Archive for the ‘Vitamin’ Tag

Menopause and Stress, Adrenal Health   Leave a comment

As a society, we are acutely exposed to daily stresses, be they emotional, physical, or mental. Work situations, family changes and obligations, changes in our bodies and in our health–all of these can contribute to the stress demands on our bodies. Our bodies respond to these stresses in a similar fashion despite the source. Physiologically, each time we are exposed to stresses, our adrenal glands respond by producing certain hormones. One part of the adrenal gland, the adrenal cortex, responds to long and short-term stresses, while the adrenal medulla responds to sudden or alarm situations, producing our “fight or flight” response. With the amount of stress we are exposed to each day, you’d think our adrenal glands were of considerable size, but that isn’t the case. Our adrenals weigh about 5 grams each and reside in our bodies just above our kidneys in the low back area. For small glands, they play an enormous role in our health. Their function also tends to decline over a person’s lifetime, leading some researchers to coin a new term “adrenapause” to define this loss. As such, we need to have ways in which we can keep our adrenal glands healthy.

From a preventive standpoint, we can reduce our exposure to certain stresses, as well as change the degree to which we allow stresses to affect us. This involves making choices about what we subject ourselves to, as well as how we respond to situations we can’t avoid or change. The amounts of hormones, specifically glucocorticoids and catecholamines, that are released by the adrenal glands are directly related to the amount of stress the body endures, and these hormones can affect nearly all the tissues in our bodies. Individuals exposed to long-term stress have higher circulating glucocorticoids than a person who is unstressed does. Certain lifestyle changes, such as exercise, meditation, breathing exercises, and yoga, have all been demonstrated to ease our response to stress. Those who incorporate one or more of these into their days are noticeably more resilient to daily stresses.

We can also address adrenal health through nutritional support and herbs. Vitamin C and the B-complex vitamins are crucial to adrenal health. Being water-soluble vitamins, they are easily depleted and may need regular supplementation, especially in times of stress. Vitamin C is stored in high concentrations in the adrenal glands, which is evidence of its need for this important vitamin. It has been shown that a person’s need for vitamin C varies, depending on what their body is going through at the time. Infection, for an example, can increase the body’s need for vitamin C considerably. Herbs which address adrenal health are referred to as adaptogens, because they help the body adapt to changes, or stresses. Some of the most notable herbs utilized for adrenal support are licorice, ginseng, and astragalus. Astragalus has long been used in Chinese medicine as a tonic. Research has demonstrated its value in enhancing immunity through multiple mechanisms. Ginsengs are commonly prescribed to increase energy and support adrenal function. Research has demonstrated improved functioning under stress as well as increased working capacity following ginseng use. For women, Siberian ginseng appears to be the most appropriate of the ginsengs, as from a Chinese medicine perspective, it is more cooling (less likely to induce hot flashes) and can be used on a regular basis. Borage leaf also provides specific support to the adrenal cortex and can be used daily to support adrenal health.

Diet is another factor that plays a strong role, as it can supply the body with nutrients as well as deplete the adrenals, depending on what choices are made. For example, sugar and caffeine tend to draw energy from the adrenal glands, so stay away from them during times of stress or if you are working at improving adrenal health. In contrast, nutrients that are found in fresh fruits and vegetables supply healthy support for the body. Nutrient-rich foods, like kelp and other seaweed, are good sources of key vitamins and minerals important to glandular health.

A balanced program for supporting adrenal health includes scheduling time to exercise and taking some time for you to be mindful of your stress level and facilitate adjustments when necessary. Remember that treating health holistically means addressing mental, physical, and spiritual aspects of one’s life, for they all affect one another and can contribute to health as well as disease.

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Be the Best You   2 comments

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bestyou“Being the best you” is in your hands! Remember how many years you nurtured everyone else? Cared for their needs? Well, now it’s time for you, but many of us don’t know where to begin to care for ourselves.

Being the best you is learning to nurture yourself. It isn’t being someone you’re not. It isn’t placing unrealistic expectations on yourself, nor allowing others to put them on you. It isn’t expecting yourself to transition through menopause’s physical, psychological and spiritual changes and expecting to be the same size 10 you once were. It’s accepting the changes, the aches and pains, learning to take a nap, finding time to regroup and sharing with other women who are going through the same thing.

There’s plenty of time to lose the excess pounds which frequently accompany menopause. Hormones will level off and everything will fall into place. Being the best you doesn’t mean you have to be the superwoman you’ve been for years. It means finding what works to make you feel better. It means taking care of YOU! Making time for YOU!

Where do you begin? By educating yourself, and arming yourself with the most updated information about treating menopause. By networking with other women who understand what you’re going through. By learning about nutrition, vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants and the most natural ways to address your individual issues during menopause and beyond. Power Surge has spent years finding the best supplements, recommending only the finest products that meet the highest standards of quality. The vitamins, minerals and herbs recommended are by a reputable manufacturer whose products meet those standards

Hands down, the BEST multi vitamin for pre or postmenopausal women — containing the proper doses of vita-nutrients required by women during their transitional years — practically everything you need in one vitamin.

There are many options for treating your menopause issues — essential vitamins, minerals, soy protein and isoflavones, herbs, exercise, naturally compounded hormones, natural progesterone creams. Just trying to maintain our sanity during the confusing time of menopause is a tall order. It often feels like your body is betraying you. Learn to give yourself time and space to regroup, find a quiet space for to sort through this confusing time. Heal your weary soul with beautiful music. Find ways of coping. Learn to pamper and be good to yourself. Take care of yourself. Try a new haircut. Maybe even a new hair color. Accept that you’re changing. Treat yourself to something new, something fun, something empowering and learn some Power Surge Menopause Survival Tips.

Expect others to accept you and not to put pressure on you to be someone you’re not. Don’t waste precious time beating yourself up over getting older. So, you may not be the young whipper-snapper you once were. Who is? Life isn’t about what you used to be. Life is about who and what you are today. Applaud yourself for what you’ve accomplished and for who you are now. Life isn’t going to stand still through all these transitions, so do everything possible to be the best YOU you can be!

Power Surge is in its 20th year as an established and well-respected menopause community. After JAMA’s (The Journal of the American Medical Association) article about accuracy in health on the Web, HEALTH Magazine followed up with an article in their April, 2000 issue. They selected the top women’s health experts to sort through thousands of sites on the Internet to find those that met the criteria, accurate, informative, safe and reliable. Power Surge was selected one of “The 25 Best Health Sites for Women” and FORBES Magazine featured Power Surge in its “Best of the Web” issue’s cover article, Use With Care. HEALTH and FORBES Magazines are only two of many who have praised Power Surge as an exemplary resource for women in menopause.

Menopause is not for sissies. Being the best you means learning that there are positive steps you can take to be the best you during a time of life when it seems everything in your body is challenging that goal.

But … you’re smarter and stronger!