"No more eggs and no more Pills
Hello steamy hot flush
Down below's a no-go zone
Since reading Sherrill Sellman's book Hormone Heresy: What women must know about their hormones I've decided that I have to find a natural alternative to Hormone Replacement Therapy. I'm already not keen on medication, and the idea of pumping my body with a cocktail of synthetic hormones yet again (since I stopped the Pill) does not appeal.
At the first sign of menopausal symptoms (hot flushes, dryness you-know-where), I rushed to my doc. He advised HRT or I would be in danger of aging rapidly - find myself suddenly dried out and an old hag in a couple of years. There was a definite hint of 'your partner won't find you attractive any more and will probably dump you for a more luscious alternative because what can you do with an old prune?' Fun...
He prescribed estriol (a form of oestrogen) for down below, and, to his credit, instead of imposing HRT on me, suggested I ask my buddies about HRT, and to do some research on the internet. So I did. Well I did the internet bit because I don't have many friends who have hit menopause yet.
I discovered that HRT is not all it's made out to be, and that some women have disastrous reactions to it. Instead of taking it and risk becoming oestrogen dominant which is not a good thing, I wanted to balance out the hormonal imbalance between oestrogen and progesterone in my menopausal body as naturally and side-effect-free as possible.
Dr Sellman suggests seeing a naturopathic doctor, and as luck would have it, the Pages Jaunes for Montpellier threw up two: a man and a woman. I looked at the woman's web page and noted she has 25 years of experience, and, from her photo saw that she has very probably gone through menopause. It seemed an obvious choice to select her rather than the man who did not have a web site and thus was just a name on a page.
Today was the day when I had my appointment. I took along my blood test analyses (usual stuff plus FSH which determines whether you're in menopause or not because it's a reproductive hormone - I am) and found myself in a little outhouse in the doc's garden.
She started by looking at my eyes. Apparently you can tell a lot from eyes. Before she looked at my blood tests, she flashed a torch at me and asked me whether I had some intestinal issues, and some joint problems, and said I have an excellent 'hygiene de vie' which means I'm in roaring good health.
I was pleased to hear that because I have made a lot of effort in the past year, and it's obviously paid off, not that I was abusing my health before, but I'm taking more care now (organic fruit and veg, less meat, dairy and bread, sport).
I do have a little intestinal problem (she said it was some inflammation) and my joints get tired when I walk a lot, so top marks the doc! I also wake up too early which annoys me. We had a chat about my eating habits and she decided to prescribe a number of food supplements to rectify my hormonal imbalances:
- Houblon which is like oestrogen
- Salsepareille which is like progesterone
- Bourrache (borage) oil which, from what she said, is like an elixir of life
- plus a bit of Hydra 7 which will help things along
- Optiflore to get my intestines sorted out
- Rhadiola Rosea and Magnesium Marin to improve the quality of my sleep and help me relax.
I was in there for an hour and it cost me 65 Eur which should be reimbursed by my mutuelle. I have to get most of the supplements on the internet, and she indicated where I could go because there's such a variety out there.
I'll be chucking out the estriol which had revolting consequences.
In the same vein, I started doing a local yoga course this evening. It was a trial session, and although there was some noise from the other activities going on in the communal centre, I found it relaxing and pretty promising.
Then I came home and had sausage and spuds, broccoli, and a glass of wine for dinner. :)
Got to keep my strength up for all this healthy living!