Save and Read Later

Minerals & Vitamins for Menopause: A Complete Guide

Menopause is a natural occurrence and not a medical condition. However, it is associated with a range of health challenges.

Rapidly changing hormone levels can lead to uncomfortable hot flashes, mood changes, urogenital symptoms, and more. And following menopause, individuals are more prone to conditions such as osteoporosis, heart disease, diabetes, and dementia.

Good nutrition is one way to potentially lessen the impact of menopause and reduce the risk of chronic illness in later life. This includes consuming plenty of micronutrients, such as minerals and vitamins.

This article explains the most beneficial menopause vitamins and minerals, including vitamins for perimenopause (the period leading up to menopause itself).

Vitamins for Menopause

Menopause is officially defined as the timepoint 12 months after the final menstrual cycle. However, symptoms of menopause can occur for many years beforehand, a period known as the climacteric or perimenopause.

minerals-and-vitamins-for-menopause-1

Perimenopause is associated with a decline in the female sex hormones estrogen and progesterone. This can cause a variety of symptoms, including:

  • Hot flashes
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Mood swings
  • Insomnia
  • Fatigue
  • Libido changes
  • Vaginal dryness and atrophy
  • Urinary dysfunction
  • Musculoskeletal pain

Since estrogen has a protective influence on many body tissues, the risk of chronic medical conditions also increases after menopause. Osteoporosis, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, dementia (including Alzheimer’s disease), and cancer are just a few examples.

Therefore, many people try to delay menopause for as long as possible or at least reduce its impact. Hormone therapy is considered one of the most effective treatments for menopause symptoms. However, it is associated with serious side effects, including an increased risk of breast cancer and blood clots.

Since the dangers of these medicines have become known, more and more people have been turning to natural remedies. Soy isoflavones, black cohosh, and red clover are some famous examples. Unfortunately, though, there is little clinical evidence to support their use.

Various vitamins and minerals are also popular, and many brands are marketing products specifically as “menopause vitamins.” These products may benefit some individuals who cannot get enough nutrition from food. However, it is generally accepted that eating a balanced diet is the best way to meet one’s nutritional requirements at any stage of life.

Below, we explore some of the most beneficial vitamins and minerals for menopause, how they work, and where to find them.

Best Vitamins and Minerals for Menopause

Everyone should consume adequate amounts of every nutrient to maintain health, regardless of age. However, menopause presents some unique challenges, meaning some vitamins and minerals become more critical.

Vitamin D and calcium are often seen as crucial due to their role in bone health. In fact, a 2017 study found that deficiencies in these nutrients could even increase the risk of early menopause. However, it is also essential to consider heart health, blood pressure, metabolic health, and cognitive function.

Eating a well-balanced diet from the mid-30s onward is one of the best ways to prepare for menopause.

This means that individuals should start paying close attention to their nutritional intake before menopause or even perimenopause. Eating a well-balanced diet from the mid-30s onward is one of the best ways to prepare for menopause and remain healthy in later life.

According to a 2010 review, the most important vitamins and minerals for menopause are as follows:

Vitamin A

There are two types of vitamin A. The first is active vitamin A (retinol) and is found in meat (especially liver), egg yolks, and dairy products. Meanwhile, fruit and vegetables contain provitamin A (carotenoids), which the body converts to active vitamin A.

Vitamin A plays a role in bone health and helps to protect soft tissue, skin, and mucous membranes. It is also essential for maintaining eye health and good vision. Furthermore, carotenoids have antioxidant effects and may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and other chronic conditions.

It is, however, possible to consume too much vitamin A, which may increase the risk of bone fractures. Therefore, it is best to meet one’s daily requirements through food rather than taking supplements.

Vitamin B6

There are eight B vitamins, and each has a crucial function in the body. However, vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), in particular, is vital during and after menopause. It is involved in energy metabolism, mood, and nervous system maintenance. It also helps to protect cells from damage and may decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease, stroke, and dementia.

The best vitamin B6 sources include meat, legumes, nuts, avocado, bananas, and whole grains.

Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 (cobalamin) is another essential B vitamin for menopause. Its functions are somewhat similar to vitamin B6, and the two work together to protect cells and prevent disease.

It can be found in meat, shellfish, eggs, milk, and fortified foods. However, the body can use B12 from animal sources most effectively.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C has antioxidant properties and supports cardiovascular health and cognitive function. It also promotes collagen production, bone health, and neurotransmitter synthesis.

The best sources are fruit and vegetables, including green vegetables, citrus fruit, strawberries, peppers, and tomatoes.

Related article

Vitamin D

As we mentioned earlier, vitamin D is one of the most important vitamins for bone health. It aids calcium absorption which keeps the skeleton strong and prevents fractures. The vitamin also has a role in preventing heart disease, diabetes, mood disorders, and neurodegenerative disease.

The best source is sunlight on the skin, which converts cholesterol into vitamin D. However, it can also be found in oily fish, dairy products, and fortified foods.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is an antioxidant and helps to prevent chronic disease. It has also been researched as a remedy for hot flashes. However, the evidence regarding vitamin E for hot flashes is inconclusive, and further study is required.

Vitamin E has been researched as a remedy for hot flashes although the evidence is inconclusive.

Vitamin E is found in nuts and seeds, vegetable oils, leafy greens, and fortified foods.

Vitamin K

Vitamin K promotes healthy blood clotting and works closely with vitamin D to protect the bones. It may also help reduce the amount of calcium in the arteries, thus reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Vitamin K has two forms. K1 is also known as phylloquinone, and its primary source is leafy green vegetables. Meanwhile, bacteria produce vitamin K2 (also known as menaquinones). K2 can be found in some fermented foods and is synthesized by gut bacteria.

Calcium and Other Minerals for Bone Health

Calcium is frequently considered the most important mineral for bone health and helps prevent osteoporosis.

However, high doses have been associated with adverse effects, such as an increased risk of heart disease or kidney stones. Large amounts of calcium can also stop the body from absorbing other essential minerals.

Therefore, individuals should consult a physician before beginning calcium supplementation and carefully weigh the benefits against the risks.

Several other minerals are also crucial for maintaining bone health after menopause. They include:

  • Magnesium
  • Silicon
  • Boron
  • Copper
  • Zinc
  • Manganese

Dairy products are the best calcium sources, alongside leafy green vegetables and fish with small, edible bones, like sardines. Other minerals are present in various foods, especially nuts, beans, whole grains, dairy, meat, and shellfish.

What Vitamins Are Good for Menopause?

As we have already explained, menopausal people should aim to get the nutrition they need from food rather than supplements. The body can absorb organic vitamins and minerals more efficiently than their synthetic equivalents, and they are less likely to cause side effects.

minerals-and-vitamins-for-menopause-2

However, some people cannot get enough nutrients from their diet and may find supplements helpful. Many brands offer specific vitamins for menopause, often combining vitamins and minerals with other ingredients like soy isoflavones.

Anyone considering using these products should consult a healthcare professional to ensure that the ingredients and dose are suitable for them. It is also vital to choose a reputable brand that uses high-quality ingredients and publishes lab reports for its supplements.

You can learn more about our top-rated brands in our Best Multivitamin Supplements Review.

The Best Minerals and Vitamins for Menopause: Summary

Good nutrition is essential before, during, and after menopause. Getting enough vitamins and minerals can help reduce the risk of chronic disease and maintain overall health.

It is imperative to pay attention to bone, heart, and brain health. Therefore, some of the most important menopause vitamins and minerals are:

  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamins B6 and B12
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin K
  • Calcium
  • Magnesium
  • Silicon
  • Boron
  • Copper
  • Zinc
  • Manganese

It is best to get these nutrients from food, but some individuals might find a supplement beneficial. Talk to your doctor for personalized advice regarding the best products and dosage.

Related article
Join the discussion

TOC
Premium
Your subscription has ended
If you love cannabis and appreciate our content, join WayofLeaf Premium today and receive:
Best of all, part of your membership fee will go towards helping to legalize cannabis.
Go Wayofleaf Premium
No thanks, I can't afford it
DMCA.com Protection Status © 2000 - 2022 All Rights Reserved Digital Millennium Copyright Act Services Ltd. | DMCA.com

WayofLeaf use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are happy with it.