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I'm 50 years old and it's been three years since I stopped my cycles. I've had very little difficulty and haven't needed to take anything. However, after doing some research for my anxiety, I really think I am way out of balance with hormones and minerals. i do take some very good whole food supplements but nothing for hormones. Any thoughts would be appreciared.

Susan asked this
April 9, 2012 at 8:36 PM

A:

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Hi Susan- of late (the past decade) hormone supplementation has been like a pendulum swinging back and forth. A lot of this has to do with the Womens' Health Initiative study which showed a definitive link between the supplementation of estrogen/progesterone and breast cancer. As such, there is now a caution to hormone supplementation for menopausal symptoms. It is a weighing process with a good amount of weight toward not using these hormones due risk. There are a whole host of other products, however. Because of the WHI data, new research will likely not be done.
I would challenge you to consider whether the timing of your anxiety coincides with menopause (the cessation of periods). While estrogen/progesterone deficiency can affect mood, other hormones can as well, namely serotonin.
If you feel that you would like to try a supplement, I would encourage you to examine how you feel presently, start taking it regularly and then evaluate after a couple months. If there has been no tangible improvement, do not continue the product. It is a weighing process. Good luck! Menopause is a challenging problem that is unique for every woman and for this reason it is important to know yourself as you work toward improving symptoms.

Jeffrey VanWingen M.D. Health Coach answered
April 17, 2012 at 10:37 PM

Susan, I agree with Dr. VanWingen. I just went to a lecture on the most up-to-date research on menopause and hormone supplementation. After looking at all the studies the expert recommendation was: If you are not having problems with symptoms then don't take extra mormon supplementation. There are small but real health risks for women who take estrogen and progesterone supplementation (such as increased risk of heart attack, stroke, blood clots, and certain kinds of cancers). If you are having problems with symptoms, then it might be worth taking hormone supplementation because the risk increased risk is only a very small increase.

If you are interested in natural treatments for menopausal symptoms, here is a link to a blog of mine about some of the most common ones:

http://www.hellolife.net/menopause/b/naturally-treat-menopause/

One thing that I do recommend for all women past menopause is taking at least 1,500mg of calcium and at least 1,000 units of vitamin D3 every day. This is not for hormone replacement, but for bone health.

Stay Healthy,

Dr. Jeff M.D.

Dr. Jeff Chamberlain, MD Health Coach answered
April 18, 2012 at 8:12 PM

Hi Susan. I had a complete hysterectomy in 1995. I couldn't take even the smallest dosage of HRT due to severe headaches. After much time researching, I started taking Black Cohosh. I know, for me, it has been a great supplement. I never had any of the symptoms typical of hysterectomy or menopause and continue to take it even now. I suggest that you do research and make a decision as to what works for you. Trial and error will be the only way you know what is needed. Hormonal imbalance can occur at any time in our life, and probably most women have some type of hormonal imbalance. I am glad that the medical profession is finally starting to take this seriously.

EDNA answered
July 16, 2012 at 10:23 AM
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Menopause

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