Let’s PAUSE, what the heck is perimenopause and menopause?

Often women pay more attention and are more concerned with what/how they are feeling or their physical appearance (abdominal weight gain, difficulty losing weight, fatigue, insomnia, hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, bloating, etc.) than knowing whether it is the perimenopause or menopause phase.


Let’s take a deeper look into what is perimenopause and menopause and exactly what is happening in a woman’s body during each phase.



Perimenopause


Perimenopause is the period where the body starts to gear up for the end of the reproductive years and during this time there are a multitude of hormonal changes happening leading up to menopause or your last period.

It usually starts around the age of 35 to 40.


Perimenopause can be quite complex because of the hormonal imbalances that cause changes in your body from one month to the next.


To further complicate matters, no one hormone is responsible for perimenopause, it’s a combination and they work like an orchestra. During this time, your ovaries produce less estrogen and progesterone (reproductive hormones) and ovulation becomes inconsistent and unpredictable.


Science behind Perimenopause


As a woman ages so do her ovaries and her menstrual cycle changes and may become shorter, longer or unpredictable. The pituitary glands increase production of follicle stimulating hormones (FSH) and luteinizing hormones (LH) to push the ovaries to increase production of estrogen and progesterone.

However, the ovaries ignore these messages and continue to slow down production. This forces the pituitary glands to work harder to produce the hormones.


At the same time, the thyroid becomes sluggish, metabolism slows, weight gain increases, fatigue and low energy occur and mood swings become erratic.


The adrenals are also involved and your response to stress is heightened. As energy continues to slow, you may experience insomnia and cravings for sugar, chocolate and alcohol, which could become your go to solutions for temporary fixes.


Some common signs and symptoms include:

  • Weight gain

  • Difficulty losing weight

  • Bloating

  • Cravings

  • Lack of energy and fatigue

  • Brain fog or memory loss

  • Depression

  • Moodiness

  • Insomnia

  • Hot flashes and night sweats

  • Low libido

Menopause

Menopause occurs when a woman has not had her period for 12 consecutive months, which signifies permanent infertility or the end of the reproductive years. Menopause usually occurs around the age of 52, but could vary.


During menopause, a woman usually has lower levels of estrogen, which could lead to different symptoms that may vary from woman to woman ranging from mild to problematic.


Science behind Menopause


During menopause, the ovaries no longer produce most of a woman’s estrogen and progesterone, the adrenals now produce about 50%. Cortisol levels also increase, which create more problems with stress and hormonal changes.


When stress levels are high, the adrenal’s primary focus is to make cortisol for fight or flight response triggered by the amygdala (part of your brain responsible for processing emotions) instead of making estrogen and progesterone. Therefore, properly managing stress will ensure that a woman will have enough estrogen during the transition from perimenopause to menopause.


As the ovaries continue to produce less estrogen, the body tries to find other sources of estrogen. Since estrogen is stored in the fat cells, your body creates more fat cells to store more estrogen, which explains why many women gain weight especially in their mid-section during the transition from perimenopause to menopause although she is taking all the right steps to control her weight.

Most of the symptoms associated with menopause are similar to those of perimenopause and could include:

  • Weight gain

  • Difficulty losing weight

  • Lack of energy and fatigue

  • Brain fog or memory loss

  • Depression

  • Moodiness

  • Insomnia

  • Hot flashes and night sweats

  • Vaginal dryness

  • Low libido

CONNECT WITH ME

If you are struggling with weight gain, lack of energy, hot flashes, cravings, etc. I have a few spots available over the next 2 weeks for a FREE 30-minute Lose Weight and Reclaim Your Energy: Menopause Breakthrough Session with me.

If you’d like to set up a time to chat, click the link below to schedule time on my calendar.

https://app.acuityscheduling.com/schedule.php?owner=19382600


Free eBook: 3 Proven Ways to naturally alleviate perimenopause and menopause symptoms without feeling overwhelmed

https://mailchi.mp/4cf17bf10659/reducemenopause?fbclid=IwAR2qoBGN0L-1nQWKSGfGz5IWPMFlD6kmiRQnZsKRlrv2Zl-9zPuCmwkNce8


In Good Health,

Deon


DISCLAIMER: This information is not intended to provide medical advice. The purpose is to provide education and broader understanding to my readers. Always seek the advice of your qualified healthcare provider before making any dietary or lifestyle changes. I do not recommend or prescribe, or recommend changing dosage or discontinuing, any prescription medications or pharmaceutical drugs.


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Menopause & Perimenopause Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/541676579718984

Website: Deonhall.com


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