After menopause, we begin to see the negative effects of sugar upon our systems in several important ways. Excess sugar steals our B-complex vitamins and minerals. You will recall that earlier in this chapter I described these as offering calming effects. With the depletion of B-complex vitamins and minerals, we may become more nervous or anxious a real concern at menopause, when stress may worsen hot flashes and other symptoms. Further, sugar promotes tooth decay and gum disease, both of which can accelerate as we age. Even though diabetes is not your concern now, it is known that excess sugar consumption can be a factor in encouraging adult-onset diabetes and other imbalances in blood sugar, and that both of these conditions can worsen after menopause.
Physicians may prescribe ERT for four main reasons: to alleviate the sudden onset of menopausal symptoms if you have undergone an early surgical menopause (see Chapter 4); to help relieve hot flashes and their nighttime twin, night sweats; to relieve vaginal discomfort dryness, soreness, and the resulting pain during intercourse (see Chapter 5); and to prevent postmenopausal osteoporosis (see Chapter 8).
It is important that we educate ourselves on our own behalf so that we can make informed choices regarding many aspects of our lives. Our continued health and wellbeing should be right at the top of our priority list. We should look forward to interesting and fulfilling years after menopause. We not only have the right, but the obligation, to manage our own health care as effectively as we know how.
Knowledge is of two kinds. We know a subject ourselves or we know where we can find information upon it.