HWHR Managing Mind and Mood Symptoms - She Runs Eats Performs

Episode 17

full
Published on:

15th Sep 2022

HWHR Managing Mind and Mood Symptoms

HWHR - Managing mind and Mood Symptoms

Mind and Mood symptoms can be debilitating for many women transitioning through menopause. Symptoms that may range from brain fog and low mood to anxiety and depression for some females. 

In this episode we give a snapshot introduction to the potential reasons and risk factors for these symptoms and outline some nutritional strategies a mid-life female runner may wish to introduce to help manage or alleviate them. 

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SHOW NOTES

(03:11)

Exploring the recognised cause of mind and mood symptoms as a female transitions through Menopause with an emphasis on the two phases of perimenopause:

Early Phase – one or more missed menstrual cycles OR a persistent difference of 7 days (or more) in length of consecutive cycles

Late Phase – menstrual irregularity progresses to longer periods of amenorrhea and more dramatic fluctuations in sex hormones  

(08:25)

Discussing key risk factors that may help explain why some women are more susceptible to mind and mood symptoms as they transition through menopause including:

Psychosocial Resources – how well an individual copes with life events generally plus what social support an individual may have

Mindset – a woman’s expectations of the transition and the way they regard menopause may impact on their psychological wellbeing during this phase of life

Exercise – it is thought that women who exercise experience less psychological symptoms as they progress through menopause besides their more sedentary counterparts

History of anxiety/depression – a previous history of these conditions may lead to an increased likelihood of them occurring during perimenopause

(16:54)

Considering the impact of mind and mood symptoms on a mid-life female runner with a focus on the positive outcomes from “running through menopause” including:

  • Better emotional wellbeing
  • Better self-image
  • Better self-confidence
  • Less anger/irritability 

BUT…it is important to recognise that long-distance or intensive running may impact on mood negatively as a result of an exercise-induced stress response affecting hormone balance  

(23:57)

Looking at the potential nutritional factors that may be implicated in the development or exacerbation of mind and mood symptoms as a woman transitions through mid-life including:

An overconsumption of refined carbohydrate rich foods and sugars – these foods are well known to lead to a disruption in hormone balance ranging from insulin to cortisol, both of which influence sex hormone balance

Low fibre diet – fibre is supportive of toxin removal from the body including xenoestrogens (chemical compounds that mimic oestrogen)

Low intake of fruit and vegetables – therefore low intake of phytonutrients, which are known to be cell protective 

(26:34)

Outlining some dietary and nutritional habits to consider to support positive mental health and hormone balance including:

Phytoestrogenic foods – phytoestrogens being compounds found naturally in many plant-based foods with their chemical structure and effects being very similar to that of oestrogen, albeit their effects are weaker

Fennel and passionfruit – both thought to help reduce anxiety

Pre and probiotic foods – important for the absorption of phytoestrogenic compounds 

(31:53)

Giving an action point to consider putting into place NOW that may help support any symptoms as you move through menopause

ACTION POINT: Introduce an everyday healthy diet CONSISTENTLY. 

By introducing this concept here, it will help ensure that a variety of natural and whole foods are being consumed, which could support hormone balance. This is a simple step, but potentially a big step towards attaining more hormonal balance therefore, helping to diminish any negative mind and mood symptoms

RELATED TOPICS

Healthy Mind for Happy Running

Eat Sleep Run

FOOD FOR...Hormonal Balance and Running 

 Disclaimer:

The suggestions we make during this episode are for guidance and

advice only, and are not a substitute for medical advice or treatment.

If you have any concerns regarding your health, please contact

your healthcare professional for advice as soon as possible.

Aileen Smith and Karen Campbell host RUNNERS HEALTH HUB. A place for like-minded female runners who are looking for simple ways to support running performance, energy, endurance, and general great health.

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Happy Running!

Aileen and Karen

www.runnershealthhub.com 

 



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About the Podcast

She Runs Eats Performs
for female runners of all abilities
Are you confused about the science around nutrition for runners? Listen in to learn about the WHY, HOW, WHAT, and WHEN of eating to fuel your running performance.

We are here to help you translate sports nutritional science, into easy to apply tips and plans, helping you enjoy peak running performance. We focus on the FEMALE FACTORS every woman needs to know to be a healthy runner.

About your host

Profile picture for Aileen Smith & Karen Campbell

Aileen Smith & Karen Campbell

Nutritionists, Educators, Podcasters, Runners and Friends

We have a love of running and a passion for nutrition, delicious food and healthy living. She Runs Eats Performs for female runners of all abilities who are looking for simple ways to improve their running performance and their health with nutrition and lifestyle.
We enjoy sharing our nutritional expertise, reviewing the latest sports science and most of all helping you to take easy action so you can enjoy your running life to the full.
We are here to help you achieve great health and good shape whilst staying injury-free with easy-to-understand sports nutritional concepts and easy-to-implement tips and plans.

Aileen and Karen are BANT and CNHC Registered Nutritional Therapists.