Liz Earle myth-busting the menopause with Hot Flush

Liz - profile close up - CREDIT Georgia Glynn Smith.jpg

For too many women perimenopause and menopause arrive shrouded in mystery. At Hot Flush, we want to encourage women to take control of their symptoms through diet, lifestyle and exercise, as well as by giving themselves a little bit of TLC.

Menopause is a time to press the reset button, break bad habits and tweak your lifestyle. Sometimes we all need a friendly nudge to make changes, so when we heard that Liz Earle, founder of Liz Earle Wellbeing and the bestselling author of over 35 books covering beauty, natural health and wellbeing, had added to her range of books with The Good Menopause Guide, we just had to ask her to share her thoughts with us. 

It’s great to see wellbeing expert, Liz, myth-busting the menopause, offering tips on managing symptoms and providing advice on helping women from the inside out. There’s so much happening for women going through this transition phase, so the better informed we are, hopefully the better the experience will be and we’ll hit the next stage raring to go. After all, there’s a lot more living, loving and enjoying life to be done!

Hot Flush: You’ve said that perimenopause can have the greatest impact on women, could you elaborate on this?

Liz: The perimenopause can have a huge impact on women as it takes most of us by surprise and it isn’t always immediately obvious that the symptoms we are experiencing (such as tiredness, low mood, stress, insomnia and anxiety) are connected to the menopause and the changes our body is in the process of going through.

Hot Flush: As a natural health and wellbeing authority, what practical steps do you think women can take to manage their own menopause?

Liz: There’s increasing evidence from across the world that small straight forward additions to our everyday routines, such as adding in some quick and easy exercises, can really help with the many varied symptoms of the perimenopause and menopause.  In the Good Menopause Guide I’ve included suggestions for a number of different forms of exercise for this stage of our lives including a focus on walking, easy weight lifting, yoga and stretching.

Hot Flush: Self-esteem can take a massive hit as the body changes hitting perimenopause and beyond: weight creeps up, hair, nails and skin react to shifting hormones. What simple changes can women make to their skin and hair care routines to help deal with these changes?

Liz: I don’t think I’ve met a woman who is going through the perimenopause and menopause who hasn’t felt a dip in confidence (and that’s putting it mildly in some cases!) but there are some easy changes we can all make to address this. These include feeding our skin from the inside out with a nourishing diet, using a richer hair conditioner and weekly hair mask to leave our hair soft and silky smooth and daily moisturising using a plant based moisturiser. Upping the amount of ‘good’ fats (olive oil, nuts and seeds) in our diet can also significantly help skin and hair.

Hot Flush: There’s lots of fabulous recipes in your new book. How do you think the food we eat affects menopause symptoms?

Liz: Food has such tremendous power to help and heal our changing bodies and what we choose to eat is one of the most important wellbeing factors we can control in life. My top tips and special ingredients for the perimenopause and menopause, as outlined in The Good Menopause Guide, and the menopause section of the Liz Earle Wellbeing website include phyto-oestrogens, which provide oestrogen-like compounds that occur naturally in the plant kingdom. Phyto-oestrogens can help ease many menopausal symptoms, but they’re also tasty and nutritious in their own right. Look for recipes rich in these ingredients, such as one of my favourites, cauliflower steaks with hummus and feta.

Hot Flush: You’ve had a broad range of experiences. What’s next for you?

Liz: On a personal note, having recently travelled through Sardinia and Greece for a mini-series for This Morning on Blue Zones and the secrets to living long and well, I’ll be putting some of what I learnt into practice this year. This includes weaving ‘pockets of still’ into my day, spending more time with my family and making vegetables and legumes the centre of my diet by enjoying even more seasonal and locally grown fruit and veg – especially anything green!

On a professional note, the next step for Liz Earle Wellbeing, my quarterly digital and print magazine is now going global!

Liz Earle, The Good Menopause Guide (Orion Spring), is available in Hardback & eBook, £25.00, and goes on sale from 8th March 2018.