New research claims eating oily fish and legumes may delay menopause


The results of the study from the University of Leeds, involved over 900 women aged 40 to 65 years, who had experienced a natural start to their menopause.

The study published in 2018, looked at the age women enter natural menopause. Both early and late menopause have implications on a woman’s health conditions later in life.

The aim of the study

The study, published in the BMJ Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health, found that the average age of menopause was 51. Scientists explored the associations between food groups and nutrient intake in women, and the age they went through natural menopause. Their premise was that ‘intake of healthier food groups such as fruits and vegetables would be associated with an earlier menopause while a high consumption of meat and processed meat would delay the onset of menopause.’

They noted that certain foods played a role in the time women went through menopause, taking into consideration significant factors such as weight, physical activity, women’s reproductive history and their use of hormone replacement therapy.

Results of the research

During the 4-year follow-up period, of the women who’d experienced a natural menopause, it was found that for each additional daily portion of carbohydrates eaten, in particular, refined pasta and rice, women were more likely to reach the menopause 1.5 years earlier than the average age of 51. Whereas for each additional daily portion of fish and fresh legumes – beans and peas – women could delay their menopause by more than three years. Women with a higher intake of vitamin B6 and zinc were also more likely to go through the menopause transition later.

The conclusion of the study

Results suggest ‘that some food groups (oily fish, fresh legumes, refined pasta and rice) and specific nutrients are individually predictive of age at natural menopause.’

The researchers noted that this research was relevant to public health and that doctors should take into consideration a woman’s diet when dealing with any menopause-related issues.

So, no excuse not to checkout our food section on other benefits oily fish have for relieving your menopause symptoms.