Natural remedies are becoming a popular treatment for hot flashes among menopausal women. Several natural remedies are readily available and can be combined with other treatments such as lifestyle changes and hormone replacement therapy (HRT). Hot flashes are the most common symptom of menopause, so for many women, it is important to find an effective treatment.
Natural supplements are very popular, and the most common herbal supplements to treat hot flash symptoms during menopause include black cohosh, red clover, dong quai, and ginseng. Some women report success with these supplements. They are promoted because they contain compounds similar to estrogen.
However, most of these supplements have been shown to be ineffective, or at best, have had mixed results. It is a good idea to talk to your doctor about any natural treatment that you take. Even though they may be touted as natural and risk-free, they can still have side effects, interact with other medicine you are taking, and have effects on underlying conditions you may have.
Making some lifestyle adjustments can help alleviate hot flashes. There are several lifestyle changes that have been shown to be effective for managing hot flashes. Exercising regularly and eating a balanced diet will improve your overall health, as a result, help balance hormone levels; this can help relieve some of your hot flash symptoms.
Important nutrients in a healthy diet during menopause include:
Vitamin C. Also known as ascorbic acid, this vitamin is found in broccoli, cabbage, asparagus, and tomatoes.
Vitamin E. This nutrient is found in asparagus, almonds, lamb, brown rice, and mangoes.
B vitamins. This group is found in wheat germ or can be taken as a B-complex supplement.
Fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids are found in soy and coldwater fish.
Natural remedies combined with simple adjustments to your daily routine can significantly impact the frequency and severity of your hot flashes in a positive way.
Tips for Dealing with Hot Flashes
Here are some ways to handle hot flash episodes in the heat of the moment:
- Wear breathable clothing
- Avoid hot flash triggers (alcohol, caffeine, sugar, and spicy foods)
- Lower room temperature
- Breathe deeply and count to 10
- Use a portable fan
Lifestyle changes accompanied by natural supplements is one way to combat hot flashes and prevent future episodes. It is a good idea to consult with your doctor if hot flashes are lowering the quality of your life.
- Mayo Clinic Staff. (2014). Complementary and alternative medicine. Retrieved December 17, 2015, from http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/consumer-health/in-depth/alternative-medicine/art-20045267
- National Health Service UK. (2008). Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Retrieved December 17, 2015, from http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/complementary-alternative-medicine/Pages/complementary-and-alternative-medicine.aspx
- National Institute on Aging. (2015). What Can You Do for Hot Flashes and Other Menopausal Symptoms. Retrieved December 17, 2015, from https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/publication/menopause-time-change/what-can-you-do-hot-flashes-and-other-menopausal-symptoms