I know that a big old bitch-and-whinge fest isn't the best way to introduce myself to these forums but I've been lurking about for a while and I get an accepting vibe from the place. Over the past year or so I've accumulated a long list of minor irritations that all add up to no fun at all.
Arthritis (first diagnosed about 15yrs ago) is flaring up regularly. I've become prone to weak, achy and easily tired muscles. I have a constant brain fog-I'm slow to think and forgetful in a way I've never been before. I've also started to have regular headaches which is something new to me. I'm constantly irritable when not outright angry-a mood that likes to alternate with anxiety and uncontrollable outbursts of crying. Sleep is just a distant memory. And now to top it all off I've had to start dieting as hard as I can just to not put on weight.
I've been to my doctor and he couldn't find anything wrong (in fact my blood results were so good he checked to make sure he had the right ones-I'm fat therefore I must be unhealthy). The diagnosis: peri menopause. The solution hold on tight for a bumpy ride and it should all be over in 5-10yrs.
Unwilling to accept this fate I started searching for advice and ended up surfing on in here. I've been suffering alone for ages and would love to hear from anybody who's been through all this already or is currently in the same boat. Just to know I'm not alone and I'm not going crazy.
So any wise women out there please share your stories. I've been so inspired by what I've been reading from everyone here but I'd really like to hear the experiences of the more mature women.
Welcome, random. I'm so glad you found us, this lifestyle change was exactly what I needed to reverse the menopausal symptoms which were starting to really bug me. I am 49 and am healthier, slimmer, fitter and way happier than I was 11 months ago when I started this and I'm sticking with it. Ditching the grains and those processed oils, and most other packaged things, was the best thing I could have done. Lost the weight I needed to, and I now sleep through the night, have gained energy, evened out the mood swings and sugar lows, hot flushes and bloating went away (unless I eat wheat). So, just do it. You ahve nothing to lose and everything to gain. Any questions, fire away.
This way of eating did nothing to ease my menopausal symptoms. I would really encourage you read Suzanne Somers book"ageless". Bio identical hormones have saved my sanity, my relationship and my career.
No more sweats in meetings, no more struggling to find the right words to make a sentence that made sense, no more wanting to punch people who pissed me off. I actually have patience and brain function! Who would have thunk it; -)?
What annoys me the most is the amount of wonen who could get off their anti depressants with a bit of progesterone and correct estrogen.
And I also believe my body is protected from cancer in a major way.
You don't have to suffer. Find a doctor who knows what they are talking about and educate yourself. There is no point in trying to get what you need from your current doc.Youneed someone who specialises. And do not listen to any one who had not investigated the issues thoroughly. "My doctor says" is not a good enough reason to discount bio identicals.
I don't have a story but do know someone who eased their PM stuff by cutting out nightshade family foods, she saw results within a month, so that's potatoes, aubergine (eggplant) and tomatoes, if you're interested there's loads of info online - search terms like "nightshade family" and "solanine" and "arthritis". She reintroduced them in much smaller amounts after 3 months with no problem, iirc having them once or twice a week.
That might not be what you're looking for but I thought I'd chuck it in just in case!
Thanks for your thoughts, ladies. Luckily for me I haven't been subject to hot flushes, or at least not yet. It seems from this small sample that everybody's experience, like our bodies themselves, is different.
Annieh, your experience gives me hope. The idea that I might be able to get a decent night's sleep or even just increase my energy levels is totally worth the price of admission. Could I just ask you how long it was before you started noticing an improvement? Weeks? Months? I want to make sure I give things enough time to start working for me before I take the next step, ie start looking into hormone replacement.
Rueben, OMG, it's like you're inside my head. I have trouble making sense all-the-time. Not only do I have trouble remembering names of people and places, often I can't even remember the word for something I've used all my life (like the other day I didn't know what to call a kettle). I'm constantly restraining myself from punching people who seem to be going out of their way to piss me off. My poor husband being at the top of the list. He's a great guy and doesn't deserve to be the focus of this free floating anger. But logic doesn't come into play here, at all. My doctor said all my hormone levels were 'normal' but maybe I should try to find somebody a bit more familiar with what I'm experiencing. Certainly I have vague memories of my mother using some sort of progesterone cream she got from a naturopath but I'm not sure what she was using it for. I'm sorry to hear that your experience with diet modification wasn't so positive. Thanks for the book recommendation. I'll definitely hunt it out.
Lady D, I have heard about the nightshade-arthritis connection. I did this elimination diet test back when I was first diagnosed (the medication I was given helped the pain but left me nauseous, so I went searching for alternatives) and for me it didn't seem to make any difference but I believe that some people swear by it.
So mixed responses at this point. Naturally I will be adopting a primal lifestyle as far as I can for its general benefits. But I'd still like to hear anybody else's stories if you're willing to share.
I think eating primally has helped me. I'm 49, pushing 50 pretty hard. My time of month (TOM) is all over the place and I still have anger/rage issues that pop up from time to time, but I'm sure my type-A personality doesn't help. But I don't have hot flashes and hardly ever get night sweats. I do still have a few days occasionally that my brain fogs some.
I'm not doing anything as far as treatment, hormones or anything. Just my normal eating primally and exercise.
I noticed the first 2 periods I had after cutting gluten were longer than normal, about a 7-day lighter bleed rather than 3 heavy days, then they went back to normal but with far less pain, there's been a huge improvement in my skin tone and the very mild hair-thinning I noticed since age 41 has also dramatically reversed, and my hair's fuller and better now than ever. My nails are also stronger than they ever have been, and that makes me wonder how my whole life might have been blighted by that cr*p!
I didn't think to post this earlier (d'oh! lol) because I don't associate it as directly primal, but if you're unsure, you could try diligently cutting all gluten first, and see how that does for you?
Welcome to the forums! I don't think you gave your age, but the minute I turned 45 two months ago peri-#%^*+?! menopause hit me with a vengeance. Hot flashes, cramps 2 weeks out of the month, mood swings, depression, weight gain around the middle, waking up at 1-2am with sweats, etc. I had slipped a bit on Primal eating, and for sure on exercise. I started on black cohosh pills and progesterone cream, cleaned up my diet and started working out again. I am happy to say that the hot flashes have nearly stopped, my mood is more constant and my belly is shrinking. The next few years may be difficult but there are things you can do to make it easier on yourself.
Hi drheather, I'm not quite 47 and I've been accumulating issues since about your age, though some, like the arthritis, have been with me a lot longer. Thanks for sharing your experience. It feels good just to know others are dealing with the same stuff successfully. I'm all about learning from the experiences of those that have gone before. Though it sounds as if you've had it harder than me with the hot flushes and sweats. I'll keep black cohosh in mind as an option if this new lifestyle doesn't improve things significantly. Cheers.
Huarache Girl I so hear you on the irregularity. Either an itsy 2 week break or nothing for 5 or 6 weeks, then just when I start panicking, bang its back with a vengeance. Seems so unfair to have to suffer with periods and menopausal symptoms at the same time. I so enjoy being a girl.
Fuller hair, stronger nails, easier periods, Lady D, why weren't we told??? Why!
Seriously though, is cutting out gluten different to cutting out grain? I thought the two were interrelated.
lol! Well, y'know, the downside is that obviously my body had been taking a hammering since weaning because my nails are stronger now than they've ever been, and I know the rate my hair grows, because I colour it, and it's speeded up a tiny bit plus much thicker on the new growth from the month after quitting the evil-G.... so anyway those gains are only relative to what must have been a Guernica of bad reactions for over 4 decades, more like having no more headaches, but only coz I stopped bashing my eejit head against the wall!
Originally Posted by randomcapitals
I was told loads by people they felt better quitting gluten, and being (I thought) to smart to fall for the hype, and "faddy elimination of whole food groups" etc, the whole Conventional Wisdom schtick, I ignored them... oh well!
Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye, and barley, and it can be used alone as an ingredient in some items, and those grains themselves are obiously also a problem, have a google for celiac information but meanwhile here's a short precis from Wikipedia:
Gluten sensitivity - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Based on my experience I would recommend ANYBODY, even those who, like me, had no symptoms noted as specific to celiac disease or any major health issues, give it a seven-day trial of cutting gluten and (of course) the wheat, rye and barley that contain it, and by all means carry on with other grains for that that time, because if you're having significant problems you may get a nice surprise, as I did!