How To Save Your Sex Life From Menopause Dryness
Great Sex After 50: Part 2
Watch the rest of the videos in this series
Great Sex After 50 Part 2: How to boost estrogen naturally with diet, lifestyle, and supplements before, during, and after (yes after) menopause - to save your sex life from menopause dryness
Great Sex After 50 Part 4: Guest expert Clinical Sexologist & Intimacy Coach Jane Steckbeck joins me and shares her best tips, strategies, & tools on vaginal dryness, incontinence, pain with intercourse, and much more.
Great Sex After 50 Part 5: Where did your libido go and how to get it back, a Tonic Herbalists perspective & tips.
Links Mentioned in the Video
This is the second in a series of articles I’m doing on great sex after 50.
In the first article (CLICK HERE to read that one) we covered
- What is vaginal dryness and where does it come from?
- The different causes of menopause dryness
- How to overcome the non-estrogenic causes of vaginal dryness in menopause
In this post we’re talking about the big one - estrogen.
The first, most common cause of vaginal dryness during or after menopause is low or declining estrogen levels.
And this post is all about how to boost those estrogen levels during perimenopause, menopause, and YES even post menopause.
I want you to know… Chinese Medicine loves this topic. So here are the diet, lifestyle, and supplements basics you need to set the foundation for hormonal balance to help reduce or eliminate that menopause dryness.
And before I get into specifics, I want to give you a heads up.
There will be things in here you’ve heard before like eat more vegetables, drink more water and quit smoking.
And I want you to know, I’m well aware that this is often easier said than done.
But what you might not know that in Chinese Medicine, menopause is a time of huge opportunity - as in - it’s one of the best times in your whole life to make healthy changes. They’re actually easier to make and they have an even bigger impact NOW than ever.
And I specialize in helping real women with real lives make these changes once and for all - for the long term. So that they can turn their health around and improve everything from vaginal dryness to weight gain, low energy, etc, etc, etc.
So if you think you might be ready to start making some changes in your health, I want you to download my Menopausal Woman’s Roadmap. It’s perfect during peri-menopause, menopause or after menopause. It’s free and it will give you the first steps to take. They’re easy. You can do them for sure. Plus, the roadmap will be followed up by an invitation to an hour-long class I teach online on boosting & balancing your hormones naturally. It’s also free. It’s a step by step system that makes easier than you ever thought possible to get on this healthy path once and for all.
So keep that in mind as you read through these specific recommendations for overcoming menopause dryness naturally, and if you’re really ready, so am I.
Fact #1: Diet Is The Place To Start If You Want To Overcome Menopause Dryness Naturally
- Without including the basic building blocks of hormones in your diet, you don’t really have a chance of making more estrogen naturally and increasing natural female lubrication.
- The right diet is the foundation of helping your body make more hormones, like progesterone and healthy estrogens. If you want menopause dryness natural remedies - diet is the place to start.
- The right diet is also the foundation of helping your body detox aggressive estrogens
- The right diet will feed the local microbiome of your vagina (so important) and will help keep the pH of the area correct.
- The right diet will help keep insulin balanced and yeast under control
And every one of these plays a part in healthy natural lubrication. So yeah, it’s important
So.. What’s The Right Diet For Increasing Estrogen Safely & Naturally?
This is where so many women get stuck. Because there is so much conflicting information out there. Or because they try to stick to a diet that is too difficult… It’s not realistic that they’ll follow it consistently.
So a diet that supports healthy estrogen levels can include: (See the Action Steps below for specific foods in each category)
- Plenty of the healthiest unrefined fats rich in Omega 3 fatty acids and fat-soluble vitamins.
- Plenty of fruits & vegetables in a rainbow of colors every day. Fruit & veg need to make up a big enough percentage of your daily diet.
- Include foods rich in B vitamins
- Drink plenty of pure water every day
- Use foods rich in phytoestrogens safely (CLICK HERE for a whole article on phytoestrogenic foods & how to use them)
- Include probiotic-rich fermented foods
Foods To Avoid If You Want Your Body To Make More Healthy Estrogen & Increase Lubrication Naturally
Getting the right foods into your diet is the most important thing you can do. But then, avoiding certain foods will boost your results
- Excess coffee, alcohol, or white sugar
- A high-glycemic diet (lots of sugar) causes a cascade of reactions in your body that seriously interfere with your hormones and with natural lubrication
Fact #2: The Right Supplements Can Supercharge Your Natural Lubrication and Help Your Body Make More Estrogen
- Supplements can give you a concentrated, consistent supply of some hard-to-find hormonal building blocks
Let's talk about the best supplements for vaginal dryness in this week's blog
What Are The Best Supplements For Vaginal Dryness During or After Menopause?
- Fatty acids like flax seeds or evening primrose oil
- Herbs rich in phytoestrogens like black cohosh can be wonderful, but I highly recommend working with an herbalist to get an herbal combination balanced for your body.
- Take the highest quality multivitamin & multimineral (cheap vitamins = totally not worth it) to supplement your diet and make sure you’re not missing anything day to day.
- Vitamin A, beta carotene, and B vitamins are particularly helpful for vaginal dryness.
- Omega 3 essential fatty acids like fish oil or evening primrose oil help support the health of your cell membranes
What About HRT or Topical Hormone Creams?
Yes, hormones can boost estrogen systemically or locally and help with vaginal dryness BUT… If you’re going to use them, here are my recommendations:
- Only start using hormones after you have the right diet, lifestyle, and supplements in place.
- Work with an expert, a specialist to make sure you're on the right dose of the right hormones!
Fact #3: Certain Lifestyle Factors Are Absolutely Key For Helping Your Body Make More Estrogen
- There’s something called VIP - its a chemical that’s produced by your body. And when it’s in your bloodstream your natural lubrication can be doubled!
With diet + lifestyle + supplements you can boost estrogen to reduce vaginal dryness naturally (it's all on this weeks blog)
Lifestyle Habits That Increase Estrogen Naturally
If your adrenals are exhausted by overuse of coffee, alcohol, and white sugar, severe stress, burning the candle at both ends for too long or the use of drugs like steroids or cortisone..
Your body is not going to be able to make enough estrogen during, and especially after, menopause.
- Stress management is absolutely necessary if you want your body to continue making estrogen during & after menopause when your ovaries slow way down.
- Get enough rest and enough sleep
- Get some sunshine
- Take deep breaths every day
- Use the power of your brain. Do things that make you feel sexy and turned on on a regular basis.
- Get the help you need to cut down on or stop smoking, and to stop using excess alcohol
- Review all your medications with your doctor and see if there are any you don't absolutely need anymore (almost all medications have a side effect of dryness in Chinese Medicine)
Action Steps: How To Increase Estrogen Naturally To Combat Menopause Dryness
- DIET: Include foods from all the categories above. Here are some examples:
- Liver is very high B12 content
- Wild-Caught Salmon
- Phytoestrogenic foods like soy & legumes
- Eat fermented foods like fermented vegetables, yogurt, natto, & kefir
- Drink plenty of pure water
- DIET: Avoid
- Very sugary or refined foods
- Preservatives and pesticides
- Anything packed in plastic, because plastic contains xenoestrogens (you do NOT want these, they confuse your body and interfere with your natural estrogen)
- Practice regular stress management (here are some links to get you started)
- Quick and Easy at Home Stress Management #1: Acupressure ear massage
- Quick and Easy at Home Stress Management #2: Guided Meditation
- Get deep breaths & sunshine daily
- Get enough sleep
- Do things that make you feel sexy (some of my best suggestions are in the video above!)
- Get the help you need to cut down on or quit smoking & drinking excess alcohol
- Use superfoods and only the highest quality supplements like vitamins, minerals, and essential fatty acids
- Use estrogenic herbs safely
Sometimes you'd rather read than watch - I get it!
Probably the biggest and most talked about is dropping estrogen levels - and this happens most often during & after menopause - if you want to know what you can do internally with diet, supplements, & lifestyle to boost those estrogen levels as much as possible - and in the safest way possible - stick around because that’s what we’re talking about in today’s video.
Hi I’m Dana LaVoie - an Acupuncturist & Herbalist, and The Founder of Menopause Basics. And I love helping women learn to boost & balance their hormones naturally from the inside out - because this is the first step you want to take in increasing your lubrication naturally overcoming vaginal dryness.
This is exactly what Chinese medicine loves - it’s what Asian women all know growing up - it basically should have been in a handbook that every single woman received when she got her first period - but most of us never did - so here it is - the diet/lifestyle/supplement basics you need to get the foundation of hormonal balance - and reducing or eliminating menopause sex and signs of aging including vaginal dryness!!
Of course if you know me already - you know I recommend starting with diet! Without the basic building blocks of hormones - you don’t really have a chance of making this happen naturally.
The RIGHT DIET is the foundation of helping your body make more hormones like progesterone and healthy estrogens while helping your body detox aggressive estrogens
- it will help boost moisture in your whole body
- it will help eliminate heat that dries things up
- it will help keep your brain and gut healthy
- it will feed the local microbiome of your vagina (which is so important)
- it will keep the pH of the area correct,
- it will keep insulin balanced and yeast under control
All of which play a part in healthy natural lubrication.
So yeah, it’s important!
So what’s the right diet?
I feel this is where a lot of women get stuck - they don’t know what’s most important - they either get CONFUSED & FRUSTRATED and give up - or they try a diet too complicated and hard to follow consistently - or they go kind of healthy but don’t know the most IMPORTANT THINGS to do consistently - so they don’t get much in the way of results.
Here’s what you want to focus on:
1) Plenty of the healthiest unrefined fats including things rich in omega 3 & fat soluble vitamins foods rich in essential fatty acids like flax seeds! These are one of my fav superfoods for menopause - 2T fresh ground per day.
2) You want to eat a rainbow of fruit & vegetables every day - you need a certain percentage of fruit & vegetables to make up a big enough portions of your overall diet
3) Eat foods right in b vitamins examples are: Beef Liver. The top benefit of eating liver is it's very high B12 content. ..Sardines. ..Atlantic Mackerel: 3 ounces: 7.4 micrograms (over 100 percent DV)... Lamb...Wild-Caught Salmon...Nutritional Yeast... Feta Cheese...Grass-Fed Beef...or take a really high quality supplement...
4) Drink plenty of pure water every single day - for optimal function, and improved hydration will increase the amount of fluids available for internal vaginal moisture. Drink lots of pure, fresh spring water and herbal teas.
5)Increase intakes of phytoestrogens, which are plant based estrogens which are able to mimic our own body’s estrogens, can also help to increase vaginal moisture.
Phytoestrogens can be found in soy products which contain soy isoflavones and other food sources such as flaxseed (which as I said are also great health fats) , legumes (beans), nuts, apples and cherries, just to name a few. Increasing phytoestrogens in your diet is one of the easiest and most effective ways to combat vaginal dryness.
And here’s a note on using soy on your diet - ONLY use soy if you’re not sensitive or allergic to it (its a common allergen) and the BEST way to eat soy is to eat a fermented form of soy like tempeh or natto in relatively small amounts - and ONLY use an organic or non-gmo soy.
You also want to eat probiotic rich fermented foods - like the soy natto listed above as well as kefir, yogurt and especially fermented vegetables.
If you’re ready to get started with the best diet for your hormones - I have a FREE download called the MENOPAUSAL WOMAN ROADMAP - be sure to grab your FREE COPY using the link below!! It will lead you step by step thru adding the most important foods to your diet daily.
Okay - once you have the basic diet - let’s look at some SUPPLEMENTS
FATTY ACIDS - HORMONES are made of fats. You can not make hormone if you don’t have enough fatty healthy fat building blocks so things like flax seeds, evening primrose oil, and fish oil.
ESTROGENIC HERBS can be really helpful. Things like black cohosh, a typical one - but honestly I HIGHLY recommend working with a qualified chinese herbalist to find the combination that’s best for you and the results are totally worth it!
Taking a good really HIGH QUALITY NUTRITIONAL SUPPLEMENT can be helpful but taking low quality vitamins - I don’t recommend! But a really, really good multivitamin can be really helpful - and of course good wholesome food at the right variety is a great natural source. But if you need an extra kick, a really good vitamin or multiminerals can help.
VITAMIN A, BETA CAROTENE, and the B VITAMINS are particularly helpful in treating vaginal dryness and make sure you are getting these everyday. And Omega-3, essential fatty acids not only help support health cell membranes in our body, but they also help promote hormonal balance as well-so fish oil, evening primrose oil - And as I mention before, increasing your water intake
I also want to talk for a minute about HORMONE REPLACEMENT THERAPY - Because it’s something you can certainly take internally to increase your estrogen levels if the other stuff is not enough. So yes, taking your hormones internally can boost your estrogen levels and help with dryness - but I highly recommend doing this only once you have all these other things working for you - and work with a really good expert who can make sure your body is turning the estrogen you’re taking into the healthy types of estrogen including the type that goes specifically to your vaginal tissues. If not, you can take estrogen - have it go elsewhere - and end up with other issues:)
OK a few last notes - now that we’ve go the good stuff in - there are a few things to avoid…
1) Excess alcohol, coffee, white sugar, I know you’ve heard this before - but menopause is the BEST time in your life to make these healthy changes and if you need help.. I’m here for you - hit me up in my private facebook group and we’ll get started.
because a high-glycemic diet (which means sugary) diet - causes a cascade of reactions in your body that seriously interferes with your hormones and with natural lubrication
2) And since we’re talking about increasing your healthy estrogens - to do that you need to avoid the unhealthy estrogens like the (parabens (preservative) and phthalates (artificial fragrance) in personal care products the BPA in plastic water bottles and food containers and the pesticides in non organic food - they all can lead to estrogen dominance and mess with your natural lubrication.
ok so diet/supplements beyond that -
3) Lifestyle matters too. You are more likely to be troubled by vaginal dryness and the loss of lubrication if your adrenals have been exhausted by overuse of coffee, alcohol, and white sugar; severe stress, burning the candle at both ends for too long or the use of drugs like steroids / cortisone..
If this is you - start practicing stress management regularly - even if it’s for 1 minute a day. I’m linking below to the video directly on my website - I have a 2 MINUTE ACUPRESSURE EAR MASSAGE that is a fantastic, 2 MINUTE STRESS MANAGEMENT ROUTINE and there’s on there that’s a really great very short meditation with my meditation teacher
4) Get some natural sunshine - this is actually a good benefit for you
5)Take deep breaths every day. It sounds simple - but it really makes a difference. Every night at bedtime - if you haven’t done it yet - sit on the edge of your bed and take 10 deep breaths.
and you know what - your brain is really powerful. Do things that make you feel sexy and turned on - whether its foreplay or really silky new sheets or new underwear or a great new novel, or a new vibrator … get your brain sending out turned on signals and good things will happen chemically in your body that will help with your natural lubrication. If you don’t already know - find out what you like.
6) Get the help you need ( this is also great time to get healthy) to cut down on or stop smoking, or using excess alcohol - and really go over any medications you’re taking with your healthcare practitioner to make sure they’re necessary - in almost all medicines have a side effect of - guess what - DRYNESS! So keep the ones you absolutely need.. but if you’re taking any casual - try to find alternatives.
OK so those are my TOP recommendations for internal ways you can reduce vaginal dryness.
Now this is the second video in a series I’m doing on having a great sex life after 50.
To watch the whole video series with transcripts, downloads, extra notes, links and more - be sure to check it out on my blog - the link is in the comments below.
In the FIRST VIDEO we covered what vaginal dryness is - what the symptoms are - and how to avoid doing things that actively disrupt your natural lubrication.
In TODAY’S VIDEO we covered things you can do internally to combat vaginal dryness.
The NEXT VIDEO in the series were talking about things you can do externally to combat it - so the best and the worst lubes, moisturizers and topical hormones and the ingredient you most want to avoid using so that you don’t disrupt your delicate pH and balance of beneficial bacteria - so how to take care of your most delicate tissues.
The FOURTH VIDEO I have a super special treat - SEX EXPERT JANE STECKBECK is joining us to share her vast experience - her best tips - and to answer your questions.
And the LAST VIDEO is on increasing libido- a topic close to my heart as a tonic herbalist.
So stay tuned - and be sure to download your FREE COPY of my Menopausal Woman Roadmap it’s absolutely step 1 to get started on your journey to hormonal health naturally.
I’m Dana Lavoie - Acupuncturist & Herbalist and Founder of Menopause Basics. Thanks so much for joining me today and spending your valuable time with me - it means a huge amount to me. I’m always checking the comments below - and please be sure once you grab your free roadmap to share this video with a friend sister!!
See you soon - Goodbye for now!
Hi, I'm Dana, an Acupuncturist, Herbalist, & founder of Menopause Basics.
For 15 years I've been helping women use effective natural remedies to get relief from menopause symptoms and feel great afterwards. It's my passion!
My secret? Start with including the right foods in your diet. Get the building blocks your body needs to balance hormones and keep you healthy. Every other menopausal remedy works better with this foundation in place.
Here's what it takes: It's not a diet.. CLICK HERE to learn what to eat every day to supply your body with the building blocks it needs for healthy hormones & anti-aging in my FREE guide.