11 reasons why yoga is the best cure for those horrible perimenopause symptomsNov 13, 2023
If menopause were a Disney movie, ‘perimenopause’ would surely be a wild hormone party where endless wicked witches turn up uninvited with the sole intention of ruining the party for everyone. From the obvious symptoms of mood swings, night sweats, and brain fog, to the lesser known symptoms of joint pain, anxiety, and fatigue, perimenopause is like the backstage chaos before the main event, aka menopause. But whilst it can be a wild rollercoaster ride, fear not, for there’s a secret weapon to tackle the madness, and it goes by the name of YOGA! But before we dive into the magic of yoga for easing perimenopause symptoms, I want to let you into a little secret if you’re reading this and have never practiced yoga before: you absolutely don't have to be flexible, you don’t have to be a certain shape or size, and you don’t need to have any prior experience to quickly reap the benefits. So, whether you're a total newbie or a seasoned yogi, there’s always a spot reserved for you on any yoga mat - and it’s going to be a game changer for chasing away those downright horrible symptoms.
Now, let's talk about 11 reasons why yoga is your go-to cure for horrible perimenopause symptoms:
Stress underlies most horrible perimenopause symptoms
Stress permeates almost every symptom of perimenopause and makes it worse. Thankfully, yoga is the ultimate stress-buster. Every time you step on the mat, the world outside fades away and your focus shifts to the present moment. Those deep, rhythmic breaths are like a natural chill pill, telling stress to go take a hike. Whether it's a gentle flow or a relaxing restorative session, yoga helps release tension, leaving you with a sense of calm that lingers long after you roll up your mat. With a consistent practice of just 10 minutes a few times each week, you can wave goodbye to those pesky symptoms of stress and overwhelm that come with perimenopause.
Bye bye mood swings
Perimenopause can severely disrupt your peace and unfortunately those dreadful mood swings and negative thought patterns can cause havoc for loved ones too. Thankfully, yoga triggers the release of endorphins, those lovely chemicals that make you feel like you're floating on a cloud of joy. Whether it's a heart-opening pose or a simple grounding posture, yoga has this uncanny ability to flip the mood switch from grumpy to happy - and at the end of a session it can be hard to recall what made you grumpy in the first place! Even on the toughest days, yoga can magically uplift your spirits and help build a positive mindset.
Hello lost energy
You can’t pour from an empty cup and those horrible perimenopause symptoms can drain it dry if you’re not careful. By practicing a gentle and passive style of yoga known as Restorative Yoga where there’s no movement required, you can calm your nervous system and give your body time and space to rest and recharge. In doing so, you will enjoy a much-needed respite from all the changes that your body is going through and in turn, reap the rewards of enhanced energy levels too.
Aches and pains be gone!
Let's address all those niggly aches and pains and joint stiffness caused by declining estrogen levels. Yoga is literally like a magic potion that opens up and lengthens the body so that you feel much looser and less like the Tin Man in the Wizard of Oz. Yin Yoga is a passive style of yoga that specifically targets the joints and fascia in the body that can impede your flexibility and range of motion. It’s like WD-40 for your joints, that promotes fluidity and eases the discomfort that comes with perimenopausal joint pain. Reaching that top shelf or bending down to pick up things off the floor will no longer challenge you and will soon be a breeze.
Move over anxiety
Sadly, anxiety is a common symptom of perimenopause that can creep up unnoticed and run riot if left unchecked. The mindful and deliberate movements of yoga combined with focused breathing, create a powerful antidote to the whirlwind of anxious thoughts. Yoga encourages you to be present, letting go of worries about the future or past. It's a gentle reminder that in this moment, you are okay. The mat becomes a safe space where you can breathe through the unease, finding a sense of calm that extends well beyond the practice.
Is insomnia part of your horrible perimenopause symptoms?
Out of all the horrible perimenopause symptoms, lack of sleep is one of the most debilitating. Without quality sleep, we simply can’t function. If you’re tired of counting sheep and feeling exhausted during the day, yogacan be your ultimate lullaby for a good night's sleep. Whether it's gentle restorative poses or a mindful bedtime routine, yoga prepares your body and mind for a restful night. The soothing stretches and conscious breathing signal to your nervous system that it's time to unwind. Yoga Nidra, a sleep-based meditation, will also help you wave goodbye to all the tossing and turning, and can become your best-friend during the early hours when sleep is elusive, leaving you refreshed and ready to conquer the day. I hour of Yoga Nidra is the equivalent to 3 hours of deep nourishing sleep. Just saying.
Hot Flash Hacks
Hot flashes are up there with all the other horrible perimenopause symptoms too, but thankfully yoga is your secret weapon to cool down those unexpected heatwaves. Certain yoga poses and breathwork have a remarkably soothing effect on the body, helping regulate your body temperature and ease the intensity of hot flashes. Simply practicing hip opening and arm raising poses help to release excess heat from the groin and underarms helping to make hot flashes more manageable. A calming Child's Pose or a Cooling Breath pranayama can also help turn down the heat and regulate your thermostat so that you can stay cool, calm, and collected.
Three cheers for a happy gut!
Perimenopause can sometimes throw our digestive and elimination systems off balance bringing constipation, heartburn, bloating, and wind, but fear not – yoga is here to promote gut gratitude. The gentle twists and turns of yoga poses massage and stimulate your digestive organs, enhancing the efficiency of your digestive processes. The rhythmic breathing during yoga also supports a healthy gut by calming the nervous system, reducing digestive discomfort and gas. So, whether it's a seated twist or a gentle forward bend, each pose contributes to the wellbeing of your digestive and elimination systems.
Ditch the scales
Weight gain can be a pesky sidekick during perimenopause, but yoga can help foster weight wellness too. Engaging in a resgular yoga practice helps maintain a healthy weight by promoting overall wellness. The combination of physical movement, mindful eating, and stress reduction through yoga creates a holistic approach to weight management helping you make more considered decisions about what goes on your plate. Yoga isn't about extreme workouts or strict diets; it's about finding balance and harmony in your body. As you flow through the poses, you're not just burning calories; you're cultivating a positive relationship with your body so that the next time you open the fridge door, you’ll have the discipline to say no.
Brain fog be gone from those horrible perimenopause symptoms
Another of the horrible perimenopause symptoms is brain fog. You know that feeling – literally like a fog has descended - making it harder to focus and remember things. Enter yoga, your mental clarity superhero. The mindful movements and intentional breathwork in yoga act as a refreshing breeze for your brain. Just a simple forward fold can send fresh blood flow to the brain, helping to clear the mind. The increased oxygen flow, coupled with the meditative aspects of the practice, helps clear the fog, allowing you to think more clearly and regain that mental sharpness.
No more sweats!
Perimenopause can turn a peaceful night's sleep into a sweaty battleground, leaving you drenched and restless. But once again, yoga steps in as your night time saviour. By incorporating gentle, cooling poses and mindful breathing exercises into your bedtime routine, you can help regulate your body temperature and minimise the intensity of night sweats. So, before you hit the pillow, why not indulge in a few relaxing yoga poses? Your sheets will thank you, and you might just wake up feeling refreshed and dry, ready to conquer the day ahead.
Bye by horrible perimenopause symptoms:
Dealing with such a wide array of horrible perimenopause symptoms can feel like navigating uncharted waters. Yet, within this unpredictable journey, there exists a steadfast anchor – yoga. It's not just a physical practice; it's a holistic sanctuary addressing hormonal havoc, mood swings, brain fog, and the myriad of mental and emotional challenges perimenopause brings. But it’s also a natural solution too - one that requires no pills or prescriptions and one that will carry you well into your latter years. So, amidst the chaos, find solace on the mat and let it guide you through the maze of perimenopause with grace and resilience to rediscover yourself. After all, you never know that within the folds of a yoga pose, you might emerge on the other side of perimenopause not just surviving but thriving.
Are you a beginner and want to start a home yoga practice? If so, download our FREE Beginners' Guide to Starting Yoga here.
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About Julie Ann Garrido:
For over 30 years, Julie successfully ran her own PR company until her menopause symptoms took hold and turned her world upside down. Not only was she physically exhausted, she suffered with low moods, negative thinking, loss of confidence, self-limiting beliefs, and crippling anxiety. She became a person she no longer recognised and simply wanted to hide away.
Unhappy with a medical approach to menopause, she turned to yoga to alleviate her struggles, and at the age of 53, she found the natural solution she’s had been searching for.
After regularly practicing short bursts of yoga at home, she noticed that many of her symptoms were vanishing. She had more energy, she slept better, her confidence retuned, she felt more in control, and no longer hobbled around with joint pain.
Realising that menopausal women felt uncomfortable with their size and shape, and didn’t have the confidence to attend a yoga studio, she was determined to bring menopause yoga to their homes - yoga that would easily fit into busy schedules, and that would take women on a journey to wellbeing and transformation in menopause. Moreover, she wanted women to enjoy a natural menopause like she did.
Julie developed My Yoga Journey, an online platform for women to access affordable, beginner-friendly menopause yoga from the sanctuary of their own homes.vThe success of My Yoga Journey is nothing short of astonishing. As well as introducing yoga to countless women who have significantly improved their symptoms, it has helped them transform their lives as a result of their new-found confidence and energy with many going on to join her menopause wellness retreats.
“My mission is simple: I want every woman to know that there’s an effective natural solution for menopause. It doesn’t have to be HRT.
~ Julie Ann Garrido