Hot flashes, trouble in sleeping, mood swings and dryness are the most common symptoms of menopausal.

Is menopause getting you down?

A lot of women write in to ask what they can do to deal with their menopausal symptoms.

I’m not surprised to see this.

Data suggests that up to 80% of women will experience hot flashes in their lifetimes. And this is just 1 symptom of menopause — other symptoms range from night sweats and mood swings to trouble sleeping.

And the symptoms can last for a long time. In fact, some women will experience symptoms for up to 8 years.

Even worse, while the average age of menopause is 51, changes in your body begin years earlier.

This time leading up to menopause is called perimenopause. During perimenopause, estrogen and progesterone production are out of whack …

And you sometimes experience symptoms of full-blown menopause.

Luckily, there are some straightforward, natural things you can do to ease the symptoms. Let’s take a look at the most common symptoms and how to address them:

Hot flashes

  • Keep a diary of when you experience the flashes. See if any patterns emerge, then try to avoid your triggers. Common causes include spicy foods, alcohol, caffeine, stress and being in a warm room.
  • Dress in layers so you can peel as necessary.
  • Use a portable fan.
  • Don’t smoke! You already know that smoking increases your risk of heart disease, stroke, osteoporosis, cancer and a range of other health problems. Did you know it also can bring on early menopause? And it may also increase hot flashes.

Sleep troubles

  • Make sure your room is dark, quiet and cool (65 degrees is ideal).
  • Use your bedroom for sleep and sex only.
  • Wear wicking pajamas that draw sweat away from your skin.
  • Try valerian root herb tea 45 minutes before bed.
  • Avoid hot and spicy foods and alcohol, as well as caffeine several hours before bedtime.

Mood swings


  • Increase complex carbs, which can help the brain produce serotonin, a chemical that helps settle your nerves. Try barley instead of white rice or pasta in soups, substitute a sweet potato for a regular one, sprinkle oatmeal instead of breadcrumbs in meatloaf, and bake with whole-grain flour and oat bran instead of white flour.
  • Exercise at least 30 minutes, 5 times a week. Moving your body increases endorphins — those feel-good chemicals in your brain.

Vaginal dryness

  • Try an over-the-counter vaginal moisturizer to address dryness and replenish moisture.
  • Water-based, over-the-counter lubricants can make sex more comfortable.
  • You know the saying use it or lose it? It’s true here. Staying sexually active helps by increasing blood flow to the vagina.

Another super important note: After menopause, a woman’s calcium needs go up to maintain bone health. Women 51 and older should get 1,200 mg of calcium each day.

Vitamin D also is important to bone health. Women 51 to 70 should get at least 600 IU of vitamin D each day. Women ages 71 and older need at least 800 IU of vitamin D each day. Higher amounts, at least 1,000 IU each day, may be needed to achieve and maintain optimal body stores, not only for bone health, but to support immune health, promote healthy cell division and maintain muscle strength.

I’m always on the lookout for health solutions, including dietary supplements, that are backed by sound science. In fact, we’ve developed one such supplement called Menopause Formula No. 1 for the RealDose® brand that specifically targets hot flashes and other menopausal symptoms.

If you’d like to learn more about it, click here.

Steve Sisskind, M.D.

Hi, I'm Dr. Steve Sisskind, Chief Medical Officer & Founder at RealDose Nutrition.

As a young physician, I struggled because my patients came to me with serious health issues, but I didn't have the right tools to help them. Medical school taught me how to put "band aids" on their symptoms with drugs and surgery, but not how to address the root causes of their problems.

Years later I discovered a better approach... based on the fundamental idea that the power of nutrition can transform your health and vitality. But there's a lot of confusion... What foods should I eat? Which supplements should I take? What does the science say?

I have dedicated my life to answering these questions... And I share this knowledge with you every day here at RealDose Nutrition.

I invite you to connect with me by joining my free private community. I've helped thousands of people and I know I can help you too!

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  1. hi
    With menopause my skin and hair are you have
    solution.I can t have hormones.
    tank you

    • Dr. Steve Sisskind

      Hi Nathalie,

      Thank you for writing in and for sharing your concerns with us! Try adding a fish oil supplement to your diet. Many of our RealDose Nutrition family report getting better quality hair and a better overall feeling after adding our RealDose Super Critical Omega 3 TG in their diet. Make it a healthy day!

  2. Which formula do you take for menopause? I am taking an estrogen blocker, Arimidex, because of breast cancer. Would this change the efficacy of Arimidex or of your supplement?

    • Dr. Steve Sisskind

      Hi Treva,

      Thank you for writing in and for sharing your concerns with us! RealDose Menopause Formula No.1 is made with all natural botanical ingredients and can be taken with other medications. However, we do strongly advise you to first speak with your personal doctor before getting started. The reason being, while we are confident that our formula will not interfere with the actions of your medications (Armidex), we have no sure way of knowing how your body will react, specifically. Hope this helps! Have a healthy day!

      • Hi Doctor, I have trouble sleeping so what should I take .

      • Dr. Steve Sisskind

        Hi Pinky,

        Thank you for writing in and for sharing your concerns with us! You should get evaluated before taking any medicine to help you sleep. However, I have found that meditating or reflecting before going to bed helps me sleep quite well. It is important to relax and slow down an hour or so before bedtime. If you are hyperactive or have just finished doing a strenuous activity, you are still restless and will find it hard to fall asleep. Hope this helps! Make it a healthy day!

  3. Quick question: With your program or w/other resources, how possible is it to eliminate my ravenous cravings for chocolate/sweets/cakes? The cravings are not sporadic or at various times of the month, they are ALL the time.

  4. I am 42 y/o and just last weekend, I had concluded (dawned on me like a light bulb actually!) that my weight gain, mood, low energy level, and CRAVINGS MUST be due to perimenopause. My biggest battle really involve 2 things: energy level and food cravings. I’ve been on this 700 calorie, no carb Phen diet for a couple months and am absolutely miserable. I have always had a great figure and this past year or 2 such is not the case. I mean I’m not obese, but I want to reach and maintain a weight of 145/150 instead of this 160. I was so glad to have “bumped” into your ad on facebook! I cannot wait to give your program a whirl. I was on the boat last weekend and out of the blue I said to my bf, “That’s it! No wonder women spread out in their 40’s and beyond– because of the hormonal changes!” Thank you for your dedication and passion for women’s health!

    • Oh yeah, and the worst part of this 700 calorie, Phen diet is absolutely NO carbs! Who can eat and be happy w/a 700 calorie diet? I’m tired of my weight being like a yo-yo. I’ve been on this diet since May of this year w/a beginning weight of 170 lbs; my weight since has fluctuated between 150 and 160. I can’t take it NO MORE! lol

    • Dr. Steve Sisskind

      Hi Muse,

      Thank you for writing in and for sharing your story with us! Congratulations on your weight loss and we want you to know that we are with you in your weight loss journey. I read through your statements and allow me to share my thoughts. As we age, our body goes through changes and for most women, approaching menopause entails weight gain and hormonal imbalances. While that may be true to a certain extent, weight loss is still possible but your determination and patience will be greatly tested.

      The types of foods we usually turn to in times of stress such carbohydrates or sweets help the brain release the feel-good chemical serotonin (which temporarily makes you feel really good). But that does not mean your body physically needs the food. Nor will it fulfill you. These emotionally-driven cravings are rarely satisfied, no matter how much you eat.

      To help deal with your cravings and curb your appetite, I recommend that you try to take a moment and reflect each time they arise. Ask yourself, “Is my stomach growling? Do I feel a bit weak? Is my head aching?” These are signs of physical hunger. If they are absent, ask yourself, “Am I stressed? Anxious? Bored?” then come up with three other ways to relieve the problem. I suggest that you get out of the kitchen or the immediate vicinity of your secret stash, go for a long walk or take the time to do house chores. Most of the time, redirecting your focus or attention is more than enough to make you forget your cravings.

      Also, increasing your fiber (from non-starchy vegetable sources) as well as protein, will help you stay full for longer. These food items will send signals to your brain that your stomach is still digesting food while also avoiding sugar spikes in your system. Fruits, berries and cherries are great sources of sweetness and if you continue to turn to these food items each time the cravings hit, your need will not be so great and can be easily satisfied with healthy food.

      Lastly, I apologize but I am not completely familiar with the Phen diet, but do know that a severely low calorie diet can slow down your metabolism greatly. A low calorie diet below 1200 calories for sedentary women and 1400 calories for sedentary men can slow your metabolism 12 – 20 percent. If this is continued over a long period of time, it may take months or even years, for your metabolism to re-adjust. This could explain why you are either feeling down, depressed or fatigued early in the day.

      Try raising your caloric intake to around 1500 to start and then work your way up to 1800. This is not at all a grand change, especially if your calories come from healthy sources such as vegetables, fish and a small amount of lean meat. Severe calorie restriction puts your body under stress and this increases your levels of Cortisol. Cortisol has been found to cause extra weight around your midsection. The best way to overcome this is to eat a healthy balanced diet, like we have described in our Fat Loss Fast Start Program, which comes free with every purchase of Weight Loss Formula No. 1.

      I hope this helps, Muse! Have a healthy day!

  5. I had hot flashes all day and at night every 10 minutes for at least 3 months straight. I started taking, Maca Root with DIM and within 3 days the hot flashes stopped completely. The Maca Root balances the hormones and the DIM metabolized the estrogen by making the estrogen receptors more responsive. I was already taking Vitamin D3 with DIM for a few weeks before that but when I added the Maca Root with DIM instead I got real results!!! Maca varies from woman to woman. My friend took 2 weeks to get results.

    The next month I got my period again and have not had one hot flash since. Vaginal dryness went away and my libido came back in a week. I took 2 capsules in the morning with breakfast the first week then on week two I added 1 more capsule at night (12 hours apart). The brand I use is : WHOLE WORLD BOTANICALS Royal Maca Plus with DIM recommened to me by a 25 year old guy at Sprouts Market. What a savior he is!!! I hadn’t slept for months waking up every 10 minutes with hot flashes was exhausting.

    Also I tried a homeopathic for Hot Flashes for the first week until the Maca Root kicked in completely. It was called “Lacnesis Mutus 30c” and just took those anytime I had a hot flash come on. Within a few minutes they stopped but later they would return. At least it stopped them quickly. The Maca root is what stopped them completely. The DIM is very important too. It gets rid of the bad estrogens we get from chemicals, foods, the environment. If your estrogen dominant (big thighs & butt are a sign you are) then you should stay on the DIM. The bottle cost me $34 for a month and it is totally worth it. I also take vitamin A, E, magnesium 400mg before bed and B vitamins with my Maca pills.
    I hope this info helps someone. I wish I found it sooner and wasn’t struggling for so many months sleepless.

    • Dr. Steve Sisskind

      Hi Janise,

      Thank you for writing in and for sharing your experience with us! Those are really sound advice and I do hope it helps our readers. Have a healthy day!

  6. Not sure if you have heard this from anyone else, but I have noted a correlation between my hot flashes and taking WLF (I have taken WLF for three years). If I slip up and skip a dose, hot flashes return that night! I wondered whether the rhodiola rosea might be responsible for keeping those hot flashes at bay! I will be interested to hear your take on this important topic as there are a whole lot of us out here struggling with this.

    • Dr. Steve Sisskind

      Hi A. Thielen,

      Thank you for writing in and for sharing your experience with us! RealDose Weight Loss Formula No.1 does have the potential to help with hot flashes as it works with your body in improving your mood. Yes! Rhodiola rosea is one of the key ingredients in the formula and it works by reducing your stress and anxiety levels. The herb has a calming effect and yet, also increases energy levels when needed. Have a healthy day!

  7. Yes, I certainly would like a supplement. I am currently receiving acupuncture and Chinese herbs that have helped immensely; but I am still waking up with hot flashes while basically sleeping in the nude. I have had surgically induced menopause with the removal of my ovaries at age 47. Please help!

    • Dr. Steve Sisskind

      Hi Marie,

      Thank you for writing in and for sharing your thoughts with us! Yes, we are currently working on several formulas which we hope, will help not only address the common issues with menopause but improve overall health and well being. In the meantime, it’s very important to understand how keeping your systems balanced by making healthy food choices, exercising and getting 8 hours of sleep each night, helps in coping with the changes your body is experiencing and in losing weight during this time. Hope this helps! Have a healthy day!

  8. would like to see something to help with weight gain.

    • Dr. Steve Sisskind

      Hi Pat,

      Thank you for writing in and for posting your question! RealDose Weight Loss Formula No.1 is one such supplement that we believe can help with weight loss. Our formula is made with all natural botanical ingredients and can hep your body get the hormones associated with your cravings, hunger and fat burning, back to their normal levels. Hope this helps! Have a healthy day!

  9. I would like to see a supplement that targets all the symptoms of menopause! Also, if possible, include vitamin D and calcium in this supplement.

    • Dr. Steve Sisskind

      Hi Lucina,

      Thank you for posting and for sharing your thoughts with us! Yes, we are currently working on several possible formulas that will address various needs and help improve one’s overall health. That said, a Vitamin D supplement is not far away and we would be happy to let you know of other additions to RealDose Nutrition as soon as research and development is complete. Hope this helps! Have a healthy day!

  10. RealDose does not work for me when it comes to “Hot Flashes”. I’ve been dealing with this discomfort for the last 15 years! I thought it was unusual for this length of time until I talked with other women and they agree with me on the length of time of dealing with hot flashes.

    • Dr. Steve Sisskind

      Hi Nyetta,

      Thank you for writing in and for sharing your experience with us! RealDose Weight Loss Formula No.1 works by helping your body get the hormones needed for fat burning, controlling your appetite and mood back to their normal levels. That said, the supplement can help with your hot flashes but its effects may not be as noticeable, especially if the hormone imbalance is great. That said, it is important that you continue with your healthy diet, exercise regimen and get between 7 to 8 hours of sleep in order to help your body recover faster from the changes being made. Hope this helps! Have a healthy day!

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