Last Modified on Jun 21, 2014
Treatment of perimenopause includes a variety of lifestyle changes and therapies as well as naturally supporting the body with supplements. A balanced diet and exercise help regulate the body’s natural balances as do other therapies including acupuncture and massage. Additional dietary support, such as magnesium and other supplements can also relieve issues associated with perimenopause.
What is Perimenopause?
Perimenopause literally means “around menopause” and is a term used to refer to the period during which a woman’s body makes the transition toward menopause. While women begin the process at different ages, it typically beings in a woman’s 40s. Common symptoms include menstrual irregularity, hot flashes, sleep problems, mood changes, vaginal problems, bladder issues, decreasing fertility, changes in sexual function, loss of bone and changing cholesterol levels.
Natural Remedies to Support the Transition to Menopause
The symptoms associated with perimenopause and menopause are directly connected to changes in hormones. As such, effective treatment options support the transition by maintaining more constant or consistent levels throughout the change. A variety of lifestyle changes support overall health while supplements including citicholine, coconut oil and magnesium maintain constant nutritional levels to minimize symptoms during this time.
Citicholine is a naturally occurring brain chemical that regulates cognitive processes and function. When taken as a supplement, the compound relieves issues related with memory and forgetfulness, an important component of perimenopause.
Coconut oil is an effective treatment option for treating several symptoms of perimenopause. Taken internally, coconut oil can prevent hormonal imbalance and treat such issues as hot flashes, excessive sweating and headache. Coconut oil can also be used externally to treat vaginal dryness and general skin dryness.
Magnesium is a vital nutrient for regulating a variety of bodily functions. Low magnesium levels are a common contributing factor associated with symptoms of perimenopause. As such, a magnesium supplement can prevent symptoms and treat the condition internally.
Perimenopause is known as the transition toward menopause that is marked by a number of uncomfortable symptoms for women. Natural treatments including supplements and a balanced lifestyle limit the symptoms and facilitate a smoother transition.
03/27/2013: Maya from New York, Ny: "Hello, a friend of mine, who is well into menopause recently told me about citicholine for short term memory issues and stroke recovery. I am having short memory issues in the past month and wonder if my estrogen levels have dropped recently (I am peri-m). Does anyone has experience with this supplement and can you please provide feedback (how much you take a day, etc)? I just ordered it online and will report back in a few weeks. Thank you!"Replies
03/27/2013: Sara from Sacramento, Ca replies: "Citicholine is a good supplement. Last year, when I was a student, I did try it with good results."
[SIDE EFFECTS] 03/24/2010: Juno from West Hollywood, California, Usa: "Hello everyone,
Since I wrote about my terrible reaction to coconut oil (the skin on my neck got cracked and soooo dry) I am not going near coconut oil. I have had many other symptoms for which I am not blaming coconut oil, but I am sure the oil did exacerbate my particular situation. Things like internal shaking, anxiety and all kinds of aches and pains. Things like feeling I'm on caffeine when it's time for bed and I am certainly exhausted.
After so many trials and doctors I now know that these are all premenopausal symptoms, which in other words mean that hormonal balance is changing in my body and doing all kinds of numbers on me (emotionally too of course). If coconut oil stimulates the thyroid that definitely explains the strong adverse reaction to it.
During menopause some women's thyroid becomes under active and for others it might become overactive (Hypertension, Hyperthyroidism) so it very much depends on your specific constitution.
What am I doing to relieve these symptoms? The answer is not simple.
I am trying very carefully monitor the effects of different foods and to find the right balance of exercise and the right supplements like magnesium, zinc, E and others which are known to be helpful.
I am trying to de -stress my day as much as I can.
Meditate and teach myself to take it easy and let go. (as a mother of two young kids that is a feat in its own right.)
Anyway, I am only writing all this to suggest to many women who might be going through all kinds of weird things to take into consideration that the onset of menopause might be the cause of many a strange sensations and emotions. Hope this helps."Replies
[SIDE EFFECTS] 03/26/2010: Amanda from Hot Springs, Ar, Usa replies: "i have been off the coconut oil for a few weeks and i still have more anxiety, internal shaking, hard time sleeping, feel like i cannot calm down. how long does it take to get back to normal? i am 36, but i did not have this problem until i was on the coconut oil for a few weeks."
03/27/2010: Francisca from Michelbach-le-bas, Alsace, France replies: "Did you start by taking a lot at once? I am 52, have just started cooking and taking coconut oil and the only side effect was constipation, no idea why as I haven't suffered from it for many years. Maybe the secret is starting only with cooking as you will only use a bit with every meal and go on from there. No menopausal symptoms here and I am a lot older. Also no other symptoms like someone just mentioned here like sleeplessness (I often don't sleep very well anyway), restfulness and so. I now only rub it on my skin twice a day as it is very dry and will use it only with cooking for a while before I start taking an extra spoonful or two a day."
01/29/2014: Kingsuites from Nc replies: "It is possible that nervousness, anxiety, heart palpatations, the feeling of being wired but tired, are all the result of too much of a drop in progesterone. I went through this, and after being misdiagnosed, several years later had a hormone saliva test from ZRT labs indicating high cortisol and low progesterone. A blood test did not show this, because it does not indicate what hormones are in the tissues. I was told by a Naturopathic Doctor who worked under a cardiologist in his office, that cortisol and progesterone compete for the same receptor cites. So if your body is low in progesterone, guess what - the cortisol makes you feel wired, nervous, anxious, cause insomnia, etc. It became a viscious cycle with me because I couldn't sleep and still had to function with toddlers, so my cortisol was up from just trying to survive. I ended up with chronic fatigue from it. I was eventually prescribed topical bioidentical progesterone cream from a compounding pharmacy. You can get other creams like this in the health food store. It really helped but took about 3 mos for it to build back up in my system. I have been taking it for over 10 years now. I always wondered, why in the world was my progesterone low in the first place? What is interesting is that later on, a health consultant told me that if you have fungus in your system (small intestine/stomach, maybe from too many antibiotics, which I definitely had growing up) that the fungus will use up the progesterone in your system. This was confirmed to him by someone he new in the pharmaceutical industry who worked in a prescription drug producing lab that grew fungus in a progesterone environment to get the mycotoxin to make the drug. All in all, the root for me was to try to eliminate the fungus. What a challenge that Candida is. Still haven't done it, though I've tried a tone of stuff. Since I found that fungus can lead to cancer, I found out about the Budwig Instuitute in Spain on this EarthClinic site. They gave me a link to a home remedy for killing fungus, which I think is the best so far. You can contact them and ask for it."
07/24/2009: Honeylette from Dublin, Ireland: "I am in my late 40's and had experienced dizziness twice already. I don't know if this is influenced by my premenupausal syndrome or i am just a diffecient of some hormones and vitamins and lack of sleep. I want to know what are the natural foods to eat to maintain my health. I don't want to depend so much on drugs."
[YEA] 04/11/2011: Bryana from Ithaca, New York: "I had to write after reading the above post of our 'highly primitive long process of dying'. Not primitive at all. Human women are unique in the animal (and mammal) kingdom. We live for many years after our reproductive years which is to our (and humanity's)great advantage. Menopause means going into our crone years... Seemingly undervalued by today's society... Misguided as it is. Because this is our time women! Estrogen drops by 75%, progesterone drops by 99% but testosterone by only 50%. That means we have more testosterone (ratio wise) than ever before. I'm going to quote Leonard Shlain here... 'with these radical hormone changes that control personality come dramatic shifts on a woman's psyche. Indecision is replaced by clearheaded assertiveness and when we are freed from our child-rearing responsibilies and re-enter the world on our own terms we can exert a wider influence on the welfare of the society. ' As Margaret Mead once said "There is no greater power in the world than the zest of a postmenopausal woman."
So let's embrace this time in our lives as the beautiful second prime that it is. Yes those symptoms need to be resolved but looking at menopause in a more empowering way can also help. We relinquish our power of fertility but become so much more with our wisdom, surefootedness and commitment to action."Replies
04/12/2011: Bess from Calgary, Alberta, Canada replies: "Thanks, Bryana, for such an empowering and uplifting comment. So many women (especially in North America) are worried that menopause is the "end" of things, yet, in reality, it's the beginning of a whole new adventure. Margaret Mead was right - it's time to embrace the new you! Cheers, Bess (and, yep, I'm a postmenopausal woman)"
04/12/2011: Granny Laura from Waco, Tx Usa replies: "There are many formulations you can find at the drugstore or discount store that will provide moisture for menopausal women. I chose one that didn't have mineral oil (highly allergic) but does contain hylauronic acid. It really does work.
I have for many years taken a formula by Nature's Way called Change O' Life. I originally took it to help w/hot flashes. The smoother skin and enhanced libido are just side effects! I can live w/that.... :-D"
09/07/2013: Erin from Tampa, Fl replies: "Thank you for that post. I am looking forward to my vital postmenopausal years. In the meantime, how do you deal with the symptoms of ovulation at low ebb? It feels like I'm on the verge of a heart attack or stroke every time I get a period, and since mine are no longer regular it's impossible to predict when it will strike. I'm so tired of being sick and tired. But it's nice to know there is something to look forward to."
05/02/2013: Ruth from Birmingham, Uk: "I am 54 years old & still menstruating, however, the last couple of months I have begun to have sweaty armpits.... No hotflashes, no night sweats... I figure this the onset of menopause. It is most embarrasing though. Is there a solution? Or a way to control this issue... I know it is the natural process, but I can't wear anything with sleeves nowadays> HELP!!!"Replies
05/02/2013: Joy from Battleground, Wash replies: "I never sweat a drop until I was pregnant and after the baby was born, no more sweat.
Then menopause came and I sweat on a regular schedule.
I haven't tried to stop it since it is one of the ways the body cleanses.
A magnesium deficiency will cause hormones to go out of balance sooner than they would if a person has their minerals in balance. Most cal mag supplements have too much calcium 2/1 ratio and our diets cause a calcium overload, which cause health problems of many sorts but especially heart issues because calcium makes the muscles tighten and magnesium relaxes them A magnesium deficiency presents in many symptoms... Muscle problems of tension and headaches and TMJ and the list goes on. Hope this helps.... Find the right magnesium for yourself through research. Then if you get your minerals in balance, since the body need them for the electrolyte system to work, and vitamin D helps them all do what they do. Most people are low D unless they run around with shorts and tank top in the sun.
If you still need help, after that... Try a dab of progesterone cream... bio identical."
11/06/2013: Michelle from Florida replies: "I am 46 and definitely have the sweating issue too. I have noticed that caffeine makes it much worse!!! One cup of coffee makes me sweat like a marathon runner! I did have green tea this morning and did not sweat, so maybe the lower caffeine content was ok for me."
03/01/2010: Grace from Kansas City, Mo: "I am just wondering, after looking at a number of different ailments/remedies, why there isn't anything on here regarding Perimenopause or Premenopause. Many of the symptoms that I see from women over the age of 35 are suspiciously the same as what the perimenopause symptoms. Irregular heartbeats, weight gain, adrenal fatigue, anxiety, depression, and on and on. And whereas using progesterone cream to help balance out the hormones during this phase of life, which can last over ten years in some women, may not cure everything. It can more than likely help solve most of the issues some of these women are having. I'm finding that most people and many doctors are clueless about this subject so finding answers is difficult. Some input or thoughts on adding this subject would be greatly appreciated by many!!!!"
EC: Hi Grace, we do have a perimenopause page, just not a lot of remedies on it!
03/04/2010: Kp from Lawrenceville, Ga, Usa replies: "Hi Grace, Like you I would like to see feedback on this subject. I know you see ACV mentioned in almost every post and you may be using it too. I have noticed that the hot flashes have decreased to few and far between since I began ACV 2 months ago, btw acid reflux symptoms are dulled to a few flare ups depending on what I eat. However, I find I am more irretable and anxious which turns into crying spells. My husband gets worried and thinks something is terribly wrong with me and wants to help. Then I feel guilty and ashamed for I have unintentionally hurt his feelings. He knows that he can be the ear that listens to me and that really helps. Then there are the little things that don't matter like putting the dishes in the right place can trigger an unwanted emotion like a domino effect.
Back to the supplements, I have started Turmeric which I feel will help with multiple ailments. Post some comments, all of us going thru or those that have been thru menopause can learn from one another. EC is number one forum for me, a daily visitor. Take care!"
[YEA] 09/07/2013: Erin from Tampa, Fl replies: "Yeay to turmeric, it definitely makes me feel a little better. I've just gone from only putting it on food to taking supplements as well, so hopefully the effects will last longer with the supplementation."
09/07/2013: Kt from Usa replies: "Ginger is great too. I take both together."
11/06/2013: Michelle from Florida replies: "One thing that has helped my moods dramatically is myoinositol. It's used for fertility, but I also read where it has helped people with (true) obsessive compulsive disorder to calm their tics. It has really leveled me out. I take 3000 mg a day, per what I have learned from research online. The one I take is by J----ow (I do not have any affiliation with them-that's just what I found for a good price). I have also had some luck with Maca. The dosage is really important. I started with 1000 mg grams a day, but didn't see much difference until I increased it to 2000 mg a day. This helps balance hormones and helped me with pms-like symptoms. Some women say it helps with hot flashes and sleeplessness and increases your libido. Good luck!"
11/06/2013: Kt from Usa replies: "I neglected to mention that magnesium powder is something else that has made a difference for me."
06/09/2009: Tina from Salinas, California: "just need to ask for advice for peri/premenopausal remedies...i've been taking multivitamins, herbs such as black cohosh, 5htp at night, extra calcium, magnesium, bcomplex, trying to exercise, watch what i eat....still a little anxious during day, wake up a lot during night because of hot flashes, night sweats...appreciate safe advice. thank you."Replies
06/24/2009: Ellen from Gainesville, FL replies: "Acupuncture has helped me, along with Evening Primrose Oil, extra calcium and eliminating all caffeine and chocolate from my diet. Anything with caffeine in it seems to worsen my hot flashes and insomnia, no matter how small of a serving I have."
04/19/2010: Kc from Washington, Dc replies: "Tina,
I see that you mentioned you are taking b vitamins. I just wanted to let you know that I had started taking b complex and it actually made me MORE anxious. They can be very tricky. For some people they are great for anxiety. But, for others such as myself, it makes the situation worse."
04/20/2010: T from Maryland, Usa replies: "If you suspect your B-complex is giving you problems, you could try switching brands or forms. I had bought a liquid form with the aim of better absorption - it wasn't long before I realized it was making me quite irritable. The capsules I have, on the other hand, have been pretty beneficial. They are the same brand, oddly enough! I don't know why the difference in effect, but it's just something you might consider before stopping B's entirely."
07/16/2010: Dara from Los Angeles, Ca Usa replies: "First off, I love this website thank you so very much. Earth Clinic is much needed with all the silly drug companies trying to feed us their drugs. . . . Second, Ladies You all rock! ! ! It seems that WE are the help that we need, so lets keep finding out what works and writing it down. It seems that peri menopause remedies are really hard to find. I realized yesterday at 44 that I am not insane nor falling apart but I am changing. At this time I have nothing to contribute but will start trying ACV and go from there. . . . ALSO does anyone have a good women's vitamin for Perimenopause? I tried Internet sites but they all want my arm & leg. Natural is better. . . . . BTW my daily diet consists of very healthy eating habits and until my severe depression & lack of focus I exercised 3-4 times a week. Today I have started a 21day detox cleanse and exercise regime. I'm taking my life back!!!"
01/08/2011: Mesem from Toulon, France replies: "This is pretty basic thinking but...
After 50 years a woman is no longer reproductive so whatever happens to her body after 45-50 is not a result of evolutionary pressures, thus women are stuck with this highly primitive long process of dying. I guess having a healthy grandmother would have implications on the survival rate of grandchildren but other than that I can't see an evolutionary reason for us to be around long... I have only thought about this 5 minutes before writing so there are probably some holes in my theory! Men keep reproducing for much longer so they are implicated even in old age in the evolutionary process."
01/10/2011: Lily from Brisbane, Queensland, Australia replies: "Hi Mesem, your post is interesting. I read a chapter on menopause from a book by a doctor who believe's supplements are the key to health so she is one of us, and her theory is that we women have trouble sleeping at night during and after menopause because in a tribal setting we would be looking after our non sleeping grandchildren, and the mother can have a well earned rest. More food for thought! Cheers Lily."
04/10/2011: Brightyoga from Long Beach, Ca, Usa replies: "Here's an expert on the topic & her website.
Christiane Northrup@DrChrisNorthrupT: 40.761505, -73.995235Visionary pioneer and beloved authority in the field of women's health and wellness.http://www.drnorthrup.com"03/27/2012: Monica from Palmyra, Nj replies: "You can't possibly be serious! "I can't see an evolutionary for us to be around long" ???? That post is insulting to every woman over 45-50 who reads it."