Menopause is a natural phenomenon that signals the complete end of menstrual cycles and women are no longer able to bear children, due to variations in reproductive hormone levels – estrogen, progesterone and ovarian follicular activity.
It is a gradual and natural biological transition begins between ages 45 -55yrs, and can cause uncomfortable and annoying symptoms like hot flashes, vaginal discharge and dryness, mood swings, headaches etc. These symptoms can turn out to be quite disturbing with time.
Ayurvedic Approach to Menopause
In Ayurveda, the menopause is known as “Rajonivrutti”, where raja is menses and nivritti is stopping, which means “the end of Artava Pravrutti” i.e. the stopping of menstruation.
According to Samhitas and many other renowned Ayurvedic scriptures, the onset of menopause is when menstrual cycles stop in women for a continuous period of 12 months and do not occur again.
Rajonivrutti is characterized by an aggravation of the Vata Dosha, thereby leading to an imbalance in all the three doshas (Vata, Pitta and Kapha).
Common Menopausal Symptoms
About 8 in every 10 women will have additional symptoms for some time before and after their periods.
Hot flushes : sudden feelings of heat, mostly in the face, chest and neck, which makes skin red and sweaty.
These flashes are directly related to decreasing levels of estrogen. For 80% of women, hot flashes occur for 2 years or less and small percentage of women experience hot flashes for more than 2 years, vary in frequency and intensity. Hot flushes that occur at nigh are called as Night sweats are also seen.
- Difficulty sleeping
- Vaginal atrophy & a reduced sex drive (libido)
- Problems with memory and concentration
- Vaginal dryness, pain, itching and discomfort during sex
- Mood changes-such as low mood or anxiety
- Joint stiffness
- aches and pains
- Reduced muscle mass
- Recurrent urinary tract infections (UTIs)
Natural Remedies for Dealing with Menopause
With a decrease in estrogen levels, the regulation of fat metabolism and control of cholesterol levels becomes a challenge in the body. Arjuna is an herb touted for its ability to augment heart functions, thus helping women preserve normal blood pressure and averting cardiac ailments.
Because of sudden ups and downs in female reproductive hormone levels during menopause, nervous system operations are negatively influenced. It works as a marvelous mood enhancer which immensely aids in stimulating mental activities, memory and concentration, brain functions, besides soothing depression.
Since hormonal levels vary widely during menopause, body weight changes tend to occur as well, an unhealthy gain in body mass leads to chronic condition diabetes and obesity, it is vital to monitor body weight . The gum resin is a remarkable therapeutic method to shed excess mass for women undergoing menopause.
Due to loss of tissue mass and reduction in estrogen levels, the bones, muscles and joints become weak in women during menopause, Garlic is famed for its powerful anti-inflammatory traits, which significantly strengthen bones, joints and improve muscle strength.
Ayurvedic Panchakarma in Menopause
Panchakarma is the process of removing toxins from the body.
- Medicated purgation (Virechana) is very effective in calming down the aggravated Pitta doshas and blood tissues.
- Medicated enemas (Vasti) are administered for calming down the aggravated vata doshas and apana vata which become disordered during menopause.
- Medicated nasal oil (Nasya) helps with the symptoms of mind and head.
- Shirodhara: it (Pouring herbal oil or decoction over the scalp)is an effective therapy for calming the nervous system and balancing the Neuro-transmitters.
- Yoni Prakshalan & Pichu (Vaginal treatments) are also adopted as per the need of each individual to treat and support the changes during menopause.
Diet and Lifestyle Advice for Menopause
Ayurvedic science believes in “prevention is better than cure”. Eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and reducing stress provide the foundation of wellbeing for every individual.
Ayurvedic Recommendations for Menopause Include
- Consume Vata-Pitta pacifying diet, that is warm, light, cooked, fresh and unctuous (containing good oils) food.
- Avoid dry, cold, refined sugar, fermented, left-over foods and red meats
- Avoid alcohol and caffeine
- Regular, mild to moderate exercises are good to combat the symptoms. Exercises that relax the nervous system, such as walking, yoga, tai chi and meditation are considered excellent.
- To calm vata, it is very important to create regular routines around your sleep, food, work and exercise
- Daily self-massage with warm oil (abhyanga) and nasal medication (Nasya) where you place some drops of oil in each nostril can help to balance hormonal activity.
Health problems at menopause represent imbalances in the body that were already in growing in the body and proper diet, nutritional supplements, exercise & simple lifestyle Plays a key role in balancing hormones during premenopausal and in menopause. Consult our doctor to choose the right balance of vitamins and minerals to treat menopause. Our online ayurvedic doctors can help you on your journey every step of the way. Book an appointment today!