Hot flushes, night sweats, poor concentration and low moods are just four of many symptoms that most women experience before, during and after the menopause. For some, they are just a minor nuisance, for others, they can be really debilitating and last for years.
The menopause is a natural phase of life, a transition from the fertile years. Puberty in reverse. So why is it sometimes really awful? The problem is, we in the West no longer live life as nature intended. Our lives are so full, so fast and often very stressful. Add to that the toxic load our bodies have to deal with, from environmental pollution to the food we eat, alcohol we drink and lack of exercise we get, it’s no wonder we feel pretty terrible at times! Add to this the negative pattern of thoughts and feelings made worse by our diminishing self confidence and loss of sex drive, we’ve inadvertently created a perfect storm of hormonal chaos!
So…here’s the good news!!! There is so much we women can do to ease menopausal symptoms by using this time of life to really nurture and care for our bodies while our hormones are in a state of flux. It’s time to rest, give yourself the opportunity to sleep as well as you can, tell your loved ones, colleagues and managers what your are experiencing and what you need from them. Exercise by listening to your body, don’t overdo or under-do it.
And now’s the time to nourish your body with the foods that will both provide you with the right nutrients as well as help to balance your hormones. One of the best ways to do this is to eat more phytoestrogens. These are foods that contain a form of plant based oestrogen, supporting your hormones. They also contain lots of fibre to help you get rid of the excess ‘bad’ oestrogen your body no longer needs. Phytoestrogens are found in most beans, lentils, other pulses and whole grains. They are also concentrated in seeds, particularly linseeds (flaxseeds).
So here’s my version of Deliciously Ella’s buckwheat bowl recipe. Mine is creamy, chocolatey, orangey and gorgeous, with no added sugar, lots of phytoestrogens, fibre, vitamins and minerals. So it’s also good for your heart, blood, bones, muscles, immune system and provides you with slow release energy to kick-start your day. What’s not to love!?
Soak 150g of buckwheat overnight in cold water, then rinse until the water runs clear. Blend two thirds of it with a peeled orange, a handful of blueberries or other berries, around 75ml of almond or oat milk, a good tablespoon of peanut butter, 1 – 2 tablespoons of flaxseeds and two teaspoons of cacao powder (raw cocoa). Add the final third of buckwhaet to add crunch and enjoy! I don’t really measure any ingredients so play around with this to get the consistency you prefer. I’d love to know if you like this so please comment and share!