The fact that many ended up writing full-length articles demonstrates just how passionate they are about these subjects! We’ll publish these in dedicated Blog posts over the coming months, but for now here are our “take-home messages” about menopausal health:
“Why is it so important and what can cardio and strength training do for you? Studies have shown:
Exercise is not optional. It is even more critically important at mid-life. We know that peri- and post menopause are associated with weight gain, body fat and composition changes and skeletal muscle loss. Aerobic and muscle strengthening exercise programmes help your overall health, longevity, and brain as well as your appearance. It is NEVER too late to start!” [The full version of Dr Anna’s post will be published in our Blog over the coming month]
“I am passionate about a healthy diet and regular exercise as the foundation of health. Menopause is a time of change for women, a time when they can improve health and slow the ageing process. A healthy diet and exercise are the cornerstones of good health in anybody, but most especially menopausal women.
Yippee, all the things I carry on about were in the Epigenetic Age lecture. Epigenetic age is your physiological or “health age,” NOT your age in years. Your epigenetic age is DECREASED by a diet rich in fruit, vegetables and fish, moderate alcohol and doing plenty of exercise. So a healthy diet and exercise keeps you young – something I have always thought😊
Your epigenetic age is INCREASED by insulin resistance (ie. pre-diabetes), being overweight, having high blood pressure and increased fats in your blood.”
“We generally know what we need to do to improve our health, but one of the biggest barriers is finding the TIME to focus on your wellbeing. One talk was about Steven Corey’s time management matrix (it’s worth a google).
It was suggested that we write down what we do with our hours in each day. Be honest… I have now limited my time on social media (big time). I realised I was focussing on non-urgent, non-important tasks in my ‘free time’ and avoiding the looming big (and sometimes boring) important tasks, putting them off until they became URGENT and then feeling under pressure to complete them.”
[Dr Katie’s thoughts on this subject will be more fully explored shortly in a longer Blog post]
We suspect that oestrogen has a protective role for the brain- just like it does for the heart and bones – because women who experience premature menopause are at higher risk of developing dementia when they aren’t treated with hormone therapy. However currently hormone therapy is not recommended specifically for primary prevention of dementia.
While the evidence evolves we need to work on all the other modifiable risk factors- eat well, exercise daily, don’t smoke and limit your alcohol intake, keep socially engaged and ensure that you get good quality sleep. The disease process for dementia starts 20-30 years before it is evident so the key message is – make the changes now! Take time to prioritise your health and enjoy the benefits for now and in the future. [More of Dr Marita’s insights about dementia and cognition also in a near-future Blog post]
“At the AMS Congress last week there was an update on data from the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) Study. This was a massive study done in the US a number of years ago, and when the initial results came out in 2002 it lead to confusion and fear around HRT in women, especially in regards to higher breast cancer risk. Subsequent studies from the WHI data have clearly showed that in younger women and those close to menopause there are more benefits than risks for HRT.
There is a “window of opportunity” for starting HRT, which reduces the risk of developing cardiovascular disease and has minimal risk for breast cancer. This opportunity window is for women under 60 years old or women that are still within 10 years of going through menopause. HRT for the vast majority of these women is extremely safe and effective for menopausal symptoms, whilst reducing risk of heart disease, colon cancer, diabetes and osteoporosis : )
Infographic “Understanding the risks of Breast cancer” from the Bristish Menopause Society
AMS pre-appointment guide for discussing menopause with health professionals
Book: “Managing Hot Flushes and Night Sweats: A cognitive behavioural self-help guide to the menopause” by Myra Hunter.
Guide: “Considering Surgery to Reduce Your Risk of Ovarian Cancer?” Royal Melbourne Women’s Hospital.
Online strength training course for healthy ageing from Project Three Six Twelve
If you can’t find the professional help you need for your menopause or perimenopausal symptoms then book a Telehealth consultation with an expert WellFemme menopause doctor.
WellFemme is Australia’s first dedicated Telehealth menopause clinic, servicing locations nationwide including: Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Darwin, Perth, Hobart, Brisbane, Dubbo, Bendigo, Broken Hill, Broome, Alice Springs, Launceston, Cairns, Mildura, Lightning Ridge, Kalgoorlie, Albany, Toowoomba, Charleville, Port Headland, Katherine, Ballarat, Coober Pedy, Bourke, Albury… and your place! 🙂