Lose weight to lose hot flushes

Intensive weight loss intervention may lead to fewer hot flushes during menopause in women who are overweight or obese. According to a  6-month randomized controlled study in the July 12th issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, women who lost 7 to 9% of their body weight reported an improvement in hot flushes.

The women in the intensive intervention group were assigned to an exercise, nutrition and behavioural change program for 6 months. The participants were encouraged to engage in physical activity for at least 200 minutes per week using brisk walking or activities of a similar intensity. They also followed a reduced-calorie diet and were given sample meal plans providing appropriate food selections as well as meal-replacement products.

The study revealed that a decrease in weight, abdominal circumference and BMI (body mass index) were each associated with improvement in self-reported hot flushes during 6 months. 

“Our findings indicate that women who are overweight or obese and experience bothersome hot flushes may also experience improvement in these symptoms after pursuing behavioral weight loss strategies; however, improvements in weight or body composition may not be the only mediators of this effect,” the authors from the study conclude.  

(Source: Archives of Internal Medicine)

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