As if menopause is not bad enough for many ladies...and then along comes snoring and it's complications. Untreated snoring can lead to weight gain and a slower metabolism. The good news is that it's simple to treat with our ladies SnoreFemme Mandibular Splint (mouthguard). Read about it here.
You shouldn't just accept what you hear or read about the inevitable weight gain, particularly around the belly, as a lot of it is caused by symptoms of menopause such as snoring and sleep deprivation - both of which can be treated.
If you are perimenopausal or well into menopause, you may find that you partner has reported you have suddenly started to snore. Indeed around 60%+ of peri and post-menopausal women have poor quality sleep. This may be from their own snoring or their partner's. Either way it is imperative it's treated as night time awakenings can lead to the development of insomnia.
We'd like to all deny it, but the facts are once a woman enters menopause the gap between the ratio of male vs female snorers narrows suddenly. There are various reasons touted for this from weight gain, hormone fluctuations and the simple fact that as we age our throat muscles are like any other muscle and become a little slacker allowing the tongue to drop back to the soft palate, vibrate, and produce the sound we know as snoring.
Unfortunately it's a vicious cycle as the more we snore the more we seem to crave carbohydrates, the more weight we put on and the less we feel like exercising due to tiredness from lack of quality sleep. Night sweats, hot flushes and increased urination at night are bad enough to cope with, let alone the sudden development of snoring. Also it's not great for our partners (if they aren't already snoring themselves!).
Do you feel like you're prone to putting on more weight when you're stressed or not sleeping well, even if you're eating the same amount of food as you always have? Too much cortisol can slow your metabolism, causing more weight gain than you would normally experience and making it harder to lose weight even when you are trying.
So by getting better quality sleep, you can lower your cortisol level which will better balance your blood sugar levels, control mood swings, eradicate fatigue and simply make you feel a whole lot better!
Excessive stress even affects where we tend to store fat. Higher levels of stress are linked to greater levels of abdominal or visceral fat. Increased levels of cortisol can not only make you crave unhealthy food, but excess nervous energy can often cause you to eat more than you normally would.
It is important to modify the types of food you ingest particularly when you are stressed or sleep deprived. By eating plenty of Omega-3's, good quality protein and and 'live' food (fruit and vegies) at each meal your insulin levels can be stabilised, which means you will not have low blood sugar cravings and spikes from 'empty' carbohydrates. When your insulin levels are stable you are better able to burn fat efficiently and your reliance on and cravings for junk foods will diminish.
Don't underestimate the impact on your weight from your partner's snoring either! If you commonly lose up to around 1-1.5 hours of sleep each night due to your partner's snoring it's referred to as 'secondary snoring' and will impact just as greatly on your own health!
Ensure you have quality sleep - treat your snoring and modify your television, alcohol, caffeine and sugar habits in the evening.
Include all the essential elements in your diet - in the best quality form possible. Buy organic meat from grass fed animals which has lower saturated fats, and Omega 3 rich organic eggs. Freshwater hook caught fish where possible rather than farmed and organic fruit and vegetables. Buy lowering the toxins in your food your body does not need to work as hard to assimilate the nutrients it needs. Consider probiotics each day and a good quality digestive enzyme.
Drink an adequate amount of water - and not all in one sitting - sip it through the day.
Exercise - in an enjoyable way!
Consider meditation or simply practice deep breathing in a calm controlled manner when you feel stressed.
Make your bedroom an enjoyable place to be. Organise it neatly and make it a serene escape from the world.
Take the first steps to getting great sleep, lowering your stress levels and regulating your metabolism now by treating the snoring!