Why I just Don’t Care Anymore

In my last post about all things menopausal, I discussed the painfully funny discovery of acne, post 50. Today I am going to discuss why getting acne at 50 didn’t put me into a state of panic, the way it would have in my teen years or even my twenties.

I just don’t care anymore.

Have I given up? Ready to trade in the fitted jeans for a pair of track pants and a leisurely stroll around Walmart…NO.  I just find that now that I have reached…and slightly passed the ripe old age of 50, things that used to send me into a downward spiral don’t have the same effect. Take the other day for instance. I had long hair and went in for a trim. I had showed the hairdresser a photo in a magazine they had in their lounge of a cute short haircut. I don’t remember telling her that I wanted this haircut…just that I though it was cute.

Well, twenty minutes later and the haircut was now on my head. 20 minutes, 6 inches and I couln’t care less. Back in the day that would have sent me to my to room for at least a week all the while calculating to the minute how long it would take to grow back. Fast forward 30 years and I don’t even think I glanced in the mirror when I got home.

Sure, there are a lot of changes that come with getting older, but I think it can be an incredibly liberating time. Why? Because you’re more comfortable in your own skin (even though it is starting to look more like your husbands skin, whiskers and all). What other people think of you matters less…and conversely..what you think of yourself, matters more.

So all those things you had promised you would do for yourself start becoming a reality in your 50′s.

Are hormones the reason. Maybe. Advancing age…possibly. Maybe it’s just the realization that even though the days sometime seem to last forever, the years go by in a heartbeat….and given the finite number of heartbeats that each of us has…I going to spend mine on the important things that make me happy…not the latest pimple or the length of my hair.

Share this with your friends!
Facebook Twitter Email Linkedin

Menopause Weight Gain

Menopause brings about many changes for women; some of these changes, like the end of the menstrual cycle are welcomed and others, such as hot flashes and weight gain are not.

There are various supplements and strategies that can help manage those troublesome hot flashes and night sweats. But for many women, it is much more challenging to keep body weight under control.

There are many factors that can contribute to weight gain in menopause. Hormones are partly to blame. A lowering of estrogen and testosterone can cause women to store fat. Lifestyle and genetic factors are also involved.

Stress also tends to become more prevalent in menopause. Whether triggered by personal, financial, or health reasons, stress impacts weight in a number of ways. Rising levels of the stress hormone cortisol make it easier to pack on weight, particularly around the mid-section.

Stress may also trigger unhealthy habits, such as overeating and eating unhealthy foods (comfort foods). It also has a negative effect on sleep, and lack of sleep is a recently recognized factor that can lead to weight gain, along with many other health problems.

Muscle mass also declines with age and since muscle helps drive metabolism and calorie burning, if you have less muscle you will burn fewer calories.

Despite all these factors that seem to be stacked against you, it is possible to keep weight under control by making some simple lifestyle modifications.

  • Boost muscle mass. Do weight training or resistance exercises to help build and maintain muscle mass. Increasing your muscle mass will raise your metabolism, so you will burn more calories and you will develop a leaner physique. Joining a gym is great, but if you are pressed for time/money, there are plenty of exercises that you can do at home, such as push-ups, squats, lunges, and chest presses.
  • Make better dietary choices. You don’t have to count calories or follow a restrictive diet, just make better choices and limit portion sizes. For example, start your day with oatmeal and berries, a large salad with chickpeas or grilled chicken for lunch and baked fish with mixed veggies for dinner. Choose healthy snacks between meals such as nuts/seeds, yogurt, dark chocolate and healthy energy bars, such as Luna Bar or Larabar.
  • Use supplements to complement your diet. Supplements that provide soluble fibre, such as femMED Weight Management, can help to reduce appetite and cravings and promote better blood sugar control – all factors that are helpful for managing weight.

These strategies will not only benefit your waistline, but they promote better heart health and improve your overall well-being.

Share this with your friends!
Facebook Twitter Email Linkedin

Acne at 50? Are you kidding me?

Menopause. Just when you gained control of the hot flashes, crazy mood swings and full beard, you discover menopause does indeed have a sense of humour… pimples. Remember how a pimple often was the first sign of an impending period…well guess what? Even when you haven’t had a period in 2 years, the pimples keep coming. Menopause really is the gift that keeps on giving.

So what is a somewhat sane person to do? Well after reading extensively on the subject, I discovered that much like a teenager, the root cause of all these pimples is…you guessed it…hormones. Once you enter the years leading up to and including menopause, your hormones begin the fluctuate leading to breakouts, much like you previously had before your period. Combine this with the fact that as we age, our skin cells turn over (shed) at a much slower rate and you have the perfect storm for a pimple filled face. Not all women experience this, but as we all know, even one pimple, is one too many.

So let’s review the golden rules of skincare and what you can do to keep your acne at bay.

Simple Ways to Minimize Acne

• Wash your face with a mild cleanser twice daily using warm, not hot, water.

• Be careful not to scrub your face, as this may cause more irritation.

• Clean your bed sheets, especially your pillowcase, weekly with mild, chemical-free detergent.

• Do not pick or pop pimples. This may cause secondary bacterial infections and lead to more scarring.

• Only use cosmetics, skin or hair care products, labeled non-comedogenic – meaning they do not clog pores and are less likely to cause acne.

• Keep your hands off your face. Your hands contain dirt and bacteria, which is easily transferred to your face.

• Manage your stress. Although stress doesn’t cause acne it has been shown to aggravate acne, which is why breakouts occur during more stressful times.

• Eat to nourish your skin. Recent studies are now suggesting that high- glycemic foods such as refined grains and processed sugars may, in fact, trigger acne breakouts. Low glycemic foods such as whole grains, lean meat, and fish may keep acne at bay because they stabilize blood sugar and prevent insulin spikes.

• Consider a hair, skin and nail supplement like femMED’s Hair, Skin & Nails to provide essential nutrients for optimal skin.

• For severe cases, where there are multiple lesions or cysts, consult a dermatologist.

• Resist the temptation to treat acne topically without first addressing the underlying cause of breakouts – hormonal imbalance.

For those women suffering from the symptoms of perimenopause or menopause, consider a natural health product, like femMED Hormonal Balance or Menopause Relief.

Well there you have it. Stay tuned for my next blog on why menopause might make you more like a man or as I call it; “Why I Just Don’t Care Anymore”

 

 

 

Share this with your friends!
Facebook Twitter Email Linkedin

Experiencing “The Change” in Your Sex Life?

Is there such a thing as sex after menopause? Absolutely! In fact, some women report that they enjoy sex more when they no longer need to plan sex around their menstrual cycles or worry about getting pregnant. Also, women often feel more connected to their bodies and more secure in their intimate relationships at this stage of life.

However, let’s not be too Pollyanna– Going through “the change” can certainly change they way women experience sex, and for some, these changes can cause a significant degree of anxiety and frustration. As we age and approach menopause, our bodies go through profound hormonal shifts that can affect our sexual functioning, pleasure and desire. The marked decrease in estrogen can make the vaginal tissues drier, thinner, and less acidic causing sex to become uncomfortable or painful, and increasing the risk of infection. It generally takes more time for the vagina to become lubricated, even when you are feeling turned on. Reduced blood flow to the genitals can affect sensation and sexual pleasure. Hot flashes are anything but sexy and night sweats can disturb sleep, causing women to feel tired and irritable throughout the day. Mood fluctuations are common, and you may find that you are just “not in the mood” for sex. Low sexual desire is one of the most common complaints of menopausal women.

BUT, don’t throw in the towel and conclude that menopause marks the end of your sex life. There are actually some simple steps that you can take to decrease menopausal symptoms, improve sexual pleasure, and give your sex drive a boost. So ladies, try some of these strategies to take the “pause” out of meno-pause and press the “reset” button on your sex life:

Take good care of your body: Your overall health affects your sexual health and sexual functioning. Be sure to have regular check-ups with your doctor, and get proper treatment for any medical conditions. Ask your doctor about potential sexual side effects of medications that you may be prescribed. Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet. Smoking poses a host of health-related concerns, and it can also impede sexual arousal and response. The same is true for high levels of alcohol and caffeine. Work on reducing or eliminating smoking and keep your alcohol and caffeine intake at a low to moderate level. Avoid strong soaps and bubble baths as they can irritate the vagina.

Get-up-and-go:  Make sure you are getting enough exercise. You don’t need to go to the gym for hours on end—just work on getting your body moving with some daily physical activity. Go for a brisk walk; take the stairs instead of the elevator; do some jumping jacks during the commercial breaks of your favourite TV show; practice yoga. Physical activity improves blood flow and circulation, including to the genitals, which increases sensation and sensitivity. Exercise also helps to boost your energy, increase your strength and endurance, lift your mood, decrease stress, and promotes more restful sleep…all of which can improve your sex drive! Kegel exercises are designed to specifically strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, aiding in the prevention and treatment of pelvic organ prolapse—a common problem for menopausal women. Doing these pelvic floor exercises has also been shown to improve pelvic blood flow and sensation, and enhance sexual pleasure.

Use a personal lubricant:  A lack of vaginal lubrication can make sexual activity and intercourse very uncomfortable, and can increase the risk of vaginal and urinary tract infections. Using a personal lubricant adds moisture and slipperiness to the vagina, which can make sex much more comfortable and pleasurable.  Lubricants come in a variety of water-based, oil-based, and silicone-based formulas, and they can be purchased over-the-counter at your local pharmacy.

Explore your body- intimatelyAs women age, they often find that they require more, longer, and/or different types of stimulation in order to arouse them and bring them to orgasm. Engaging in self-pleasuring (or masturbation) can help you to learn more about your own body and the types of sensations, touch, and stimulation that you find most pleasurable. Having a good understanding of how to turn yourself on will help enable you to teach your partner how to please you sexually. Self-pleasuring is normal, healthy, and good for you and your libido—at any age!

Try using natural supplements: Many women report experiencing significant improvements in sexual desire, response and satisfaction, as well as increased vaginal lubrication while using a natural libido supplement such as femMED LIBIDO. Look for supplements containing a doctor-formulated combination of natural ingredients such as L-arginine, Tribulus, Terrestris and Gingko Biloba. These ingredients have been demonstrated to help to encourage pelvic blood flow and lubrication, increase free testosterone and improve sexual desire. There are also natural supplements available that target sleep disturbance and other menopausal symptoms, such as femMED SLEEP and femMED MENOPAUSE RELIEF.

Have more sex:  Believe it or not, sexual activity in and of itself is good for you and for your vagina. Becoming aroused during sex increases blood flow to the genitals, which helps to keep the tissues healthy. So, here’s the drill:

1) Try the above strategies to make sex feel better

2) When sex feels better you will likely want more of it

3) Have more sex

4) Repeat step 1!

Share this with your friends!
Facebook Twitter Email Linkedin

Am I Losing My Mind or is it Menopause?

This month we will be discussing all things menopausal, from determining what stage of life you are currently in, to some of the common and less known symptoms of menopause. Along the way, we will be sharing tips and tricks for keeping your health and sanity intact.

We invite our followers to share their insights and stories, and especially those funny “Meno Moments” we have all had.

Now let’s begin our crash course in all things menopause.

The menopausal process occurs in four stages: pre-menopause, perimenopause, menopause and post menopause.

Pre-menopause refers your fertile period, which ranges from your first menstrual period to your last menstrual period.

Perimenopause encompasses the years preceding menopause, and it’s during this stage that your hormone levels change and levels of estrogen decline. Perimenopause typically takes place between 45- and 60- years-of-age and can span a 2- to 6-year period of time. Early signs of perimenopause usually occur in your mid 40s.

Menopause is the permanent termination of menstruation and fertility. This stage begins when you have last period. Menopause can be defined by more than 12 consecutive period-free months. At this stage, your ovaries are no longer producing eggs as hormone production stops, and common changes become noticeable – including vaginal dryness and loss of sex drive.

Post menopause is determined after a woman’s menstrual period hasn’t reoccurred within a period of 12-months. The two most serious health concerns in post-menopausal women are heart disease and osteoporosis.

SYMPTOMS OF MENOPAUSE

The symptoms and signs of menopause are not cut and dry, don’t appear in a logical order, and they are different for each woman. As our ovarian production decreases, the follicle stimulating hormone (or FSH) increases, triggering symptoms like hot flashes, headaches, memory problems, acne and mood swings. Sounds fabulous, doesn’t it?

MENOPAUSE RELIEF

Menopause causes hormonal imbalances that can trigger dozens of uncomfortable symptoms in a woman’s reproductive life. These changes occur due to the female hormone estrogen, suddenly decreasing during this time. How we can deal with these symptoms, and keep a sense of humour throughout, will be discussed in future posts.

The A-Z of Menopause

  • Aching Joints
  • Allergies
  • Anxiety
  • Bloating
  • Breast Tenderness
  • Burning Tongue
  • Changes in Odor
  • Depression
  • Difficulty Concentrating
  • Digestive Problems
  • Dizziness
  • Electric Shocks
  • Fatigue
  • Fingernails Gum Problems
  • Hair Loss
  • Hot Flashes
  • Incontinence
  • Irregular Periods
  • Irritability
  • Itchy Skin
  • Loss of Libido
  • Memory Lapses Migraines
  • Mood Swings
  • Muscle Tensions
  • Night Sweats
  • Osteoporosis
  • Panic Disorder
  • Racing Heart Beat
  • Sleep Disorders
  • Tingling Extremities
  • Vaginal Dryness Weight Gain
Share this with your friends!
Facebook Twitter Email Linkedin