I’ve had so many female patients and online community members tell me about health issues during menopause, that I decided I needed to dedicate a show to it. From hot flashes to weight gain and mood swings, hormone imbalance can have a drastic effect on a woman’s quality of life. So, I’ve assembled a team of experts to debunk the myths and provide answers on how women can stop suffering through menopause. We’ll discuss how you can balance your hormones and get your life back!
My friend, Dr. Shawn Tassone is board certified in obstetrics and gynecology. He’s also well known for his mind-body approach to medicine. In the ‘90s, while Dr. Tassone was an OBGYN resident, his mother developed ovarian cancer. He tells me she was unable to use hormones to help herself feel better during her five-year struggle. Watching his mother’s misery had a profound effect on him, “As I went through my own training I just said you know what, I don’t ever want to see somebody have to deal with that again.” We talk about how our natural hormones work, the role they play in our bodies and how hormone therapy can be used to alleviate specific issues.
Dr. Tassone also shares the six-step process he’s come up with after talking to 40,000 women over the last 15 years. He calls it the SHINES method, and it incorporates spiritual practices, hormonal modulation, infoceuticals, nutrition, exercise, and supplements. Tune in for our discussion on bioidentical hormones vs pharma created hormones. We also talk about how spiritually-based practices like yoga and meditation can help alleviate your menopausal symptoms.
Physical therapist Rinku Singh and I discuss the importance of pelvic floor therapy. Rinku clearly explains exactly what the pelvic floor is and the three main functions it provides. Additionally, we talk about the specific health problems that can develop from a weakened pelvic floor. Rinku shares the importance of hormones in keeping this key muscle group healthy, “Post-menopausal women are lacking estrogen,” she tells me. “And when their estrogen levels are low, the tissue integrity of the muscles changes. The muscles aren’t as flexible anymore, they’re going to be dry, they’re going to thin out, and they’re going to become weak.” Among the problems women can experience are incontinence and painful intercourse.
Now, if you’ve always thought of the pelvic floor as only a woman’s concern, you’d be wrong. Rinku shares some of the related issues men have and how they’re surprisingly similar to problems women experience. She also tells me about the emotional effects these problems create. Plus we discuss ways in which you can strengthen and rehabilitate your pelvic floor muscles, and the important role sex plays in keeping you healthy and happy.
A certified acupuncturist with almost 20 years experience, Julie Silver joins me to discuss a natural option to balance your hormones. Now, some menopausal symptoms are fairly standard and Julie talks about the way Chinese medicine works to treat the body as a whole. We discuss the theory of how our bodies have an underlying energy called Chi, “It’s really this intangible energy that promotes our body’s own ability to heal,” she tells me, “it promotes self-defenses, many, many functions of chi.”
Importantly, Julie points out that most symptoms associated with menopause are heat-related: hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, etc. Join us as she explains how acupuncture can release the heat and bring back balance. Of course, a lot of us are squeamish when it comes to needles, but Julie explains why we shouldn’t be worried or afraid of those tiny, thin acupuncture needles.
My guest, Magdalena Wszelaki, is a certified holistic coach. She’s written a book called “Cooking for Hormone Balance” about key foods and herbs that can help women regain their hormonal balance. Magdalena discusses her incredible story about contracting Graves disease when she was in her late 20s and then having to deal with it again about 10 years later. Graves is an autoimmune disease that attacks the thyroid. And around that same time, she was also diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease, which suppresses your thyroid hormones. “I also had estrogen dominance. I had adrenal deficiency. I had no idea what was going on,” she tells me.
Magdalena shares how she became depressed and anxious as she began to gain weight, feel fatigued and become forgetful. “I knew that I had to do something,” she says, “and the first thing I started looking at is nutrition.” We also discuss the simple dietary changes Magdalena made that had her feeling better within a month’s time.