Some women have observed that when they are worried or anxious, their hot flashes are more intense and frequent. This observation was also confirmed in an article in the June 2005 issue of Menopause: The Journal of the North American Menopause Society.
Many lifestyle elements, such as exercise, stress, diet and anxiety are very important in how a woman experiences hot flashes in menopause. In the article, moderately anxious women experienced three times as many hot flashes as women who considered themselves as on a low scale of anxiety. Women who were considered highly anxious had five times as many hot flashes!
Why do you get hot flashes?
During menopause the body gradually begins to slow down the production of hormones. As this happens there can occur an imbalance, which in turn causes the symptoms of menopause, such as night sweats, hot flashes, insomnia, fatigue, etc.
Factors such as stress and anxiety can further disrupt this hormonal balance and the body thinks there is an emergency and needs to cool down. So, it sends out the message to sweat and dispel heat- you have a hot flash.
Does anxiety have an effect on hot flashes?
Women who are stressed out due to life’s circumstances are much more likely to have hot flashes. Many women notice this in their own experience. This happens because the stress demands that the body produce hormones from the adrenal glands, such as adrenaline. If this persists, then a hormonal imbalance occurs, and the result is a hot flash, or some other symptom of menopause.
What can you do?
- There are actually several very simple steps you can take to help alleviate the hot flashes.
- Eat whole, fresh foods; especially fruits and vegetables. The nutrients found in these foods will give your body the necessary ingredients to produce the hormones you need.
- Make time for regular exercise. This also helps relieve stress and anxiety. Just imagine for a moment the difference between sitting and stewing over a problem and taking a long, brisk walk or bicycle ride! You will certainly feel better and be able to think more clearly when you exercise.
- Supplement your diet with high grade natural vitamins and minerals.
- Drink lots of clear, fresh water. Not coffee, tea or juice; but clear water. It cleans you out and enables your body to function as it should.
- Learn deep-breathing techniques. This is very helpful when you are feeling stressed. It is amazing how effective this little method of slow, paced breathing is.
- Try using the time-honored natural remedy called maca. It has been used for centuries by South American women to treat a variety of ailments, including hot flashes and menopause.