10 Natural Home Remedies for Menopause Relief

Natural Remedies for Menopause

Officially, I hit menopause a year ago.

Yay! That means no more cramps, surprises, mood swings, or birth control. But – menopause comes with its own set of problems, and some of them can be as bad as during the reproductive years.

What Happens During Menopause?

When the female body stops being a viable receptacle for pregnancy, certain areas shut down, while others pick up. Eggs no longer travel down the fallopian tube and the lining of the uterus is no longer shed each month. For many of us, both of these are a welcome relief. But in turn, your body will produce less and less estrogen and other changes occur. I noticed that it got really hard to lose that last 10 pounds I wanted to shed, and in fact, gained a few more. I think (and it’s not been proven, but makes sense) that since estrogen is a fat-based hormone and your body is making less of it, your body keeps the fat to house the small amount of estrogen that it has.

Since there are no eggs being released, birth control is no longer necessary, but… beware! In the first year of menopause, your body can still throw out an egg or two randomly. Many women have had late babies because they thought they were in menopause, only to find out they weren’t quite there yet. Once a full year has passed without a menstrual cycle, it’s generally pretty safe. (You might want to choose a back up method just in case.)

Other things that happen while your body is adjusting are hot flashes (power surges!), night sweats, blood sugar complications, loss of libido, hair falling out, hair growing in other areas it wasn’t growing before, and yes, even mood swings can start up again.

So what can you do? There are a host of medications out there that can be taken for these problems. One is Premarin, and excuse me for saying it, but eeewww! It’s made from the urine of pregnant mares. Yep – PREgnant MARe urINe. It can also be synthetic, produced in a lab with ingredients that are like nothing found in nature. I chose the natural way.

Natural Remedies for Menopause

1. Black Cohosh

For many women, this is a miracle drug. It comes from the root of the plant Cimicefuga rascemosa, which is found readily in my area (the southern Appalachian mountains) and many other parts of the world. The root, which can be quite smelly, it harvested, cleaned, dried and ground and then used in capsules or as a tea. It can also be found in tinctures. Whatever application you choose, it will take a while to show effects. It gets into the system slowly and builds up over time.

2. Vitex or Chaste Berry

This comes from the vitex shrub. It’s a great landscape plant with it’s purple spires of flowers during the summer. The berries, or a preparation of the berries, are used over time like black cohosh.

3. Hawthorn

Hawthorn berries are like little crab apples, but they come from a different tree. Hawthorn works to strengthen veins and arteries, helping blood to flow better to vital areas.

4. Ginseng

Ginseng is an adaptogen, enabling your body to endure stressful situations.

5. Soy

For some women, soy will help to relieve hot flashes. I’d recommend using only non-GMO soy products.

6. Saw Palmeto

Saw plameto has been used in men for a long time to help with the prostate gland. Now it’s been found that some women in menopause can benefit from it too.

7. Clary Sage

Clary sage helps during the menstruating years to balance hormones. It can help in much the same way, on a different part of the spectrum, during menopause.

8. Eliminating Caffeine

Some women benefit from cutting caffeine during menopause. Some say it stops hot flashes entirely. Being a coffee drinker, I haven’t tried it yet.

9. Yarrow

Yarrow is good for all kinds of issues, including hot flashes or night sweats. Use it as a tincture or tea. It’s bitter, so it’s best when mixed with something.

10. Mountain mint and pennyroyal

Both of these mints can have high amounts of pugelone, which can cause intrauterine contractions. They should NOT be taken by pregnant women. But during menopause, the hormone balancing action may benefit some women.

Most of these natural options can be found in herb, tincture, or capsule form HERE.

A Word of Caution

Before trying to diagnose yourself, you should always see a doctor, clinical herbalist, or someone of that type. Don’t ever start an herbal regimen without the advice of a professional. Not all herbs are right for everyone, and if you experience discomfort or are feeling a little “off,” you should always discontinue use immediately.

I tried to use black cohosh while I was menstruating and it just made me dizzy and sick. I went back to it years later and it had a different effect. Always know what you are using and know what to take and how to take it. And keep in mind that more isn’t always better – sometimes less is more.

Have you tried herbal remedies for menopause?

Which ones helped you? Share your experience in the comments section below!

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Comments

  1. Black Cohosh and Evening Primrose Oil helped me through the worst of menopause. I went into premature menopause in my mid 30’s. Due to the strong history of heart disease in the family on both sides, I was not a candidate for the traditional hormone replacement and then with the added side effects of those, I didn’t want to go that way and wanted to go a more natural routine. I also worked OB/GYN for 20 years and my boss was my doctor and a huge help in finding things to help. Get prepared for the blanket and ceiling fans, etc- even in the middle of winter, for the “power surges” that take place. I used to get the freezing symptom which was the the warning that the ” heat wave” was on it’s way. Good luck to anyone going through this and the symptoms can last for years! This isn’t a 1 year and done issue.

    • Boy, that’s for sure, Mona Lisa! I’ve had symptoms since I was 40 and I’ll be 51 in December. I’ve never tried evening primrose oil. I’ll have to check it out. Thanks for the tip!

  2. I’ve used all of those and they work for a few months and then quit working. I’m probably half way thru (5-6 yrs), so I’ll get thru it on my own. The worst part is the hot flashes that wake me up at night.

    • I have read, maybe on this site or one similar to it, that sweet potato’s, green bell peppers and different vegetables was good for hot flashes and nothing could be more natural than these. I never knew about these things when I was going through mine. I just read on this site what the pill premarin was made out of, and oh my goodness, I used that for awhile and there was a patch I used for sometime. Wish I would have known about the natural ways for help on hot flashes. This is a very good site.

  3. Apple Cider Vinegar saved my sanity! And Black Cohosh….however, I now am Dx w/MS…and night sweats can be a symptom of that as well…so I’m still poppin’ ACV tabs (ACV formula/Puritans’ Pride) and I drink Bragg’s ACV in honey/lemon juice/ginger root/tea daily, and no sweats! LOVE IT!

  4. Turmeric with Bioperin has been a miracle for easing mood swings. Fennel seeds used in my morning teas have eliminated the hot flashes. I no longer stand in front of the open freezer door trying to cool down. I am still looking for a cure to the horrendous hormonal migraines that now come with greater frequency while the estrogen bounces in frequency.

    • Migraines are the worst part of menopause, I think. If you find something that works, Dana, please let the rest of us know. I’ve found some triggers for mine, like aged cheese, so I tend to stay away from that. Other triggers can be chocolate, red wine or stress.

  5. Menopause is such a funny word. actually the whole language used to describe women’s hormonal journey is odd. we need new words- better language, to describe this beautiful journey/experience of being female. Myself have found that most of the bothersome of the symptoms of this phase of life, came more from my subconscious fears, feelings of unworthiness, from no longer being childbearing age, etc. etc. shifting my attitude toward this phase of life, is helping me find the joy of this time of life, which helps greatly. but also Deborah, thank you for your wise sharing of herbal relief.

  6. I was going to a Chinese acupuncturist for back pain. On my first visit he spent over an hour just talking to me and going over my health history. He was very nice and asked alot of questions. I had mentioned that I was just starting to have hot flashes and night sweats that were keeping me awake at night. His response was immediate that this was “no problem and he would fix”! Well, true to his word after just three visits the hot flashes and night sweats stopped. I visited him for a year for the back pain – which went away also. It has been three years since my initial visit and only now have the “flashes” and “nightsweats” returned. I think I will definitely going back to him for a visit. I have also referred several of my friends going thru the same thing and they also have been “relieved” of their symptons. I think acupuncture is a often overlooked option. Just make sure that you are going to a “true” Chinese acupuncture trained Dr.

  7. You must have been reading over my shoulder last evening as I searched the web for natural remedies for menopause symptoms. Having taken HRT for a number of years, my doctor decided it was time to take me off. However, no one tells you when you begin HRT that when you come off, your body remembers you never completed menopause — it was just put on HOLD! Well, the hot flashes/flushes, night sweats, even days of just not feeling good and achy all over, have returned in spades.

    BUT, last night I requested an appointment with a physician, a woman certified by the North American Menopause Society to practice menopausal medicine. Once I have an opportunity to meet with her, I’ll discuss your post with her with an eye toward one or more of these DIY treatments.

    Thanks for a timely post!

  8. Hi everyone!
    I was just prescribed Premarin and Estrace creme for the dryness/pain issue during intimacy. I have taken the natural route all the way through, but this issue is not fun. If anyone can guide me to a natural concoction for this very painful problem, please share..I covet your wisdom

    • Anita, every night after going to the bathroom for the last time I rub virgin olive oil generously on the vagina opening. I keep it in a small medicine bottle, carefully washing my hands before each use. Don’t slack and miss doing it. After a few weeks or closer to a month you should see some relief if you consistently apply it. Hope this helps.

  9. The worst symptoms for me have been hot flashes and vaginal dryness. I am using estriol cream vaginally twice a week and it has helped so much! I get mine through amazon.com…Life-flo estriol cream. I use the applicator that I got from a prescription for estriol cream that my doctor ordered, then I realized I could get it so much less expensive by ordering it myself. I have tried some of the remedies for hot flashes that you mentioned, but nothing has helped a whole lot. Guess I’ll try some of the other ideas.

    • I’ve never tried olive oil, but may give this some thought. I have used egg whites, as suggested by one of my herbalist friends, but it got sticky fast and needed more moisture, so it was a moot point. I make a hand cream with olive oil and beeswax that’s pretty dense. This might work too.

  10. I have used Vitex for years for PMS and now menopause. So glad to hear you mention this! It helps with irritability AND belly fat. I take 2 Vitex in addition to 1 mg Estradiol prescribed by my GYN everyday. She knows I take it and of course couldn’t endorse it but my herbalist did. Be sure and drink lots of water with it!! I get it from natures sunshine. I agree that not all the herbs will work for everyone but I encourage all to try something even if you are taking a prescription. Thank you for an awesome blog. I look forward to getting your email every morning (yes with coffee) :-)

    • Thanks Mary! I’ve been harvesting my own vitex and making a tincture from those. If you live in a somewhat temperate area, you could grow your own. Of course, the standardized extract will be the same every time, where tinctures can vary. Just a thought…

  11. I was in the early onset of Premenopause at age 40. Waking up more than twice through the night having to wring my clothes out. I still had my periods but were not always on schedule. My doctor said she couldn’t do much hrt way because I was only Premenopause. So, for years I suffered the heavy sweats and being moody. AT age 49 I developed benign cysts in my breasts. Had them checked out by the cancer clinic. I was asked by the clinic to begin a regime of Evening primrose. My cysts had shrunk to nothing. For 20 years I’ve been taking Vitamin E 800iu and now Evening primrose. I have since started Black Cohosh with excellent results. Sweats became fewer to none. I ran out of Black Cohosh and began to get the sweats back.Back on the Black Cohosh and continuing my Primrose/vitamin E, everything is back to no sweats. Evening Primrose is a known anti-inflamatory. Black Cohosh should be stopped every now and then as it is not recommended to be taken indefinately. It certainly doesn’t hurt to try. Being 56 now I will continue this regime with excellent results.

  12. Howdy ya’ll! I am 51 about to be 52 years young! I know I have been experiencing menopause in one fashion or another. I have yet to experience hot flashes, I do have moderate night sweats. I’ve had a partial hysterectomy 9 years ago. I still have my ovaries. Since I have come into menopause I have been growing facial hair on my chin and under. As time goes by the hair has become denser. I’ve tried doctors, waxing, plucking, creams, meds, and even electrolysis. Nada, nothing works but shaving. That’s gross and humiliating for us women! I have to carry a razor with me everywhere I go. I know I’m not alone in this matter. Does anyone have any suggestions to share? This is a depressing situation and I am DESPERATE for a solution. Thank you friends! April