To contact us Click HERE Some stuff I forgot to include in the last musings:
Enter the thyroid--not only does your pancreas slow down in meno- or man-o-pause, but so does your thyroid. While mentioning hot flashes in the last segment, I forgot to tell you about the COLD flashes as well--at first, I'd get random hot flashes and cold flashes, and this was enough to get me to wear a t-shirt and hoodie around indoors, because I never knew if I was going to flash hot or cold, or when.
Finally, my body got it's shit together to a point where I knew what sequence was going to happen: if I got a cold flash, it was immediately proceeded by a hot flash, so I now had some sort of warning system. As I gathered information and tried remedies, the flashes became further apart and blunted, then faded into one a day, then nothing. Then nothing for days...weeks so far.
The flashes used to come only after the sun went down, then came at any time at all--the worst ones were the 3:00 a.m. or 3:30 a.m. ones. They'd wake me up, and keep me up. Decent sleep was only gotten during the day when either no flashes or minor ones were happening, so slept I did. This was the only time I didn't have to play Kick the Covers Off, Then Pull Them Back On Again.
Thank god I found a remedy that worked for me, because women go through this for YEARS before it resolves itself--night sweats and all. I never had night sweats, and I'll tell you why: blood sugar control.
Night sweats are your body trying to detox itself from excess blood sugar--blood sugar that used to be consumed by your hungry brain, but can no longer get through the blood-brain barrier. These sweating episodes can last long after the hot flashes have ceased--this is a BIG sign that you need to have yourself checked for diabetes! Paleo, Primal, Atkins, and keto eaters are already ahead of the sweat curve, because they already lowered their blood sugar levels long ago--long before "the pause." They instead chose to sweat on the gym floor, or at the sports field, or in the various -athalons instead of later in their beds while trying to sleep.
When your pancreas receives the flash signal from the brain, it raises the total volume of blood sugar by signaling the liver to kick out stores of glucose, thinking more is better and that SOME of it has to get through...but it doesn't. All it does is make an eventual diabetic out of you unless you sweat some of it off.
I'm here to tell you WHATEVER YOU DO, STAY AWAY FROM THE CONVENTIONAL ADVICE TO USE SOY, BLACK COHOSH, OR PYRAMID-STYLE EATING HABITS TO RELIEVE SYMPTOMS! Soy--we already know what the dangers of ingestion are, and the dangers double or treble now that your thyroid is slowing down on its own. This stuff can render you a hypothyroid case, but ceasing use can restore some function, along with cooking crucifers instead of eating them raw. Again, Paleo, Primal, Atkins, and keto eaters are ahead of the thyroid curve because they include coconut oil, and all manner of sea animals, sea vegetables, and sea salt to their diets. I apparently had to ramp up my coconut oil activities--now, a single homemade coconut bar every morning does the trick. I get thyroid relief, and I get a ketone boost which translated into more energy for me!
I've been running around here cleaning cupboards, sorting contents of drawers, and going through my pantry, bookshelves, dresser drawers, and other places asking, "Am I going to need this in the next 30 years or so I have left? If no, let it go...just let it go." I'd pick up each item and ask,"Can I let this go?" All the nest-feathering I did over the last 25 or so years is now getting undone. My Thrift Store pile is growing each day, and now I have a Food Bank pile. I even vacuumed--something I despise because it kicks up my dust allergies--in places where I usually don't vacuum until I move: the corners, up the walls, the backs of closets, all along baseboards, behind doors...
Currently, my biggest bugaboo is the refrigerator--since I went keto trying to regain a handle on my blood sugar levels, the vegetable crisper drawers are now empty, and this seems like wasted space...space I'm paying to keep cool. Along with the foods I WAS refrigerating that didn't really need it, now I find more wasted space, and once again am faced with the possibility of moving down to a bar-sized fridge to hold my eggs, saved meat drippings, lard, bacon, and gelatin for soups--soups that now have no veggies in them. Also, my gallon jug of filtered water (which I go through every day), and Hubby's tea he refuses to give up. Oh wait...the few condiments and the coconut milk--stuff kept in the door. That's about it--notice no dairy. That's for two reasons:
1. Food allergies
2. Lactose content--are you aware of just how much sugar is in a glass of milk?
If and when you arrive at the point in life I did, no matter your gender, you'll begin your own journey for relief, and will find countless sites and books telling you to "eat the rainbow" or "eat the Pyramid" or whatever style that includes lots of carbs from differing sources--JUST SAY NO! You don't need to, and here's why: as your bran cries out for more fuel, your own body receives the signal, and raises your blood sugar levels to try to feed it, even though the blood sugar actually no longer gets through to the brain. the blood sugar is now elevated and trapped inside your body, with no exit other than exercise or meds/supplements. To help alleviate this conundrum, you need to cut back to your furthest point of carb intake, which for me turned out to be zero. You may possibly be able to add carbs back at some point in the near future, after things have quieted down, but certainly not now.
So why avoid black cohosh? Too much use (either to high a dose, or too long of time) can cause liver damage, and you need all the liver you can spare at this point in your life. If nothing else quells the hot flashes, go ahead and use it, but LIMIT YOUR USE TO ONLY THE TIME YOU REALLY NEED IT.
You will come across info that espouses the use of soy, flax, other lignans, and forbidden foods to use as fiber sources--that's because the SAD, when CAFO-raised and conventionally-farmed foods are eaten, raise your estrogen levels to the point that you yourself are being fattened for slaughter. Conventional wisdom, based on that scenario, says to lower your estrogen levels by limiting red meat intake, raising fiber intake, and eating soy, clover, flax seeds, and other foods to avoid estrogen-driven cancers that spring up after menopause is over. THIS IS WRONG! This is where I had great difficulty finding helpful information and pt out my cry for help. Hopefully I'm laying down breadcrumbs for others to follow.
Because we (meaning you and I) don't imbibe in such things as the SAD foods, or the thyroid-killers, or the CAFO foods, and only eat eggs and meat that's grass-fed and/or pastured, none of this applies to us, and can make things much worse. SAD eaters already have an excess of estrogen built up in their tissues, and need to start the detox process IN A HURRY to avoid cancers, but sometimes even this doesn't do the trick--it isn't enough. Then they find out about the Paleo or Primal diet, and by then, it's too late--chances are their incomes won't support this kind of eating, and their thinking won't allow for the rearrangement of priorities so they can afford it. They've lived and eaten that way for too long to try to change now, and these are the people that get talked about as living longer than their own parents, but not living anywhere as healthy.
Speaking of eating cleanly in retirement, it looks like a shoe-in for me (right now) because my food footprint has narrowed by a lot. If and when I get to the adding-carbs-back stage, it'll be microgreens--nutrient-dense and compact, and can be self-grown indoors (no insect or weather worries). I'm quite surprised at how little food it takes to keep me going these days--maybe I was right about the 90% fudge factor in Food pyramid design and calorie "requirements." To me, now, it seems the 2000-calorie requirement is only to keep Big Food in business, and subsidies flowing!
Is it any wonder we as a nation are so fat? Between the bad information, the lobbyists guiding the nutrition profession, the nutrition labels themselves being inaccurate, doctors allowing patient blood sugar levels to reach insulin-dependent levels before mentioning anything (enter Big Pharma), and people all-too-eager to satisfy their tongues as reward for what...having a lousy job? Having kids they really couldn't afford? Taking on too much debt? The only comfort they can seek is in food, and oh...those...carbs! Come "pause" time, those carbs come back to haunt you, and eat up precious retirement money.
These are the people Obamacare, Medicare, and Medicaid were made for, and they're eating up precious tax dollars NOW for dietary sins committed in the past. They'll go on eating up precious retirement dollars--OURS--because the rest of us had to subsidize them.
Who's going to subsidize US? Apparently we are. Now you see how the entire system, right down to what you choose to eat, is a scheme of some sort--Pyramid or otherwise. Even the much-ballyhooed My Plate program was cohersion by the same Big Food corporations that sponsor dieticians, nutritionists, and the A.N.D. as a whole.
Someday in the future, somebody's going to get brave enough to fund studies on us Paleo, Primal, Atkins and keto eaters to find out why we're so well, why we're living longer, and why we aren't succumbing to Western diseases. I hope what I've written about my own journey somehow makes it into standard health and medical knowledge one day, as well as the dietary advice/knowledge that so many have worked to uncover and disseminate (and are still doing it, and will be doing it in the future). Someday, someone will be brave enough to say SCREW POLITICS! and a new (old) medicine chapter will be opened.