Training for the menopause
Ruben Tabares has trained and given nutritional advice to some of the country’s leading sports stars, from footballer John Terry to boxer David Haye, but it’s not just sporting events he prepares people for. Ruben’s also been helping women, including Meg Matthews, prepare for and deal with the menopause, which can be a physical and mental battle more demanding than any boxing or football match.
Ruben shares some of his top tips, below, on how best to get through this physically and mentally demanding time…
1) Taper the toxins: We can all benefit from removing toxins from our lives, but it’s particularly important during the menopause. At this time, women’s bodies are already going through a major change and don’t want to be affected further by having to deal with toxic chemicals. There are obvious things to cut out like smoking and excess drinking (avoiding alcohol altogether is even better), but other toxins can be more subtle. Toothpaste, shampoos, body and face creams can all contain petrochemicals, so take a close look at ingredients lists. Consider changing what you wash your bedsheets in, we all spend a lot of time in bed and can absorb chemicals from bed sheets through our skin.
2) Up your energy levels: Many women suffer from fatigue during the menopause. You can help counter this in part through diet. Consider cutting down on wheat and dairy products and remove junk food altogether. Add more organic green leafy vegetables to your diet as they contain B vitamins, which are crucial for, amongst other things, helping boost energy levels.
3) Keep hydrated: Drinking plenty of water is not only important for general hydration. It also helps keep unwanted fat and toxins down to a minimum and helps with dry skin, which affects many women during the menopause.
4) Exercise: Everyone can benefit from exercise, but osteoporosis (a thinning of the bones) can become a particular issue during and after the menopause. I therefore particularly recommend strength training ahead of any other form of exercise as this helps keep bone density higher and keeps you strong and toned.
5) Certain supplements: Supplementing a healthy diet with certain nutrients can help. Sun Chlorella, a type of algae supplement, is great for menopausal women as there is evidence it contains nutrients that can help with stress (because of hormonal changes some women can become more easily aggravated during the menopause).