Why you don’t need to be scared of menopause

Many women are scared of menopause. Here we discuss why it's perfectly normal and allay your fears

Menopause has been a time which women have feared for many years. Unlike men, women have a clear indicator that they are getting older. The menopause has traditionally been a taboo subject, often referred to as ‘the change’.

Women are worried and frightened by menopause as it represents a time of loss: loss of fertility, youth, bone density and full functioning. Not only that, it brings with it an array of seemingly unconnected symptoms; hot flushes, memory loss, decreased libido, sleep problems and mood swings to name but a few. Small wonder then that one of the major symptoms: anxiety, has women beating a path to the surgery door in search of a cure for these ills.

There is no doubting that menopause with all its symptoms can be uncomfortable and frightening for some women. Just as a girl getting  her first period  can be confused and overwhelmed by all the changes occurring, a perimenopausal woman is equally unsure what is going to happen next for her. However menopause is a completely natural and expected stage of life. What woman would really want to be able to bear children into her eighties? (Urghh No Thanks!)  It makes biological sense that women shouldn’t be able to reproduce until the end of her life as human children require a very long period of care before they can fend for themselves (it seems to be getting longer all the time).

Now that  the average life expectancy of a woman is in the mid 80s and beyond, and the average age they go through menopause is 51, women can be reasonably sure they have 30+ years of life post menopause. When you consider that, it makes complete sense to embrace the menopause as not just marking the end of your reproductive years but the threshold to a previously unexperienced freedom. It’s a time to make plans for the future, learn new skills and determine how you are going to enjoy the rest of your life unfettered by previous responsibilities (and worry-free in white trousers!) if that’s what you want to do.

Yes, some of the symptoms are uncomfortable but that doesn’t mean they should be medicalised. There are many ways to treat the effects of the menopause without resorting to the dreaded HRT with all its associated risks.

A positive outlook will help you enormously.  You should also pay attention to what goes into your body as food and drink and on it as powders, creams, detergents and the like. Avoidance of toxic substances and a healthy organic diet will also make a big difference.

As proponents of a natural menopause we recommend applying a natural source of progesterone which will reduce all the symptoms. but there are many natural ways you can treat your symptoms.

Horror stories from women who have already been through it don’t help. Just like childbirth, every woman’s experience is slightly different. Many women hardly notice when they are menopausal and you may be one of them. Above all, whatever your experience of menopause, you can rest assured that you don’t have to suffer in silence. Remember this is your time to be awesome!!

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P.P.S. Any queries, ideas or if you would just like to say Hi, email me at  info@menopausematters.guru

BHRT and Breast Cancer

BHRT and Breast Cancer

Using BHRT when you have breast cancer

I have been asked by lots of women about using natural progesterone (BHRT)  when you have, or have had breast cancer, so I wanted to clarify what’s best.

Dame Dr Shirley Bond MB BS, LRCP MRCS, FFARCS

Dr Bond is a Harley Street general practitioner. She was one of the very first doctors in the UK, over 25 years ago, to use bio-identical hormones, including natural progesterone, to enable women of all ages to balance their hormones naturally. She was also involved in the development of methods for diagnosing and treating osteoporosis in its early stages, before it becomes severe enough to lead to fractures.

During my research, I came across some answers to questions women had asked  about progesterone and breast cancer:

Can taking natural progesterone cause breast cancer?

Progesterone never causes breast cancer. If a breast cancer is described as being progesterone-sensitive, it does not mean that the progesterone caused the cancer or that the administration of progesterone will make it recur. What it means is that the breast cancer has receptors that are sensitive to progesterone. The effect of progesterone on the breast is to reduce proliferation of the tissues, and it is this proliferation that makes cancer more likely, so by using progesterone you are positively protecting your breasts against the risk of cancer.

I have been told that natural progesterone inhibits oestrogen, so can it be used instead of Tamoxifen following breast cancer? 

It is not true that natural progesterone inhibits oestrogen. Oestrogen and progesterone are female hormones that occur naturally in the body and should occur in quantities that balance each other out. The importance of progesterone is that it balances out the effects of oestrogen. Breast cancer is usually an effect of oestrogen dominance. If this dominance can be counteracted, then the activity of breast cancer cells should be inhibited. It is claimed that tamoxifen does this. However, it is a very potent drug (actually a weak oestrogen) with unpleasant side effects of its own and, in the opinion of many people, is best avoided. As natural progesterone prevents oestrogen dominance and has no reported side effects, it is preferable to use it.

I had breast cancer 15 years ago and now have osteoporosis. I believe I can’t have HRT,  what else can I do?

No, you will not be prescribed HRT as you would be a prime risk for further cancer if you were to be given it. However, there is still a great deal that can be done to help your osteoporosis; taking natural progesterone will enable you to build up new bone and will  be protective against any further breast cancer risk.

Hormones and Breast Cancer The findings from the Women’s Health Initiative by Dr David Zava

Hormones and Breast Cancer The findings from the Women's Health Initiative by Dr David Zava

Natural progesterone has a much safer profile than all forms of synthetic progestins, not only for the breasts, but for nearly all tissues of the body, including the reproductive tissues, the cardiovascular systems, and the brain. There is a plethora of published literature on this subject.

For those who are unsure about the striking differences in safety profiles of synthetic progestins versus natural progesterone as regards breast cancer risk, several clinical trials have clearly shown the superiority of natural progesterone. In a 2005 review of clinical studies comparing synthetic progestins to natural progesterone, Campagnoli and co-authors concluded that: “The balance of the in-vivo evidence is that progesterone does not have a cancer-promoting effect on breast tissue. …..We therefore suggest that when hormone therapy is indicated, preparations containing progesterone and not a synthetic progestin should be used. In this way the risk of endometrial cancer is minimised without increasing the risk of breast cancer.”
So why are the news media confusing synthetic progestins with natural progesterone? Too often information such as this is streamlined in mainstream media by those who have power, money and the ability to shout the loudest. Large pharmaceutical companies have a strangle hold on funding for universities, who gets grants, what gets published, whose opinions get press, the success of women’s health organisations and journals they represent.
“The decision on natural hormone therapy is one between a patient and physician; natural hormones, when properly balanced, allow the body to function at its optimal level.”

P.S. Any queries, ideas or if you would just like to say Hi, email me at  info@menopausematters.guru