You have 4 summaries left

The Diary Of A CEO with Steven Bartlett

The Menopause Doctor: This Diet Delays Menopause! They're Lying To You About Menopause! Menopause Is Shrinking Your Brain! - Dr Lisa Mosconi

Thu Jun 13 2024
menopausebrain functionhormone therapyexercisehydrationnutritionpsychological aspectssocial aspects

Description

This episode explores the impact of menopause on brain function, the different stages of menopause, hormone therapy options, lifestyle adjustments, exercise, hydration, nutrition, psychological and social aspects of menopause. Key insights include the significant changes in brain functionality during menopause, the importance of understanding women's health during this transition, and the need for more research and support for women experiencing menopause. The episode also discusses the challenges faced by black and Hispanic women during menopause and the potential benefits of hormone therapy, exercise, and a healthy lifestyle in managing menopausal symptoms.

Insights

Menopause can lead to significant changes in brain functionality, including a 30% drop in brain energy levels.

Brain symptoms like hot flashes, insomnia, and depression are common during menopause but often not recognized in medicine.

Research on women's brain health and menopause has been lacking despite the higher risk of Alzheimer's disease in women.

Alzheimer's disease is not just a disease of old age but starts in midlife, with symptoms appearing later.

Estrogen plays a crucial role in women's brain function, acting as a master regulator and affecting neuron growth, blood flow, energy production, and overall brain health.

During perimenopause and post-menopause, the decline in estrogen levels impacts brain function and leads to changes in how the brain operates.

Menopause impacts the structure, volume, connectivity, and blood flow of the brain, leading to measurable changes.

Not all women show the same extent of brain changes during menopause; some may experience more severe changes.

Brain fog affects up to 62% of women going through perimenopause and postmenopause, impacting memory, concentration, attention, and language.

Menopause leads to significant changes in the brain structure and function due to hormonal fluctuations.

Chapters

  1. Understanding Menopause
  2. Impact on Brain Function
  3. Hormone Therapy and Lifestyle Adjustments
  4. Exercise, Hydration, and Nutrition
  5. Psychological and Social Aspects of Menopause
Summary
Transcript

Understanding Menopause

00:00 - 08:00

  • Menopause is defined as not having a menstrual cycle for 12 consecutive months, with three phases: pre-menopausal, perimenopausal, and postmenopausal.
  • Perimenopause typically starts in the mid to late 40s and can last between two to ten years with fluctuating estrogen levels.
  • Menopause is reached when a woman has gone one year without a period, usually occurring around age 51 to 52 and can last 7 to 14 years.
  • Postmenopause is the stage after menopause where a woman no longer has periods for the rest of her life.
  • There are different types of menopause including spontaneous (natural aging process), induced surgically or medically, which can occur at various ages due to different reasons like chemotherapy or transgender surgeries.

Impact on Brain Function

07:30 - 15:10

  • Menopause can lead to significant changes in brain functionality, including a 30% drop in brain energy levels.
  • Brain symptoms like hot flashes, insomnia, and depression are common during menopause but often not recognized in medicine.
  • Research by Dr. Lisa Moscone highlights the importance of understanding and supporting women's health during menopause.
  • Men should also pay attention to menopause-related brain changes to better support their female relatives and friends.
  • Menopause impacts both fertility and the brain, with neurological symptoms affecting two-thirds of women experiencing menopause.
  • Research on women's brain health and menopause has been lacking despite the higher risk of Alzheimer's disease in women.
  • Alzheimer's disease is not just a disease of old age but starts in midlife, with symptoms appearing later.
  • Women show red flags of Alzheimer's disease in their brains already in midlife, while men do not.
  • Menopause can impact concentration and focus due to neurological changes in the brain.
  • Comparing brain scans of perimenopausal and postmenopausal women to men of the same age shows more Alzheimer's plaques in women.
  • Menopause is not a single stage but consists of three stages: pre-menopause, peri-menopause, and post-menopause.
  • The transition period to menopause typically lasts four to seven years but can extend up to 14 years for some women.
  • Women are born with a neuroendocrine system connecting the brain and ovaries, which becomes dismantled after the transition to menopause.
  • Estrogen plays a crucial role in women's brain function, acting as a master regulator and affecting neuron growth, blood flow, energy production, and overall brain health.
  • During perimenopause and post-menopause, the decline in estrogen levels impacts brain function and leads to changes in how the brain operates.
  • Menopause phase lasts for seven to 14 years and leads to a 30% drop in brain energy levels.
  • Menopause impacts the structure, volume, connectivity, and blood flow of the brain, leading to measurable changes.
  • Not all women show the same extent of brain changes during menopause; some may experience more severe changes.
  • Brain changes during menopause can lead to symptoms like brain fog and subjective cognitive decline.
  • Historically, women's cognitive disturbances were often dismissed as psychological issues due to societal beliefs about women's mental health.
  • Research is validating women's long-held beliefs about the connection between the uterus and the brain.
  • Brain fog affects up to 62% of women going through perimenopause and postmenopause, impacting memory, concentration, attention, and language.
  • Menopause leads to significant changes in the brain structure and function due to hormonal fluctuations.
  • The brain experiences an ATP crisis during menopause, affecting energy production and overall brain function.
  • Estrogen loss during menopause leads to changes in brain volume and activity, causing symptoms like brain fog.

Hormone Therapy and Lifestyle Adjustments

43:44 - 51:14

  • Historical background on hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and its impact on women's health
  • The Women's Health Initiative study in the 1990s led to a shift in understanding the risks and benefits of hormone therapy
  • Current practices involve using lower doses of bioidentical hormones taken orally or transdermally for menopausal symptoms
  • Timing is crucial for hormone therapy effectiveness, ideally starting within a 10-year window of the final menstrual period
  • Hormone therapy is primarily approved for vasomotor symptoms like hot flashes and night sweats, with ongoing research for other potential benefits
  • Hormone therapy is being researched for its potential benefits in treating brain fog during menopause.
  • Lifestyle adjustments like diet, exercise, and stress reduction are recommended for managing menopausal symptoms.
  • Menopause progresses through stages with varying symptoms, including changes in menstrual cycles and cognitive function.
  • Symptoms of menopause can include difficulty sleeping, hot flashes, mood changes, forgetfulness, and physical symptoms like weight gain and muscle tensions.
  • The late perimenopause stage typically starts around age 45-47 and may present more severe symptoms in black and Hispanic women.

Exercise, Hydration, and Nutrition

1:25:32 - 1:33:16

  • Exercise is important for hormonal, brain, and heart health during menopause.
  • Different types of exercise have specific benefits, such as cardiovascular activity for hot flashes and strength training for bone mass preservation.
  • Regular moderate intensity exercise can reduce the severity of hot flashes in menopausal women.
  • Midlife challenges like lack of time and fatigue can hinder women from exercising during menopause.
  • There is an optimal level of exercise intensity for health gains, with excessive exercise potentially causing negative effects.
  • Research shows that even mild intensity exercise can lead to gains in muscle mass, especially beneficial for postmenopausal women.
  • Moderate intensity exercise at high frequency is recommended for consistent gains and lower risk of dementia.
  • Switching to decaf may be beneficial for sleep as caffeine's half-life can disrupt sleep patterns and impact brain health.
  • Consuming coffee late in the day can interfere with deep sleep, crucial for brain's self-cleaning process and reducing Alzheimer's risk.
  • Alcohol consumption can worsen symptoms of menopause and dehydrate the body, affecting brain functionality.
  • Alcohol can worsen symptoms of menopause by dehydrating the brain, impacting cognitive function.
  • Dehydration can lead to neurological symptoms like headaches, migraines, dizziness, and brain fog.
  • Water with electrolytes and minerals is essential for proper hydration of the brain.
  • Avoiding plastic in food and drink containers is important due to pollutants accumulating in the body, especially for women.
  • Specific nutrients like potassium, sodium, magnesium, omega-3 fatty acids are crucial for optimal brain function and health.
  • Clean foods that are nutrient-dense and prioritize brain-supporting nutrients are recommended for overall brain health.
  • Supplements should be used to complement a healthy diet, not replace it
  • High doses of supplements are only beneficial if there is a deficiency
  • Omega-3 fatty acids are crucial for brain health and may require supplementation if not obtained through diet
  • Legumes and fatty fish in the diet can delay menopause onset compared to a standard American diet high in processed foods
  • Consumption of omega-3 and antioxidants may lead to gentler menopause, better fertility, and lower risk of depression

Psychological and Social Aspects of Menopause

1:47:54 - 1:55:05

  • Black and Hispanic women may experience more severe symptoms during menopause with limited research on the topic.
  • Suicidality tends to increase for women in midlife, correlating with menopause, and divorce rates are higher during this transition.
  • The most challenging period of menopause is the few years before and after the final menstrual period.
  • Menopause is a unique neuroendocrine transition specific to women that impacts various body systems, including the brain.
  • Similarities exist between symptoms of pregnancy and menopause, but societal support differs greatly between the two transitions.
  • There is a lack of education among doctors regarding menopause, with minimal training provided in medical school.
  • Life contentment tends to fluctuate during menopause, with a dip during the transition to menopause and an increase in late postmenopausal phase.
  • Historically, ovaries were often removed during hysterectomies without medical necessity, leading to surgical menopause with severe consequences.
  • Surgical menopause has been linked to increased risks of cognitive decline, dementia, Parkinsonism, stroke, major depression, osteoporosis, heart disease, and neurological disorders.
  • Recommendations have shifted towards preserving ovaries during hysterectomies to avoid unnecessary surgical menopause.
  • Brain scans have shown significant changes in gray matter volume after oophorectomy, indicating a strong relationship between ovaries and brain health.
  • Brain scans show differences between women in different menopausal stages of the same age.
  • Research is being conducted on hormone therapy's effects on brain scans in menopausal women.
  • A new designer estrogen called neuro serum is being tested to support brain health without impacting breast tissues.
  • Clinical trials are ongoing for the neuro serum with a focus on perimenopausal and postmenopausal women experiencing hot flashes.
  • Factors like maternal menopause age, puberty experiences, and lifestyle choices can indicate a woman's potential menopause experience.
  • Factors like smoking, diet, and exercise can influence the onset of menopause.
  • Talking to mothers about menopause is important as it was often a taboo topic in previous generations.
  • Understanding menopause helps in supporting women going through it and being more empathetic.
  • Lack of awareness about menopause can lead to confusion and isolation, contributing to mental health issues.
  • Having conversations about menopause helps destigmatize the topic and push for more research and support.
1