Ready for Menopause? 9 Healthy Moves to Make Now

A healthy lifestyle now may reduce menopause symptoms later (8 Photos)

Paula Spencer on Jul 19, 2012 at 10:36PM

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Ready for Menopause? 9 Healthy Moves to Make Now

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Eat Mediterranean Style

"It's all about preventive maintenance," says Shari Lusskin, M.D., director of reproductive psychiatry at New York University's Langone Medical Center. Your 30s and 40s are exactly the right time to prime yourself for the inevitable "change of life," starting with your diet. Estrogen loss raises the risk of heart disease—the leading cause of death in women—but eating a diet based on vegetables and fruits, fish, whole grains and good-for-you oils such as olive oil and nuts, and even moderate amounts of wine and dark chocolate, can counter this risk. Another plus: Because this diet relies on spices rather than sauces, and lean protein rather than fatty meats, it can help keep extra pounds away. At menopause, you may need to eat as many as 400 fewer calories per day to maintain your weight!

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