In our expert Q&A with Suzie Welsh – founder of Binto and a women’s health and fertility nurse – we finally get the answers to our most pressing supplements questions.
1. What are the most important supplements during perimenopause?
The most important supplements I recommend taking for perimenopause and menopause support are the ones that target :
The brain, the gut and your bones. To get to the core of what is going on with the severe hormone fluctuation and drop.
The first one I’m gonna recommend is an Omega 3-6-9. Any woman should be taking this – no matter what reproductive life stage she is in.
Most of us don’t get enough Omega 3s 6s and 9s through diet alone, unless you are eating a ton of fish, healthy oils, fats, nut seeds on a daily basis. And if we are not following a strict Mediterranean diet, it can be hard to get the daily recommended dose.
This is gonna help with vision, brain fog and it also will keep your uterus healthy.
I am also suggesting that you take a Vitamin D3 with K2. You want supplement with about 2000 of IUs (at least) of Vitamin D3 daily – especially once we approach menopause and we worry osteoporosis.
Humans are in general very deficient of Vitamin D, we are not getting enough sun and unless we are eating fish skin, we are not getting through diet.
So Calcium in combination with Vitamin D3 and K2 are critical in helping prevent osteoporosis or osteopenia and in general to strengthen our bones. Make sure to get blood work done annually, because your levels can fluctuate and if you are supplementing we would worry about your liver function. So it is really important to work together with a health practitioner to help you get the right dosage.
The next one is a synbiotic. I am such a huge believer in gut health – everything starts in the microbiome. This is where over 90% of the serotonin is made and as many of us enter perimenopause, we deal with a lot of mental side effects – anxiety, depression.
So if we can take of our gut, we can also support a healthy mind. And hopefully alleviate some of the mental health side effects or mood changes we are experiencing.
2. Which supplement can help with sleep?
The question we got is : I wake up every 2 hours or so, is there a specific supplement that can help me with staying asleep. Sleep can be super frustrating and tricky.
What we recommend is magnesium. Magnesium is a mineral and it is super helpful in terms of calming down the nervous system.
It is also a great muscle relaxant, so once you fall asleep it is really great at keeping you and your body still. So that you can get a restful night sleep. Magnesium would be my top supplement.
Melatonin is great occasionally. However it is not something that I recommend taking every single night.
As supplementing with melantonin can throw off our bodies’ natural melatonin and sleep cycle.
3. How can supplements help my libido?
Libido is a really tricky question. It impacts many of us at very different stages throughout our reproductive life cycle. It is a very funky thing to deal with. One of the best things you can do is to work on your gut health, this is very over 90% of the serotonin in our body lives. So if we take care of our gut, we take care of our minds. And if we are feeling good then hopefully that can help us jumpstart our sex drive.
In terms of other over-the-counter supplements, I am pretty weary of brands promoting increase in sex drive. I have just not seen enough clinical trial data to recommend anything.
But I would suggest to work with a physician to see if you are a suitable candidate for Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) – which might help you with libido more than an over-the-counter supplement will.
4. Which supplement can help my joint pain?
So many of us suffer from joint pain without even realizing. One of the best supplements you can take for joint pain is the Omega 3-6-9 DHA, it can also act as an anti-inflammatory agent.
Outside of the DHA, I recommend a supplement called MSM. I used to take myself in highschool and college because I suffered from a lot of joint pain and stress fractures. It worked very well for me. That is something you should check out and give a try.
Disclaimer: This is not medical advice, does not take the place of medical advice from your physician, and is not intended to treat or cure any disease. Patients should see a qualified medical provider for assessment and treatment.
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