Nutrients for Menopausal Symptom Relief
Black Cohosh is the most researched herb for the treatment of menopausal symptoms and the replacement of standard hormone replacement therapy (estrogen and progestins). It is effective in the treatment of the following menopausal symptoms: hot flashes, heavy perspiration, headaches, heart palpitations, depression, sleep disturbances, vaginal atrophy (thinning of the vaginal walls causing painful intercourse), vaginal dryness, nervousness, irritability and loss of concentration.
In 2004 researchers discovered that black cohosh has no hormone action and that it works on the vascular system to reduce hot flashes and night sweats. As a result studies were then performed using black cohosh along with tamoxifen in women with estrogen receptor positive breast cancer to dramatically reduce hot flashes. Black cohosh is safe and non-estrogenic.
Sage Leaf: The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) in the European Union recently approved 300 mg of sage per day as a treatment for excessive perspiration associated with menopause. In the United Kingdom, medical herbalists treat menopausal women suffering from hot flashes and night sweats with sage. The sage in MENOsmart PLUS is not an alcohol extract or an oil. The safety studies for long term use of the full herb (i.e. longer than one year) are excellent. Research demonstrates that 300 mg of sage does not cause elevated heart rate or blood pressure.
Dong Quai is an effective treatment for the symptoms of menopause, especially hot flashes, as well as for painful menstruation that causes spotting but no full blood flow. It will also relieve too frequent menstruation (more than one menstrual cycle per month).
Chastetree Berry, also known as Vitex, has no direct hormonal activity and is not estrogenic. Its main active ingredients stimulate the pituitary gland to produce a hormone that, in turn, increases progesterone. Vitex also inhibits the production of prolactin, which increases at menopause. Excess prolactin triggers male facial hair growth and acne in women, among other symptoms. Excess prolactin is also found in women with low thyroid function.
Gamma-oryzanol, which is isolated from rice bran oil, is recommended for the treatment of hot flashes, to enhance pituitary function and to promote endorphin release by the hypothalamus, thereby improving mood. Not only is it a very effective substance for alleviating menopausal symptoms, but it also lowers triglycerides and total cholesterol. This is especially important because women of menopausal age and beyond are at increased risk of heart disease.
Hesperidin, a potent flavonoid from citrus fruit, improves the vascular (vein) system and capillaries, thereby improving cardiovascular health and reducing bruising. It has also been shown to reduce hot flashes and night-time leg cramps.