Before dropping another heaped teaspoon of sugar into that cup of tea or coffee, you should stop to consider the effects it might have on your body. If you are currently struggling through the unavoidable phase of life known as “menopause”, then it is likely you are experiencing some fairly uncomfortable and distressing symptoms.
Hot flashes and night sweats are two of these and are experienced by 50% of women in peri-menopause and 75-85% of women in
post-menopause. Eating and drinking the right foods and drink is imperative to making hot flashes and night sweats, and all other symptoms in addition, as infrequent and undisruptive as possible.
Sugar, eaten in excess, triggers hot flashes and night sweat episodes, so if you often find yourself drenched in sweat with your heart beating faster than normal, you should be altering your diet and cutting back on the foods which contain high amounts of this sweet additive.
What Foods and Drinks Are Unnecessarily High in Sugar?
• Fast food and processed foods
• Soft drinks /energy drinks
• Sugar-coated cereals
• Cookies and candy
• Dried fruits and fruit juice
• Foods made from white flour
So, Why Should You Avoid Excess Sugar Consumption?
Before being able to understand why experts advise against high sugar consumption in menopause, you need to know what causes a hot flash or night sweat to occur. A menopausal woman is likely to experience a hot flash and/or night sweat episode because of the hormonal imbalance in the body.
When the body has a lower amount of estrogen, the part of the brain which controls temperature, called the hypothalamus, is directly affected. The hypothalamus misreads the body’s signals and believes the body is overheating so triggers “cooling down” sensors. This is the hot flash, or night sweat. So, what has sugar got to do with this?
The Effects of Sugar in Your Body
- Triggers stress response
An excess amount of sugar causes an artificial high which triggers the body to go into a stress response with the assumption that the body is under stress. The stress response originates in the hypothalamus and causes an increase in blood pressure and heart rate, and an increase in blood circulation; all signs of a hot flash or night sweat.
- Increases heart rate
As well as the stress response raising the heartbeat, sugar has a vasoconstriction effect which causes the heart beat to increase.
- Increase body temperature
The increase in sugar increases a woman’s blood sugar level which in turn elevates the overall body temperature.
You are what you eat. You might ask how these three factors then trigger a hot flash or night sweat. When sugar is consumed in a large quantity, and the body reacts in the ways listed above, the hypothalamus is confused even more and therefore sends out more messages to the rest of the body which works to cool you down. And if your heart rate and temperature are already increased, it is no surprise that your body goes into overdrive and you experience an overwhelming amount of heat at one time.
If you are suffering from hot flashes or night sweats there are several ways to minimize their effects or even avoid them altogether. Altering your diet and doing more exercise are the least invasive ways and should be tried before opting for hormonal treatments. You can follow the Manna Weight Loss program, which is more of a healthy lifestyle change than just a weight loss program. By taking the Manna Menopause Support supplement, it can help to increase your estrogen levels the natural way to prevent and reduce hot flushes and night sweats.