Understanding menopause

Menopause is a natural event in a woman’s life and every woman experience its effects differently.

It is a time when women go through important changes and might feel like they are losing their femininity as the levels of hormones drop. They might start to feel uncomfortable and experience symptoms of menopause such as irritability, hot flushes, and insomnia. It is important to understand what causes menopause and what can be done to minimise the symptoms. Once women understand what they are going through it is important to take responsibility and manage their lifestyles; maybe slow down, focus on self study, and on a healthy lifestyle.

Menopause is not a disease and it does not need to be managed with hormones. With Hormone yoga therapy women can successfully manage their symptoms through exercise and healthy lifestyle. It means incorporating half an hour of exercise into their daily/almost daily routine. It does take more time than taking a HRT – hormone replacement therapy pill but at least you know that there are no negative side effects and that you are using a healthy and natural alternarnative.

Around the age of 35 woman’s reproductive organs generally start to slow down meaning that the levels of hormones (estrogen and progesteron) start to decrease.

NATURAL MENOPAUSE usually comes after the age of 40 and the average age is around 52 years. It starts with irregular menstruation cycles either with less bleeding or excessive bleeding. After some time the periods stop altogether which means that a woman’s reproductive life is over. Menopause is defined as a period of 12 months without a menstruation. The decrease of estrogen levels might cause unpleasant physical as well as emotional symptoms between the age of 45 – 60+, and might be accompanied by osteoporosis or cardiovascular diseases. Some women can experience an EARLY MENOPAUSE when they stop menstruating before the age of 45. Often this runs in certain familys but other causes of early menopause might be; surgical intervention, as a side effect of medication, excessive physical exercise, excessive loss of weight, or emotional trauma.

PERIMENOPAUSE is a period which starts aprox 3 years before menopause and ends aprox 8 years after menopause.

POSTMENOPAUSE follows the menopause, meaning years that come after the menopause. Although the levels of estrogen are low there is still a lot one can do with their lifestyle and diet to help your body cope.

The most important female reproductive hormones are estrogen and progesteron. Ovaries are the main producer of these hormones but not the only ones. The thyroid and pituary glands play a very important role in producing hormones which effect the production of estrogen and progesteron. Therefore HYT technique focuses on reactivating not only ovaries but the thyroid and pituary glands as well.

Factors that decrease hormone production Factors that help to increase hormones
sedentary lifestyle swimming
stress and emotional trauma gentle exercise
unhealthy diet healthy diet and lifestyle
smoking emotional balance
excessive alcohol and coffee drinking hormone yoga therapy
extreme loss of weight
excessive exercise

Symptoms of menopause – caused by decreased levels of estrogen

  • Hot flushes – 75 % of women suffer with this symptom;
  • Urogenital dryness, low libido (decreased production of colagen)
  • Hair, skin, nails – decrease of estrogen causes decreased production of estrogen and worsen blood circulation. All these factors impact negatively on hair, skin and nails
  • Emotional symptoms such as insomnia, depression, forgetfullness
  • Headaches and migraines
  • Aching joints
  • Weight gain, slow metabolism
  • Carpall tunnel syndrom

Other diseases related to low levels of hormones

  • Osteoporosis – one of the functions of estrogen is to stimulate calcium absorption in bones therefore decreasing levels of estrogen might worsen osteoporosis
  • Cholesterol and cardiovascular diseases – next to genetic disposition and other factors like diabetes, smoking, and hypertentsion, low levels of estrogen mean that women are not as well protected against cardiovascular diseases as they were previously. Estrogen helps to increase good cholesterol which helps to prevent the narrowing of your arteries from cholesterol deposits. With decreasing levels of estrogen you can see that this HAS the potential to cause the opposite; higher levels of cholesterol and less protection against cardiovascular diseases. Modern medicine manages this with HRT but research has shown that artifical hormones in the form of HRT do not provide as much protection as our naturally produced hormones (Risks and benefits of estrogen plus progestin in healthy menopausal women  – JAMA, 2002). HYT is potentially therefore a better way to reactivate estrogen production.
Hormone yoga therapy (HYT) for menopause aims to stimulate your hormone glands to work more optimally. It is a very beneficial technique which helps to reduce symptoms of menopause plus hormonal imbalances before menopause (polycystic ovaries, PMS) as well as problems with infertility.

I would recommend talking to your doctor about symptoms related to menopause or hormonal imbalance. Even if you decide to go with HRT I would highly recommend practicing HYT alongside. You might find that if practiced regularly you can stop with HRT altogether, managing your symptoms naturally with regular exercise and a healthy lifestyle.

Case studies based on Dinah Rodrigues’ book – Hormone Yoga Therapy for menopause:
Age 66, menopause when she was 51, estrogen level less than 10 pg/ml; symptoms: insomnia, irritability, urogenital dryness and low libido.

She started practice HYT for 16 days in a month. After 4 month of practice her estrogen level increased to 23 pg/ml; increased libido, no irritability, insomnia nor urogential dryness. She felt full of energy, content and in good mood. She continued practicing HYT for next 6 months and was not experiencing any symptoms. After further 2 months she stopped with the practice (12 months after she started) and her estrogen level dropped to 14,2 pg/ml, irritability and insomnia reappeared as well as urogenital dryness and she started experiencing hot flushes. She decided to start practicing again and increased the intensity to 25x per month. After 2 months of practice the level of estrogen increased to 30 pg/ml, all symptoms disappeared. She increased her practice to 29x per months and after another couple of months the estrogen level increased to 39,6 pg/ml plus she had not symptoms. She felt content and full of energy again.