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Chronically elevated cortisol increases the liklihood of severe menopausal symptoms

Cagnacci etal, 2011. Menopause, 18,3, 273-8)

Menopause can be a new beginning: a time when priorities change, leading to transformation and growth. Unfortunately, until fairly recently, this phase of a woman's life was poorly understood. Can you believe that the hormone oestrogen was only identified in 1929 and it took just over 30 years following that for research into menopausal conditions to begin? 8 out of 10 women in the UK experience some menopausal symptoms. Most common are hot flushes and night sweats but others include: anxiety; palptiations; mood swings; insomnia; poor memory; depression; itchy skin; achy joints; weight gain; hair loss; incontinence; low libido; headaches; dry vagina; tinnitus; dizziness and more. Quality of life can be severely affected and postmenopausal women are at increased risk of a number of long term conditions like osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease. Hormones are extremely influencial in the body (remember how you felt going through puberty?) and changes in their levels can have big effects. The good news is that educated, there is plenty that can be done to help. 


I offer support for menopausal women using reflexology, but part of my role is to educate and empower women to have the best menopause possible, by making small lifestyle changes that can run alongside my treatments to help with symptoms day to day. I will focus on the five pillars of menopause health:

  • Diet

  • Sleep

  • Exercise

  • Relaxation

  • Purpose

By looking at where improvements can be made, each woman can explore what works for them and if hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is the route they want to take, reflexology works well with that too. I am here to support all choices, but feel passionately that my clients should have as much information as possible to do so. Of course, some will prefer to just come for treatments and look at their lifestyle in their own time and way, which is fine. Stress is a major factor when it comes to menopausal symptoms. Oestrogen actually acts as a buffer for cortisol (the stress hormone) in the younger years, but the reduction of oestrogen can make it much harder for women to regulate their emotions when stressors come their way. The combination of regular relaxing treatments and an actionable plan can really help with this. Think about who you want to be for the next phase of your life. I would love to help you achieve this.


The effects of reflexology on sleep disorder in menopausal women. Maryam Asltoghiri, Zahra Ghodsi. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, Volume 31, 2012, Pages 242-246,


The effects of reflexology applied to women aged between 40 and 60 on vasomotor complaints and quality of life.  Gozuyesil E, Baser M. Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2016 Aug;24:78-85.

The effects of reflexology on depression during menopause: A randomized controlled clinical trial. F Mahdavipour et al. Complementary Therapies in Medicine, Volume 47, 2019,

The effects of reflexology for menopausal women. Williamson, J  et al.  BJOG_Oxford, 2002 Vol 109:Number 9, pg 1050-1055

Balance - Website and link to fantastic menopause app created by GP Dr Louise Newson:
She also has a highly acclaimed podcast:

Megs Menopause - Meg Mathews was a well known public figure in the 90s, working in the music industry, but when she started to suffer with the symptoms of menopause she was shocked by the lack of information available. She has a website:
Facebook page: MegsMenopause
and brilliant book: The New Hot - Meg Mathews

Dr Lisa Mosconi, a scientist with a strong family history of Alzheimers has dedicated her life to looking at how the sex hormones have unique impacts on female health. Her  book - The XX Brain looks at the female brain and offers steps that can be taken at any age to help prevent decline. The XX Brain - Dr Lisa Mosconi
I can also recommend a conversation she had with Dr Chatterjee discussing brain health on his podcast - Feel Better Live More:

Norma Goldman and Victoria Goldman offer free quarterly newsletters that that can be sent to your email box. They contain menopause news, the latest research and articles from experts in the field. Definitely worth signing up if you are the type of person who likes to keep up to date with the latest developments:
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