The menopause is an ideal time to take stock of eating habits and begin some gradual changes to help ensure the best health possible while entering this new phase of life. Taking steps to achieve a healthy diet, a good level of fitness and an ideal body weight can help to ease immediate symptoms such as hot flushes, and improve longer term health, such as reducing risk of developing osteoporosis (brittle bones) and heart disease.
During the menopause the rate at which calcium is lost from bones speeds up dramatically as the protective effects of oestrogen are lost. This increases the risk of developing osteoporosis so boosting intake of both calcium and vitamin D is important.
Aim to include a low-fat dairy food (or calcium fortified plant alternative) in your diet three times a day (e.g. reduced fat milk on cereal, a skinny latte, low fat yoghurt or reduced fat cheese). In the UK all adults are advised to consider taking a 10mcg supplement of vitamin D daily, especially during the winter months.