Menopause is a point in time 12 months after a woman’s last period. The years leading up to that point, when women may have changes in their monthly cycles, hot flashes, or other symptoms, are called the menopausal transition or perimenopause.
The menopausal transition most often begins between ages 45 and 55. It usually lasts about seven years but can be as long as 14 years. The duration can depend on lifestyle factors such as smoking, age it begins, and race and ethnicity. During perimenopause, the body’s production of estrogen and progesterone, two hormones made by the ovaries, varies greatly.
The menopausal transition affects each woman uniquely and in various ways. The body begins to use energy differently, fat cells change, and women may gain weight more easily. You may experience changes in your bone or heart health, your body shape and composition, or your physical function.
Menopause is an important transition in women’s lives. Menopause can make women more at risk of osteoporosis (weakened bones) due to reduced levels of oestrogen as well as contribute to other conditions such as diabetes, stroke and heart disease. Regular exercise can help prevent or manage these conditions, improving health and wellbeing in a number of ways. Use it as a reminder to take good care of yourself. Start by considering these fitness tips for menopause:
- Preventing weight gain. Women tend to lose muscle mass and gain abdominal fat around menopause. Regular physical activity can help prevent weight gain.
- Reducing the risk of cancer. Exercise during and after menopause can help you lose excess weight or maintain a healthy weight, which might offer protection from various types of cancer, including breast, colon and endometrial cancer.
- Strengthening your bones. Exercise can slow bone loss after menopause, which lowers the risk of fractures and osteoporosis.
- Reducing the risk of other diseases. Menopause weight gain can have serious implications for your health. Excess weight increases the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Regular exercise can counter these risks.
- Boosting your mood. Physically active adults have a lower risk of depression and cognitive decline.
Menopause Wellness Event
Recently our Senior Project Officer for Health, Rob Ward attended the Menopause Wellness Event hosted by HI Friends.
This event was very much dedicated to supporting Women and their families through the menopause journey. It was an opportunity to explore wellbeing during this life transition, and discover how to get the support you need.
No matter where you are in your journey, perimenopause, menopause or thinking ahead we hope this event will connect you to the right information, support and people to make sure your journey is as positive
as it can be.
At the event there was advice to help individuals set up a local menopause support group alongside opportunities to have a Health Check (Pre-register at healthyyou.org.uk or call 0333 005 0093 for more information) and of course some Menopause experts on hand to answer any of your questions.
Guest speaker Kate from Menopause Support the body behind the #MakeMenopauseMatter campaign. Kate is a registered nurse who has spent over 13 years specialising in women’s health with extensive experience in menopause and fertility. Following Kate’s talk there was an opportunity for the audience to ask any questions.
Menopause Support and Guidance
Womens Health Concern
The patient arm of the British Menopause Society, providing a confidential, independent service to advise, reassure and educate women of all ages about their gynaecological and sexual health, wellbeing and lifestyle concerns.
Menopause and Me
An organisation that provides tailored information about all stages of menopause and the tools and support to help make
informed choices when it comes to managing symptoms.