Hot flashes are considered as the most widespread and the most irritating symptom that is associated with menopause. In the United States, about 75 percent of the women population undergoing menopausal stage suffers from hot flashes while about 15 percent suffer from severe hot flashes. The cause of hot flashes that the women suffer at the time of menopause is largely unknown. At the time of menopause, there is a considerable loss of estrogen itself as a result of which the muscles of the blood vessels become totally unstable. This instability is at times used to describe a hot flash.
The western women are known to suffer much more menopausal complaints including hot flashes than the Japanese counterparts. Diet is considered as the major reason behind this. Hence diets and herbs are known to play a significant role in the dealing with hot flashes.
The Japanese are known to consume lots of soy. Soy is rich in phytoestrogen that have an estrogenic effect on the human body. Consumption of such foods that have rich content of phytoestrogens aids in replacing the estrogen lost due to the decreased secretion of estrogen from the ovaries at the time of perimenopause and menopausal period.
Besides soy beans, flax seeds are also rich in phytoestrogens. Consumption of both these soy and flax seeds food also helps to combat vaginal dryness that is common at the time of menopause. In addition to flax seeds and soy that are rich in phytoestrogen, the other food that have phytoestrogen are apples, oats, olives, carrots, plums, potatoes, coffee, tea as well as sunflower seeds.
There are a lot of herbs that can effectively deal with hot flashes. Dong quai, chaste berry, black cohosh, unicorn root, blue cohosh, licorice root, motherwort etc are some of the herbs that can be useful while combating hot flashes. While Dong quai is known to be helpful in the in the stabilization of blood vessels, motherwort helps to ease the stressed nerves for combating hot flashes. The mild estrogenic properties of licorice and the reduction of the LH levels by black cohosh are considered to be effective for the decrease in hot flashes.