What You Should Know About Menopause

by: Dr. Mary Claire Haver

Each and every woman will experience menopause at some point in her life, usually between her late 40s and early 50s. Below are answers to six common questions women have as they enter this, thought to be daunting, stage of their life.

1. What even is “menopause”?

Menopause is defined as the absence of a menstrual period for one year. Once this happens, any vaginal bleeding is abnormal and should be evaluated by your physician.

2. What is happening to your body during menopause?

Menopause occurs as a result of a decreased production of estrogen and progesterone in your ovaries due to the depletion of ovarian follicles. We are born with our ovarian tissue – and it ages with us.

3. What is “perimenopause?”

Perimenopause is the stage of one’s life leading up to menopause, which can last anywhere from a few months to 10 years. For most of us, the ovaries don’t just shut down overnight. They can “sputter” for years before giving up completely. Most women begin to experience common menopausal symptoms, especially irregular periods. Periods may be completely skipped, bleeding during one’s period may vary, and/or time between periods may continually change. An important thing to note about perimenopause, however, is that you can still become pregnant during this time.

4. What specific symptoms are associated with menopause?

Symptoms include, but are not limited to…

  • Hot flashes – the most common symptom of menopause characterized by the feeling of increased temperature in the upper part of your body
  • Weight gain – body generally changes from “pear-shaped” “apple-shaped,” with most of the weight gained in the abdomen/midsection
  • Vaginal dryness/atrophy – inflammation and thinning of vaginal tissues, which usually makes intercourse uncomfortable
  • Irregular periods – eventually leading to the halt of periods altogether
  • Sleeping problems/night sweats – insomnia is the most common complaint
  • Mood changes – depression, mood swings, and anxiety tend to increase during this time
  • Skin changes – primarily decreased elasticity

5. What other indirect effects happen in your body?

Increased risk for osteoporosis, which is the weakening of bones.
Additionally, weight gain that is often associated with menopause may increase one’s risk for: cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and high blood pressure.

6. What can I do now to prepare for or alleviate the effects of perimenopause/menopause?

The best thing to do to be proactive about the changes your body will experience is to lead a healthy lifestyle as soon as possible. The Galveston Diet was specifically formulated to help alleviate these effects. It is important to remember that this new phase of your life MUST come with changes in your exercise and nutrition in order to remain as healthy as possible.

Related Posts:

The Galveston Diet can help women in menopause feel more confident in their skin.

This blog provides general information and discussion about medicine, health and related subjects. The words and other content provided in this blog, and in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. If the reader or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately-licensed physician or other health care worker.

Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this blog or in any linked materials. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or emergency room immediately.

The views expressed on this blog and website have no relation to those of any academic, hospital, practice or other institution with which the authors are affiliated.

While the information on the site was prepared to provide accurate information regarding topics related to general and specific health issues, the information contained in the site is made available with the express understanding that neither Dr. Mary Claire Haver, galvestondiet.com, nor the other experts on the site, nor the site itself, nor members of the Site are dispensing medical advice and do not intend any of this information to be used for self-diagnosis or treatment.


Don't miss a thing from
The 'Pause Blog

Get the latest news from Dr. haver delivered to your inbox.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
By signing up, I agree to the Terms & to receive emails from The Galveston Diet.

This website uses cookies to ensure you receive the best experience.