Women have been going through the menopause since the beginning of time, and yet only now are we beginning to see it spoken about more openly in mainstream media. While, as Pharmacists here at Pharmaplus, we have been advocating for years for better education and more positive awareness around the menopause, what the symptoms are, what options are available in terms of treatment, and overall wellbeing during this period, it is finally HAPPENING.
Not only that, but we are very excited to share the latest addition to our range of evidence-based supplements – our Menoplus daily supplement has been designed with you in mind, with carefully selected ingredients to support wellness in your menopausal journey.
What are the signs and symptoms of the menopause?
Before I delve into this, I think it’s important to note that while there are signs and symptoms of the menopause that we will be aware of, there are also long-term impacts of the menopause which are important, but which may not materialise for years after first experiencing the menopause.
First, let’s talk about the most common signs and symptoms, and it is important to note that every person going through the menopause has a different experience, and not everyone has any or all of the following symptoms (these are just the most common):
- Irregular periods: As menopause approaches, menstrual cycles often become irregular. Periods may become lighter or heavier, and the duration between cycles may vary.
- Hot flashes and night sweats: Perhaps the most well-known symptoms of menopause, hot flashes are sudden waves of heat that spread throughout the body, often accompanied by sweating. Night sweats are similar experiences that occur during sleep, leading to disrupted sleep patterns.
- Vaginal dryness: Decreased estrogen levels can result in vaginal dryness, causing discomfort, itching, and pain during intercourse. It may also lead to an increased risk of urinary tract infections.
- Sleep disturbances: Many women experience difficulties with sleep during menopause. Night sweats and hormonal fluctuations can lead to insomnia or disrupted sleep patterns, affecting overall quality of rest.
- Mood changes: Hormonal shifts during menopause can affect mood and emotional well-being. Women may experience mood swings, irritability, anxiety, or feelings of sadness or depression.
- Fatigue: Menopause can be accompanied by fatigue and a lack of energy. Disrupted sleep patterns, hormonal changes, and other menopausal symptoms can contribute to this fatigue.
While menopause itself is not a disease, its hormonal shifts can have several long-term impacts on a woman’s health and well-being. Here are some of the key longer-term effects:
- Bone health: Estrogen plays a crucial role in maintaining bone density. After menopause, when estrogen levels decline, women become more susceptible to osteoporosis, a condition characterised by weakened and brittle bones. This makes women more prone to fractures and can increase the risk of developing osteoporosis-related complications.
- Heart health: Estrogen has a protective effect on the cardiovascular system, and after menopause, the risk of heart disease increases. This is because estrogen helps maintain healthy blood vessels and regulates cholesterol levels. Therefore, postmenopausal women need to be proactive in adopting heart-healthy lifestyles and monitoring their cardiovascular health.
- Cognitive function: While the relationship between menopause and cognitive function is complex and not fully understood, some studies suggest that hormonal changes during menopause may contribute to cognitive decline and an increased risk of developing conditions such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. However, more research is needed to fully understand the link.
It is important to remember that while menopause can have long-term impacts, lifestyle choices and proactive healthcare measures can significantly reduce the risks and promote overall well-being. From regular health check-ups, to healthy lifestyle decisions, there are so many things we can be empowered to do to ensure a more positive menopausal experience, and that is the exact ethos with which Menoplus came to be created!
What makes Menoplus special?
This daily supplement was created by Pharmacists, with evidence-based ingredients included in the optimal dosages to support your specific menopausal and women’s health needs at this stage of your life. We believe that supplements are just that – a supplement to a balanced and healthy lifestyle, which is why we focus our efforts on including only the best, evidence-based ingredients. With our special formulation, we are helping to support menopausal women with their specific needs, and overall wellbeing, using targeted nutrition.
As mentioned above, the menopause is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease due to hormonal changes. We have included omega-3 fatty acids, as they have been extensively studied for their cardiovascular benefits, including reducing triglyceride levels, lowering blood pressure, improving arterial function, and reducing inflammation. By supporting heart health, omega-3s can contribute to overall well-being during menopause. Omega-3s have also been found to have a positive effect on bone health by promoting calcium absorption, reducing bone loss, and enhancing bone density. They can work synergistically with other nutrients, such as vitamin D (which is also included in the supplement) and calcium, to support bone health during menopause.
Vitamin D not only has a role to play in terms of bone health, but also in terms of muscle function, and plays a key role in the maintenance of a healthy immune system, as well as having a role to play in mood and cognitive function. Vitamin D receptors are present in areas of the brain involved in mood regulation, and low vitamin D levels have been associated with a higher risk of depressive symptoms. With mood changes being a commonly experienced symptom in menopausal women, having adequate levels of vitamin D is an often underestimated, yet important element to consider in regulation of mood. If in doubt, it could be a good idea to have your vitamin D levels checked with your G.P.
Numerous studies have associated low Vitamin B12 concentration with cognitive dysfunction and cognitive decline in menopause and older age, with other B vitamins, such as B6 also having an important role to play in this respect (1, 2). Folic acid (vitamin B9) has also been included, with low folate levels linked with cognitive decline (3). B vitamins also have an important role to play in the maintenance of our energy levels, and each B vitamin included in the Menoplus formulation has been carefully selected and included in the optimal dosages, backed by science.
Zinc is involved in the production and metabolism of various hormones, including estrogen and progesterone. During menopause, when estrogen and progesterone levels decline, ensuring sufficient zinc intake may help support hormonal balance and alleviate some symptoms associated with hormonal fluctuations. It also has an important role to play in terms of bone health, immune function and even in maintaining collagen and tissue health when it comes to our skin.
Lastly, but certainly not the least important key ingredient in the formulation, is magnesium. With many women experiencing sleep disturbances in the menopause, and a large body of research supporting the beneficial role magnesium can play in sleep, it certainly made our ingredient list. Not only that, but magnesium also acts as a muscle relaxant and can help regulate body temperature, promoting a more balanced thermoregulatory system, it has an important role in our bone health, mood and emotional wellbeing, muscle health, energy production, and even cardiovascular health.
Over the years of research and development we have put into creating this supplement, after years of helping to support women on their menopausal journey in the Pharmacy setting, we can’t wait for you to try Menoplus, and benefit from a supplement designed to support you through this stage of your life.
- Moorthy D, Peter I, Scott TM, et al. Status of vitamins B-12 and B-6 but not of folate, homocysteine, and the methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase C677T polymorphism are associated with impaired cognition and depression in adults. J Nutr. 2012;142:1554–1560. [PMC free article] [PubMed] [Google Scholar]
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