Hot Flushes and Fermented Food

Is our perimenopause a good time to start fermenting our food?

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Did you know that one of the classic symptoms associated with perimenopause - the hot flush - has significant cultural variations?

The majority of American and UK women experience hot flushes as their hormone levels change during perimenopause, However, only a very small proportion of Japanese and Chinese women do! 

The scientific wisdom has long attributed this cultural difference to the higher intake of phytoestrogen-rich food in the Eastern diet, think tofu, and soy products. And well there is some clear evidence that these foods are linked to a reduction in some symptoms associated with menopause. 

But a phytoestrogen-rich diet may only be a part of the explanation! 

A fascinating new area of research that might contribute to our understanding of hot flushes, is looking at the gut microbiome! 

And in particular, the impact on menopausal symptoms of the much higher proportion of fermented foods that Japanese and Chinese women traditionally consume, and how this supports the diversity and resilience of their gut microbiome during perimenopause and menopause.

This is an important new area of research and whilst we await further studies -  it feels like there’s never been a better time to focus on taking care of our gut microbiome.


Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

Cara Wheatley-McGrain

Coach| Speaker | Author | Psychologies Ambassador, The Mindful Gut UK

Cara Wheatley-McGrain is a coach, speaker, and Hay House author. 

Cara is an expert patient who has lived with IBD and IBS for
20 years. Following a hospitalization that resulted in her almost losing her colon, Cara resolved to develop a more mindful and empowered relationship with her gut. She has spent the last two decades cultivating an authentic whole-life approach to mindful, compassionate and intuitive gut care – and is now dedicated to sharing this powerful message of self-care and holistic healing with those who are experiencing both short- and long-term symptoms of incurable IBS and IBD.

Cara offers workshops to inspire people to learn to love and listen to their gut, and to raise awareness of the connection between good gut health and mental health. She has a particular passion for raising awareness of gut health and perimenopause and menopause. 

Cara's book on Gut Health, Well Being and Compassion will be published by Hay House in January 2022.