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Team Inspiriko - August 2022

Natural Remedies for Menopausal Anxiety & Depression

Like a train that comes out of nowhere come mood swings, anxiety, and depression during menopause. When thinking about this period in life, maybe you envision annoying hot flashes and a very welcome lack of menstruation, but the truth is that your mental health can also be thrown out of balance during menopause.

Hormonal changes during menopause can affect the levels of neurotransmitters in your brain, such as serotonin and dopamine, which can contribute to feelings of anxiety, depression, and loneliness. But don’t despair! Natural remedies and supplements can help you have these feelings under control and become your best allies in your fight against menopausal anxiety and depression.

Unlike prescription medications, natural remedies generally have fewer side effects and are less likely to interact with other medications. Plus, they often take a more holistic approach to health and well-being, addressing physical symptoms and emotional well-being.

Finally, exploring natural remedies can empower you to take control of your health and well-being, making you an active participant in your own care. So, let’s have a look at how exercise, meditation, dietary changes, and your loved ones can play a crucial role when looking for natural remedies for menopausal anxiety and depression.

Get Fit, Feel Great: The Benefits of Exercise in Menopause

Moving your body is not only important to get fit and look great: regular exercise can be a great way to decrease anxiety and unwind.

Here are a few reasons why you should start exercising regularly during menopause:

 ● Releases endorphins, which are natural mood-boosting chemicals in the brain. This can help reduce feelings of anxiety and promote a sense of well-being after any type of exercise you decide to do (1).
Reduces stress by lowering your levels of the stress hormone cortisol in the body (2), thus helping you manage negative thoughts and feelings.
Improves sleep, which can be especially important for menopausal women who may experience sleep disturbances due to hormonal changes (waking up soaked in the middle of the night, anyone?).
Boosts self-esteem. Your body image during this period can change dramatically and impact your self-esteem. Exercising can contribute to a more positive outlook on life and reduce your anxiety.
Improves overall health: Exercise has many health benefits, including reducing the risk of chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes, and osteoporosis (3), which are very common after menopause.

Improved physical health can also contribute to better mental health. If you're hesitant to start exercising more frequently, don’t: the benefits largely outweigh the inconvenience. Understandably, it can be hard to get started with exercise, especially if you haven’t moved for a long time.

So, start with small, manageable goals and gradually work your way up to more intense workouts. Whether it's taking a brisk walk, trying a new fitness class, or doing yoga, finding an exercise routine that works for you will certainly help you manage your emotions during menopause more easily.

Optimizing Your Health Through Dietary Changes During Menopause

The food you eat every day not only impacts your digestive health and energy levels: your meals can also affect your mental health. During menopause, in particular, it’s important to incorporate certain nutrients that can do away with mood swings and help you feel like your old happier self again.

For example, Omega-3 acids in fatty fish like salmon and tuna can help reduce inflammation and promote brain health (4), improving mood.

Nothing better than a morning coffee… but maybe not during menopause! The way in which we respond to caffeine varies depending on our genetics, body weight, metabolism, and the amount of caffeine ingested. Unfortunately, some side effects of caffeine include restlessness, tremors, and difficulty sleeping (5), which can contribute to your anxiety. As a result, limiting the consumption of coffee and tea is a good idea.

Now, let’s focus on the foods that can help you navigate menopause in the best possible way, avoiding anxiety and boosting your health at the same time:

Soy contains phytoestrogens (6), substances that mimic the lost effect of estrogen in your body, thus helping support hormonal balance during menopause. Try to incorporate soy products like tofu, tempeh, or edamame into your diet.
Foods high in iron. Women going through perimenopause may experience heavy bleeding, which can lead to iron deficiency. As a result, eating foods high in iron becomes a must, such as red meat, poultry, beans, and leafy greens (7).
B vitamins, such as B6 and B12, are important for mood regulation and can help alleviate depression and anxiety during menopause (8). Foods high in B vitamins include fortified cereals, meat, fish, and leafy greens.

Overall, eating a balanced diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein can help support overall health and well-being . For example, the Mediterranean diet is an excellent option for menopausal women due to its focus on nutrient-dense foods that promote heart health, weight management, bone health, and mental health.

And if you’re having trouble balancing your diet, natural supplementation can be of great help to ensure you’re eating all the nutrients you need for optimal health.

Navigating Menopause Together: The Power of Social Support

We are social beings, so having a support network is crucial to maintaining good mental health. During menopause, it is common to feel isolated and alone, especially if your symptoms interfere with work and social relationships. So, having a support system can make all the difference in reducing menopausal anxiety and depression.

Your loved ones can become your safe space so you can express your feelings and emotions, your fears and frustrations. Meanwhile, support groups can also provide you with practical tips, as you’ll be surrounded by other women going through the same things as you.

Both online and in-person options are available, and they can provide a safe space for women to share their experiences and feelings. You’ll surely find it reassuring to know that you are not alone in your struggles.

In addition to seeking out social support, don’t forget to set boundaries and prioritize self-care. This includes taking breaks when needed, engaging in activities that bring joy and relaxation, and being mindful of overcommitting to obligations. Taking care of yourself will reduce stress levels and boost your overall well-being.

The Bottom Line

Menopause can bring many challenges, and mental health symptoms like mood swings, anxiety, and depression are no exception. The hormonal changes during this period can affect your brain and your body, leading to emotional imbalances. Fortunately, natural remedies and lifestyle changes can help alleviate these symptoms and help you feel like yourself again. Regular exercise, meditation, dietary changes, and having your loved ones around will do wonders for your menopause symptoms.

And let’s not forget about the amazing benefits natural supplements bring about when trying to keep menopausal mood swings under control. Start exploring natural remedies today and regain control of your health and well-being!

And if you’d like to keep on learning about menopause and its effects on your body and mind, have a look at our comprehensive article, where we list and explain in detail all of the 36 symptoms that occur in menopause.


1. Grossman A, Sutton JR. Endorphins: what are they? How are they measured? What is their role in exercise? Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise. 1985 Feb;17(1):74-81.
2. Jacks, D. E., Sowash J., Anning, J., Mcglouchlin, T., & Andres, F. (2002). Effect of Exercise at Three Exercise Intensities on Salivary Cortisol. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 16(2), 286–289.
3. Mishra, N., Devanshi, & Mishra, V. (2011). Exercise beyond menopause: Dos and Don′ts. Journal of Mid-life Health, 2(2), 51.
4. Lange, K. W. (2020). Omega-3 fatty acids and mental health. Global Health Journal, 4(1), 18–30.
5. Lange, K. W. (2020). Omega-3 fatty acids and mental health. Global Health Journal, 4(1), 18–30.
6. Cederroth, C. R., & Nef, S. (2009b). Soy, phytoestrogens and metabolism: A review. Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology, 304(1-2), 30–42.
7. Geller, S. E., & Studee, L. (2007). Botanical and dietary supplements for mood and anxiety in menopausal women. Menopause, 14(3), 541–549.
8. Field, D. T., Cracknell, R. O., Eastwood, J. R., Scarfe, P., Williams, C. M., Zheng, Y., & Tavassoli, T. (2022). High‐dose Vitamin B6 supplementation reduces anxiety and strengthens visual surround suppression. Human Psychopharmacology: Clinical and Experimental.