Managing Your Heart Health Through Menopause

Navigating Menopause Effective Strategies for Maintaining Heart Health

Heart Health & Menopause Management

News Picture: Managing Your Heart Health Through Menopause

By Cara Murez HealthDay Reporter

Women can help protect their heart health as they go through menopause. It’s like being a superhero, but instead of a cape, you need to focus on your cardiovascular system. The American Heart Association (AHA) has come to your rescue and offers some tips for protecting that most critical organ while hormone levels and body composition change.

“More women in the U.S. are living longer, and a significant portion of them will spend up to 40% of their lives postmenopausal. It’s like trying to find the right outfit for every occasion – navigating through menopause isn’t one-size-fits-all, and neither is the journey to good heart health,” said Brooke Aggarwal, an assistant professor in cardiology at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City.

But fear not, ladies! Aggarwal, a fearless volunteer for AHA’s Go Red for Women movement, advises, “This makes it even more important to focus on heart and brain health at all stages of life.” So, get ready to grab your heart-healthy shield and embark on this exciting adventure!

The first step in protecting against menopause-related changes is working together with your doctor, who is like your trusty sidekick ready to assist you. It’s important to keep your key health numbers in check. Think of it as monitoring your vital signs like a vigilant secret agent. Blood pressure, blood sugar, and body mass index (BMI) should be monitored yearly, and if they’re out of range, even more often. Remember, numbers can be sneaky, so make sure to keep an eye on them!

And don’t forget the importance of cholesterol! It’s like the villain lurking in the darkness, waiting to strike. Healthy cholesterol numbers are more individualized based on your other risk factors, but fear not! Your doctor has the power to help you figure them out.

Now, let’s talk about the power of nutrition. Your overall pattern of eating is a force to be reckoned with. The DASH and Mediterranean types of eating plans are like the superheroes of heart health. They are high in vegetables, fruit, whole grains, healthy fat, and lean protein. They’re also low in salt, sugar, alcohol, and processed foods. So, fill your plate with these mighty nutrients and fuel your body for the battles ahead!

But wait, there’s more! Exercise is a superpower that you possess. Strength and resistance training, endurance, balance, and flexibility make for a well-rounded routine. Did you know that strength training has the added benefit of increasing bone strength and muscle mass? It’s like getting a power-up to face off against the effects of menopause on your bone density and body composition. So, grab those weights and become a powerhouse!

Last but not least, sleep is your secret weapon. In menopause, many symptoms can affect a good night’s sleep. Night sweats, insomnia, and late-night bathroom visits try to sabotage your rest. But if you manage to get enough sleep, you’ll have a stronger immune system, a better mood, more energy, clearer thinking, and a lower risk of chronic diseases. It’s like charging your body with the energy it needs to conquer the day!

Remember, every superhero has a routine. Set an alarm to remind yourself it’s time to wind down and prepare for a restful night. Shut down all electronic devices at that time, like turning off your Bat-Signal for the night. And if you’re still having trouble, don’t hesitate to call your doctor. They can be your sidekick when sleep becomes the villain.

So, gear up, superheroes! Protect your heart health during menopause and show the world the power you possess. Together, we can conquer any challenge that comes our way!

SOURCE: American Heart Association, news release, Nov. 2, 2023

SLIDESHOW: What Is Osteoporosis? Treatment, Symptoms, Medication #### SLIDESHOW: What Is Osteoporosis? Treatment, Symptoms, Medication

Are you ready to unleash your superhero powers and protect your heart health during menopause? Share your thoughts and superhero strategies in the comments below! Let’s support and inspire each other on this amazing journey!