(Natural News) Menopause is a significant time in a woman’s life, but it doesn’t always come easy. Many of its symptoms bring discomfort and can be downright inconvenient. Take hot flashes, for instance. Thankfully, there are natural treatments that offer comfort while remaining safe for use even during menopause. One of these is Cameroonian propolis, according to a study published in the journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine.
The term menopause refers to the time in a woman’s life when her ovaries cease to function and her menstrual periods stop coming. It is a gradual process that occurs around the age of 51, although some women may start experiencing the signs as early as their 30s or as late as their 60s.
Menopause comes with several symptoms that affect a woman’s mind and body. Of these, hot flashes are among the most inconvenient. A hot flash is characterized by a sudden feeling of warmth, even without any change in external temperature. It is often accompanied by tingling in one’s fingers, redness in various areas of the body, palpitations, and sweating. A hot flash may last up to several minutes.
Although they are neither painful nor life-threatening, hot flashes can occur so often that some women seek medical help. Some doctors prescribe chemical medications, sometimes the kinds used to treat depression and high blood pressure, but these come with a number of side effects. (Related: Menopause solutions – Reshaping your life without toxic medications.)
Treating hot flashes with Cameroonian propolis
Propolis is also known as bee glue. It is a mixture of bee saliva, beeswax, and plant matter gathered by the bees. It is used to seal off any space in the hive that is not in use or is unwanted, but it can also be used as a health supplement.
The plant content of propolis varies depending on the flora surrounding the hive. Because of this, the substance has been of special interest to researchers who want to uncover the health benefits of propolis in specific regions.
Cameroonian propolis is traditionally used to treat gynecological problems, among other illnesses, but no scientific data supports its purported health benefits. The aforementioned study was designed to examine its estrogenic properties.
The researchers treated rats with the ethanolic extract of Cameroonian propolis (EEP) for three days – equal to a month for a woman. They found that a dose of 150 milligrams per kilogram (mg/kg) effectively reduced the total number, average duration, and frequency of hot flashes.
Interestingly, EEP showed an antiestrogenic effect when tested on MCF-7 breast cancer cells. Because breast cancer cells need estrogen, antiestrogens are used to counter or prevent the effects of the hormone, preventing the diseased cells from proliferating. EEP was also found to be non-toxic at any dosage and, in fact, is rich in antioxidants like cancer-fighting, health-boosting caffeic acid.
Coping with hot flashes
Hot flashes are a natural part of menopause, but this needn’t stop women from seeking comfort. Here are some home remedies and strategies for dealing with hot flashes:
- Find the trigger – While hot flashes can occur without warning, they can be triggered by specific stimuli in certain instances. Determining which factors lead to hot flashes will allow one to adapt appropriately and reduce the frequency of attacks.
- Keep cool – Once a hot flash occurs, one of the best things to do is to lower one’s temperature. A great way to do this is to stay in a well-ventilated area or close to a fan. For women on the go, a portable fan would come in handy. Also, one must never forget to stay hydrated, so carrying drinking water at all times is ideal.
- Avoid bad habits – Obesity and bad habits can increase the severity and frequency of hot flashes. Cutting off nicotine for good and losing weight are two ways to reduce one’s discomfort during menopause.
- Relax and avoid stress – Stress causes one to feel hot – literally. Relaxing activities like yoga, tai chi, breathing exercises, and even a good massage are highly recommended.
- Eat healthily – For such a delicate time, the body needs all the nutrients it can get to function at its best. Proteins and fats are especially helpful as they guide hormones and keep nerves healthy. Fatty fishes like salmon and herring are good sources of both nutrients.
Learn strategies to stay healthy as you go through menopause at WomensHealth.news.