Sometimes, even with a full plate, you can't pack in all the nutrients you need to ease your menopause symptoms. However, when it comes to hot flashes, there are a few that you should consider that provide extra benefits to menopausal women. Check out this list of the top five vitamins and minerals to help manage your hot flashes.
Studies have shown that this antioxidant vitamin can serve as an alternative therapy for hot flashes during menopause. Sources of vitamin E include roasted sweet potato salad and almond butter, for example. While vitamin E won't work for everyone, it's worth a try if you're searching for natural menopause remedies. Consult your doctor about appropriate dosages before beginning your vitamin E regimen.
B vitamins, especially folic acid (B9), can also help calm your hot flashes. When you consume this vital nutrient from soy, you get added benefits like protein and fiber. Among the tasty foods that contain soy are soymilk, soy yogurt, tofu, and miso. Other good sources of B vitamins like folic acid include asparagus, spinach, and other legumes.
While calcium intake is extremely important for women's bone health, this mineral is also an important electrolyte that is sometimes lost in the sweat from hot flashes and night sweats. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) sets its standard recommendation of calcium intake at 1,000 mg each day for women ages 20 - 50 and 1,200 mg daily for women over 50.
Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is an antioxidant vitamin. It has been used in combination with hesperidin, a compound from citrus fruits, to reduce hot flashes. As an added benefit, vitamin C supports the production of collagen, an important structural protein in skin that can help reduce dryness and itchiness. Adding plenty of citrus fruits to your diet can help calm hot flashes and other menopause symptoms.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
These polyunsaturated fats are vital for cell maintenance and can benefit women with hot flashes. Supplementation with omega-3 has shown to be helpful in reducing the frequency and intensity of hot flash episodes. Omega-3 is found in oily fish and soy, but fish oil and sacha inchi supplements are another way to consume the nutrient.
Treatments for Hot Flashes
Hot flashes are commonly triggered by spicy foods, nicotine, caffeine, and alcohol, so moderate your intake of these substances if you suffer from this menopause symptom. Changing your diet is the first step, but it does not address the root problem, which is hormonal imbalance. Click on the following link to find out more about hot flash treatments to complement a healthy diet and balance hormone levels.
- Office of Dietary Supplements. (2013). Calcium. Retrieved May 14, 2015, from http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Calcium-HealthProfessional/#h7
- Lucas, M. et al. (2009). Effects of ethyl-eicosapentaenoic acid omega-3 fatty acid supplementation on hot flashes and quality of life among middle-aged women: a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized clinical trial. Menopause, 16(2), 357-366.
- Smith, C.J. (1964). Non-hormonal control of vaso-motor flushing in menopausal patients. Chicago Medicine, 67, 193-195.
- Ziaei, S. et al. (2007). The effect of vitamin E on hot flashes in menopausal women. Gynecologic and Obstetric Investigation, 64(4), 204-207.