“You only hurt yourself when you’re not expanding and growing. Many people can’t stand the thought of aging, but it’s the crystallized thought patterns and inflexible mind-sets that age people before their time. You can break through and challenge your crystallized patterns and mind-sets. That’s what evolution and the expansion of love are really about.”
~Sara Paddison, The Hidden Power of the Heart~
Changes during Menopause Increases Risk of Heart Disease and Stroke
When women hear the word menopause, they often think about hot flashes, hormone shifts and mood swings. But what about heart disease? Studies show a woman’s risk of heart disease intensifies drastically around the time of natural menopause, which for most women is around the age of 50. This news may come as a surprise, but experts explain that understanding risk factors is an important first step, and reassure women that there are ways to lower your risk.
"Many women younger than 50 have not yet gone through menopause and still have high levels of the female hormone estrogen in their blood, which is thought to help protect the heart. After menopause, however, the levels of estrogen in a woman’s body drop significantly and can contribute to the higher risks of cardiovascular disease," explains Vera Rigolin,MD, associate director of the Center for Women’s Cardiovascular Health in the Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute of Northwestern Memorial Hospital.
Weight gain is also a factor that may play a role in postmenopausal risk of heart disease. Maintaining a healthy weight often becomes difficult after your body experiences a change in hormone levels. Extra mass can take a toll on the body causing physical inactivity, high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol, all risk factors that can lead to heart attack and stroke.
Women need to take an extra step in taking care of their health during menopause in order to prevent heart disease and stroke. Which includes eating a healthy diet, plenty of exercise, and a required eight hours of sleep a night. Secondly, it is important for women to do all they can to take care of their menopause symptoms. This means finding an effective menopause treatment to balance out the body’s hormones in order to protect your body against the risks of heart disease and stroke.
With the support of bio-identical Hot Flash Freedom you can just enjoy the independence from your period and the related pains. When going through menopause your sex hormones and stress hormones are negatively affected. Research shows that stress (physical or emotional) is the main destructive influence on hormone balance. Most products only take care of the sex hormones but the other still remains and very little menopause relief is found. Through our unique combination of ingredients Hot Flash Freedom gives your body a boost by aiding the sex hormones, stress hormones, and libido support. Hot Flash Freedom will make your menopause problems non-existent and your life will become a breath of fresh air!
Creamy Chicken and Dumplings
Our revision of creamy chicken and dumplings uses whole-wheat flour for the dumplings and adds lots of vegetables to the filling. The delicious, satisfying results are packed with beneficial nutrients and dietary fiber, and because we don’t use canned soup for the sauce, sodium levels are drastically reduced. To go even lighter, try the recipe with boneless, skinless chicken breasts.
- 1 3/4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
- 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
- 2 large carrots, diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 tablespoon poultry seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 2 14-ounce cans reduced-sodium chicken broth
- 1 cup water
- 1 1/2 cups frozen peas, thawed
- 1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup nonfat buttermilk
- Toss chicken with 2/3 cup all-purpose flour in a medium bowl until coated. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Reserving the remaining flour, add the chicken to the pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate.
- Reduce heat to medium and add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the pot. Stir in carrots, celery, onion, 1 tablespoon poultry seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Sprinkle the reserved flour over the vegetables; stir to coat. Stir in broth, water, peas and the reserved chicken. Bring to a simmer, stirring often.
- To prepare dumplings: Meanwhile, stir whole-wheat flour, 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning, baking soda and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl. Stir in buttermilk.
- Drop the dough, 1 tablespoon at a time, over the simmering chicken stew, making about 18 dumplings. Adjust heat to maintain a gentle simmer, cover and cook undisturbed until the dumplings are puffed, the vegetables are tender and the chicken is cooked through, about 15 minutes.
Tips for Menopausal Women Reducing Their Risk of Heart Disease
A healthy lifestyle goes a long way in preventing heart disease in women. Incorporating the following tips into your everyday life may help you reduce your risk of heart disease during and after menopause.
- Avoid or quit smoking. Smokers have twice the risk of heart attack than nonsmokers. In addition to eliminating cigarettes, stay away from other peoples’ smoke. Secondhand smoke also increases the risk of heart disease.
- Maintain a healthy body weight. The more you weigh, the harder your heart has to work to give your body nutrients. Research has shown that being overweight contributes to the onset of heart disease.
- Exercise for at least three to five times per week. The heart is like any other muscle in that it needs to be worked to keep it strong and healthy. Being active or exercising regularly (ideally, at least 30 minutes every day) helps improve how well the heart pumps blood through your body. Activity and exercise also help reduce many other risk factors. It helps lower high blood pressure and cholesterol, reduces stress, helps keep weight off, and improves blood sugar levels.
- Eat well. Follow a diet low in saturated fat; low in trans fat (partially hydrogenated fats); and high in fiber, whole grains, legumes (such as beans and peas), fruits, vegetables, fish, folate-rich foods, and soy.
- Treat and control medical conditions. Diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure are known risk factors for heart disease.
- Take an aspirin every day, if approved by your doctor. Check with your doctor first; he or she will recommend the dose, if any, that is most appropriate for you.