Postmenopause is defined as the time after menopause. Usually doctors define menopause as a single moment when a woman has not menstruated for 12 whole consecutive months and after this point a woman is considered to be in postmenopause.
Women experience changes and transitions from menopause to postmenopause differently and therefore the age-range of when women first become postmenopausal could be pretty different. Natural postmenopause (as opposed to induced) usually begins in women between their late 40s to early 60s.
A woman is considered to be postmenopausal when she has not had her period for an entire year. Your doctor can measure your follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) level and check and/or confirm if you already enter your postmenopause. Your FSH levels will dramatically rise as your ovaries begin to shut down – very typical for postmenopause.
During postmenopausal period all the symptoms that have been around during the menopause (such as hot flashes, mood swings, gaining weight) slow down until they disappear completely.
Generally speaking the woman is postmenopausal from the moment menopause occurs until the end of her life. Postmenopause is time after a woman’s menstrual periods have ceased completely.
Postmenopause is caused by natural hormonal changes in women body but some external factors can trigger postmenopause. Fluctuations in hormones like estrogen and progesterone are at the very foundation of postmenopause and may occur naturally. These hormone changes that cause postmenopause are complex and can be more than a bit confusing.
External triggering factors include general illnesses, surgeries, medications and not healthy lifestyle such as smoking, alcohol and drug use.
Often, women are led to believe that all the uncomfortable symptoms associated with menopause disappear once postmenopause begins. This however, is not always the case, and the symptoms some women may experience when they are postmenopausal could be similar to menopause symptoms. The hormonal changes that take place in the female body as a result of the aging process often leave many women feeling as though their femininity has been replaced by a host of changes that can range from minor annoyances to major causes of stress.
Postmenopausal osteoporosis is a form of osteoporosis which occurs in women after menopause. This form of osteoporosis cannot be entirely prevented, but there are some steps which women can take to reduce the severity of bone loss after menopause and to care for their bodies during and after menopause to reduce the risk of developing complications associated with bone loss, such as fractures.
Osteoporosis occurs when the rate of bone resorption exceeds the rate of bone formation. In other words, the body is breaking down bone as it normally does, but it is not producing new bone. As a result, the bones become more porous, and more fragile. Osteoporosis greatly increases the risk of fractures, and it is harder to heal after a fracture when one has osteoporosis, presenting a double threat for people with this condition.
People develop postmenopausal osteoporosis because estrogen rates decline after menopause. Low estrogen levels cause the rate of resorption to increase, potentially causing osteoporosis. As women grow older, they can lose a significant percentage of their bone mass to osteoporosis.
One way to reduce the risk of developing postmenopausal osteoporosis is to take calcium supplements throughout life, and to continue supplementing into menopause. It is important to consume dietary calcium in a way which maximizes absorption.
Weight bearing exercise and exercise in general are also useful. Staying active is an excellent way to preserve bone density.
Hormone therapy can also be used to address postmenopausal osteoporosis, by supplementing hormone levels to address the changes which can contribute to bone loss.
POSTMENOPAUSE risks & recommendations
Postmenopause period could have some high risks for some women and one of the most threatening of them all is the fact that women who enter their postmenopausal period can develop osteoporosis. Aside of that, women in their postmenopausal period are also more prone to develop certain heart conditions, diabetes and other chronic illnesses.
In postmenopause it is strongly recommended to quit smoking. Not only does smoking lead to different types of cancers but smoking can trigger other conditions to develop.
In postmenopause it is strongly recommended to limit your intake of caffeine and alcohol or you can stop having them for good. Although coffee has been proven to be every effective, especially for women, try to cut it down as low as you can, as coffee also has some side effects and not only good parts to it.
In postmenopause very strict and healthy diet is recommended. There are many foods which help people lead a healthier life and you should most definitely try to look for a balanced diet, which will offer you anything you need. It is very important to eat healthy during this period of your life.
Healthy Diet during postmenopause can provide several benefits for your changing body.
Main diet strategy during postmenopause includes two main approaches:
rid off extra calories from the diet and
provide nutrients needed during this erratic time of your life
After menopause, women have a higher risk of developing heart disease and some cancers. Eating plenty of green vegetables and fresh fruit will help lower these risks. Eating foods high in fiber and vitamins should help relieve hot flashes and lower sugar levels.
Eating lean meats and fish will lower calorie intake to assist in avoiding any weight gain from menopausal symptoms. Mackerel and salmon are high in omega-3 fatty acids that help in regulating some symptoms or post menopause such as depression and mood swings.
Typically, bones do become weaker with menopause, so it’s important to include plenty of calcium in your diet. Having low-fat milk and other calcium rich foods daily will increase the amount of calcium in your daily diet.
Eating foods made with whole grains have many health benefits for the postmenopausal women. Maintaining a healthy weight, lowering blood pressure and cholesterol, can be improved by eating whole grain breads and cereals. Whole grains are known to fight fatigue and ovarian cancer associated with postmenopause.
Eating a healthy diet is vital for a woman in postmenopause. Making healthy food choices will ease some of the unfortunate symptoms associated with postmenopause.
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Disclaimer: It is strongly recommended to consult your doctor for professional advice. Above mentioned information and recommendations are just general and should be adapted to each person according to personal health indicators and status.