Cropped image of a woman in menopause pushing on her stomach with both hands - gut health concept

Probiotics And A Healthy Gut Ease Menopause Symptoms

You are what you eat.

Well, obviously not exactly, or we would all be wine infused chocolate bars wearing cheese hats and carrying crisp purses. 

The Gut/Hormone Connection

But our bodies do respond to everything we ingest, and as the crisps and wine and leftover toasted cheese crusts work their way through, they pack a punch on how we feel–from weight gain to moodiness to aching joints. And when you’re dealing with menopause and the accompanying hormonal reorganizations, diet does play a large part in managing your symptoms.

Recent research has found a direct connection between your gut (your gastrointestinal system–you learned all this in high school–from your mouth all the way through to the other end) and your overall health. Emerging research into the menopause indicates that a happy gut not only lessens the symptoms of menopause, but can also lower the chances of oestrogen-related cancers in your body. 

When menopause happens, the oestrogen and progesterone your body has been happily producing for years just go on a permanent holiday. You may have noticed this doesn’t happen overnight, it takes (at best) months for your body to stop producing these hormones and for your metabolism to settle into a new normal. This wasn’t such a big deal for millennia; most women didn’t live long enough for post-menopausal health to be a concern–they were lucky just to survive childbearing. Also, “lady problems” have never got the billboard attention that men have for their aging-related “issues”…but we digress. 

Anyway, the bottom line is that a gut chock-full or flora and microbes and all the good things is the key to a happy and healthy life post-menopause. So how to get and maintain that gleeful gut?

Cropped image of a woman in menopause pushing on her stomach with both hands - gut health concept

Hormonal Health

The first thing to do is fix your diet–highly processed, fatty, and sugary foods are just bad, and don’t really meet your nutritional needs. Focus on the perimeter of Tesco and try to avoid the centre aisles where the chemicals lie in wait. Colourful fruits and veggies are the most nutrient-dense, and meat and fish provide good fats and protein. Putting good and real food into your body is a great start towards a healthy gut, and you’ll see results in a few days. 

A Daily Probiotic

OK, all well and good, but avocados and salmon aren’t really enough to make me turn on the heat in the dead of winter, and I’m still a raging witch, unless I’ma sobbing mess. Also, I still crave chocolate.

You’ve read and heard about probiotics–supplements that balance and regulate gut flora. The Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations has even weighed in on probiotics, defining them as 

“live microorganisms that, when administered in adequate amounts, confer a health benefit on the host.”

This isn’t nearly as icky as it sounds– minimally processed yoghurt is a probiotic, and if you’ve ever used yeast in baking, guess what. Live microorganisms are what make the yeast rise. So rounding up all those good microbes in a supplement ensure you’re getting the quantities you need, without hoovering up all the muffins and sandwiches you can get your hands on. And you ladies know that there are days you could do just that–and then take a nice long power nap–thanks to your ebbing hormones. 

Oh–and a daily probiotic may help you lose some of that weight you’ve put on. It all goes back to the gut, and candida fungi bacteria. There’s supposed to be somecandida in your gut, but modern living is the primary culprit when it gets overenthusiastic and overwhelms the other flora. Antibiotics, oral contraceptives, diabetes, high stress, and poor diet (high in carbs and sugar) suppress the good flora, and the candida just keeps growing. Candida craves sugar and you just can’t help giving in; it really is a demand your body is making. Rebalancing your flora, and sending candida to the showers reduces your sugar cravings, boosts your metabolism, and voila–your jeans zip again. 

Bespoke Menopause Management

Dr. Allie’s Vitality Clinics offers a host of natural and holistic therapies for women at every stage of life, and a bespoke treatment for every woman. If you’re searching for a healthy way to meet menopause and maintain good gut health, visit Dr. Allie online and complete the quick survey–she’ll develop a therapy just for you, so you don’t turn into a walking Hershey’s Kiss. 

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