A new study of more than 17,000 menopausal women suggests that a low-fat diet may effectively stop hot flashes and lessen the sweaty, unpleasant symptom. Now, you have a new motivation to stick to your diet.
Fat and hot flashes
The study, which was published last week online in the journal Menopause, involved more than 17,000 menopausal women who were not on hormone replacement therapy, HRT. Nearly half of them, 40 percent, were given a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grains to follow. During the study, women met periodically with a nutritious to ensure they were following the diet as prescribed. The other study participants made no special changes to their diets.
All of them experienced hot flashes and hormonal night sweats, night time hot flashes, and recorded details about their symptoms. Women who dieted were 14 percent more likely to stop hot flashes within the first year of the diet. The 14 percent margin remains even after numbers are adjusted to account for risk factors such as weight, smoking habits and ethnicity. Even women who gained weight while on the diet, instead of losing, were more likely to stop hot flashes and reduce menopause symptoms.
Stop hot flashes
The study doesn’t definitively point toward certain foods that stop hot flashes, but it is pretty interesting. Weight loss has already been linked to hot flashes in previous studies; women who are overweight tend to have them more frequently and at greater severity. Certain foods, like soy and flaxseed, have also been touted as hot flash cures, but scientific study of the foods doesn’t stand up.
Other methods of stopping hot flashes have been effective for some women. Many experts tout stress relief as a viable and very effective method. Self-hypnosis, meditation, mindfulness and other forms of relaxation can greatly lessen the severity of hot flashes.
Instead of hormone replacement therapy, which can increase cancer risk, some women use vitamin supplements, like Remifemin, that mimic the estrogen they’re losing. Some supplements contain natural plant estrogens, which are not harmful, in order to help balance the hormones in your body.
Diet and exercise are a well-known and effective way of stopping hormonal night sweats, hot flashes and other menopause symptoms – not to mention, increasing your overall health. Exercising regularly can help release some of the heat in your system, and it will actually reduce the hot flashes you’re having. Exercise also helps to relax you and relieve stress, which triggers hot flashes. Eating healthy and staying in shape is a good way to prevent many aches, pains and other health problems. Whether you’re doing it to stop hot flashes or fit into that new swimsuit, always approach diet and exercise in a healthy way. Consult with your physician or a dietician and come up with a healthy weight loss and exercise plan that won’t put stress on your body.
Find more ways to stop hot flashes in our free special report, 5 Proven Remedies to Reduce Hot Flashes During Menopause.