Menopause: Resetting your temperature to help alleviate Menopausal Symptoms
1) Hot, Hot, Hot!
Acupuncture may alleviate certain menopausal symptoms in women by reducing the heat that can arise as the body’s hormone levels (especially oestrogen) fall during the menopause. Lifestyle factors (stress, diet e.g. alcohol and caffeine (see point 5!), overworking and repressed emotions) can also add to the levels of heat which accumulates in the body.
2) Chill out!
Certain acupuncture points promote the nourishing, moisturising, therefore cooling (Yin) energy within the body, which in turn rebalances and calms the rising, heating (Yang) energy. Yang energy tends to rise through the body’s acupuncture channels (or meridians) to the upper body, which can result in the menopausal symptoms of hot flushes, excess sweating and headaches.
3) Disharmony manifests in different ways
An imbalance of Yin and Yang energies in the channels of the lower body, may result in vaginal dryness, also often experienced during the menopause. Heat can also play a part in sleep disturbances and anxiety – disturbing the calmness of the heart, which may lead to palpitations and emotional restlessness.
4) Getting the balance right
Acupuncturists tailor their treatments to an individual’s symptoms and needs, allowing them to target the specific heat imbalance within different acupuncture channel systems; using the most Yin nourishing points on the channel with the disharmony, to address the symptoms which have manifested as a result of the energy imbalances.
In addition to an imbalance in heat, menopausal symptoms such as lethargy or tiredness, aimlessness, digestive issues (e.g. loose stools), thinning hair and poor memory may be attributed to the decreasing levels of our overall vital (Qi) energy, which declines naturally as we age, and also from mental and/or physical overwork. By directing the body’s Qi energy - using acupuncture needles - to the channels with deficient Qi levels, acupuncture may tonify or boost the Qi within these areas, which otherwise may lead to the more Qi deficient-based symptoms aforementioned. Disharmonies in both Qi and Yin energies are often observed during this time, giving rise to the often multiple symptoms, that can be experienced during menopause.
5) Self help
Certain foods can be energetically heating. Ever noticed those night sweats increased after steak and red wine for dinner? Red meats, alcohol, in addition to caffeine and chocolate are particularly heating on the body, so reducing these so not all elements are consumed within one meal can be beneficial. Adding energetically cooling yogurt in the form of a cucumber and mint raita (both also energetically cooling) with your curry, or a yogurt-based dip with your fajitas, balances the heating aspect of these warmer dishes.
A version of Kerry’s article was published by Prima online within their article https://www.prima.co.uk/diet-and-health/healthy-living/a26401815/acupuncture-for-menopause/