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- Nurse Barb
There’s one patient, Ellie (not her real name), who comes to mind whenever I think about how much things have changed in the last 20 years. I cared for 2 of Ellie’s 4 daughters during their pregnancies and really enjoyed their visits. I was happy to be the person who did their first ultrasounds and printed up photos of their babies. One day, the oldest daughter called me and asked if I’d be willing to see to her mother right away as she was visiting from out of town. She was concerned about her mother’s repeated blood transfusions for blood loss from heavy periods.
A few months ago, I decided to get really serious about weight loss, partly because I was in the midst of writing a book on Menopause with a chapter titled “Losing the Meno-Pot Belly” and partly because I saw a photo of myself which forced me to confront the sad and true fact that I was fat. Yes, I am using the F word here, though if you prefer, we can sugar coat it a bit, I was overweight with a BMI hovering close to the obese zone. The photo was scary and I couldn’t blame it on bad lighting or the wrong angle. It didn’t matter what the atmospheric conditions or the angle of the camera or the sun, I was FAT.
Oh my gosh, is it hot outside or what? As the temperature rises outside and the air conditioning is going full blast, what do women with hot flashes do? They’re already steaming and baking on the inside, but when the outside temperature soars, they’re in for even more searing heat.
It’s good to avoid hot flash triggers and stay cool. Here’s some ideas: (more…)
This is part 2 of the series on Menopause and Acupuncture from Ted Ray, L.A.c., DNBAO
Last time we talked about the “kidneys” and the energetic role they play in fertility and menstruation. Now we can get down to the details with answers to the questions my patients always ask.
Why Women Get Hot Flashes
Women handle incredible workloads. They raise families, manage households, and work full time. But without adequate rest, they must pull from their reserve tanks to get through the day.
I’ve been seeing a lot of women lately who are pre-diabetic. They have high fasting blood sugar levels, most have high triglycerides and are struggling to lose weight. Right now, I’m writing a book on Menopause and the chapter I just finished was about how to lose the Belly Fat.
Are your pants shrinking? Are you looking a pants with hidden elastic waist bands? Are loose fitting tunics all of a sudden an attractive option?
Our Featured Wrtten Article Today is by Eleanor M W Forbes, MSN, RN, WHNP-BC, IBCLC,RLC.
Today I saw Maria* (not her real name), a 57 year old woman who was complaining of frequent urination and other symptoms that are associated with Urinary Tract Infections. And though her Primary Care Provider had found nothing in the frequent urine evaluations she’d had, something just didn’t feel right. Maria had a hysterectomy in her mid 40s and since then it had started to get more painful when having sex, to the point that she was losing all desire to be intimate with her husband.
Lynn* came to see me with severe hot flashes and night sweats. She worked in sales and had resorted to bringing extra blouses in her car because she inevitably sweated through at least one each day. She was beyond irritable and hadn’t slept through the night in months. “I feel like a different person,” she said. “I can’t live like this.” Lynn wanted to know about all of her options for treatment.
Herbs, Soy and Acupuncture
I began by explaining how yoga, acupuncture and deep breathing had been shown to be effective, then moved into the research on black cohosh and soy. She wasn’t interested in hormones, but did want to discuss other prescription remedies. She had tried increasing her soy already and wanted something more effective than the herbs and yoga breathing we discussed. (more…)
This is the 1st in a series on Menopause, Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine.
All of these articles are by Ted Ray, L.A.c., DNBAO
Using acupuncture and herbal medicine can be a great way to manage the transition into menopause. This series of short articles will help you make an informed decision about the process.
What is Traditional Chinese Medicine?
While it is fairly well understood that the symptoms associated with menopause relate to shifting hormone levels, Chinese Medicine looks at this issue through a different lens. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the kidneys are largely responsible for the development and decline of female fertility. In fact, the kidneys are so important, that TCM breaks them down even further in to kidney yin, yang, qi, and essence.
Paulina Porizkova, a former model, writer, and a mom featured an article on Huffington’s Post that I thought would be of interest.
Here’s What I Have to Say:
I see a lot of women in midlife and at the other side of hormonal swings, adolescence. I’m convinced that our brain chemistry shifts dramatically with hormone surges and precipitous drops. I’ve seen well adjusted women with everything under control, suddenly become unrecognizable to themselves and their families. I’ve seen the same thing happen with teens. Hmmmm?
Why is it that some women can increase their soy intake and experience fewer hot flashes, while others can’t? Could it be that the way that our bodies metabolize soy is the key difference?
There’s recent evidence that about 50% of women in Asia are able to convert Soy into it’s natural metabolite, S-equol and that those women have fewer hot flashes! Who knew? How many women from the US can convert soy into S-equol? Only 20-30% have the ability to make S-equol on their own. And this discovery could be the key to unlocking treatment for hot flashes.