Want to make those hot flashes hotter, or ADD to that menopause belly rather than reduce it?
Then ignore the advice I’m about to share with you.
This article is an eye opener for any woman whose body isn’t responding the same way since hitting menopause.
Feel like an alien in your own skin? I’ll tell you why.
Yes, many women — perhaps even most women — do gain weight as they enter menopause. And that weight is more often carried around the middle.
But just calling it “menopause belly” doesn’t tell the whole story.
Several different “master switches” trigger these symptoms and make things like hot flashes, weight gain and exhaustion worse.
In fact, if all you do is cut these 3 things from your diet, you’ll make the “change of life” much easier. And you’ll keep that slim body, too.
We all know that too much sugar is bad for us. But still, we keep eating it.
Here’s the thing…
Eating sugar causes your body to release large amounts of the hormone insulin in order to normalize your now raised — or “spiked” — blood sugar levels.
When your body releases too much insulin and it isn’t used immediately — for example, burned off during exercise — it pushes the extra glucose into your cells, where that glucose is stored as fat.
That’s why insulin is often called “the fat storage hormone.”
Aside from promoting extra fat storage, those spikes in blood sugar will leave you hungry and craving more carbohydrates very soon after you eat.
And this can pull you into a cycle of binge eating, leading to… yes, you guessed it…. weight gain.
The dreaded “menopause belly” has a lot more to do with your habits than you might think!
When this sugar-driven insulin release becomes the norm — say from eating a high-sugar diet — then you’re at serious risk of metabolic syndrome.
Metabolic syndrome is characterized by weight gain, obesity, high cholesterol, elevated blood sugar and triglycerides, and high blood pressure.
Sugar has been linked to hot flashes, too.
Here’s what two of my clients had to say after cutting sugar from their diets:
“Sugar, sugar, sugar — it seriously makes everything worse. Drinking lots of water does help. I have never had a problem with coffee. But alcohol, especially wine, sets me off in a hot flash.” Donna
“I’ve noticed I get less hot flushes the less sugar I have.” Janine S
So cut the sugar. You won’t regret it.
Now let’s talk about another food that used to be recommended for menopausal women — and that you should avoid like the plague…
Soy has long been recommended for women in menopause for its estrogenic properties.
And soy supplements are said to stave off hot flashes, night sweats, and other uncomfortable menopausal symptoms.
Well, I’m here to tell you that is nonsense.
The research is conclusive. Soy does nothing to help alleviate the symptoms of menopause.
But that’s not all…
There are serious health risks associated with eating soy.
You see, soy contains substances that mimic hormones. They also act as goitrogens, substances that suppress your thyroid function. And when the thyroid is suppressed, a host of health problems result, such as:
- Anxiety and mood swings
- Difficulty losing weight
- Difficulty conceiving children
- Digestive problems and food allergies
Soy foods also contain saponins, soyatoxin, phytates, protease inhibitors, oxalates, goitrogens and estrogens, some of which can interfere with the enzymes you need to digest protein.
So what about those Asian women? You know, the ones who rarely ever report hot flashes, and who seem to breeze through menopause without a struggle? Aren’t they so healthy and thin because of their higher soy consumption?
Let’s BUST THAT MYTH right now.
In the Asian countries referenced in those stories, women eat very small amounts of whole, mostly fermented non-GMO soybean products. And that fermentation removes many of the undesirable elements from soy.
But Western food processors separate the soybean into two golden commodities: protein and oil. And there is nothing natural or safe about those products — or in the vast majority of unfermented soy products on the market today.
Studies show that even small amounts of unfermented soy (45 mg isoflavones – which is a bit more than a single cup of soy milk) have the potential to disrupt female hormonal balance.
So if you’re going to eat soy, stick to fermented soy foods like miso, natto, or soy sauce. Fermentation reduces the phytate and “antinutrient” levels of soy, making them okay to eat. Natto also contains high levels of vitamin K2 — if you can stand the awful taste.
Finally, there’s one last food that menopausal women should completely avoid…
3) Canola Oil
Canola oil is one of the worst things you can put in your body.
It’s very unstable when under heat, light, and pressure, and that can cause oxidization to take place, creating free radicals in your body. This makes it unsafe for cooking.
You should also avoid other processed seed oils like soybean oil, sunflower oil, corn oil, canola oil, cottonseed oil, and safflower oil. These oils have been through processing and contains trans fatty acids.
Why are trans fats so bad for you?
Artificial trans fats (or trans fatty acids) are created in an industrial process that adds hydrogen to liquid vegetable oils to make them more solid.
Trans fats raise your bad (LDL) cholesterol levels and lower your good (HDL) cholesterol levels.
Eating trans fats increases your risk of developing heart disease and stroke. They’re also associated with a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
The primary dietary source of trans fats in processed food is “partially hydrogenated oils.” If you see this mentioned on a product label, put it right back on the shelf.
Trans fats can be found in many store-bought foods, including fried foods like doughnuts, and baked goods like cakes, pie crusts, biscuits, frozen pizza, cookies, crackers, and margarines and other spreads.
Start by cutting canola oil from your diet. And then work to reduce — and eventually eliminate — these other items too.
Menopause will be a heck of a lot more manageable if you remove these 3 harmful foods from your kitchen and your life right now.
You might even find that symptoms like hot flashes, sleep disruption and weight gain around the stomach and hips go away completely… if diet is your main issue.
But what about those other “master switches”?
How does stress, sleep and your own self image — yes, really! — make some women go from confident and beautiful to frumpy and exhausted when menopause arrives?
Don’t worry, you can fix those things too. And that’s what we’ll talk about next.