Vaginal dryness occurs when estrogen levels in your body drop and not enough moisture is produced to lubricate the vaginal walls. Symptoms include itching and stinging around the vaginal opening and in the lower third of the vagina. Stress, medical disorders, childbirth, smoking cigarettes, imbalanced diet, cancer therapy, and perimenopause or menopause will cause your estrogen levels to fluctuate. Always consult your physician to ensure your condition is vaginal dryness and not an underlying symptom of a medical disorder. Eating the right foods can help alleviate vaginal dryness.
There are foods that facilitate estrogen production and help keep your hormones in balance, if the condition is due to low estrogen and there are also foods that contain phytoestrogens or naturally occurring compounds found in plants, they act like estrogen and support the body functions required to keep your vagina moist.
There is no scientific evidence confirming foods with phytoestrogens cure vaginal dryness, however data from several preliminary studies and clinical prove phytoestrogens play a role in combating vaginal dryness.
Research and preliminary studies conducted at The University of Naples suggest that phytoestrogens may alleviate vaginal dryness. A study in the British Medical Journal (1993) found that women who ate 45 grams of phytoestrogen rich foods each day experienced some relief from vaginal dryness.
Among the phytoestrogen groups recognized as contributing to the relief of vaginal dryness are isoflavones, flavones, coumestans, lignans and miroestrol, deoxymiroestrol. Red clover is a legume, and is rich in isoflavones. Whole soy products, like tofu, soy beans, tempe, and soy milk also have a high concentration of isoflavones. High amounts of lignans are found in flaxseed. In addition, legumes, nuts, apples, celery and cherries are high in phytoestrogens.
The latter two phytoestrogens, miroestrol and deoxymiroestrol are found in a plant grown in Asia named Pueraria mirifica. Scientific studies published in the Sept/Oct 2007 issue of Menopause, The Journal of the North American Menopause Society, found that the plant showed positive results in alleviating vaginal dryness. The article indicates the plant has high levels of phytoestrogen that are much stronger than the isoflavins found in soy or red clover.
One to three cups per day. Use one teaspoonful of dried herb and blossom per cup of boiling water. 40 to 160 mg of isoflavones.
45 mg of soy daily from high quality whole soy foods.
2 tablespoons per day. Or for those who are use to fiber, 2 tablespoons in the morning and evening. Mix with anything, cereal, juice, milk, yogurt. Drink plenty of water when adding flaxseed to your diet.
Eat a Balanced Diet
Eating a balanced diet that includes the recommended servings of vegetables, fruits, grains, legumes and healthy fats will facilitate estrogen production and help balance your hormones. Healthy fats play a role in the production of cholesterol and most of the estrogen in your body is produced from cholesterol in your ovaries and adrenal glands. Healthy fats include Omega-3: fish, flaxseed; Omega-6: evening primrose and borage oils; Omega 9: olive oil. Sea fishes like salmon, tuna, mackerel, and halibut are sources high in healthy fats.
Drink four to 10 glasses of water a day.s The amount of water you drink depends on your metabolism. Water will help keep your body tissues moist, including those in your vagina.
Herbalists at the Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation suggest that taking motherwort tincture or dong quai in any form by mouth for three to seven days improves vaginal lubrication. Put 1 to 2 teaspoons of dried herb per cup of boiling water.
Researchers at Vanderbilt University indicate ginseng possesses many of the same properties as the hormone estrogen. As a result, shortening and thinning of the vagina walls and lessening of vaginal lubrication may be reduced. 4.5 to 6 grams daily.
Food and More….
In addition to eating a healthy diet, you may want to try Kegel exercises. They are designed to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles and keep your vagina healthy. Kegel exercises are easy to do and everyone else is clueless when you are doing them. See Resource below: The Menopause Naturally Symptoms-Kegel Excercises.