Imbalances in cortisol - the stress hormone - as well as in estrogen can cause many strange symptoms in menopausal women, including an upset stomach. When you enter menopause, your estrogen levels fluctuate constantly, which has a profound effect on other chemicals in your body, like cortisol.
However, poor lifestyle choices can not only aggravate hormone imbalances, but they can also be the root of your troubles. For digestive health especially, diet and exercise are incredibly important.
Below is an example of a daily routine that will help you protect your digestive system and prevent other health complications.
Wake up early
Give yourself plenty of time to have a bowel movement. Rushing your natural processes can cause general digestive problems. Doing some stretches first thing in the morning can help get things moving.
Get your exercise
Whether it's your yoga or aerobic day, the morning is the best time to get exercise. It will give you energy throughout the rest of the day and help you establish a routine, which is great for digestive health.
Though coffee is a diuretic, it can also dehydrate you, which is completely counterproductive to digestive well-being. Instead, try having some water.
Protein is a great way to start your day, but if you're having problems with constipation, cheese may be the last thing you need. Instead, try scrambled eggs or yogurt with probiotic cultures, and don't forget fiber.
Try an anise seed cookie or other snack. It tastes like licorice and promotes bowel regularity.
Water will keep you hydrated throughout the day and ensure that all of your body's systems are working properly.
Fiber for lunch
Have a salad filled with raw vegetables like chard, spinach, and broccoli. Add some raspberries for color and some grilled chicken to satisfy your hunger. Have a piece of whole grain bread with olive oil on the side.
Make sure you drink water at all times of the day. It's easy to become dehydrated, in which case your digestive system will not function as smoothly.
Eat an early dinner
Give your body plenty of time to digest before you lie down for a solid eight hours. One possibility is a bean salad with a lot of vegetables.
Take an after-dinner walk
Help your body digest by moving around for about 20 minutes after dinner. Enjoy a cup of green tea if you like, too.
If your digestive problems are persistent and chronic, they may be caused by something more serious and should be addressed by your doctor. Lifestyle changes and healthy diet are the natural, lowest risk options that produce results. Click on the following link for more information on how to manage digestive problems during menopause.
- Edwards, Dr. Charmaine.(n.d)."Digestive disorders are more prevalent in women".Retrieved from http:// northcountjournal.stltoday.com
- Heitkemper, M.M. & Chang, L. (2009). Do Fluctuations in Ovarian Hormones Affect Gastrointestinal Symptoms in Women With Irritable Bowel Syndrome? Gender Medicine, 6(Suppl 2), 152-167. doi: 10.1016/j.genm.2009.03.004
- Fukudo, S. (2007). Role of corticotropin-releasing hormone in irritable bowel syndrome and intestinal inflammation. Journal of Gastroenterology, 42 Suppl 17, 48-51. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17238026