Vitamins & Minerals to manage Perimenopause
Morgane Leten – Nutrition & Fertility Coach
Perimenopause is a natural phase in a woman’s life that typically starts showing up in your 40s. It can throw quite a curveball with a range of symptoms including hot flashes, mood swings, and irregular periods. These changes are a completely normal part of aging, but no one needs to suffer through this transitional period. Here’s the exciting part: science has revealed that some vitamins and minerals can help you manage the symptoms associated with perimenopause.
In this article, we will tell you all about the key vitamins and minerals, backed by scientific studies that can help you manage perimenopause with ease. Let’s dive in.
Vitamin B-6, also known as pyridoxine, plays a vital role in the production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter responsible for transmitting signals within the brain. As you progress through the aging process, your serotonin levels tend to fluctuate and ultimately, decline. These fluctuations in serotonin levels can potentially contribute to the mood swings and feelings of depression commonly experienced during menopause.
For women aged 19 to 50, the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for vitamin B-6 is 1.3 milligrams (mg) per day, while it slightly increases to 1.5 mg for females aged 50 and above. Consider incorporating a vitamin B-6 supplement into your daily routine during and after menopause, as it may assist in alleviating symptoms associated with low serotonin levels. These symptoms often include a loss of energy and feelings of depression.
Did you know that our adrenal glands play a significant role in estrogen production? It's a fascinating aspect of our physiology! When the ovaries begin to reduce their secretion of sex hormones, the adrenal glands step in to produce a hormone called DHEA, which is later converted into estrogen. It's a remarkable example of how our bodies adapt.
This is precisely why B Vitamins should be at the top of your list if you’re thinking about adding a supplement to your routine to support you through perimenopause. Supporting the adrenal glands is super important, as they become the primary source for continued production of both estrogen and testosterone. Modern life moves fast. And everyday stressors already place significant demands on the adrenal glands. When combined with the natural decline of your ovarian function, it can increase issues related to declining progesterone levels. This can lead to a common problem known as HPA dysregulation, which in turn can result in fatigue, anxiety, and changes in your sleep.
B vitamins can play an important role in helping the adrenal glands respond to stress and maintain hormone production. When you’re low on B vitamins, the adrenal glands can't perform at their best. Consider incorporating B-Active Plus, a comprehensive B vitamin complex, into your diet to ensure you're getting the full range of B vitamins your body needs.
Vitamin D has loads of benefits - including helping to keep your bones strong - but did you know that it’s also been shown to help with symptoms of menopause like hot flashes and vaginal dryness as well as reducing your risk of breast cancer.
As we age, our estrogen levels decline and our risk for bone disease increases. This is one of the reasons why some doctors recommend adding vitamin D to your list of perimenopause supplements in a dosage specific to your needs.
We talk about Omega-3 fatty acids a lot here at Guud Woman, and for good reason. Omega-3 fatty acids are something our bodies can't whip up on their own, so we've got to get them from our diet. What's cool is that our natural estrogen helps turn plant-based omega precursors into those essential omega-3s. This makes it even more important to include fatty fish in our diet or consider omega-3 supplements as we get older.
While Omega-3s have been talked up as a possible way to ease those pesky hot flashes in women, we should keep in mind that we're still waiting on more research to confirm if they can really deliver all the benefits they promise.
Now, let's chat about zinc. This little mineral does some pretty amazing stuff. Not only is it beneficial for women with PCOS because it contributes to normal fertility and reproduction, it also supports a healthy immune system.
Speaking of aging gracefully, let's not forget about testosterone. It's not just for men - this hormone is like the secret sauce of your vitality, and as we get older, it can take a bit of a nosedive. While a testosterone decline can result in a dip in your sex drive, it can also impact your muscle mass. And that, combined with the hormonal rollercoaster of perimenopause and beyond, can be a recipe for some frustrating weight challenges.
Adding zinc to your diet can be beneficial as it can help keep those testosterone levels in check, so they don't go haywire and cause hair loss or other unwelcome surprises.
Vitamin E can be a useful supplement if you’re experiencing the symptoms of perimenopause. For starters, they can be helpful if you experience hot flashes. This study found that Vitamin E can offer some relief for this symptom.
Also, Vitamin E can help regulate sex hormones so it can be useful if you’re experiencing vaginal dryness. This common symptom, that begins during perimenopause, can make sex uncomfortable and lead to inflammation. Vitamin E can help provide some relief.
During perimenopause, melatonin levels start to naturally reduce, so increasing your intake of magnesium can be incredibly helpful.
Magnesium is crucial for your body to convert digested food and supplements into the energy you need to stay active throughout the day. When magnesium levels are insufficient, the nutrients you consume cannot be effectively metabolized into energy, making you feel tired and sluggish.
Chastetree, also known as Vitex, is a commonly recommended herbal remedy for women in early menopause who are dealing with irregular menstrual cycles. It's worth noting that German health authorities have approved Chastetree/Vitex for addressing a range of women's health issues, including PMS, breast tenderness, and menstrual cycle irregularities. If you're interested in learning more about the benefits and usage of Chastetree/Vitex, you can refer to this study published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information.
Adding supplements into your perimenopausal journey can be a valuable way to manage the changes that come your way. But remember: it's not just about supplements; it's about creating a holistic approach. Pair them with a healthy lifestyle, including regular physical activity, effective stress management, and ample sleep, to navigate the transition to menopause with greater ease.
Looking for more information about other ways to help you through perimenopause? Check out this blog post for everything you need to know including what it is, the symptoms and lifestyle changes that can help you navigate this phase of your life.
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