Diet for the Estrogen-Deficient Fast Processor

Monday, April 18, 2011 by Susan Lark
Estrogen deficient–fast processors have more acidic body compositions and can’t handle the acidic foods that estrogen deficient–slow processors thrive on. Fast processors often complain of often severe menopause symptoms like night sweats, vaginal dryness, menopause hot flashes, and dry skin and hair. 

Fast processors do best by eliminating all acidic foods, such as red meat, citrus fruits, and hot spices, and even dairy, and instead following a vegetarian-emphasis diet that contains whole grains, beans, salads, and vegetables. I also recommend using "cooler" spices like lemon balm, cilantro, basil, marjoram, and chamomile in your cooking, and forgoing "hot" spices like red pepper and chili powder.

If you are an estrogen deficient–fast processor, here are the foods you should be eating:

• Most vegetables
• Gluten-free whole grains
• Legumes (beans and peas)
• Small amounts of raw seeds and nuts
• Organic eggs
• Wild fish such as salmon, mackerel, trout, and tuna
• Sea vegetables such as kelp
• Fruits like bananas, melons, and papayas
• Free-range poultry in moderation

Eating a diet rich in these types of foods will help will increase your energy, stamina, and resistance to disease. Plus, you’ll notice a dramatic decrease in troubling menopause symptoms like menopause hot flashes, night sweats, and vaginal dryness.

Diet for the Estrogen-Deficient Slow Processor

Thursday, April 14, 2011 by Susan Lark
If you are an estrogen deficient–slow processor, you tend to have greater reserves of alkaline minerals such as calcium, magnesium, potassium, and zinc within your cells, tissues, and bones. Slow processors also have the body and hormonal makeup to be able to handle an acidic diet that is rich in red meat and dairy, but these foods lack the essential nutrients that all women need to maintain optimal health. For this reason, estrogen deficient–slow processors are best served by following a diet that is both highly acidic and nutrient-rich. This includes the following foods:

• High-fiber foods such as buckwheat and flaxseed
• Citrus fruits (oranges, limes, lemons, and grapefruit), berries, and pineapple
• All vegetables, especially sauerkraut, spinach, cucumbers, tomatoes, asparagus, and broccoli
• Free-range poultry
• Wild fish such as salmon, mackerel, trout, and tuna
• Free-range beef and lamb, as well as game meats like venison and buffalo
• Soy and soy-based foods
• Vinegar
• Raw nuts (almonds, walnuts)
• Heating spices such as turmeric (curry), ginger, cayenne pepper, chili powder and pepper, cumin, cloves, and cinnamon

By following this diet, slow processors are able to regain their energy and zest for life, reduce joint pain, and stabilize their female hormone levels. Not to mention, eating a healthy diet provides menopause relief from symptoms like hot flashes and night sweats.

Exercises for Estrogen-Deficient Fast Processors

Tuesday, April 12, 2011 by Susan Lark
I personally follow an exercise program for estrogen deficient–fast processors. Even though my female hormones are healthy and well-balanced, I fall more into this category because I am a petite and slender woman, and I have a fast-paced day-to-day life. To help balance my female hormones, I follow a workout routine that calms me.

Estrogen deficient–fast processors don’t want to heat up their bodies and sweat. It is more important to engage in slower, more expansive and relaxing aerobic activities that are moderately strenuous and can be done in a relaxed and leisurely way. For this reason, the best activities for women in this category include golf, gardening, swimming, and moderately-paced walking and bicycling. You can also try ballroom dancing—in particular, slower dances like the waltz.

In terms of stretching, the best types for this hormonal category include tai chi and hatha yoga, which are slower and more meditative. With these slower-paced exercises, you will tend to breathe more deeply and slowly. Moderate aerobic exercise relaxes, dilates, and expands the network of blood vessels in your body, and enables your heart to work more efficiently. Better circulation and oxygenation, in turn, improve the health of all of your organs, including your ovaries and uterus.

Of course, another benefit to this and all exercise is the reduction of menopause symptoms like  hot flashes and night sweats!

Exercises for Estrogen-Deficient Slow Processors

Friday, April 8, 2011 by Susan Lark
If you are an estrogen deficient–slow processor, I recommend keeping your female hormones balanced with high-intensity activities such as power walking, cycling, running, triathlons, racquetball, tennis, and fast-paced styles of ballroom dance like the tango, foxtrot, and swing.

Women with these hormone profiles tend to be instinctively drawn to strenuous types of exercise that are more contracting and acidifying to counter their natural tendency toward alkalinity. I’ve seen women with these hormonal profiles maintain this level of intense physical activity well into their later years. In fact, it is not unusual to see slow processors participating in triathlons and bodybuilding well into their 70s and beyond!

Stretching and flexibility exercises are also important parts of your workout routine. Stretching keeps you limber and helps your muscles and tendons function well into your older years. The best stretching exercise is Pilates, as it tends to include more intense and faster-paced movements. In addition, yoga is beneficial for these women—particularly the high-energy Bikram (hot), ashtanga, and power yoga.

Another benefit of these exercises? They help reduce menopause symptoms like hot flashes and night sweats!

Are You Fast or Slow?

Monday, April 4, 2011 by Susan Lark
During menopause, things aren’t as simple as just too much or too little of any given hormone. In my practice, I found that patients tended to experience a total shift in their entire physical and chemical makeup that manifested as one of two patterns. Their body and brain chemistry tended toward becoming either too fast or too slow. For this reason, I call the first pattern estrogen deficiency–fast processor. The second is its mirror image: estrogen deficiency–slow processor.

Today I'll give you the characteristics of a woman who is a fast processor.

Characteristics include:
• Anxiety
• Thin, dry skin and tissues
• Menopause hot flashes
• Night sweats
• Insomnia
• Vaginal dryness
• Sore joints
• Increased risk for heart disease and osteoporosis

Later this week, I'll tell you about slow processors, then give you information on how to deal with both chemical makeups!

My Blog Entry About a Blog!

Friday, March 18, 2011 by Susan Lark
I like to read other blogs, and recently came across an entry posted by a woman blogging about menopause symptoms. 

The writer quotes a doctor who says he still prescribes conventional hormone replacement therapy to certain groups of women, despite the risks--which I found quite disturbing. However, this doctor did acknowledge the benefits that black cohosh and soy can have in safely and naturally relieving the effects of menopause--namely night sweats and menopause hot flashes.

I say ditch the dangerous HRT and use natural. Along with black cohosh and soy, you can find a variety of solutions for your menopause problems throughout this blog and on my Web site.

High-Dose Hormone Replacement Therapy--Still Being Prescribed?!

Thursday, March 17, 2011 by Susan Lark

According to a study that appeared online December 2, 2010 in Menopause: The Journal of the North American Menopause Society states that many doctors are still prescribing high doses of conventional hormone replacement therapy for menopause hot flashes, night sweats, and insomnia, even though the risks have been thoroughly proven and documented, and even though lower dose hormones are effective in alleviating these menopause symptoms.

I find this news so upsetting, considering how dangerous convention hormone replacement therapy has been proven to be--greatly increasing the risk of diseases like breast cancer and cardiovascular disease, to name just a few.

If you are one of those women still taking conventional hormone replacement to find menopause relief, please talk to your doctor about cutting back or stopping altogether. You can find many, many safe, suitable natural therapies for your  menopause symptoms throughout my blog.

And for more information on female hormones and natural menopause relief, please visit my Web site.

Menopause Hot Flashes--Good for the Heart?

Thursday, March 10, 2011 by Susan Lark
A recent study published in the journal Menopause claims that those debilitating menopause hot flashes that so many women suffer from can actually protect the heart!

More than 60,000 postmenopausal women were studied, and researchers found that those who suffered from menopause hot flashes early on were 17% less likely to have a stroke, and 11% less likely to have heart disease or a heart-related illness. And, women who did not have menopause hot flashes until later in menopause were at a 32% higher risk of heart attack!

So, while menopause symptoms can be quite bothersome, this research might be a sliver of positive news for you if you suffer from hot flashes or night sweats!

Is It Menopause?

Monday, February 28, 2011 by Susan Lark
Do you ever wonder if what you think are menopause symptoms really are menopause symptoms? Well, by answering the following questions, you may be able to know for sure. If you answer yes to most or all of these questions, then you are likely entering the menopausal phase of your life.

  • My last period was 6 months or longer ago (real menopause)

  • My periods are lighter, less frequent, and of shorter duration (late perimenopause)

  • I'm 46 or older

  • I'm having hot flashes

  • Intercourse is painful

  • My desire for sex has faded

  • I have difficulty achieving orgasm

  • I have frequent vaginal infections

  • I leak urine when I laugh, cough, sneeze, exercise, or wait too long to void

  • I've lost my zest for life

  • I have difficulty sleeping through the night

  • I'm frequently tired

  • I'm anxious and irritable

  • I forget small details

  • My skin is drier, thinner, and more wrinkled

  • My muscles are losing their tone

  • I'm gaining weight

  • My joints and/or muscles ache

  • I have itchy, crawly skin

  • I sometimes feel as if electric shocks were going through my body

Visit my Web site for all natural solutions to help calm and alleviate the unpleasant effects of menopause.

Hormone Replacement Therapy Settlement

Thursday, February 10, 2011 by Susan Lark
A while ago, I wrote about and linked to an article that discussed tactics Wyeth (a division of the pharmaceutical giant Pfizer) used to market its conventional hormone replacement therapy drug Prempro, even though executives were aware of the risks associated with hormone replacement, like breast cancer.

To follow up on this, yesterday, a report came out saying that Pfizer is paying $330 million to settle 2,200 claims from women who blamed Prempro for their breast cancer. This amounts to about $150,000 per person--WAY less than the costs they incurred during their cancer treatments, I'm sure.

I cannot reiterate enough the dangers associated with conventional hormone replacement. Protect your heart, protect your breasts, and protect your overall health by exploring the many natural therapies for hot flashes, night sweats, and other menopause symptoms that I discuss throughout my blog.

And for more information about natural menopause relief, visit my Web site.

Are You DHEA Deficient?

Tuesday, February 8, 2011 by Kimberly Day
Of all the female hormones in your body, DHEA is the most prevalent and circulates in the Are You DHEA Deficient?bloodstream in the highest concentrations. Women produce about 1–2 mg of DHEA-S per day. This production declines with age.

A fetus has relatively high amounts of DHEA, which functions to ease the birth process. However, by the time an infant is six months old, DHEA production all but ceases, and only revives at age six to eight in preparation for puberty. Peak DHEA production is between the ages of 25 and 30; after this, production declines by as much as 10 percent per year. A person may feel the effects of this by their mid-40s. At age 80, you make only about 15 percent of what you produced in your 20s.

A study appearing in the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences documents this. Sixty-four volunteers, between the ages of 20 and 40, had four times the levels of DHEA-S as 138 volunteers over age 85. Patients with major diseases such as atherosclerosis, cancer, and Alzheimer’s also have significant deficiencies.

The physical and psychological well-being enjoyed in youth may well depend in part on having sufficient levels of DHEA. For many years, little attention was given to the effect of DHEA on humans, especially in terms of aging and the decline of performance functions. Most of the research on DHEA had been done on rodents and focused on disease.

Then a study by Morales et al. investigating the effects of DHEA in older individuals was published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. Volunteers in the study described a list of benefits that made DHEA seem like a fountain of youth. They reported increased energy, improved mood, better sleep quality, and a greater ability to remain calm and handle stress.

Poor lifestyle habits—especially excess stress and a lack of exercise—can also affect DHEA levels. In addition to producing DHEA, your adrenal glands manufacture other hormones, including cortisol. Cortisol is released during times of extreme stress, be it physical, emotional, or mental. When you produce too much cortisol and not enough DHEA, you can throw your adrenal glands out of balance, and eventually strain them to the point of exhaustion. Because DHEA levels are already naturally decreasing as you get older, this imbalance can aggravate both perimenopause symptoms and menopause symptoms.

Additionally, too little exercise may be linked to decreased DHEA levels. Fortunately, a study from Age and Ageing found that regular, moderate aerobic exercise such as walking, swimming, or biking increased DHEA production in older people. This is another one of the many health benefits that regular exercise provides for women (and men) of all ages.

Are You DHEA Deficient?

To begin to determine whether your body’s supply of this hormone has lessened enough to affect your ability to perform at your best and maintain optimal health, Dr. Lark created the following checklist. If you answer yes to four or more of these questions, you very likely need to increase your DHEA levels.
  • I am over the age of 50.
  • I experience menopause symptoms such as hot flashes.
  • I have low libido.
  • I suffer from insomnia.
  • I am unable to handle stress.
  • I am easily upset.
  • I have a negative outlook on life.
  • I am often unable to recall details of recent events.
  • I have a history of osteoporosis or osteopenia (low bone mass).
  • I have a history of cardiovascular disease.
  • I have significant excess body fat.
  • I am at risk for diabetes.
  • I have a history of autoimmune disease, including rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, multiple sclerosis, ulcerative colitis, and/or AIDS.
  • I have a weak immune system and am prone to colds and flu.
  • I am at high risk for cancer, especially bladder cancer.
  • I suffer from asthma.
  • I lack muscle mass and strength.
  • I tend to tire easily; my level of stamina is low.

If your responses suggest that your DHEA level is low, then your next step is to get your hormone levels tested.

The DHEA in the blood is a combination of DHEA sulfate (DHEA-S) and unbound, or free, DHEA. It is generally thought that unbound DHEA is most active and that DHEA-S is not fully metabolically active. Therefore, it is important that any lab assessment distinguish between the two.

This can be done using a 24-hour urine test. Some practitioners also think it is important to monitor DHEA levels if an individual has a significant illness, and that at age 40, all people should obtain a baseline reading.
  • Range of DHEA blood levels in adult men: 180 to 250 ng/dl
  • Range of DHEA blood levels in adult women: 130 to 980 ng/dl
  • Ranges of DHEA-S blood levels in adult women:
    • Aged 31–50: 2 to 379 µg/dl
    • Postmenopausal: 30 to 260 µg/dl
  • Range of DHEA salivary levels in women:     40 to 140 pg/ml

If your results indicate that you are deficient in DHEA (or if you scored high on the questionnaire), you may want to consider using bioidentical DHEA. I’ll tell you more about this on Friday.

For more information on all female hormones, visit Dr. Lark’s Web site.

Menopause Hot Flashes and Breast Cancer Risk

Tuesday, February 1, 2011 by Susan Lark

A recent study published in the online edition of the journal Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers and Prevention has tied hot flashes with a reduced risk of breast cancer.

Researchers questioned 1,437 postmenopausal women between 55 and 74 years old, 988 of whom had had breast cancer at some point. They were asked about the severity of their menopause symptoms, including hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, and anxiety. They found that the women who had the most hot flashes had a very low risk of developing breast cancer.

It is known that high estrogen levels increase the risk of breast cancer. What this study shows is that, yes, drastically reduced levels of estrogen can lead to miserable menopause symptoms, but can also significantly protect you against breast cancer.

Of course, if you have hot flashes and other menopause symptoms, you can reduce them by using nonhormonal methods. I talk about many of these options throughout this blog. And for more information on natural hormone support, visit my Web site.

The Feminine Benefits of Testosterone

Tuesday, January 25, 2011 by Kimberly Day
If you are like most women, you probably don’t spend much time thinking about your testosterone levels. While testosterone is typically thought of as a “male hormone,” it is just as critical to your health as the more common female hormones like estrogen and progesterone. You simply produce testosterone in much smaller amounts. the feminine benefits of testosterone

Testosterone plays an important role in normal female sexual development. The initiation of menstruation and puberty is, in part, triggered by testosterone production. Additionally, testosterone stimulates libido. Levels of the hormone rise and decline during the menstrual cycle to insure that sexual desire increases just before ovulation, when a woman is fertile and chances are greatest for conception.

Testosterone also restores vitality and energy levels, helps reduce depression, balances mood and, in part, engenders attributes such as optimism, assertiveness, and aggressiveness that are usually associated with male behavior.

Finally, testosterone benefits female health by helping to relieve menopause symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats, nervousness, vaginal dryness, and the strength of vaginal tissues. It can also help to prevent osteoporosis.

Do You Have Testosterone Deficiency?

Even the small amount of testosterone you produce can have a significant effect on your quality of life. If levels are below normal, you can experience a wide range of emotional symptoms, including decreased energy, depression, and anxiety. You’ll also notice a few physical effects as well, such as loss of libido, osteoporosis, and insomnia.

The following checklist will give you an idea of whether you are experiencing the effects of inadequate testosterone production.
  • I am over the age of 50.
  • I experience menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes, mood swings, and vaginal dryness.
  • I lack interest in sex.
  • I have a tendency toward depression.
  • I often feel withdrawn.
  • I have experienced a decline in the frequency of my sexual activity and orgasms.
  • I suffer from persistent fatigue.
  • I have osteoporosis and suffer from frequent bone fractures.
  • I have rheumatoid arthritis.
  • I lack stamina.
  • I have experienced a decline in my level of assertiveness.
  • I typically have little desire to take risks.
  • I have poor muscle tone or weak muscles.

If you answered yes to three or more of these questions, you very likely have low testosterone levels. If this is the case, you may want to get your hormone levels tested.

For more information about ALL female hormones, visit Dr. Lark’s Web site.

Say No to Antidepressants for Hot Flashes

Tuesday, January 25, 2011 by Susan Lark
I've been seeing a lot of stories in the news lately touting the use of antidepressants for the treatment menopause hot flashes. A recently conducted study showed that taking the antidepressant Lexapro for eight weeks dropped the number of menopause hot flashes in women from about 10 a day to an average of just over five a day.

I find it troubling that antidepressants could now be the recommended treatment-du-jour for menopause hot flashes. A decade ago, conventional hormone replacement therapy was the standard treatment, and that supposedly "safe" protocol turned out to be an indescribable health disaster for millions of women. And it's well-known that antidepressants do have side effects, including weight gain, insomnia, and sexual dysfunction--which also happen to be common menopause symptoms, too! So, while you may have fewer hot flashes when taking an antidepressant, you will likely experience other unpleasant symptoms that could make other aspects of your life challenging.

I urge you to try one or more of the many NATURAL menopause hot flash solutions I have discussed throughout my blog, including black cohosh, soy, and vitamin E.

And to get more tips on menopause relief, visit my Web site.

Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 24, 2010 by Susan Lark

I want to wish you and your loved ones the merriest of Christmases!

No doubt, Christmas can be one of the most joyous--and stressful--times of the year. And as you know, stress can exacerbate any number of health complaints, including estrogen dominance, menopause symptoms like hot flashes and night sweats, and even your appearance!

To help you enjoy your holidays to the fullest, I would like to give you the gift of relaxation this year. The following are some of my top relaxation recommendations. Take good care of yourself--now, and into the new year!

  • Deep Breathing—Lie on your back with your knees pulled up and inhale deeply and slowly through your nose. Allow your lungs and abdomen to naturally expand. Imagine that the air you breathe is filling your body with energy. Then exhale deeply, letting your stomach and chest collapse. When you are doing your deep breathing exercises you can visualize relaxing and healing colors, such as sky blue and gold colors flowing through your body.
  • Yoga—The Child's Pose in yoga calms anxiety and relieves stress. Sit on your heels. Bring your forehead toward the floor, stretching your spine as far as possible. Close your eyes and hold for as long you can without pain, breathing deeply through your nose. The Sponge is another pose that relieves anxiety and irritability, while reducing eye tension and swelling of the face. Lie on your back. Your arms should be at your sides, palms up. Close your eyes and relax your whole body. Inhale slowly, breathing from the diaphragm. As you inhale, visualize the energy in the air around you being drawn in through your entire body. Imagine that your body is porous and open like a sponge so that this energy can be drawn in and revitalize every cell of your body. Exhale slowly and deeply, allowing every ounce of tension to be drained from your body.
  • Acupressure—This ancient Chinese technique can promote general healing and relieve anxiety, nervous tension, and sleeplessness. This particular exercise can help energize you. Stand or sit upright in a chair. The point you’re looking for is below your navel. Measure three finger-widths below your navel to find this point. It is located 1–2 inches deep inside the abdomen. Hold the point for 1–3 minutes.
To learn more about how relaxation techniques can minimize menopause symptoms and other health complaints, visit my Web site.

Wheat-Free Recipes: Pizza

Monday, October 25, 2010 by Kimberly Day
Seeing as this the last week of National Celiac Disease Awareness Month, I thought I’d give you all several wheat-free recipes.

You don’t need to have celiac disease to reap the benefits of going wheat free. You will also likely enjoy looser pants and tops as you reduce inflammation and false fat. You may even start to feel your female hormones come into balance in the form of fewer menopause symptoms like hot flashes and night sweats.

Best of all, you can enjoy all these benefits without depriving yourself of your favorite foods, including pizza, pasta, and baked goods.

So, on that note, I’ll give you two pizza recipes today, two pasta recipes on Wednesday, and we’ll end the week with two of my favorite desserts on Friday…just in time for the weekend.

BBQ Chicken Pizza
Serves 4 (two slices each)

This is my family’s favorite pizza. It’s so easy and is so delicious, you’ll never miss the wheat. If you are vegetarian, swap the chicken for 14 ounces of black beans, drained.
  • 1 wheat-free pizza crust, such as Namaste Foods
  • ½ cup pizza sauce
  • ½ cup low-sugar BBQ sauce
  • 2 red peppers, sliced
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • ½ cup mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 ounces chicken breast, cooked and cubed
  • 4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
  • 1 avocado, diced

Combine pizza sauce and BBQ sauce in a small bowl. Spread evenly over the pizza crust. Sauté peppers, onions, and mushrooms in olive oil until tender. Distribute pepper mixture over sauce. Add chicken and goat cheese. Bake at 425ºF for 12–15 minutes, or until goat cheese has browned. Top with diced avocado and serve warm.

Pesto Pepper Pizza
Serves 4 (two slices each)

This is a great pizza for those of you who don’t care for tomatoes or tomato sauce.

  • 1 wheat-free pizza crust, such as Namaste Foods
  • 1 cup pesto
  • 4 ounces roasted red peppers, sliced
  • 4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled

Spread pesto evenly over the pizza crust. Distribute peppers evenly over sauce. Top with goat cheese and bake at 425ºF for 12–15 minutes, or until goat cheese has browned. Serve warm.

For more great wheat-free recipes, visit Dr. Lark's Web site.

Hormone Replacement Therapy: The Bad News Continues

Friday, October 22, 2010 by Susan Lark
Conventional hormone replacement therapy--specifically the brand Prempro--was in the news again this week. Follow-up studies published in the latest edition of the Journal of the American Medical Association have found that Prempro increased women's risk of breast cancer, and these cancers were more likely to spread to the lymph nodes. Even worse, researchers found that the women who took Prempro were more likely to die of breast cancer.

This is disturbing news indeed--but definitely not surprising at all. I've discussed the dangers of conventional hormone replacement therapy many times in my newsletter, and Kimberly and I have written about it here on my blog. If you are currently taking hormone replacement therapy to ease your hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, and other menopause symptoms, I strongly encourage you to look into more natural methods for menopause relief. Simply search through this blog to read about the many safe, natural options available to you. And to learn more on how to achieve menopause relief safely and naturally, visit my Web site.

"Bone-Building" Drugs are Causing Broken Bones?!

Monday, October 18, 2010 by Susan Lark

Along with hot flashes, night sweats, and loss of libido, many women have to worry about bone loss when they reach menopause. Osteoporosis is a common effect of menopause that, fortunately, can be prevented. However, mainstream medicine would have you believe that prevention is as easy as taking a pill once a day or once a month. But emerging science has shown that these so-called "bone-building drugs"--or bisphosphonates--are not all they're cracked up to be.

I wrote about the increasing dangers of bisphosphonates in the September issue of my newsletter. The mainstream media reported on these same dangers just last week. The most recent news is that the FDA is requesting labeling changes in the Warnings and Precautions section of bisphosphonates stating that these drugs could make bones weak and more likely to break. You read that right--the very drugs that are used to prevent bones from breaking are actually making them more likely to break!! 

As I wrote a few months ago in my newsletter, your body is designed to naturally rebuild bone. And as we get older, we can help that process along:

Every three to six months, your bones undergo a complete renovation. During the breakdown process, a team of bone cells—osteoclasts—secretes an acid that dissolves old bone. Once they have broken down enough bone to create a small hole, they die and the remodeling phase begins. At this point, a new team of cells—osteoblasts—takes over. Osteoblasts are responsible for producing collagen fibers and other substances that allow your bones to be stronger and more flexible, thereby enabling the bone to withstand physical trauma and injury.

Sadly, conventional medicine’s attempt to treat osteoporosis only addresses one-half of the problem…and not the right half. As it turns out, the supposed “bone-building” bisphosphonates, like Boniva and Fosamax, don’t build new bone at all. All they do is prevent the osteoclasts from breaking the bone down, thereby keeping old, tired bone around longer than Mother Nature intended. This reduces bone quality and actually increases fractures in unusual locations, such as mid-shaft on the thigh.

However, many doctors continue to push bisphosphonates on patients while ignoring all of the dietary, exercise, and supplement research out there (with the occasional nod to vitamin D and calcium). Worse yet, they also continue to ignore the myriad of disturbing side effects associated with bisphosphonates, including arthritis, muscle pain, esophageal cancer, and kidney and liver toxicity, and rotting of the jawbone.

If you are taking bisphosphonates, I urge you to talk to your doctor about taking a more natural approach to protecting your bones that includes exercise; nutrients like calcium, vitamin D, and magnesium; cutting-edge treatments like low frequency pulsed electromagnetic field therapy; and maintaining a healthy, alkaline diet.

To learn more about protecting your bones, and staying healthy during all stages of menopause, visit my Web site.

Yoga Help for Hot Flashes

Friday, September 10, 2010 by Kimberly Day
If you are looking for menopause relief, especially help for hot flashes and menopause-related anxiety, then the Pump exercise is just what the doctor ordered. This exercise also strengthens the back and abdominal muscles.
  • Lie down and press the small of your back into the floor. This allows you to use your abdominal muscles without straining your lower back.
  • Keep your back flat on the floor and let the rest of your body remain relaxed.
  • Slowly raise your right leg while breathing in. Make a conscious effort to move slowly. Imagine your leg is being pulled up smoothly by a spring.
  • Hold for a few breaths; exhale as you lower your leg.
  • Repeat this exercise on your left side.
  • Repeat entire sequence, alternating legs, 5–10 times.

For more information on female hormones and other health concerns, visit Dr. Lark’s Web site.

Cut Menopause Symptoms with Aerobic Exercise

Tuesday, September 7, 2010 by Susan Lark
According to a recent study, postmenopausal women who engaged in three 70-minute sessions of aerobic exercise experienced a reduction in their menopause symptoms after 24 weeks on the program. The 65 women in the study reported significant decreases in their menopause hot flashes, night sweats, cardiac symptoms, muscle and joint pain, sleep problems, anxiety, irritability, sexual problems, and urinary symptoms.

The benefits of exercise truly are endless. In terms of the balancing of female hormones, exercise helps to relieve the effects of menopause, as well as PCOS, estrogen dominance, and PMS.

I encourage you to exercise as often as you can--ideally every day for at least half an hour. In reality, I know we are all busy--so do your best to add exercise into your everyday routine. Go for a walk at lunch, park far away from the entrance of the mall or grocery store, and do sit-ups or push-ups while watching TV. It all adds up!

To learn more about balancing female hormones and reducing menopause symptoms, visit my Web site.