Saturday, March 4, 2017

Are You Feeling Hot Hot Hot?

WebMD Magazine
As you know, I turned 50 recently! Yeah me! I still feel like my 23-year-old self but certain things are different. At the beginning of my 50th year of life, I noticed that I was hot, like boiling hot all the time and sweating profusely. I also noticed (without getting too detailed) that Aunt Flo was no longer paying regular visits. I was happy that Aunt Flo was no longer a guest but disturbed, disappointed and angry by the incessant heatwave I was in. I was miserable.

I tried different things - some things worked but most things did not or they only worked for a short timeframe. Eventually, I went to my gynecologist and had a thorough exam and a full blood workup. She confirmed that I was not nutty and that indeed I was going through some changes by showing me the data. All of my numbers were in the highlighted range below. I think she may have been in a bit of disbelief herself, because she said, "How do you look like 12 and this is happening?" You can't argue with the data. So here's the data that you should be aware of. If you're past the age of 45, ensure that your blood work is measuring these hormones.

Luteinizing Hormone (LH)
Follicular Phase
2.4 -12.6
3.5 - 12.5
12.5 - 166
0.1 - 0.9
Ovulation Phase
14.0 - 95.6
4.7 -21.5
85.8 - 498
0.1 - 12.0
Luteal Phase
1.0 - 11.4
1.7 -7.7
43.8 - 211
1.8 - 23.9
7.7 - 58.5
25.8 - 134.8
<6.0 - 54.7
0.0 - 0.1

Seeing the data brought acceptance. This stage of life is not all bad. Some of the positives that I have noticed are:

  • I have more energy - the constant fatigue that I had during the child-rearing years is gone
  • No more PMS and its symptoms (this is a HUGE blessing!!!)
  • Greater focus on self-care
  • A willingness to take risks and try new things
  • No worry of pregnancy
In talking to other girlfriends - as they go through this stage, whether naturally or because of a hysterectomy, the sudden changes due to surgery seem to be worse for the individual. Eventually, over time everything evens out and, as women, we adjust to our new normal.

Trying to stay cool!

Here's a short list of things that you can do to take care of yourself:
1. Reduce your caffeine and sugar intake
2. Minimize your ingestion of processed foods
3. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables
4. Drink lots of water
5. Minimize drinking hot beverages as it can increase the      heated sensation in your body
6. Try to get some exercise in a way that you like

Also, I've discovered that clothing with vents (i.e. keyhole backs, cold shoulder tops, or some creative way to bare flesh while being modest) or things made with breathable fabric, like these pajamas, or anything made with linen make all the difference in the world.

Every woman will experience this stage of life differently - some have no physical symptoms and some have all of the symptoms. I recommend that you find a doctor you trust and work with them to figure out what's best for you. My doctor has suggested that if you need to go on hormones, it may only be on a short-term basis, but again speak with your doctor as some of these symptoms can really affect your quality of life.

As a young traveler on any airline, I wondered why those vents were blowing cold air over each passenger. I always stopped the airflow and wrapped myself in blankets. The other day, I couldn't believe it, but I was so grateful for those vents. I kept the air flowing on me for most of my flight, with abandon. For me, I'm embracing this new stage of life while looking forward to what the future holds. What about you?

I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well. Psalm 139:14

If you're here and this is you, how are you handling this stage of your life?

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1 comment:

  1. I'd never guess you were 50! I too have been experiencing problems with what I thought could be hot flashes, but it turned out to be my thyroid being out of whack. Once I got it under control, the 'always hot' feelings calmed down. Those are some very good tips you posted. I will have to share this.


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