnenolone is the key precursor for the body's production of estrogen, DHEA, and progesterone, and it has an impact on mental acuity and memory. DHEA is involved in maintaining the health of the cardiovascular and immune systems. These ingredients combine to help support the endocrine system and balance overall hormone levels.
CREAMS & SERUMS:
- Progessence Plus Serum: Progessence plus is a mainstay for progesterone support. It is a pure progesterone serum from wild yam that is infused with Sacred Frankincense essential oil. This serum easily absorbs into the skin and also contains the nourishing oils Copaiba, Cedarwood, Bergamot, Peppermint, and Clove giving it many added benefits for supporting and stabilizing mood. Fun bonus: Clinical studies are also showing that essential oils can enhance the ability of natural hormones to penetrate the skin, allowing us even more benefit. This way we quickly get our new progesterone on its way to that estrogen that's been left hanging.
- Regenolone Moisturizing Cream: This is a natural estrogen support cream with plant-based phytoestrogens that soothe the skin and can provide an alternative to conventional estrogen creams. This rich, nourishing cream of plant extracts such as wild yam (phyto-progesterone!) and black and blue cohosh (phyto-estrogens) supports female hormone health – especially estrogen levels. This cream also contains St. John's Wort and adaptogenic herbs to help soothe the adrenal glands and emotions!
- Prenolone Plus Body Cream: This cream is very similar to Regenolone, except it has one more ingredient – DHEA. This body cream smells incredible and provides so many wonderful hormone supporting herbs such as St. John's wort, wild yam extract, ginkgo biloba leaf extract and green tea leaf extract. These herbs and essential oils work synergistically to promote a healthy balance of hormones while also nourishing the skin. The DHEA in Prenolone Plus can be really helpful to some women. DHEA is a hormone precursor for estrogen, progesterone and testosterone, meaning you would further increase the hormone levels that you need.
- Sclaressence: Sclaressence is an essential oil blend containing Clary Sage, Peppermint, Spanish Sage, and Fennel. This blend is rich in phytoestrogen oils. Phytoestrogens are simply plant-based compounds that are similar enough to human estrogen that they are easily recognized as estrogen in our bodies. There is also thought that they help our body create its own estrogen!
- Clary Sage: Clary sage is a natural phytoestrogen and can help the body balance estrogen levels.
For more on hormone support, see the related resources linked below! Also check out one of our favorite supplement books, the Supplement Field Guide by Dr. Ashley H. Cribb!