The Wisdom of Menopause

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9780749922146: The Wisdom of Menopause

Dr Christiane Northrup is one of the world's most trusted medical advisers. In The Wisdom of Menopause, the bestselling author of Women's Bodies, Women's Wisdom and Mother-Daughter Wisdom gives you all the medical and nutritional advice you need about the menopause. In particular, Dr Northrup examines the connection between the menopause and a woman's emotional and spiritual development during this important period of her life. Combining expert medical information and advice with mind-body healing, Dr Northrup explains: How to deal with the physical and emotional symptoms of the menopause; How to decide about HRT and alternative supplements; How to prevent long-term problems such as heart disease, hormone-related cancers, and memory loss; How the menopause can become a period of considerable personal empowerment.

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Review:

Menopause doesn't have to be a dreaded curse of aging during which we can look forward only to hot flashes and whacked-out hormonal mood swings. According to Christiane Northrup, M.D. (Women's Bodies, Women's Wisdom), menopause often marks the beginning of a woman's most sexually passionate, creatively inspired, and professionally productive phase of life.

While this may sound like wishful thinking, Northrup backs up her good news with solid medical expertise. As an obstetrician and gynecologist, Northrup has specialized in using a mind-body approach to women's health for decades, which means she doesn't just write about hormones, but also examines how a woman's lifestyle, emotions, and beliefs are affected by menopause. With the right diet, attitude, and perhaps some supplements along the way, women can actually look forward to a resurgence of energy and a revolutionary opportunity for personal growth--one that rivals the hormonally driven period of adolescence in its scope and urgency, she claims. And yes, at just under 500 pages, The Wisdom of Menopause does explain how to have a positive and healthy menopause in concise detail. Northrup has indeed "written the book" on menopause.

It helps that Northrup has been through menopause herself (she vowed she wouldn't write a book on it until she was on the other side). Readers have the sense that they are gleaning advice from a knowledgeable holistic doctor as well as a sage aunt whose life was radically altered by the "change of life" (Northrup divorced at the onset of menopause). After she shares her personal story of "the change," Northrup delves into a significant discussion on how self-sacrifice catches up with women in midlife. Suddenly, hormones are directing women out of the caregiver role and into an inwardly focused assessment of life and its meaning, she explains. Resentments (not hormones) are what spur the notorious surges of anger, as women reexamine the agreements surrounding their relationships with colleagues, friends, and family members.

From here, Northrup guides readers into a thorough section on menopausal hormone changes--a discussion that is scientifically informative, yet entirely accessible. While acknowledging the need for hormone-replacement therapy and the tremendous relief it can provide (helping to alleviate insomnia, hot flashes, and depression), Northrup encourages women to avoid synthetic hormones and instead consider "bioidentical" hormones (such as estradiol, estrone, and estriol). She also devotes an entire chapter to foods and supplements that support hormonal balance. By the way, she says to skip the wild Mexican yam creams: "they certainly don't provide the documented benefits of progesterone." Be warned: some readers may find the advice in Wisdom of Menopause too alternative for their liking. For example, in her discussion on insomnia, one of Northrup's recommendations is to cover the mirror at night, following the ancient Asian design principles of feng shui. (Skeptics will find Northrup's medical assertions carefully cited and footnoted in the rear of her book.)

Northrup gives a solid and practical diet plan that supports hormonal balance while countering the weight gain that so frequently plagues menopausal women ("focus on portion size, not calories," "eat protein at every meal," and cut down on refined and high-carbohydrate foods). Readers can also expect a thorough mind-body discussion in subsequent chapters that cover breast health, bone loss, and cultivating midlife beauty, along with chapters titled "Sex and Menopause: Myths and Reality" and "Creating Pelvic Health and Power."

She concludes with a list of mail-order and online resources, such as retailers for bioidentical hormones, progesterone cream, Chinese herbs, soy products, weight-loss audiocassettes, lubricants, and Kegel weights. Northrup takes a truly comprehensive approach to all the effective treatments of menopausal symptoms so that women can make their own highly informed and wise choices. --Gail Hudson

From the Inside Flap:

Dr. Christiane Northrup has become one of American women's most trusted medical advisers. In Women's Bodies, Women's Wisdom, she broke entirely new ground by demonstrating that women's most common medical problems are often rooted in the basic conditions of their lives -- and that they can return to health by learning to listen to their bodies. She also integrated advanced medical techniques with the best natural remedies, offering readers specific guidance on choosing the right approach for themselves.

Now, in The Wisdom of Menopause, Dr. Northrup once again challenges convention. "The change" is not simply a collection of physical problems to be "fixed" -- whether with hormones or herbs -- but a mind-body revolution that brings the greatest opportunity for growth since adolescence. This vitally important new book examines the connection between menopause and a woman's emotional and spiritual life. And it stresses how the choices a woman makes now -- from the quality of her relationships to the quality of her diet--either secure her health and well-being for the rest of her life, or put her future at risk.

Dr. Northrup draws on her own life-changing experiences -- as well as on many intimate case histories--to explore the transformative power of these years. Readers will learn:
* how menopause literally rewires the brain, triggering a shift of priorities from nesting and caretaking to personal growth and equality
* how to listen for the wake-up calls inherent in women's cyclic nature, from PMS to SAD to menopausal symptoms
* how the body adjusts naturally to changing hormones, and how to make personalized decisions about HRT and alternative supplements
* how to rebalance metabolism shifts and prevent middle-age spread
* how to deal with the myths and realities of sexual changes and appearance issues
* how to prevent long-term health problems such as heart disease, hormone-related cancers, and memory loss

Candid and reassuring, The Wisdom of Menopause elucidates the changes women should expect from ages 40 to 55, and shows how these changes can be wonderfully life-affirming. Instead of dreading menopause as a time of loss, women will hear the real message their bodies are sending -- that this is a time of personal empowerment and positive energy ... and a time for women to break free and thrive.

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Book Description Piatkus Books, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: Used: Good. Paperback in good condition, small creasing to cover. Review For women of a certain age, The Wisdom of Menopause could be just the book you've been waiting for. Menopause doesn't have to be a dreaded curse of ageing during which we can look forward only to hot flushes and hormonal mood swings. According to Christiane Northrup, MD, menopause often marks the beginning of a woman's most sexually passionate, creatively inspired, and professionally productive phase of life. While this may sound like wishful thinking, Northrup backs up her good news with solid medical expertise. As an obstetrician and gynaecologist, Northrup has specialised in using a mind-body approach to women's health for decades, which means she doesn't just write about hormones, but also examines how a woman's lifestyle, emotions, and beliefs are affected by menopause. With the right diet, attitude, and perhaps some supplements along the way, women can actually look forward to a resurgence of energy and a revolutionary opportunity for personal growth one that rivals the hormonally driven period of adolescence in its scope and urgency, she claims. And yes, at just under 500 pages, The Wisdom of Menopause does explain how to have a positive and healthy menopause in concise detail. Northrup has indeed "written the book" on menopause. It helps that Northrup has been through menopause herself (she vowed she wouldn't write a book on it until she was on the other side). Readers have the sense that they are gleaning advice from a knowledgeable holistic doctor as well as a sage aunt whose life was radically altered by the "change of life" (Northrup divorced at the onset of menopause). After she shares her personal story of "the change," Northrup delves into a significant discussion on how self-sacrifice catches up with women in midlife. Suddenly, hormones are directing women out of the care-giver role and into an inwardly focused assessment of life and its meaning, she explains. Resentments (not hormones) are what spur the notorious surges of anger, as women re-examine the agreements surrounding their relationships with colleagues, friends, and family members. ISBN 0-7499-2214-1 0749922141. Bookseller Inventory # 5437

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