Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Caffeine Makes Perimenopause & Menopause Worse

Many of you know how much I love Cynthia Gorney's latest synthesis (from the New York Times Magazine last month) of where we are as we face perimenopausal chaos and need to decide whether to take estrogen.

She describes the predictable ebb and flow of estradiol, the main estrogen we make from our teens through mid-40s, and how that predictability comes crashing down into wild, jagged fluctuations in perimenopause. Estradiol has over 400 jobs in your body, so there's a good chance you'll notice by way of increased moodiness, hot flashes, disrupted sleep, low libido, fatigue, achey joints and the like.

Meanwhile, we're cleansing here at the Gottfried Center. We're off caffeine, sugar, alcohol, gluten and dairy. Just wanted to catch you up on some of that bad things that caffeine does to our perimenopausal bods: it lowers estradiol and testosterone. Testosterone is the main hormonal driver of libido and vitality. Caffeine also causes hot flashes and night sweats. Further, in perimenopause, caffeine dramatically increases cardiac reactivity -- meaning your pulse rises, your blood pressure jumps up, and your more jittery than before perimenopause.

Stay off the stuff!

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I'm an organic gynecologist, yoga teacher + writer. I earn a living partnering with women to get them vital and self-realized again. We're born that way, but often fall off the path. Let's take your lousy mood and fatigue, and transform it into something sacred and useful.