Menopause can be a challenging transition whereby women often face a barrage of symptoms that impact their daily life. In addition to the well-known hot flushes, night sweats, and fatigue, many women also suffer from mood swings, anxiety, depression, weight gain, and memory and concentration problems.
Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is a popular treatment method for menopause symptoms, whereby women receive specific doses of hormones such as estrogen and progestogen. However, HRT isn’t right for everyone. Some women choose to opt for a more natural method of menopause relief, while others have concerns about the risks of HRT or are ineligible due to health issues.
Although HRT may be one of the most common treatments available to menopausal women, it is by no means the only option. Lifestyle changes, antidepressants, plant-based identical hormones, and supplements can all play a role in supporting women through menopause.
Let’s take a look into some of the options that are out there, the potential risks, and if they really work.
Our Recommendation for For Menopause Relief Without HRT: Kurapeak
In addition to the typical symptoms that women suffer during menopause, a common complaint from women is that the menopausal transition leaves them feeling deflated, lacking energy, and just simply not feeling like themselves.
We think the best alternative therapy for menopausal women is something that will not only address symptoms such as menopausal hot flushes and low mood but will also provide the energy and vitality to maintain a healthy and happy lifestyle and allow women to feel able to tackle whatever life throws their way.
Out of the HRT alternatives we reviewed, Kurapeak’s formula appears to be the most comprehensive for combatting menopausal symptoms and also improving overall physical and mental well-being.
Kurapeak’s ingredients are backed by a wealth of scientific evidence to support its claims to improve anxiety and mood, boost energy levels and fight burnout,aid sleep disturbance, support fat loss, and reduce hot flushes.
We particularly like the supplement’s focus on addressing mental health, such as low mood, anxiety, and depression. Kurapeak’s formula takes a multi-level approach to improving mental well-being. Turmeric can improve serotonin levels in the brain, while Panax ginseng reduces stress hormones such as cortisol, and l-tyrosine aids mental clarity and sharp thinking.
Additionally, evidence suggests that turmeric has properties that can combat the effects of arthritis, which is more likely to occur in women in later life and can be linked to menopause.
Symptoms Of Menopause
As hormone levels decline during perimenopause and menopause, a wide range of symptoms can occur, often lasting for months to years. Menopausal symptoms can severely impact women’s quality of life while they navigate the menopausal transition. Many women complain of the need to manage fatigue, depression, hot flashes, and problems concentrating alongside their busy lives and day-to-day schedules.
Common symptoms that occur in menopausal women include:
- Hot flushes
- Sexual dysfunction
- Night sweats
- Vaginal dryness
- Night sweats
- Dry skin
- ‘Brain fog’ or memory and concentration problems
- Disturbed sleep
- Mood swings
- Weight gain and slowed metabolism
- Irregular periods
- Thinning of hair
Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)
Hormone replacement therapy, or HRT, can help to relieve most of the common menopausal symptoms that women experience. HRT replaces hormones that are declining as women approach menopause. Treatment usually consists of a combination of estrogen and progestogen. HRT can be administered in tablets, gels, skin patches, vaginal creams, and pessaries.
Risks of HRT include increased risk of breast cancer, blood clots, heart disease, and strokes. Most physicians will advise that the benefits of HRT outweigh the risks. However, there are other options available if women decide against HRT.
HRT-Alternatives For Combating Menopausal Symptoms
There are effective alternative therapies available for women who don’t want to go down the route of HRT during menopause or postmenopausal hormone therapy. Symptoms can be managed or reduced through alternatives such as medication, changes to your lifestyle, bioidentical hormones, and supplements.
Some women may also benefit from HRT alongside complementary therapies. If natural methods are not working for you, you may want to use a combination of treatments to get the best results.
For women looking to avoid HRT but still find relief from their menopause symptoms, physicians recommend specific lifestyle changes that may lessen symptoms and promote health.
Top recommendations for beneficial lifestyle changes include regular exercise, weight loss, wearing lighter clothing (for hot flushes), cutting down on smoking and drinking alcohol, and reducing your caffeine intake. Most women report a mild-to-moderate impact on their mesopause symptoms from lifestyle changes.
Giving up smoking could potentially lessen some symptoms of menopause, such as hot flushes. Some women find that both smoking and alcohol trigger hot flushes during menopause. Quitting smoking is also likely to reduce the chances of cancer, heart disease, and strokes in later life.
In some situations, regular exercise can improve menopause symptoms. However, irregular high-intensity exercise could worsen symptoms, and women should focus on regular low-impact exercise such as swimming or jogging to alleviate symptoms. Maintaining a healthy level of muscle mass can help combat the onset of osteoporosis that can occur from menopause.
Often the drop in estrogen that is associated with menopause can cause a reduction in strength and in muscle tissue. As such, regular exercise and a high-protein diet can help maintain muscle which will, in turn, support heart, bone, and metabolic health.
Several studies have found a positive association between obesity and the severity of menopausal symptoms in women. Weight loss can cause a marked improvement in women’s menopausal symptoms, particularly sleep disturbances, mood swings, and hot flushes.
Although beneficial, weight loss can be challenging to achieve during menopause. Symptoms such as fatigue and muscle loss can be counterproductive to weight loss. Often, women actually report weight gain during the menopause transition, particularly around their stomach and hips. Additionally, some women become more insulin resistant during menopause which can also lead to excess weight gain.
Although treating menopausal symptoms may not be their intended use, in recent years, some medications have been found to have secondary benefits of easing symptoms, such as hot flushes. However, some of these medications do not come without side effects.
The traditional uses of the anticonvulsant gabapentin are treating epileptic seizures and nerve pain. However, the medication has also been found to be effective at treating hot flushes in menopausal women.
Reported side effects of gabapentin include drowsiness, dizziness, gastrointestinal discomfort, and potential withdrawal syndrome. It also may not be appropriate for women at risk of breast cancer or heart disease.
Specific antidepressants, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and serotonin noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), have been found to have secondary benefits for menopausal women in addition to the medical purpose they are intended for.
A side effect of SSRIs, including citalopram, fluoxetine, and paroxetine, and SNRIs, such as venlafaxine, is reducing the occurrence of menopausal hot flushes. It is not yet clear how these medications reduce hot flushes, and it does not work in all women. When effective, the relief from hot flushes from SSRIs and SNRIs is almost immediate but is not usually long-lasting.
Antidepressants are not licensed for this use at present, and they are strong medications that influence brain processes and often come with side effects. Common side effects of these medications include reduced sex drive, sickness, diarrhea, feelings of agitation and anxiety, blurred vision, and dizziness.
Bioidentical HRT alternative treatment or bioidentical hormones are made from plant sources and promoted as natural, safer alternatives to HRT that are almost identical to human hormones. Depending on where you do your research, the reviews of bioidentical hormones are mixed.
Many physicians do not recommend bioidentical hormones because they are somewhat unregulated, and there is not enough research to determine their safety. At present, there is not enough evidence to support that they are either safer than standard HRT or even how effective they are in reducing menopausal symptoms.
Vitamins and Herbal Remedies For Menopausal Women
Potential vitamins and herbal remedies for women to look out for when choosing a supplement to support them through the menopausal transition include:
- Vitamin D – Vitamin D is essential for your body to absorb calcium effectively. Without sufficient vitamin D levels, your calcium intake could be going to waste if your body can’t adequately absorb it. Calcium is crucial for menopausal and postmenopausal women to support bone health, which often decreases due to a drop in estrogen.
- Saffron – Saffron has been traditionally used all over the world to boost libido, improve mood, and aid cognitive function. In women, it can be particularly beneficial for increasing mental energy, lowering anxiety, reducing bloating and cramps, and improving sexual function. Although beneficial to menopausal women, saffron is the most expensive spice in the world and can substantially increase the cost of a supplement.
- Black cohosh – Some evidence suggests that black cohosh could be beneficial for combatting hot flushes. However, due to limited research and the varying ways of preparation, the safety of various black cohosh preparations is still uncertain. Some variants may also interfere with other medicines. Black cohosh should not be used if you have liver problems.
- Red clover – Red clover contains natural plant estrogens. As such, some women take this to reduce menopausal symptoms, but the evidence is mixed. Research is generally conflicting on the benefits and safety of red clover. It should not be taken by women with breast cancer or on certain medications unless advised by a doctor.
- Ginseng – Ginseng is often known as a mood-boosting extract. Research has found that ginseng can improve symptoms of menopause and boost mood, enhance libido, improve quality of sleep, and lower the risk of cardiovascular disease. Ginseng also promotes healthy and vibrant skin and can help to address the dry skin caused by menopause.
- Calcium – Bone loss is a very real concern in menopausal and post-menopausal women. Calcium is essential to counteract bone loss, and the amount of calcium women need to support bone health increases after 51. Calcium is readily available in food sources, such as milk and yogurt, and it is typically most beneficial if you can meet your calcium requirements through food. However, additional supplementation can help you to reach the optimum levels.
Women’s Vitality Supplements
The supplement market is not regulated in the same way prescription medicine is. As such, it is important that women do their research into both the safety and efficacy of the supplements they are considering. However, with the right research, supplements can be extremely beneficial in supporting overall women’s health, boosting vitality, and combatting menopausal symptoms.
Our Top Choice – Kurapeak
Kurapeak Vitality Booster is a natural-ingredient supplement that is designed to help women of all ages, not just during menopause, to improve energy levels and boost vitality. Although, it is particularly effective at reducing the effects of menopause, such as brain fog, anxiety, and fatigue.
Kurapeak includes Panax ginseng to elevate mood, fight fatigue and support fat loss. It also contains saffron, turmeric, and l-tyrosine to improve sexual function and libido, enhance cognitive function, improve circulation, and boost metabolism.
A one-month supply of Kurapeak vitality booster will cost you $49.00.
Gennev Women’s Vitality Pack is formulated by a Naturopathic Physician and aims to combat nutritional deficiencies that often arise in women during menopause. In addition, Gennev women’s vitality pack includes ingredients to support stress management, joint pain, and immune health.
Key ingredients to minimize menopausal symptoms include folic acid, vitamin D and B12, CoQ10, and a range of antioxidants.
For a four-week supply, Gennev women’s vitality pack will cost you $39.95.
Remifemin Menopause Relief has been on the market for over 50 years, longer than most menopause supplements. It is an estrogen-free supplement that uses active ingredients such as black cohosh to reduce menopausal symptoms such as hot flushes and night sweats.
The recommended dosage of Remifemin Menopause Relief is 2 capsules daily. As one of the lower-cost supplements available, 60 capsules of Remifemin will cost $22.46.
Evening Primrose Oil
For many women, one of the most frustrating and uncomfortable perimenopause symptoms is hot flushes. Evening primrose oil may reduce the severity of menopausal hot flashes. A 2013 study found that women who took 500 mg daily of EPO for six weeks experienced less frequent and less severe hot flushes.
Douglas Laboratories Ultra Menoease is designed to ease menopausal symptoms and balance hormones. Ingredients include vitamin D3, red clover extract, and genistein. Genistein shows potential for reducing hot flushes in menopausal women, and red clover contains isoflavones, which are similar to estrogen and may support hormone balance.
Douglas Laboratories Ultra Menoease is priced at $43.05 for 60 tablets.
There Is Hope For Combatting Menopause Without HRT
Menopause can be a stressful time for any woman as you adapt to the changes your body is going through. However, even if you choose not to go ahead with HRT, there are options available to you to support you through this transition, allowing you to still feel like yourself and maintain your health.
We found that the best all-around alternative, which doesn’t come with nasty side effects, and combats menopausal symptoms while boosting overall well-being, is Kurapeak.
We particularly like the supplement’s focus on supporting both physical and mental health. Menopause is not just about hot flushes and night sweats, and we like that Kurapeak acknowledges that in their formula. Many women find menopause particularly taxing on their mental health and report that brain fog, reduced energy, and depression are the symptoms that hinder them in their day-to-day lives the most. Particularly in their careers, where women compete with men who don’t suffer from the same menopausal symptoms.
The combination of a holistic approach to health, whereby traditional menopausal symptoms such as hot flushes, dry skin, and sleep disturbances are reduced, alongside further health benefits such as improved energy, brain function, libido, and metabolism, is what makes Kurapeak the standout supplement for us.
As an added plus, a number of Kurapeak’s ingredients, such as saffron and turmeric, have also been found to be effective at treating irregular periods and the symptoms of PMS, such as menstrual pain. As such, this supplement could also be beneficial for women of all ages and not just those dealing with menopause.
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