Menopause — creating the opportunity for a new beginning

Web Lead

Paul Gaucher

All women eventually experience the ending of their reproductive years as their menstrual cycle ceases. Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) sees menopause as a deep change that extends beyond physical changes. It’s a natural and normal part of a woman’s life, yet it has the power to affect her mind, body and spirit.  Menopause is a chance for a woman to prepare herself for a healthy, long life. It’s a time when she can heal, strengthen herself, and balance and harmonize her energies. Menopause creates the opportunity for a new beginning, as a woman becomes free to discover or pursue new interests in a profound and meaningful way.

This change typically occurs between the ages of 35-55, and the hormonal changes that occur at this time can cause many different types of discomfort. Some problems women deal with at this time include hot flashes, night sweats, irritability, headaches, moodswings, and stress. Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is considered the standard treatment for menopause and related conditions. While this method may alleviate hot flashes and prevent osteoporosis, it will also increase the risk of breast, ovarian, and uterine cancer, and have a number of significant side-effects.  TCM, on the other hand, offers a gentle yet effective way to address menopause and related conditions. Chinese herbs and acupuncture have demonstrated a marked effect on the endocrine system to alleviate hot flashes, insomnia, loss of bone mass, and other conditions associated with menopause.  In addition to acupuncture and herbs, certain nutritional and lifestyle changes are very useful.

Healthy oils such as evening primrose oil and flaxseed oil, which contain essential fatty acids can also help to alleviate symptoms.  It is also crucial to eat healthy food and reduce stress during this time in a woman’s life, and if possible, in the years leading up to this change. It’s an interesting fact that 75% of North American women experience noticeable menopausal discomfort, while only 10% of Asian women experience the same. It’s worth considering that some of the factors involved in this difference are dietary and TCM related, which are both comprised of natural elements. The idea that food can be used medicinally is an inherent Chinese cultural belief, as well as a fundamental principle of TCM. Research has increased the study of the relationship between women’s health and plants and plant chemistry, specifically chemicals found in plants called “phytoestrogens”. Western and Eastern medicine agree that diets rich in phytoestrogens found in certain vegetables can reduce the adverse symptoms associated with menopause.

Caffeine, alcohol, tobacco and spicy foods tend to promote hot flashes and other menopausal symptoms.  Avoiding these lifestyle choices generally helps ease the symptoms of menopause naturally without side effects.

Summary of TCM treatment of menopause:

•Acupuncture to balance the system

•Customized Chinese Herbal Formulas

•Embrace a healthy diet with plenty of vegetables

•Avoid alcohol, coffee, dark chocolate and spicy foods

•Stress reduction techniques

Paul Gaucher (R.TCM.P) and his wife Dove Sprout (R.TCM.P) co-own Creston Acupuncture & Natural Health. They work at the Full Circle Health Centre, which also offers Physiotherapy, Chiropractic , and counselling services. For more information or to book an appointment, call the clinic at 250-402-2044. For further questions about what acupuncture and herbal medicine can treat, you can e-mail Paul at


Just Posted

Two minutes of silence

This year I was very upset when the requisite Two Minutes of Silence was missed/overlooked/forgotten

Disheartening to see the campaign urging Creston voters to say no

Our firefighters have been doing an excellent job within the limitations of their current facilities

Building Unity and Loving One Another

Difficult to understand that the editor has allowed an organization to take a pot shot at the Catholic Church

Creston’s Ralph Heald has been given French’s highest award for his WWII service

Ralph Heald found speaking about his WWII experiences difficult until a successful application for the rank of Knighth of the French National Order of the Legion of Honour unleashed his memories.

Locums help fill medical gaps

The Creston Valley Health Working Group has been successful in recruiting new physicians to the area, but locums are also an importantn piece in a challenging puzzle

VIDEO: Rare comic showing Superman’s 1st appearance to be auctioned

The 1938 comic features Superman hoisting a car over his head

An adopted cat is the best 10 pounds you’ll gain this season

BC SPCA encouraging families to add a forever feline friend during adoption event Nov. 24 to Dec. 3

Uber official says public needs to push for ridesharing in B.C.

Mike van Hemmen tells Kelowna Chamber of commerce ridesharing would be ‘win-win-win’

B.C. co-ops relieved with Ottawa’s housing strategy

Federal government to have a new co-operative housing funding model in place by 2020

B.C. NDP referendum plan sparks legislature battle

David Eby says public will decide on proportional referendum

Hammy has been freed of his threads, a purple antler remains

The iconic Prince Rupert buck with a piece of hammock attached to his antlers was caught by COs

COLUMN: Taking another look at Kelowna

Columnist Donna Macdonald finds many things to love about the city Nelsonites love to hate

Court adjourned again for man linked to Shuswap farm where human remains found

Curtis Sagmoen will appear back in court on Dec. 14

B.C. family advocating for drug decriminalization following death of son

Federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh has noted the New Democrats would decriminalize personal possession of all drugs

Most Read