Menopause and stress

5 Expert Tips for a Stress Free Menopause Journey

Prioritising health over hustle has never been more important. 

Now more than ever, especially in an increasingly digital world, with hybrid working and women juggling both running a home while working on their careers, burnout is high, and so are the health problems associated with chronic stress. For those of us entering the perimenopause and menopause stages, learning to slow down is even more of a necessity.

Stress can cause many health issues and will affect your menopause experience, likely worsening any menopause symptoms you already have, from hot flushes to insomniaweight gain, and joint pain.

But it can be hard to do, especially if we lead a busy life, wearing many hats, and being responsible for the emotional and mental well-being of others, like young children or ageing parents. So, how can you slow down? The best approach is understanding your options and finding what’s right for you. In this article, we run through what you can do to slow down and live well during your menopause transition.

The importance of reducing stress in perimenopause and menopause

Understanding the impact of stress on menopause is crucial. While short-term stress can sometimes be beneficial in motivating and focusing our energy, chronic stress, stemming from various challenges like relationships, finances, or busy lifestyles, triggers physiological responses that negatively affect our overall well-being.

Prolonged stress not only affects sleep, digestion, and immunity but also increases the risk of various health conditions like heart disease, diabetes and depression. The continuous 'flight or fight' response, with elevated stress hormones, takes a toll on our physical and emotional health, leaving us exhausted, anxious, and generally struggling to get through each day. 

In short, slowing down becomes pivotal in managing stress for a smoother menopause journey.

How stress makes menopause symptoms worse

Navigating the menopausal journey becomes more challenging when stress enters the picture. While cortisol, the stress hormone, is a natural response to stress, prolonged periods of elevated cortisol levels can take a toll on your well-being. During menopause, the diminishing levels of estrogen, a hormone crucial for cortisol regulation, adds an extra layer of complexity. As estrogen declines, your body becomes less efficient at managing cortisol, making you more susceptible to stress.

Persistent stress, whether from dietary habits, strained relationships, or overwhelming situations, maintains high cortisol levels, potentially leading to adrenal fatigue or burnout. This can trigger health issues such as depression, weight gain, fatigue, sleep disturbances, and cognitive fog.

Top tips to help you slow down during the menopause transition

Thankfully, there are many natural and simple ways to help manage the stress in your daily life to help keep your menopause symptoms in check and live well. However, if you feel increasingly anxious or are struggling to see a way through your situation, please see a trusted health provider for professional support and a tailored self-care plan.

1. Move your body:

Low-impact exercises like yoga, walking, and swimming are gentle ways to strengthen the body while boosting your mood and improving sleep. It’s also a great way to support cardiovascular health without putting stress on joints.

2. Practice mindfulness and self-care, no matter how small:

Studies show that mindfulness-based stress reduction activities can reduce stress levels, anxiety and depression during the menopause transition while actively improving your quality of life. There are plenty of small ways you can practice mindfulness and self-care to give you moments of calm when you need it:

  • Slowing down during meals and embracing mindful eating allow us to listen to the body's needs and support better digestion
  • Meditation and deep breathing exercises.
  • Keeping a daily gratitude journal.
  • A relaxing bath, reading a book, or a manicure; if it’s something quiet and relaxing that makes you feel better and more grounded, do it!

3. Boost your immunity:

A healthy, balanced diet provides good nutrition, crucial for fighting the effects of stress and reducing your risk of illness. Avoid sugary, processed foods and try to eat a range of colours and whole foods. It’s also a good idea to limit alcohol intake or excessive caffeine so that your sleep isn’t affected—an all-to-common and frustrating menopause symptom.

Stress also lowers natural immunity by decreasing lymphocytes. These are the white blood cells that fight infection. You can help support the lymphatic system by slowing and deepening the breath several times—another way to boost your immunity.

4. Talk to your support network:

As the saying goes, it takes a village! Chatting with friends, family, or even a health professional is an important way to handle stress during menopause and at any point during life’s journey. Having someone who gets what you're going through can really lighten the load on your mind and body. Don’t forget that conversations don't always need to be deep! Laughing with a friend can literally be the best ‘medicine', triggering the release of endorphins – often referred to as “feel good hormones".

5. Consider natural supplements:

An evidence-based, natural herbal supplement formulated to support your mood and well-being during times of stress can also be helpful. The Menopause Co’s Mood supplement contains natural ingredients known for their stress-reducing and mood-boosting properties, like St John’s Wort, Saffron, Lavender and Green Tea Leaf.

The benefits of slowing down 

Menopause can at times be a stressful experience in itself, slowing down and taking care of yourself matter, especially during the rollercoaster of the perimenopause years. From understanding stress to mindfulness and seeking support, it's all about finding the right balance for you.



Discover our range of evidence-based supplements, developed with mind and body nutrients to address the most common symptoms and support your body and your needs before, during, and after this transitionary life stage.

This article has been reviewed by our expert advisory team.


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