Mood swings can make a woman's daily life extremely difficult and frustrating because they can interfere with every day activities, relationships, and overall well-being. The sudden shifts in temperament are often inexplicable and can leave women feeling out of control of their own emotions. However, some women find that they can alleviate their experiences by simply leading healthier lifestyles. Read on to discover how both diet and exercise can play vital roles during menopause.
Why Do I Have Mood Swings?
There are multiple potential triggers for mood swings, but hormonal imbalances during menopause are often the primary cause. During menopause, a women's body begins to produce fewer reproductive hormones (i,e.,estrogen and progesterone) as it prepares for infertility. Because these are the chemicals that are responsible for regulating mood, their fluctuations can significantly impact the brains serotonin and endorphin levels. As a result of these changes, women can suffer from mood swings and many other menopausal symptoms.
How to Treat Mood Swings with Lifestyle Changes
For mood swings related to menopause, an effective and risk free way of alleviating any negative experiences is to begin with the least invasive option available- lifestyle changes. Making small adjustments to your lifestyle and daily habits is considered effective because the approach doesn't hold the same potential for risk as medical based methods. The tactic is also deemed efficient because, putting into effect small and healthy changes will not only ease your menopausal mood swings, but it will also improve your overall well-being. Suggested lifestyle alterations include:
Exercise produces endorphins that elevate a person's mood. If someone does not exercise regularly, they may not produce enough endorphins. This can leave them more prone to feeling low and likely to encounter mood swings.
Keeping a healthy diet is one of the most commonly recommended ways of boosting estrogen and progesterone levels, and in consequence, a body's serotonin and endorphins levels. Therefore, women looking to temper their mood swings should consider increasing their fresh fruit and vegetable intake. Stocking the body with the nutrients it needs will ensure it is capable of tackling hormone changes. Other recommended lifestyle changes include:
- Sleep for the recommended seven to eight hours a night
- Drink the equivalent of eight glasses of water a day
- Don't smoke
- Don't drink alcohol
Many women complement their healthy lifestyle changes with natural supplements. In cases of severe and persistent mood swings, medication could be considered as a last resort. Click here for more information about mood swings and their treatments.
- The Health Center.(n.d). "Adult Mood Swings".Retrieved from www.thehealthcenter.info.
- Dr. Love, Susan, and Karen Lindsey. Dr. Susan Love's Menopause and Hormone Book. New York: Three Rivers Press, 2003.
- Amin, Zenab, Turhan Canli, and C. Neill Epperson. "Effects of Estrogen-Serotonin Interactions on Mood and Cognition". Behav Cogn Neurosci Rev 2005; 4; 43.
- Molecular Psychiatry.(n.d)."Estrogen Promotes Gender Difference in Brain's Response to Stress".Retrieved from www.psycheducation.org.