Some of you may know that I collect books. I have a library of information on alternative therapies. Although one thing seems to be missing from most of the books that I have. That is: Alternatives to Hormone Replacement Therapy. Most Dr's know and advise their patients of all of the benefits of HRT, but very few, if any of them mention the disadvantages. I am going to share with you what has been working for me.
First of all, I am going to share a personal story as to why I can't take HRT. I was diagnosed with Stage One-invasive breast cancer on November 22, 2011. My cancer was Estrogen Positive. Which means that I CAN NOT TAKE ESTROGEN! I had a double mastectomy along with 6 lymph nodes removed from under my left arm as well as my ovaries and fallopian tubes removed on December 16, 2011. 11 days later, I woke up to one of the worst migraines I have ever had in my life. I could not take anything stronger than Extra Strength Tylenol and Dr Pepper for it at that time. I spent most of the day on the sofa with an ice pack on my head just to get some "minor relief" from the pain. It lasted 8 hours and eventually went away.
I went to see my gynecologist on January 5, 2012. I asked him what I could take to get relief from my migraines, hot flashes and night sweats. He told me: Do what works for you. Since you have had estrogen positive breast cancer, there is nothing that I can prescribe for you. My oncology surgeon put me on Arimidex to prevent my cancer from returning. Some of you may know that it is an estrogen-blocking drug. My headaches and hot flashes began increasing in frequency and intensity. Ice packs no longer helped with minimizing the pain. The 3 things that she recommended that I do to help prevent osteoporosis and minimize my risk of heart disease (which is hereditary on both sides of my family) is this: Exercise. Exercise. Exercise.
Estrogen protects your bones which means weight bearing exercise is a necessity because it builds muscle which nourishes and protects your bones.
Estrogen protects your heart which means aerobic exercise keeps your heart healthy.
Estrogen improves your mood which means exercise is necessary to release those feel good hormones-endorphins.
She was on the right track for half of the benefits. It took me 3 months before I found relief for my headaches/migraines, hot flashes and night sweats. Here is what I discovered that works for me. Perhaps it will work for you too!
Ground flaxseed has been proven to reduce the intensity and frequency of hot flashes and night sweats. It is also good for women who have fibrocystic breast disease. 2 tablespoons a day in your oatmeal or low-fat yogurt is all you need to get this benefit.
The other thing I discovered is that, in most of my reference books, women who get frequent migraines or headaches are deficient in magnesium. For too many years to count, I have been taking 500 milligrams of magnesium and 250 milligrams of calcium. Your body needs magnesium to help it absorb calcium. I have one book titled: The Vitamin Bible by Earl Mindell (that has been on one of my bookshelves for at least 5 years that gave me some different advice. He says that women who suffer from frequent headaches/migraines can benefit from taking twice as much calcium as magnesium. I immediately made the switch. I have been taking 500 milligrams of calcium and 250 milligrams of magnesium for 2 months now along with a Super B Complex Vitamin every day and my headaches and migraines are a thing of the past unless I accidentally eat something that triggers them. That is a subject for another blog.
Let me know if you found this information helpful. If so, share it with your friends.