How This Helps

Ayurveda helps to balance the systems of the body such as metabolism, bodily substances, and movement. During menopause, the production of estrogen in the body is reduced. Ayurveda can help to provide the right amount of estrogen to balance the bodily systems. Combining Ayurveda, herbs, yoga, and meditation can help relax the mind while balancing the body systems.

Science and Research

As menopause takes place over years, menopause is often divided into two phases: Perimenopause (start experiencing menopausal signs and symptoms, despite the fact that you still menstruate; may last four to five years) and Postmenopause (once 12 months have passed since your last period; your ovaries produce much less estrogen and no progesterone, and they do not release eggs).

What is menopause?

According to Ayurveda, during the menstrual period, there is a downward flow of prana (life force). The menses stage is considered an introspective time for women, where they recharge the body once a month and re-establish a connection to their silent, intuitive, and spiritual center. From this profound state of awareness and insight, they could better lead, govern, and love from a source of peace, wisdom, and calm. Engaging in excessive activity in the menstrual cycle directs the prana upward instead of downward in order to fuel the activity, rather than the menses and introspection. With excessive action, stress-fighting cortisol is released from the adrenals. This is at a time when the natural forces are encouraging an inward action. This kind of adrenal stress during the menstrual cycle may undermine the efficiency of the menses, resulting in more frequent PMS symptoms and difficulty during menopause.
The association between stress and a disturbance of regular menses is well-documented. Stressful conditions, as a result of physical, emotional, or metabolic stressors, are able to negatively affect the hypothalamus-pituitary-ovarian axis. This causes many issues, including moderate growth in PMS symptoms, late periods, longer periods, shorter periods, painful periods, and even missed periods. Stress-induced amenorrhea (no menses) is generally called hypothalamic amenorrhea (HA) and affects a constant percentage of women regardless of age. Other commons causes include undernutrition and excess physical training. If not addressed quickly, these underlying causes may result in long-term and serious health concerns. If this stress is a re-occurring monthly throughout the cycle, then it is more probable that a woman will experience increased symptoms and complications surrounding menopause. For women now entering menopause, these early principles now supported by modern science suggest that we may have the ability to help prevent menopausal concerns in women still in or just entering their reproductive years.

See: Menopause Relief with Ayurvedic Herbs

Ayurvedic treatment to heal menopause symptoms

The signs and symptoms of menopause include irregular periods, decreased fertility, vaginal dryness, hot flashes, sleep disturbances, mood swings, increased abdominal fat, thinning hair, loss of breast fullness, amongst others. Though menopause isn't an illness, you shouldn't hesitate to get treatment or lifestyle adjustments if you are having severe symptoms. Hypothyroidism and mood disorders have to be ruled out in the differential diagnosis. Monitor blood pressure, lipid profile, and renal functions.

Vata Pitta balancing is the Ayurveda guideline for the menopausal period. Herbs of candy tastes are commonly used; there are a couple of medicines that work very powerful.

During menopause, we're low on ojas, and so we have a lessened ability to maintain balance, even in the exact same environment and with the same stressors. Couple that with the erratic nature of Vata, unchecked, and our body changes into a sympathetic overdrive. Our nervous system is a delicate balance of the sympathetic nervous system, a stress-oriented system that exists for self-preservation, and the parasympathetic nervous system, which works to unwind and renew. These two branches operate as opposing, yet complementary, systems. Due to low ojas, menopause becomes a condition of the high sympathetic nervous system--cortisol levels increase, blood pressure increases, heart rate increases. This state of stress drives high pitta through the body, ready to attack any danger. The menstrual cycle can be considered a curative rakta moksha.  In the ideal, healthy condition of the menopausal woman, we shift away from pitta predominance, mentally and physically, to Vata predominance. Normally, the female body would transition just fine. But with persistent pitta activities and continuous activation of the sharp and hot sympathetic system, pitta stays trapped within the body. 

In the end, we are left with the following procedure:

- Elevated, ungrounded Vata disperses throughout the body, carrying your heart digestive fire, Agni, away from its home in the stomach and intestines. This leads to difficulty with digestion and general nutrition.

The warmth traveling in the circulatory system gives rise to hot flashes, insomnia, and cardiovascular disease.

- High Vata also flows down, drying out the vagina.

- High Vata in the colon and other deeper tissues, eventually creates conditions like osteoporosis.

- Superfine Tejas, also decreased, leads to problems with memory and concentration and a higher predisposition to cancers.


See: Vata Dosha Balancing

Ayurveda home remedies for menopause symptomes

Ayurvedic Home Remedies for Menopause:

There are several herbal, dietary, and yoga-based remedies you can try as you manage the different menopause symptoms:

a) Saffron is used in menopause, depression, Alzheimer's diseases, and includes vitamin A, calcium, Vitamin D, Vitamin B12. Saffron acts as antioxidants that help protect the body from oxidant-induced stress. Additionally, it is abundant in several vital vitamins, including vitamin A, folic acid, riboflavin, niacin, and vitamin-C. Saffron stigmas have been used as a flavoring base and coloring foundation in both food and beverages

b) Black cohosh is used today mainly as a dietary supplement marketed to girls as remedies for the symptoms of premenstrual tension also in age-related disorders like osteoporosis. It has analgesic, sedative, and anti-inflammatory properties.

c) Dietary levels of red clover are safe to use as well. The flowers have antispasmodic, estrogenic, and expectorant properties. Chinese medicine has used red clover in teas as an expectorant. Russians recommend the herb for bronchial asthma. Traditionally, the herb was used in treating prostate cancer. Reduce hot, sour, and salty tastes. Use of Ksheerabala nasal drops or as nasyam and using milk for Sirodhara is effective in hard cases.

d) Try to pinpoint what triggers your hot flashes. For many women, triggers may include hot drinks, spicy foods, hot weather.

e) Relaxation techniques with 30 minutes of yoga postures, deep breathing exercises, and meditation are effective in menopausal symptoms Shavasana and Sudarshan Kirya, are also effective in mild-to-severe mood disorders

f)  Eat a balanced diet that includes a variety of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Include calcium, Vitamin D, and/or Vitamin E supplements as per your doctor's advice. Dietary supplements, such as licorice, evening primrose oil, and wild yam can also help.

g)  Get at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity

h) Schedule regular checkups (mammograms, Pap tests, lipid level)

i) Phytoestrogens occur naturally in certain foods such as soybeans, chickpeas, and other legumes, asparagus, flaxseed, whole grains, and some fruits and vegetables. Include these in your diet.

j) Include coconut water, raisins, ghee, and asparagus in your daily diet.



See: Proper Diet Eliminates Chronic Migraine and Brain Fog

Lifestyle changes for menopause symptoms

Lifestyle strategies for dosha balancing

- The morning abhyanga, or ayurvedic oil massage, is vitally important for preventing menopausal issues. Ayurvedic oil is designed to improve circulation, calm Vata dosha, and provide needed moisture to the skin.

- Sleep is very important to the woman entering menopause or going through menopause because both Vata and Pitta imbalances may lead to sleep issues, which is only going to make menopausal imbalances worse. To maintain both doshas in balance and to sleep deeply at night, make sure that you're in bed before 10:00 p.m. and that you appear before 6:00 a.m. This is the time of night when sleep comes easier and is more relaxed. If you stay awake past 10:00, it'll be harder to fall asleep, and you will also boost any Pitta imbalance, since 10:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. is your Pitta period of the night, once the body has to be at rest to be able to cleanse and purify itself.

- For both Pitta and Vata dosha, it is important not to skip meals, and also to eat your primary meal at noon, when the digestive system is at it's most powerful. Try to eat at exactly the exact same time each day, and go to bed and wake up at the exact same time in a good routine.

- Make certain to get a great deal of rest throughout your menstrual cycle as you approach menopause since this can keep Apana Vata in equilibrium and prevent the more severe complications of menopause.

- Daily exercise (gentle for Vata and not overly overheating for Pitta) is also essential for maintaining all doshas in balance.

See: Sleeping on the left side health benefits

Summary

As the name suggests, menopause does bring a pause in a woman’s life. But it doesn’t stop a person from living life to the fullest. When a woman doesn’t get her period for 12 months consecutively, she is said to have got menopause.

Menopause symptoms majorly include physical illness, hot flashes, vaginal dryness, depression, weight gain, sleep disturbance, mood symptoms, urinary complaints, and uterine bleeding problems. Menopause causes a lot of physical and emotional changes in a woman’s body, but it should not be considered as a disease. Ayurveda and Yoga have been used with conventional therapies in menopause. There are Ayurveda treatments available, all of which involve the body, mind, and spiritual concepts. Ayurveda can help to overcome the vagaries of menopause. Ayurveda describes menopause as a phase in which the body system goes out of balance.

See: Ayurveda treatment for depression

References

References:

1. Qureshi NA, Al-Bedah AM. Mood disorders and complementary and alternative medicine: a literature review. Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat. 2013;9:639–658. DOI:10.2147/NDT.S43419

2. Geller SE, Studee L. Botanical and dietary supplements for menopausal symptoms: what works, what does not. J Women's Health (Larchmt). 2005;14(7):634–649. DOI:10.1089/jwh.2005.14.634

3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17454163 

4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21171936 

5.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12809367 

6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4740760/ 

7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5308513/ 

8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4566777/

9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14598915

10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1764641/

11. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27884717

See: Yoga & meditation for natural stress relief

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