All people go through a form of Menopause!
We have all heard of women and the struggles of menopause, but there is research out that confirms men go through "male menopause".
What might menopause look like for women vs men?
We see women every day at EastWest Acupuncture at their wits end with the awful struggles that accompany menopause.
- Hot flashes/night sweats
- Irritability/Feeling overwhelmed
- Weight gain/Inability to lose weight
- Vaginal/Skin Dryness
We hear about these signs and symptoms frequently for women. What does menopause look like for men?
Men do not go through as much of a defined period of menopause like women do in their 40’s and 50’s. Male Menopause (andropause) is a decline in testosterone. The issues men begin to see as testosterone decreases, usually beginning in their later 40’s, are:
- Night sweats
- Weakness in large muscle groups
- Weight gain
- Sexual dysfunction
Women and men have been taught to think these horrible issues are a “normal” part of menopause. However, just like the warning lights on your vehicles dash, this issue is your body saying that YOU need help. If you are suffering with any of these or other symptoms, please know that you do not have to go through the next 3+ years praying for this nightmare to end.
What can acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine do to help?
According to the classic text of Traditional Chinese Medicine, the Huang Di Nei Jing, physical and mental effects of aging occur as the Mingmen Fire is declining and our Life Qi is not as strong as it was in our 20’s. This is actually not far off from what Western medicine believes to be the reason for menopausal symptoms. Instead of "Mingmen fire", Western medicine talks about changes in estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone production.
Now, is there away to keep our Mingmen fire blazing as we get older? YES there is!
There are 14 meridians that govern over different functions of our body. Each Meridian governs over local functions, organ functions, neurological functions, emotional functions, and hormonal functions. Think of the meridians as a highway system and Qi as the flow of traffic. If traffic is going too slow, too fast, or in the wrong direction, there is going to be issues in the connected highways! When there is illness, injury, or disease it is because the flow of traffic (Qi) is not moving appropriately and there are traffic jams going on in the body creating these symptoms.
Acupuncture works to balance out the flow of traffic (Qi or life source) to remove the traffic jams and allow for homeostasis. As our bodies return to homeostasis, we begin to see changes in symptoms, the body systems begin to recover, and balance is restored within our body functions. Every person and their health conditions are different, so acupuncture and herbal medicine are customized for each individual person. Even if the symptoms between two people are generally similar, the treatment and herbal formulas may be very different.
Along with acupuncture, we will customize a food therapy plan and some other home and lifestyle changes that will help to support balance of the meridians and the flow of Qi.
Here are a couple food therapy tips for you:
Decrease spices that create heat in the meridians, like Ginger, Basil, Pepper, Cinnamon, Vinegar, and Sugar
Increase – Foods and minerals like fish, shrimp, leafy green veggies (NOT kale or arugula) avocados, and pumpkin seeds as well as vitamins and minerals such as Magnesium, Zinc, and Vitamin D.
For a little extra help, feel free to give our clinic a call or hop online to schedule with one of our providers!
At EastWest Acupuncture, We Got You!