Thoughts on Better Aging

Want to Delay Menopause? Quit Smoking

April 24th, 2014

Smoking not only hastens the onset of menopause but can worsen some of its symptoms

By this point, everyone knows smoking is harmful for your health. However, a recent research study from the journal Menopause revealed a somewhat surprising new addition to the numerous adverse health effects of smoking: earlier onset of menopause, especially for white women.

Previous studies had already shown that smokers tended to enter menopause one to two years earlier than non-smokers, but this new study was the first to show that a woman’s genetic background can further increase the risk of smoking hastening menopause.

The study was conducted by researchers from the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine using data from the Penn Ovarian Aging Study. Looking at over 400 women between ages 35 and 47, the researchers found that the average menopause onset occurred an average of 9 years earlier for light and heavy white smokers carrying the CYP3A4*1B gene variation.

Besides potentially bringing menopause on earlier, smoking can also worsen some menopause symptoms, including:

  • Hot flashes
  • Mood swings
  • Memory loss
  • Fatigue
  • Osteoporosis
  • Weight gain
  • Skin changes

Why? Because smokers tend to have lower estrogen levels than non-smokers. The less estrogen you have, the more unbalanced your hormones will become post menopause and the worse your symptoms will be.

The good news is that hormone imbalances can be addressed with the proper combination of hormone replacement therapy and healthy lifestyle choices. Renew Woman™ can serve as your expert guide through this process. We offer a variety of menopause treatments backed by proven science. Here are the key elements to look for in a quality menopause treatment program.

Testing and treatment of multiple hormones: Although estrogen is the most important female hormone, it is not the only hormone affecting your menopause symptoms. At Renew Woman™, we take all of your vital hormones into account to provide effective, personalized treatment of your unique menopause symptoms.

Pairing of estrogen and progesterone: If estrogen replacement therapy is recommended, progesterone should also be replaced in order to prevent health risks associated with estrogen dominance.

Bioidentical hormones: Only bioidentical hormones that are chemically identical to the ones produced by your own body should be used.

Assistance with healthy lifestyle choices: For best results, any menopause treatment should include recommendations for healthy diet and exercise, as nutrition and exercise are vital for helping to control menopause symptoms like weight gain and skin changes.

Quitting smoking is another healthy lifestyle choice that is highly recommended for women suffering from menopause symptoms. Not only will you see improvement in symptoms, you’ll also lengthen your life. Quitting by age 50 can give you an extra six years of life, while quitting by age 60 nets you four, according to the North American Menopause Society.

 

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