Herbal Remedies for Menopause vs Menopause Supplements
Menopause symptoms can be debilitating, lasting for an average of four years and, in some cases, as many as 12. Therefore, you need to find a way to manage your symptoms and feel more like yourself again.
If you’ve decided that hormone replacement therapy (HRT) isn’t for you and you’re looking for a more natural way to manage hot flushes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, mood swings, a lack of energy and other symptoms of menopause, there are plenty of options available.
But how can you decide if herbal remedies or menopause supplements containing natural ingredients are best for you?
Herbal Remedies for Menopause
From soothing aromatherapy oils to herbs you can add to your tea, there are multiple herbal remedies for menopause to choose from. But, did you know that some of the most popular options can have unpleasant side effects?
St John’s wort
St John’s wort has long been renowned for its ability to help wounds, bruises and burns heal, and it’s also been linked with treating depression, which suggests it could possibly relieve the feelings of low mood that can come with menopause.
However, it can take a long time for the effects of St John’s wort to be seen, and it’s important to make sure you take the right dose, or you could begin to experience side effects, such as vomiting, dizziness and even more severe mood swings, taking you back to where you started - suffering, without a solution.
Evening Primrose Oil
As an aromatherapy oil, evening primrose oil is known for its calming effects, but applying the oil to your skin or taking it orally as part of a supplement may help you to manage some menopause symptoms.
Evening primrose oil naturally contains high levels of omega-6 fatty acids, which are essential for your brain and bones to function properly. Concentration problems are a common menopause symptom, while a decline in your body’s oestrogen levels can weaken your bone density, increasing your osteoporosis risk.
Although evening primrose oil may help some women to manage these symptoms of menopause, it is vital to speak to your GP before using it during menopause, as it can increase the risk of health problems in others, especially when the dose is wrong.
The herb black cohosh has been linked with reducing hot flushes, night sweats, difficulty sleeping, low bone density and vaginal dryness in menopausal women.
At the same time, there are concerns that black cohosh could interfere with other medications, and may carry risks of headaches, gastrointestinal problems, dizziness and even toxicity of the liver.
Some women swear by ginseng root to manage menopause symptoms, drinking it in herbal teas to try to relieve hot flushes, as well as trouble sleeping, during their 50s and beyond.
However, the NHS warns that ginseng has been linked with an increase in headaches, gastrointestinal problems and even disturbed sleep. Ginseng may also interfere with other medications, so a high level of caution is needed if you’re considering using it to manage menopause symptoms.
Natural Menopause Supplements
While you might hear a lot of talk about using herbal remedies for menopause, few of their effects have been scientifically proven, whereas their risks are widely reported.
As a result, finding a tried-and-tested way to manage menopause symptoms could be a preferable option, and that’s something that menopause supplements offer.
Menopause supplements typically contain herbal ingredients and other natural components, such as the soy derivative DT56a, which can be found in Femarelle® products.
You will need to make sure that you don’t take more than the recommended number of capsules of your menopause supplement each day, but these will be measured doses - something you can’t always control when administering herbal remedies to yourself.
Of course, if you do experience any adverse side effects, you will need to seek professional medical advice as soon as possible, but there will also be plenty of alternative options available for you - you'll find a fantastic range from leading brands at Menopause Supplements here.