Plant-Based Diet May Ease Menopause Symptoms - NOURISH Cooking Co.

Plant-Based Diet May Ease Menopause Symptoms

80% of postmenopausal women suffer from hot flashes. Heat moves up from the chest, creating chills, sweating & flushing. At night, the latter causes insomnia. But there's some very promising news!

A recent study which examined the link between menopause relief & diet, showed that a plant-based diet rich in soy, decreases moderate-to-severe hot flashes by a whopping 84%, down from close to five hot flushes per day to under one [1]

Optimistic News

Changing to a plant-based diet could potentially bring hope to millions of women dragging their way through the extremely unwelcome effects of menopause. The results of the three-month study, known as the WAVS trial (Women's Study for the Alleviation of Vasomotor Symptoms), were featured in the well-known medical journal, Menopause.

They showed that almost 60% of women became totally free of moderate-to-severe hot flushes. Moreover, generally speaking, hot flashes (of all intensities), decreased by a massive 79%.

In addition, participants reported ameliorated energy levels, sleep, sexual symptoms & mood [1]. All aspects that are essential for optimum living and wellness!

Discussing the results, Neal Barnard, MD, President of the Physicians Committee at George Washington University School of Medicine, stated: "This is a game changer for women aged 45-and more" [1]

What's the Plant-Based Secret?

"We believe that the combination [of plant-based foods] is what is important. By the end of the study, the majority of women on a plant-based diet rich in soy, reported that they no longer experienced moderate-to-extreme hot flashes at all and that they experienced significant improvements in their quality of life"

Hana Kahleova, Director of Clinical Research for the Physicians Committee [1]

This particular research project came about because previous studies indicated that soy may be beneficial for helping to cut the number of hot flashes that women experience.

Soy isoflavones can Benefits Menopause

The scientists had a theory that this could be due to the fact that soy contains isoflavones (these are a type of polyphenol which is also found in legumes such as soybeans, chickpeas, fava beans, and peanuts.

Vegan Wraps Plant Based Diet

The bacteria in the human gut can metabolize these isoflavones into something called, equol. This is a non-steroidal substance which has been scientifically shown to reduce the severity and incidence of hot flushes.

The 3 Step Program to Beat Menopausal Symptoms

"Previous studies have shown that those following vegan diets produce higher levels of equol. This new study showed a more robust response, using the combination of a plant-based diet plus soy" [1]

If like millions of other women, you are eager to take positive action against the traumatic symptoms of menopause, then simply follow these easy 3 steps:

Number 1: Go vegan (or adjust your current vegan regime to include whole soybeans). Ensure that you fill your shopping cart with wholegrains, fresh fruits and veggies, whole soybeans (which are also a first-class source of protein), and legumes (lentils, peas, beans, and peanuts).

Avoid all animal products, namely: eggs, all things dairy, fish, poultry and meat.

Also, if you order home-delivery meals, or eat out, be ready to discover the exciting new vegan outlets that are regularly popping up due to rocketing consumer demand. The drive for optimum mental and physical health, anti-aging, a greener planet, and zero cruelty to animals, is becoming the way forward for countless millions, and now, it appears to be a potential answer for beating the grim symptoms of menopause [2].

Number 2: Limit high fat foods. If you buy any packaged food, check out the labels to make sure that it has under 0.10 ounces (3 grams) of fat per serving [2].

Number 3: Incorporate 1/2 a cup of cooked whole soybeans into your daily diet. (This can be spread out between meals). Just reading this will make many wonder how on earth they can do it, but it's super simple.

Boiled Soybeans used in Plant Based Diet

The whole soybeans, which are extremely versatile, can be purchased ready-cooked, online, or at your local supermarket. Note: only whole soybeans should be used to reduce hot flushes [2].

The Low-Down on Fresh Soybeans

Fresh Soybeans

When soybeans are picked as soon as the pod is filled out (when the pod is green and plump), they can be used like a green vegetable, such as lima beans. These fresh soybeans, which are bumper packed with B vitamins and vitamin A, are super popular due to their rich nutty flavor.

They make a wonderful addition to all kinds of meals. Further, the soybeans can either be cooked in the pod, or shelled [3].

Food For Thought: Masala Soybeans

Ingredients List

  • 5.3 ounces (150 grams) of whole soybeans
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 1 chopped tomato
  • 2 tablespoons of chopped ginger
  • 2 tablespoons of chopped garlic
  • Chopped green chillies (as desired)
  • A dash of turmeric powder
  • Red chilli powder (as desired)
  • 1 tablespoon of chaat masala spice mix
  • Refined oil
  • A dash of salt
Instructions
  • Rinse thoroughly, and then place the soybeans in a large pan of water, and soak overnight
  • Place the soaked soybeans in a pressure cooker, and cook until soft
  • Heat some oil in a pan, and then add the chopped garlic and ginger. Once these two additions become golden brown, add in the chopped onions, and sauté
  • Now put in the chopped tomato, and cook until the pieces of tomato become soft
  • Next up, place the green chillies into the pan; and add the salt, red chilli and turmeric powders, followed by the boiled beans. Then stir the mixture for a couple of minutes
  • Now pour in two cups of water, and let the mixture simmer for 10 minutes
  • Keeping the pan on a low heat, stir periodically, until the water has almost evaporated
  • Sprinkle some mixed spice chaat masala over the soybeans, and it's ready to roll!

Keeping a Daily Symptom Diary

"To see how the diet is working for you, you can track your hot flashes using an app or pen and paper. You may notice improvements in weight & hot-flash severity or frequency, as early as day one!" [2]

This exercise of keeping a 24-hour daily dairy is extremely important, as you will be able to monitor any progress. Further, if required, you will be able to show it to your physician, who will find it extremely helpful.

Be sure to write down what you eat and drink every day (stating your approximate mealtime, for example, 12 noon); and the symptoms that you experience. For example, a hot flush at 11am, and 2am.

If you would like to start your 'Daily Symptom Diary 'before you go on the 'Plant-Based Diet with Daily Soy', for instance, one or two weeks beforehand, then that will allow you to see any positive changes in a recorded format.

There's nothing like seeing improvements to help spur us on! You can also do further reading about the massive benefits of switching to a plant-based diet!

Sources

[1]. News Medical Life Sciences (2021). "Plant-based diet rich in soy reduces troubling menopause symptoms by 84%."
https://www.news-medical.net/news/20210715/Plant-based-diet-rich-in-soy-reduces-troubling-menopause-symptoms-by-8425.aspx

[2]. Physicians Committee (2021). "Fighting Hot Flushes with Diet."
https://www.pcrm.org/clinical-research/fighting-hot-flashes-with-diet

[3]. Willis, H. (2020). "How Soybeans Are Used as Food." Eco Farming Daily.
https://www.ecofarmingdaily.com/grow-crops/grow-soybeans/soybean-crop-science/how-soybeans-are-used-as-food/

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