The female body goes through a lot of changes throughout life. A mature woman’s health needs change with her body, and the physical and mental changes caused by depleted hormones after menopause require special attention. Some women choose to fill up missing hormones by taking specially made drugs to reduce discomfort during menopause. Vitamin supplements can help offset the health risks associated with hormone therapy
Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)
Synthetic HRT drugs are chemically altered forms of hormones derived from the urine of pregnant mares. According to a study by the Women’s Health Initiative, synthetic HRT cause chest pain, shortness of breath, breast lumps, vision problems, dizziness and depression. The safer option is bioidentical hormones made from plants.
Patients taking HRT are subject to an increased risk of breast cancer, stroke, heart attack, blood clots in the legs and lungs, ovarian and uterine cancer. That is why it is important to supplement a healthy diet with vitamins that can help reduce the medical risks of HRT.
A study called the Women’s Angiographic Vitamin and Estrogen (WAVE) trial published in the Journal of the American Medical Association reported that female CHD participants on HRT who took vitamin C and E had the highest mortality rate. Overall results suggested vitamins had no effect on coronary health one way or the other.
Bone mineral density decreases drastically after menopause. Vitamin K is known to affect bone metabolism by facilitating the synthesis of osteocalcin (BGP). Therefore it is wise for menopausal women to take a daily vitamin K supplement to 90mcg.
Vitamin A is necessary for vision, cell growth and a healthy immune system. According to the Institute of Medicine, more than 3,000 mcg a day off this vitamin increases the risk of bone fractures. Because postmenopausal women are already vulnerable to osteoporosis, it is best to stick to the proposed recommended daily intake of 700mcg.
Although iron is not a vitamin, it is an important mineral that women need to prevent anemia. The recommended daily allowance is 8 mg a day postmenopausal women, regardless of whether they are on HRT. Stick to the recommended dosage because too much iron can cause stomach upset and increase the risk of heart disease.
Vitamin D is essential for proper absorption of calcium, which is essential for bone health. A calcium supplement is most effective when taken with vitamin D. The recommended daily calcium intake for women is 1,500 mg, and should be combined with 400 IU of vitamin D for optimal absorption.
Vitamin B Complex
B vitamins necessary for energy. A deficiency of vitamin B12 can lead to anemia and dementia in older people. Therefore, supplementing the diet with Vitamin B complex recommended for general good health in women on HRT.