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You probably wouldn't be shocked to find that your metabolism changes during and after menopause. What you might find surprising is that the one size fits all diets that you've tried in the past may have actually increased your chances of gaining weight. Learn how to readjust your body's metabolism to accommodate the changes that menopause brings.

"Female Ginseng" for Menopause Relief

Scientifically named Angelica sinesis and commonly known as dong quai, "female ginseng" is an herb indigenous to China. The dong quai root has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) for thousands of years, with practitioners advocating dong quai to treat a number of women's reproductive problems, including menopausal relief.


"Female Ginseng" for Menopause Relief

Menopause describes the changes women go through right before or after menstruation stops, thus ending her reproductive period. It is a normal condition all women experience as they age and occurs around age 40. Most women experience hot flashes, along with other common symptoms of insomnia, mood swings, fatigue, depression, headaches, and mood swings. With menopause being an inevitable part of aging, women cannot avoid it, though the symptoms can be treated and cared for. Hormone replacement therapy is oftentimes recommended to replenish estrogen, a declining hormone during menopause and component used to subside symptoms. Though researchers are not sure whether dong quai acts like estrogen or blocks estrogen in the body, some women turn to dong quai to relieve menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes.

Continuing its use in women's health, "female ginseng" may be beneficial in the treatment and management in a number of reproductive problems. Thanks to antispasmodic properties, dong quai is suggested to relieve premenstrual syndrome symptoms such as cramps. Dong quai may also stabilize irregular menstrual cycles and infrequent periods, particularly in women who terminate birth control pills.

In addition to women's reproductive health, dong quai has been used for male infertility treatment, as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent, and to lower high blood pressure and decrease symptoms relative to heart disease.

Dong Quai Dosage Recommendations and Precautions

There is no established safe and recommended dosage at this time, especially since several forms of the dong quai exist and dosages vary widely. But according to, crude root extract ranges from three to 15 grams per day; while in combination, preparations of 75 to 500 milligrams may be taken up to six times daily. In a clinical trial investigating use in menopause, 4.5 grams of dong quai was administered daily for 24 weeks and suggested to be safe.

Despite general safeness with its use, there are a few instances in which dong quai should be avoided, including in pregnant and lactating women and individuals taking warfarin, heparin, and other antiplatelet therapies.

Menopause Meal Delivery

With bistroMD, you can achieve your goals and beat menopause by regaining control of your body with doctor-designed, chef-prepared, meals delivered to your door. The bistroMD Menopause Program has been carefully created and focuses on lean proteins and reduces carbohydrates to support hormone regulation. While plans are customized to meet individual needs, all meals are scientifically-proven to provide your body with balanced nutrition during menopause. And as a bistroMD program member, you will have unlimited free access to our team of Registered Dietitians, as well as a wealth of health and wellness information. Find more information on bistroMD's Menopause Program here.

Written By Sydney Lappe, MS, RDN. Published on January 14, 2018. Updated on January 29, 2018.


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