What to Take for Energy During Menopause: Boosting Vitality Naturally

14 Jan 2024

Menopause is a natural phase in a woman's life that signals the end of her menstrual cycles. It is diagnosed…

Sarah Benson

Author, Researcher & MenoPhix Advocate

Menopause is a natural phase in a woman’s life that signals the end of her menstrual cycles. It is diagnosed after 12 months of amenorrhea and usually occurs in the late 40s or early 50s. With the body’s decline in estrogen production, many women experience a range of symptoms, and among these, fatigue is notably prevalent. To sustain energy levels during menopause, it’s important to understand that a multifaceted approach addressing both lifestyle and nutritional needs is key.

A table with a variety of healthy foods and supplements, such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, and vitamins, with a focus on energy-boosting options for menopause

We appreciate that the irregularities brought on by menopause can impact daily energy. Combating fatigue during this time often involves a balance of diet, exercise, proper sleep hygiene, and sometimes, supplements that support energy production and overall health. Consulting with healthcare professionals can also provide guidance on any additional treatment options, such as hormone therapy, if lifestyle adjustments alone do not suffice. As we navigate the transitions that come with menopause, knowing what to take and which habits to adopt is fundamental for maintaining vitality and well-being.

Key Takeaways

  • Managing menopause symptoms requires a comprehensive approach involving diet, exercise, and sleep.
  • Supplements might be beneficial to support energy levels during menopause.
  • Seeking professional advice can help tailor a specific plan to combat menopausal fatigue.

Understanding Menopause

Menopause is a significant phase in our lives as women, marked by the cessation of menstrual cycles. It is a natural biological process, signifying the end of the reproductive years and is accompanied by various hormonal and symptomatic changes.

Hormonal Changes

During the perimenopause stage, which marks the onset of the menopausal transition, our bodies start to experience a shift in hormone production. Estrogen and progesterone levels fluctuate, leading to a decrease in their overall production. This hormonal imbalance is the primary instigator of the physical and emotional symptoms we associate with menopause.

Symptoms of Menopause

As we navigate through the menopausal transition, we’re likely to encounter a variety of symptoms. These may include:

  • Hot flashes: A sudden feeling of warmth that spreads over the body, which can be severe.
  • Night sweats: Hot flashes that occur at night, leading to sleep disturbances.
  • Vaginal dryness: Decreased estrogen levels can cause the vaginal lining to become drier and thinner.
  • Mood changes: Hormonal shifts can contribute to feelings of irritability or depression.
  • Fatigue: Many of us find our energy levels are significantly impacted during this time.

Once we have reached postmenopause, which occurs 12 months after our last menstrual period, our hormone levels will stabilize, but at a lower level. Understanding these changes allows us to manage our health proactively during this phase of life.

Energy and Fatigue Management

A woman reaching for a bottle of energy supplements on a cluttered desk, with a cup of herbal tea and a list of fatigue management tips nearby

During menopause, we often find our energy levels fluctuating, and fatigue can become a common challenge. It’s important for us to consider dietary adjustments and appropriate hydration as keys to managing these changes.

Dietary Adjustments

We need to ensure that our diet comprises a variety of foods that contribute to sustained energy levels. Incorporating a mix of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains is fundamental. Vegetables and fruits provide us with essential vitamins and minerals that are crucial for energy production. Whole grains offer complex carbohydrates that are broken down gradually, providing a longer-lasting energy source. It’s also beneficial for us to include soy-rich foods in our meals, as they can offer additional health benefits during menopause.

Fats should not be shunned; instead, we should opt for healthy fats found in nuts and seeds, which are energy-dense and contain vital fatty acids. Including dairy products can provide us with calcium and vitamin D, but for those looking for non-dairy sources, fortified foods and supplements are an option.

  • Sample Menu Items for Energy:
    • Breakfast: Oatmeal with almonds and berries.
    • Lunch: Quinoa salad with mixed greens, chickpeas, and a sprinkle of sunflower seeds.
    • Snack: Greek yogurt with a side of fruit.
    • Dinner: Grilled salmon with steamed broccoli and brown rice.

Appropriate Hydration

Staying properly hydrated is an integral part of managing our energy levels and combating fatigue. Water is essential for the optimal functioning of our body systems, and even mild dehydration can lead to a noticeable drop in our energy. We need to aim for a consistent intake of fluids throughout the day. While water is the best choice, we can also get our hydration from other sources like herbal teas and water-rich foods such as cucumber and watermelon.

  • Hydration Tips:
    • Carry a bottle of water with us to encourage regular sipping.
    • Start meals with a glass of water.
    • Incorporate foods with high water content into our diet.

Let’s remember, regular monitoring and adjustment to our diet can improve our energy levels and help manage fatigue during menopause. By eating a balanced diet rich in vitamins, minerals, and staying well-hydrated, we take positive steps toward feeling more energetic and focused.

Lifestyle Modifications

A woman surrounded by healthy foods, herbal supplements, and water, engaging in exercise or yoga to boost energy during menopause

In navigating menopause, we recognize the profound impact of certain lifestyle choices. By implementing specific changes, we can significantly improve our energy levels and overall well-being during this transitional phase.

Importance of Exercise

Regular physical activity is paramount during menopause. We find that engaging in daily exercise not only counteracts fatigue but can also alleviate other menopausal symptoms. Whether it’s yoga, tai chi, or more vigorous workouts, staying active boosts our body’s energy reserves and mood.

  • Types of Exercise: Yoga, tai chi, aerobics
  • Frequency: Aim for at least 30 minutes daily

Stress and Sleep Hygiene

Managing stress through relaxation techniques like deep-breathing exercises, meditation, or mindful walks enable us to handle life’s pressures more efficiently. Sleep hygiene is equally crucial; a consistent bedtime routine and minimizing exposure to caffeine and alcohol close to bedtime can help us achieve restorative sleep.

  • Stress-Reduction: Meditation, deep-breathing exercises
  • Sleep Hygiene: Consistent sleep routine, limit caffeine and alcohol

Weight Management

During menopause, we’re mindful that weight gain can exacerbate our symptoms. It’s beneficial for us to maintain a healthy weight, which can be achieved through balanced diet choices and regular physical activity. This not only aids in managing energy levels but also reduces the severity of hot flashes and other menopausal discomforts.

  • Dietary Choices: Balanced, nutrient-rich foods
  • Physical Activity: Integral to weight control

By embracing these lifestyle modifications, we pave the way for a smoother transition through menopause, effectively boosting our energy and enhancing our quality of life.

Supplement and Medication Guidance

A woman reaching for a bottle of energy supplement with a list of recommended medications for menopause displayed on a table

As we navigate the complexities of menopause, it’s crucial to understand that both supplements and medications can offer relief from fatigue and other symptoms. We’ll explore herbal supplements that show promise and discuss the role of hormonal therapies, always keeping safety and effectiveness in mind.

Herbal Supplements

Black Cohosh: Promoted to reduce menopausal symptoms like hot flashes and sleep disturbances, our interest in Black Cohosh stems from its potential to act like estrogen in the body. However, we must proceed with caution, as its safety particularly with long-term use is not fully established.

Red Clover: This is another supplement we consider for its isoflavonoids, which might help with hot flashes. But, clinical evidence of its efficacy is mixed, and we need to be aware of its potential to interact with other medications.

Ashwagandha: This adaptogen could be useful for stress relief. Our emphasis is on its energy-enhancing and anxiety-reducing effects, which may indirectly alleviate menopausal fatigue.

Valerian: In cases of sleep disruption, which is common in menopause, we look at valerian root. Known for its mild sedative properties, it could improve sleep quality.

Melatonin: As a sleep aid, melatonin supplementation can help us adjust our sleep-wake cycle, potentially benefiting those of us struggling with menopause-related insomnia.

It’s key that we consult with healthcare professionals before taking these supplements, as they can have side effects and interactions with other medications.

Hormonal Therapies

Hormone Therapy (HT) and Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT): These are potential options for us to address many menopausal symptoms, including energy depletion. HT and HRT work by supplementing the hormones our bodies are producing less of during menopause. We’re mindful that these therapies can come with risks, and it’s important to assess the benefits and potential side effects with our doctors.

Antidepressants: When hormonal fluctuations affect our moods and energy levels, we may explore certain antidepressants, such as Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs). These medications can alleviate menopausal symptoms by enhancing serotonin levels in the brain, which can affect mood, sleep, and energy.

When we consider these options, we do so with careful deliberation, informed by our individual health profiles and the advice of our healthcare providers.

Dealing with Mental Health

A woman reaching for a bottle of vitamins on a kitchen counter, with a cup of tea and a plate of healthy snacks nearby

In our journey through menopause, mental health becomes as crucial as physical well-being. We often face challenges like mood fluctuations and cognitive changes, which can impact our daily lives. Here’s how we can tackle these mental health issues head-on.

Anxiety and Mood Swings

Anxiety and mood swings are common during menopause. Our mood may shift rapidly without warning. To manage anxiety, we’ve found that regular exercise and relaxation techniques like meditation can be effective. Reading and other hobbies can distract us from irritability and help maintain a positive state of mind. If these self-help methods don’t suffice, it’s advisable to explore therapy options; a link with helpful insights can be found on Everyday Health.

Cognitive Function

We may also experience difficulty concentrating, often labeled as “brain fog.” To counter this, we focus on maintaining a structured routine with tasks that stimulate the brain, such as puzzles or learning a new skill. Ensuring adequate sleep is crucial as it aids in cognitive function and energy levels. In some cases, consulting with a health professional for treatment options like hormone therapy might be the step we need to improve our mental focus. Additional resources on managing these cognitive changes are available at Harvard Health.

Managing Other Menopause Symptoms

Dealing with menopause requires us to address a range of symptoms that can impact daily life. We’ll explore evidence-based strategies to manage hot flashes, sleep disturbances, and maintain vaginal and sexual health.

Hot Flashes and Night Sweats

Hot flashes and night sweats are among the most common vasomotor symptoms we experience during menopause. To manage these, we recommend:

  • Dress in Layers: Wearing layers allows us to adjust to temperature changes caused by hot flashes.
  • Keep a Cool Environment: Using fans or air conditioning can help reduce the discomfort from night sweats.
  • Consider Lifestyle Changes: Reducing caffeine intake and practicing stress-reduction techniques, like meditation, can be beneficial.

Sleep Disturbances

Quality sleep can be elusive during menopause, with issues like insomnia and sleep apnea often arising. For better sleep, we suggest:

  • Establishing a Sleep Routine: Going to bed and waking up at the same time every day can enhance our sleep quality.
  • Creating a Restful Environment: Ensure the bedroom is dark, cool, and quiet to foster better sleep.
  • Limiting Screen Time Before Bed: The blue light from screens can interfere with our natural sleep cycle.

Vaginal and Sexual Health

Menopause can lead to changes like vaginal dryness, affecting our sexual health. We can address this through the following:

  • Use of Lubricants or Moisturizers: These products can alleviate dryness and make sexual activity more comfortable.
  • Pelvic Floor Exercises: Strengthening the pelvic muscles can improve sexual function and urinary control.

Let’s remember that each person’s experience with menopause is unique, and it may take a combination of solutions to find relief.

Considerations for Severe Cases

In severe cases of menopause-related fatigue, it’s crucial to evaluate whether the symptoms require medical intervention. We should be prioritizing not only treatment for fatigue but also considering the overall health implications that may come with menopause.

Medical Treatment Options

For those of us experiencing severe fatigue during menopause, a consultation with a doctor is necessary. Our doctor might suggest medical treatments that can help manage not only fatigue but also other related health concerns. For instance, fatigue may be compounded by hypothyroidism, a condition more common in postmenopausal women, necessitating thyroid hormone evaluations and treatment.

We should monitor our blood pressure regularly as menopause can lead to higher risks of high blood pressure, which can also affect our energy levels. Management might include medications combined with lifestyle adjustments.

Treatments aimed at improving bone density can be important, as menopause is also a time where the risk of osteoporosis increases. Our medical team may recommend bone density scans and potential treatments to prevent fractures.

For those of us experiencing heartburn or constipation, which can be exacerbated during menopause and contribute to feeling unwell, dietary changes or medications can provide relief and improve our day-to-day energy levels.

Medical treatments may also involve preventative measures against cancer, including regular screenings as recommended by healthcare guidelines, especially considering the heightened risk for certain cancers after menopause.

As we consider our options for medical treatment, it’s important to remain informed and collaborate closely with healthcare professionals to tailor a plan that addresses our specific needs and health conditions during menopause.

Additional Health Concerns

When addressing menopause-related fatigue, we must consider the possible impact of other health issues. The presence of underlying conditions can affect energy levels significantly.

Underlying Health Issues

Sleep Apnea: We often overlook that sleep apnea can contribute to exhaustion. It’s a condition where breathing repeatedly stops and starts during sleep, impacting our rest quality. If we’re frequently tired despite adequate sleep, it’s worth investigating this possibility.

Stress: The effect of stress on our bodies can’t be understated. It increases cortisol levels, which, when constantly elevated, can lead to chronic fatigue. We should seek methods to reduce stress, such as mindfulness or talking therapies.

Anemia: A common issue many of us face is anemia, especially when changes in the menstrual cycle lead to irregular periods and increased blood loss. This can decrease our iron levels, leading to fatigue. It’s essential to monitor our iron levels and consider supplementation if necessary.

Hypothyroidism: Our thyroid plays a crucial role in regulating energy, and hypothyroidism can make us feel unusually tired. A simple blood test can help us determine if this is a factor in our fatigue.

Illness: We must also be mindful of general illness, as our body’s efforts to heal can drain energy. When we’re unwell, our priority should be recovery.

In dealing with any additional health concern, we recommend consulting healthcare providers for a thorough evaluation. Our approach to enhancing energy during menopause should be holistic, taking into account any and all underlying health issues that could be contributing to our discomfort and low energy levels.


In managing menopause-related fatigue, we understand that maintaining a balance in our lifestyle choices is key to improving our quality of life. We prioritize regular exercise to boost energy, as its benefits are well-documented in aiding with menopausal symptoms.

Following a healthy sleep routine is also essential. Our hormones may disrupt our sleep patterns, yet establishing a consistent routine helps us to minimize the impact. We ensure our diet includes all necessary nutrients; particularly, we seek to include foods that are rich in B vitamins known for their role in metabolism and energy production.

We also acknowledge the role of psychological well-being in our overall health. Managing emotional ups and downs with stress reduction techniques can greatly improve our energy levels. Simple strategies like mind-body practices or even seeking community support can make a significant difference.

Finally, if we find our efforts not yielding the desired improvements or experience severe fatigue, we consider consulting a healthcare provider. They may suggest treatments that could include hormone therapy or supplements tailored to our individual needs.

To conclude, our approach is holistic and proactive, involving exercise, diet, sleep, and psychological support to navigate this phase with resilience and vitality.

Frequently Asked Questions

In this section, we address common concerns about managing energy levels during menopause by providing clear and informative answers.

Which vitamins are effective in combating menopause-related fatigue?

B vitamins, particularly B12 and B6, are known for their role in energy production and can be effective in reducing menopause-related fatigue. Additionally, vitamin D is important for bone health and mood regulation, which may indirectly influence energy levels. For personalized advice, it’s always best to consult with a healthcare provider.

What are the characteristics of fatigue caused by menopause?

Fatigue during menopause often encompasses both physical and mental exhaustion. This type of fatigue may present as a persistent lack of energy, reduced motivation, or difficulty in performing daily tasks, which can be exacerbated by menopause symptoms like sleep disturbances.

Can menopause contribute to joint pain and fatigue, and how are they related?

Yes, menopause can contribute to joint pain and fatigue. Hormonal changes can affect joint health, potentially leading to inflammation and discomfort, which in turn can cause fatigue. Additionally, poor sleep due to joint pain can exacerbate tiredness.

What is the typical duration of fatigue during the menopausal transition?

The duration of fatigue during the menopausal transition varies among individuals. It can last for a few months to several years, depending on factors such as lifestyle, overall health, and the severity of other menopausal symptoms.

Does fatigue vary between perimenopause and postmenopause stages?

Fatigue can vary between the perimenopause and postmenopause stages. In perimenopause, fluctuating hormone levels often cause more pronounced fatigue. After transitioning to postmenopause, fatigue may lessen but can still occur, particularly if sleep disturbances persist.

What dietary choices can help alleviate fatigue associated with menopause?

Incorporating soy-rich foods in the diet can be beneficial as they contain compounds that may have a positive effect on energy levels. Maintaining a balanced diet high in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains can also play a crucial role in managing menopause-related fatigue.

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