Menopause Treatment

 

Weight Gain

Weight-Gain

Weight gain is one of the common concerns for my patients’reasons for seeking care for me. And it is mainly related to aging lifestyle. The many women feel like they are gaining a lot of weight around the time of menopause.  It has been conflicting what the studies have shown but over the menopause transition, you can expect about an average weight gain of five pounds during those years. And there are changes in body composition and fat distribution however that have been shown to be independent of aging. And this includes:

  • An increase in fat accumulation in the abdominal region.
  • The decrease in lean body mass.
  • Visceral abdominal fat – so that is that the bad fat that surrounds your organs that can be associated with cardiovascular disease, diabetes and metabolic syndrome.
  • And then also decrease metabolic rate or any energy expenditure has been shown to be associated with menopause.

So do hormones help you lose weight? No. But estrogen may attenuate some of these metabolic changes. And some studies have shown that estrogen may also attenuate the propensity to accumulate fat in the abdominal region. But I have yet to see any patients lose weight on their hormone therapy.

Hormone therapy

hormone therapy

We are going toward to hormone therapy next and I need spend some time talking about this because this also seems to be an area where there is a lot of confusion.

So hormone therapy refers to the estrogen, or if you have a uterus, the estrogen-progesterone combination products. And it has been available for more than 60 years, it still seems to be the most efficient treatment for hot flashes and vasomotor symptoms. And it is FDA approved for moderate to severe hot flashes and night sweats that are bothersome to a woman. Symptoms of vaginal atrophy, those are the sole symptoms generally the recommendation is s to use the estrogen vaginally and not use it to the point where you would raise your blood estrogen levels. Also, it is FDA approved for prevention of osteoporosis.Though not generally a first-line therapy for that anymore.

So the benefits include as I already mentioned highly effective for the treatment of the vasomotor symptoms, positive effects on preserving bone density.

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