Hot flashes are sudden and intense heat sensations around the face, neck, and upper body region. Hot flashes are most common amongst women undergoing menopause which is the period when the menstrual period stops in women and numerous hormonal changes occur.
The reduction in the estrogen hormone, during menopause, is the major cause of hot flashes.
The occurrence of hot flashes varies amongst women. However, in general, hot flashes become less severe with time. Furthermore, not all women experience hot flashes during menopause.
Symptoms that often accompany hot flashes include; excessive perspiration, nausea, rapid heartbeat, dizziness, anxiety, headache, weakness, and a sensation of being suffocated.
Factors that could increase the likelihood of hot flashes include; smoking, stress, obesity, warm baths, spicy foods, and excessive consumption of alcohol.
Here are some tips and good practices, to consider, when dealing with hot flashes;
- Ensure you sleep in cool, well-ventilated rooms. You could keep the windows open, use fans or use air conditioning.
- If you notice the hot flashes coming, you could start sipping cold water or lemon water.
- Avoid eating hot and spicy foods.
- Avoid consuming alcohol and smoking cigarettes.
- If you are obese, strive to lose the excess fat to help reduce incidences of hot flashes.
- You could opt for cotton or loose-fitted clothes to help keep you cool.
- Taking cool showers would also help relieve hot flashes.
- Avoid stress and stressful activities as stress could trigger hot flashes.
Below are home remedies and natural ways to relieve hot flashes;
1. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is probably the most effective remedy for hot flashes in women. It neutralizes the toxins in the body that tries to get eliminated through perspiration. For this remedy, take a glassful of water and add 1-2 tbsp of ACV. You may also mix ACV with fruit or vegetable juices. Consume it 1-2 times every day. Make sure you use raw and unfiltered ACV to reap its maximum benefits on your health.
2. Vitamin E
Vitamin E helps in boosting estrogen levels in the body and reduces hot flashes that are common during menopause. Vitamin E also helps in replenishing the electrolytes lost through severe sweating. All you have to do is eat foods that have high vitamin E content such as tropical fruits, nuts, and leafy green vegetables on a regular basis. You may also take vitamin E capsules in doses of 200 IU twice every day along with your meals. Consult a doctor before taking any supplement.
Exercise is very important to maintain an optimal health. Exercise would also help in reducing hot flashes to a great extent. You should indulge in 30 minutes of aerobic exercises every day. Go swimming or just walk around the neighborhood. You may also try dancing. Furthermore, strength training exercises for 15-20 minutes 2-3 times every week is helpful.
4. Red Clover
Red clover has isoflavones that produce properties similar to estrogen in the body. As such, red clover may decrease the frequency of hot flashes.
For this remedy, take a cup of boiling water and 1-2 tsp of red clover (dried). Cover it and let it sit for half an hour. Strain the solution and drink it twice or thrice every day. Make sure you consult your doctor before using red clover as it may interact with some medications.
Sage has been used for many years to help relieve hot flashes. A tea made of sage leaves can be extremely beneficial due to the presence of high amounts of flavonoids, tannins, and volatile oils. It also boosts your overall health. For this remedy, pour boiling water in a cup and add some fresh or dried sage leaves. Let it sit for 4-5 minutes. Strain the liquid and mix honey and lemon juice to enhance its taste. Consume it 2-3 times in a day for several weeks.
Flaxseeds are another great source of phytoestrogens and would significantly reduce hot flashes. Studies show that consuming crushed flaxseeds every day for six weeks may reduce the instances of hot flashes significantly. It also helps in improving your mood. Crush some flaxseeds and consume about 40 grams of it along with your meals every day. You may also mix it with yogurt, smoothies or soup and consume it on a regular basis.
7. Black Cohosh
Black cohosh is an effective remedy for problems associated with menopause, menstruation and premenstrual syndrome. It may also help in treating weak bones and acne. To reap its benefits, you should take a 20mg supplement of black cohosh every day. It is recommended to talk with your doctor to know about its suitability.
Acupuncture has been used for many years in treating numerous ailments in an excellent way. Acupuncture works by stimulating certain specific nerves that promote the release of certain hormones essential for healing.
Acupuncture can help in regulating the levels of hormones endorphins, cortisol, and serotonin which has a positive impact in reducing the frequency of hot flashes. An acupuncture treatment, twice weekly, for at least 10 weeks is sufficient to bring a lot of relief from hot flashes. Make sure you get it done by an experienced professional to prevent any complications.
Soy products may help in reducing the intensity of hot flashes in women. Soy has an estrogenic action which helps in balancing the hormone levels in the body. Have at least 2 serving of foods containing soy every day. You may have edamame, soy milk, and tofu on a regular basis to benefit from soy. Furthermore, some studies show that a daily supplement of soy isoflavones can be helpful. It is recommended to consult a doctor before taking any supplements.
Chasteberry or vitex works by balancing the estrogen and progesterone levels in your body. This helps in reducing the frequency of hot flashes in an effective way. You can use chasteberry in form of tincture or capsules whichever is readily available. Although, you must talk with your physician to know the amount of chasteberry you should be taking to relieve hot flashes.
11. B Vitamins
B vitamins are essential for maintaining a good health. They also help you deal with hot flashes. Vitamin B12, B2, B5, B6, and B3 all aid in balancing estrogen and progesterone in the body. These vitamins also improve the health of mucous membranes of the vagina. In addition, B vitamins are also helpful in reducing anxiety and depression.
Incorporate foods such as green leafy vegetables, whole-grain bread, legumes, milk, eggs, fish, turkey, banana, avocados, dried fruits, sunflower seeds, nuts, and beans in your diet as they are rich in B vitamins.
12. Wear Cotton Clothing
Clothes made of nylon, georgette, and leather may raise your body temperature and increase the intensity and frequency of hot flashes. It is always best to wear cotton clothes as they help in keeping your body cool. Cotton clothes also absorb sweat in a great way and maintain the body’s temperature. Also, wear loose clothes as body-hugging clothes can also raise the temperature and increase hot flashes.
13. Avoid Alcohol
Alcohol may increase the chances of a hot flash in women to some extent. Therefore, avoiding it will help you balance your hormones and reduce hot flashes occurrence. Alcohol may also cause alcoholic flashes by raising your body temperature. Besides, consuming too much alcohol can be damaging to your health. So, stay away from it as much as possible.
14. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Consuming foods that rich in omega-3 fatty acids are known to show positive results in reducing hot flashes. Omega-3 fatty acids also aid in reducing cholesterol from your blood. Include fish such as sardines, mackerel, and tuna in your daily diet. You may also take omega-3 supplements for reducing hot flashes.
Ginseng is an effective herbal remedy for hot flashes. It is used in traditional medicine for combating numerous ailments such as heart diseases, fatigue, high blood pressure and even cancer. It is also effective in treating erectile dysfunction in men. You may take this herb after consulting your doctor and discussing the doses.
16. Avoid Bathing In Hot Water
Bathing in hot water when you are frequently getting hot flashes is not a good idea. A hot bath would further increase your body temperature, thus, worsening your condition. So completely avoid using hot water for bathing. Instead, use cold or lukewarm water to keep your body temperature cool. Also, avoid going to saunas.
17. Evening Primrose Oil
Evening primrose oil is effective in treating symptoms of menopause and premenstrual syndrome. It can effectively bring down the frequency of hot flashes. Apply the oil over the affected areas, especially around the head and neck region, to get a quick relief.
18. Licorice Root
Licorice aids in balancing hormone levels by improving hormone metabolism in the body and reduces the symptoms of menopause. For this remedy, pour boiling water in a cup and add licorice roots to it. Let it steep for 18-20 minutes, then, strain the liquid. Consume the tea once daily. Avoid over-consumption of licorice roots as it can be harmful to the body.
19. Avoid Hot Spices
Hot spices and chilies may raise your body temperature. As a result, your body starts reacting and cause severe perspiration. To avoid hot flashes while eating, it is important to keep away from hot and spicy food.
20. Reduce Stress
Stress disrupts your hormonal balance leading to frequent hot flashes. To prevent this, it is important to lead a stress-free life. Try meditation and other relaxation techniques to get rid of stress and anxiety. Chronic stress is linked to an imbalance in estrogen and progesterone levels in the body, so try to stay away from stress as much as possible.
Furthermore, you can take up relaxation techniques such as yoga, meditation, and deep breathing to help reduce your stress levels.
21. Chamomile Tea
Chamomile tea has a relaxing effect on the body. It helps keep hot flashes and other symptoms of menopause at a bay. Chamomile tea also helps in reducing stress and calms the body. For this remedy, take a cup of hot water and add some dried chamomile leaves to it. Let the beneficial compounds infuse into the water for 12-15 minutes. Strain the decoction and drink it a few times in a day to relieve hot flashes and other menopausal symptoms.
Yoga is an age-old remedy for naturally treating many diseases and maintaining an optimal health. The various asanas or poses, of yoga, produce specific effects. Yoga is also beneficial in reducing symptoms of menopause.
Furthermore, yoga is helpful in reducing stress and depression which is indirectly linked to hot flashes. You should perform yoga on a regular basis using postures and breathing techniques to maintain a better health. It is important to do yoga properly to prevent any harm to your body. Join yoga classes to learn it from a professional trainer.
23. Lavender Tea
One of the most potent ways to prevent hot flashes and sweating during the night is to drink a cup of lavender tea every day before going to bed. It would relax the body and calm your hormones in a natural way. Lavender tea also helps in reducing stress and promotes better sleep. For this remedy, pour boiling water in a cup and add lavender extract to it. Let it steep for a few minutes. Strain the liquid and sip it slowly.
24. Avoid Coffee
Coffee may seem to work well in reducing some amount of stress but it can raise your body temperature leading to frequent and intense hot flashes. As your body temperature increases, your body tries to balance it through severe sweating and hot flashes. To keep your body cool, it is important to avoid drinking coffee. If stopping it altogether seems difficult, you may at least consider to cut back on it for a few days until the symptoms, of hot flashes, subside.
25. Get Enough Sleep
A good night’s sleep is essential for a good health. Since the body goes through a repair process when you sleep, it helps in balancing your hormones as well as reducing stress. Experts recommend an uninterrupted sleep for 6-8 hours to maintain an optimal health. Avoid taking a nap during the day to sleep better at night. Also, create a calming environment in your bedroom to fall asleep early.
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