Some of the symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome and menopause overlap. Joint pain, headaches, lack of energy, depression and anxiety are present in both conditions. Menopause patients experience hot flushes, decreased libido and aging skin.
The three stages of a women’s lifecycle are pre, peri and post menopause and all three of these stages can be treated with the same diet as the patient that suffers from chronic fatigue. Menopausal woman are encouraged to increase their intake of phyto oestrogens as these will increase the hormonal level in the body. This increase in hormones is helpful to the patient with chronic fatigue also. When the body is depleted of necessary hormones the blood sugar level fluctuates. This fluctuation causes inflammation in the joints of the individuals. The goal is to have a healthy balance of hormones so the adrenal glands do not become stressed. When this gland experiences stress the body will try and recover by over producing adrenaline. This powerful hormone will cause the muscles to flex and over extended periods of time without reduction the muscles become overtaxed and inflamed.
Foods to avoid during menopause and those that suffer from chronic fatigue disease are: white flour, sugar, and refined carbohydrates. These cause the blood sugar level to fluctuate which puts added stress on the adrenal glands. Reduce the consumption of caffeine. Caffeine increases the risk of osteoporosis which is already a risk factor for individuals experiencing menopause. Reduce the intake of dairy products as they cause an acidic reaction in the body which leads to inflammation and osteoporosis. Avoid saturated fats and non organic meats. These cause an increase in fat cell production which leads to a rise in the oestrogen level in the body. Avoid hydrogenated and Trans fats as their presence damages the cell wall and can lead to increased inflammation.
Foods to increase are those that contain phyto oestrogens: tempeh, miso, soy beans, chick peas, lentils, red clover, and linseeds. These are suitable supplements for chronic fatigue. These will cause a natural balance of hormones in the body. Increase the intake of foods high in essential fatty acids such as tuna, herring, anchovies, trout, nuts and seeds. These foods lubricate the joints, vagina, and skin and help lower inflammation.
Maintain a high level of fiber intake. This will reduce constipation and help remove added oestrogens. Chronic fatigue disease suffers and menopausal women need to have regular bowel movements to keep the gut free from toxins and unwanted hormones. By drinking enough water to cause urine to be lightly yellow colored is a benchmark to assure daily bowel movements. Consuming 5 -12 servings for fresh fruits and vegetables will help provide the needed fiber to keep healthy bowel movements that is needed to keep menopausal women and chronic fatigue suffers from experiencing unpleasant symptoms.
Lifestyle adjustments will help reduce symptoms of menopause and chronic muscle fatigue. Yoga, meditation, and deep breathing will alleviate stress and reduce the impact on the adrenal glands. Avoid extremes of body weight. Too much fat or not enough fat negatively affects the menopausal woman. Too little fat causes strain on the adrenal glands and too much fat releases an excess of oestrogens in the body. The proper amount of exercise and weight bearing activities aid in protecting the body from muscle and bone weakness. Xenoestrogens are compounds in the environment that cause the oestrogen levels in the body to increase. These toxins permeate into food from plastic containers, plastic wraps, lotions, creams, non organic foods, microwaveable containers, and cleaning products.