Perimenopause (womens things)
It seems to me that discussion of the menopause is a bit hush hush. As women we don’t really like to talk about it and I’m not sure why that is. Is it that we are uncomfortable with the fact that it’s a reminder we are getting older? or is it that we are just not sure that what we are experiencing is the menopause?
For a few months I have been getting joint pain. I assumed that it was old injuries which had been aggravated by lifting weights. I assumed that I may need to scale back the weight, maybe I was lifting too heavy? I also assumed that because of my high doses of Cod Liver Oil that any inflammation experienced as part and parcel of my gym workouts should be covered. So when the pain in my elbows and hips started disturbing me in the night, I turned to my trusty friend Google.
It would appear that joint pain is a little known, but not uncommon symptom of the menopause. I am guessing that my workouts are maybe just exacerbating it somewhat. During my search I came across a website from A.Vogel which covered this in specific detail. If you have supplemented with vitamins or minerals in your diet you are probably aware of the Company. Alfred Vogel was a Swiss pioneer of natural herbal medicine and he dedicated his life to extolling the virtues of living our lives more naturally and in harmony with nature. Their products cover anything from sprouted seeds to cold sore cream and are extensively researched and tested and available on the high street. Amongst the products on their website are a number of helpful articles and videos on health in general, and this is where I came across the Menopause Support. In a series of articles and videos Eileen Durward talks about what to expect and how you can help yourself.
For many women Menopause can be a confusing time. As our hormones start to subtly change we can experience symptoms whilst still having regular periods, and as such we do not add two and two together. Given that many of us have to deal with anxiety, low mood or irritability anyway as part of our usual hormone fluctuations, would we really notice these subtle differences? From my perspective, if I add that to stopping my SSRI’s, I am completely unsure what mood is related to what!
The menopause happens on average to woman between the ages of 45-55. It is this period of time that see’s all the symptoms. You are not considered to be post-menopause until your periods have stopped for 1 year, although Eileen says that 2 years would be more accurate, as it is quite common for women to stop for up to a year and then start again. Talk about confusing.
No two women’s experiences will be the same. Although the ‘hot flashes and night sweats’ is a very common symptom which we all know about (my mother in-law called them ‘mini-summers’) actually up to 25% of women will never actually experience them! (I have my fingers crossed that I am in the minority here). The good news is that all this is only a phase, and just like the beginning of your fertility when all hell broke loose, the end, whilst bumpy, is finite.
What I did find on the A Vogel site was a FREE 7 day plan. When you sign up to the plan you will receive a video link in your email inbox every day of the seven days, you will also receive a free Menopause Support pack in the post. The Nutritional supplement which I received on the day that I received my first video (good timing AV) contains magnesium, fermented soy bean extract, hibiscus extract and vervain essential oil. The fermented soy isoflavones within the tablets are an active form of phytoestrogens which are purported to help falling levels of oestrogen which are the main culprit for the symptoms experienced. I would note here that there is a lot of hoo-ha surrounding phytoestrogens especially for women of child bearing age, so you need to decide for yourself whether they are right for you or not.
The feedback on the tablets from other women on the site is quite positive, and whilst you only receive a free 7 day supply, some women have reported feeling better within that short period of time. Clearly I only received my pack this morning, so I have only taken one tablet, and I’m not dancing around the house like Mary Poppins yet. I am however very interested to see if I do notice any subtle differences in my mood, particularly as I am trying to unpick tenuous peri-menopausal symptoms from other previously mentioned mood issues. Welcome to my mad, mad world.
On a final note, it’s lovely to see a corporation give this type of advice. Given that many of us cannot get in to see a doctor at any point in the near future nowadays, this type of support and help is most welcome.
Whilst I appreciate that their free sample is an introduction to their products with a hope that you will purchase them in the future. The fact that they are confident enough in their offerings to give them away in a bid to help poor floundering women such as me, is a testament to their ethical approach. Free samples aside, the information provided both through the online videos, emails and printed literature which came in the post is extremely helpful. So if you, like me, are on the steps peering down into the mysterious abyss that is menopause, click on the link and grab yourself a copy. You never know, we could be frolicking through the poppy fields like young girls before we know it!