Don't like the terrible alternatives out there? Same here!
I was able to stall menopause till 54! Today at 56, love making is still awesome, I still have my energetic teenager body, relatively young looking skin, and no hot flashes! How do I do this? By helping my body to continue making it's own hormones! Yes, most doctors won't tell you this solution because they and the pharmaceutical companies aren't going to make any money off of you! This option is healthier because it's more natural. The body is always in a state of homeostasis, that is, it's always balancing itself out. So, if you start taking hormones – bioidentical or whatever, your body says, "Oh, now I have hormones, so now I don't need to produce my own" and it closes down the factory and becomes dependent on the drugs forever! My advice is to just say, "No!" to pharmaceutical drugs whenever possible!
Now, it hasn't been all rainbows and unicorns, but I didn't like any of the other options out there and I couldn't find any doctors with a clue as to how to do this, so I've had to be my own test rat! I'm not a doctor so proceed at your own risk.
First, DHEA is produced naturally by the body when we're younger but as we age, we produce less and less until we stop. There are no natural sources of DHEA but you can get it at most health food stores or on the internet. I was on the average dose of 50 mg DHEA a day but my periods were coming too early and often so I cut down to 25 mg DHEA and lost my period for a month. I went back on 50 but it didn't come back, so then I took 100 mg and I experienced pitchfork cramps and a bloody murder scene with beastly breasts biting and hissing! Actually, I had to go to Emergency, it was so painful, but there was nothing they could do except tell me to take pain killers. I quickly learned about estrogen dominance!
Back to my research, I found DIM. Diindolylmethane, to the rescue! DIM is an estrogen blocker which blocks the evil estrogens that cause all the drama. Teenagers take this to get rid of acne and body builders take it to get rid of "man boobs." The next day my sweet girls were back and I felt fine.
So it turns out that 50 mg of DHEA seems to be everyone's favorite dose (but there's always that smaller deviation from the norm). The following table may be helpful but I'm warning you, that you must be very in tune with your body:
Symptoms of Estrogen Dominance:
fibroids, heavy menstrual bleeding, mood swings, breast tenderness, increase in breast size, bloating, pelvic cramps, weight gain, nausea, sugar cravings, depression, crying easily, mental fog, dumb as dirt, fatigue, and painful cactus-like sex. The first symptom I notice, is under-eye puffiness. With estrogen dominance, I stopped taking DHEA for about a week or I reduced the dose.
Symptoms of progesterone deficiency:
hot flashes, night sweats, and rapid heartbeat episodes.
Symptoms of Low Estrogen: dry eyes, dry skin, dry vagina, low sex drive, painful porcupine sex, back and joint pain, headaches, migraines, difficulty falling asleep, brittle bones, muscle tenderness, muscle cramps, disappearing lips, drying up, and aging! I love DHEA!
Too much Testosterone:
insensitivity, nymphomaniacal, an excessively lean body, disappearing caboose, low hoarse manly voice, oily skin, acne, and loss of moon cycle.
supple glowing skin, sparkling eyes, full, happy breasts and lips, sharp mind, sex drive, and a carefree energetic healthy feeling.
The best time to start is when you're pretty sure you're menopausal, you missed your cycle, you're experiencing hot flashes/hot excessive sweating (see symptoms of low estrogen), and you're 51 (the average age of menopause). If you're younger than 51, see your doctor.
After messing with the DHEA dosage for a year, I finally found the missing ingredient! Ashwagandha is an ancient eastern indian herb that has been used for 3,000 or more years. Ashwagandha naturally balances the hormones your body is naturally producing from the DHEA so you don't have to! On top of that, Ashwagandha has many more benefits including: removing hot flashes, anti-cancer properties, stress and anxiety reduction, cortisol reduction, blood sugar reduction, and testosterone boosting - which brings your sex monkey back! I take anywhere from 1 rounded teaspoon to 1 heaping tablespoon per day.
Back to testosterone boosting, well, I got lucky and found Christopher Walker on YouTube. Here's his link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XmW7S6t4Syc&t=364s He explains that to increase your testosterone you need to use resistance training, also known as weight training. Specifically, you need to use your upper body muscles found in your arms and back because that's where we have our androgen receptors. The work must be done in as short a time period as possible with the highest work load to elicit the largest hormone response, yet remaining below the stress threshold because stress creates cortisone - producing the opposite results. So, what does that look like in real life for a woman?
I take a 12.5 lbs. dumb-bell, which is difficult enough for me, and I do bicep curls, combined with raising the weights above my head, as fast as I can, for 7 repetitions. Right now, I can do more reps. than 7, but I feel that would be over-stressing (creating cortisol) so I stop at 7. I also lift 10 reps. of 10 lbs. for my triceps (cross-training for surfing). You also want to be careful that you don't throw the weights up, like I see many people do at the gym, this can cause injury. You want to lift weights with good form, slowly enough to feel the resistance, yet as fast as you can. There's a fine balance between the extremes. If in doubt ask a trainer.
Still, there are many articles on menopause, but I still haven't found one better solution!
I wish you all the best!