Menopause is medically determined when you haven’t had a period for 1 full year. However before you hit menopause, you may experience some peri-menopausal symptoms (clues that your body is entering a phase of hormonal change). These symptoms can last years or can be a few short months. These symptoms are likely due to a drop in estrogen, progesterone and possibly testosterone The signs and symptoms can range in severity but may include: hot flashes, mood swings / irritability/ low mood (anxiety or depression), night sweats, brain fog, low libido, painful intercourse, vaginal atrophy or vaginal dryness, irregular periods, or weight gain. My integrative approach to treatment involves getting the appropriate testing completed: blood serum hormone levels and other indicators of nutritional deficiencies and/ or DUTCH testing (dried urine hormone testing). I pair this information with the natural and integrative therapies to help resolve the symptoms.
The naturopathic integrative medical approach I have used includes some or all of the following:
We only give the most active forms of vitamins/ minerals to ensure maximal absorption whether it be doses through oral consumption or through IV (intravenous therapy support). A range of supplements can be used depending on the individual symptoms to help achieve a better hormonal picture, some of this can be done with herbs or with nutritional supplements. Some of these include: ashwagandha, MACA, B vitamins, magnesium, vitamin C, wild yam, fish oils and evening primrose oil, vitex, black cohosh, sage. Stress can also be managed by adaptogenic herbs and lifestyle changes.
The topicals: specifically compounded using tested formulas to help support hair regrowth; including a mix of minoxidil, melatonin, and finasteride.
Our gut is our second brain, and a healthy diet leads to less inflammation and a healthy gut which in turn leads to a healthy hormone production. Diet changes involve removing common triggers for hot flashes/ night sweats such as: hot/spicy food, alcohol, caffeine, foods high in refined sugars. Instead adding healthy fats, proteins, ground flax seeds, yams and pumpkin seeds (phytoestrogenic foods). Teaching patients how to eat for their hormones is an integral part of my menopausal treatment plan.
BHRT (Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy):
This is an option for some women after careful examination of their health history. BHRT is a form of natural hormone therapy in which I compound a specific dose in the compounding pharmacy that could help balance your hormones. It can be given in different forms depending on the hormone and the presenting case (sometimes requiring a combination); oral, troche (sublingual or under the tongue, cream form or vaginal suppository. Careful monitoring of your hormones through testing will be required to ensure appropriate dosing while on the treatment.
My holistic approach involves tweaking lifestyle to help with this phase of transition. We will chat about smoking cessation, and of course incorporating more movement in the form of exercise if applicable.
If you’re struggling with your menopausal symptoms and want to find a more natural solution, schedule your appointment with Dr. Hasan, Naturopathic Doctor!