Embracing Menopause: The 5 Common Myths Debunked

As we reach our mid-40s, we start experiencing changes in our body and emotions, changes that we typically keep to ourselves. Our skin changes, weight loss becomes challenging, and our capacity to multitask seems to dwindle. We may notice shifts in our mood, sexual drive, and menstrual cycles. Because we are still having periods, many of us don’t connect these initial experiences to the beginning of perimenopause. Yet, for most, this is how it begins. But menopause is not something to dread. It’s simply a new stage of life that requires some lifestyle changes to get our bodies back in balance. In fact, there are some common misconceptions about menopause that often cause unnecessary fear and anxiety.

Five common menopause myths

Myth: Hot flashes are the only symptom of menopause.

Reality: The best-known symptom, yes, but not the only one. Sleep disruption is also a classic sign, which can result from alternating night hot flashes and sweats. Other common symptoms include irritability, mood swings, and foggy thinking. To keep track of your symptoms, it helps to write them down. You can also use a perimenopause symptom tracker to capture a complaint, its frequency, and intensity.1,2,3

Myth: Menopause is the beginning of the end.

Reality: Menopause is not a disease. Repeat: Menopause is not a disease! It’s a natural process that occurs when estrogen begins to decline around the age of 45 and ending around 55, when a woman’s period stops for about six months (or a year, according to some researchers).4 Remember that menopause is a normal life transition, and there are more tools and support available to navigate this journey than ever before. With a well-balanced diet, the right supplements, regular exercise, and good communication with your healthcare provider, you have the power to not just manage symptoms, but truly thrive during this phase of life.

Myth: Menopause makes you gain weight.

Reality: Menopause often leads to perceived weight gain due to hormonal fluctuations that shift our metabolism and reduce muscle mass. These changes in hormone levels can trigger metabolic syndrome (MetS) that can cause an increase in abdominal fat. Low thyroid levels can be another factor.5 However, menopause doesn't necessarily mean inevitable weight gain. The transition period of perimenopause is an ideal time to revisit diet, exercise, and self-care. Achieving a healthy weight can translate to better health in the years ahead. Plus, it will make you feel better now.

Myth: My sex drive will disappear.

Reality: Some women experience a dip in libido, but in other cases, it’s not desire that’s the issue. As your estrogen levels drop, you may experience vaginal dryness that makes having sex uncomfortable. There are lubricants and supplements you can use to combat vaginal discomfort. Be sure to discuss these options with your healthcare provider.4

Myth: Hormones are the only effective menopause option.

Reality: Although short-term hormone replacement therapy can help relieve symptoms for some women, it is not the only option. Plant-based diets rich in fruits, vegetable, seeds, nuts, legumes, and grains can help ease the menopausal transition and protect your bones. Food derivatives like amino acids from protein and fatty acids from oils, as well as botanicals, can also be effective.6

Menopause marks a new phase of life, and all of us embark on this inevitable journey. Each of us experiences the decline of estrogen differently. Knowing your body and taking care of your health can ease this transition. Talk to your healthcare partner to discuss your unique menopause experience.

Visit Metagenics.com for more product education.


  1. Nelson et al. Lancet 2008;371:760-770
  2. Santoro et al. Clin Obstet Gynecol 2008;51:539-48
  3. Paramsothy et al. Menopause. 2017;24(2):142-149.
  4. van Dijk GM et al. Maturitas. 2015;80(1):24-30.
  5. Janssen I et al. Ann Intern Med. 2008;168(14):1568-1575.
  6. Franco OH et al. Use of plant-based therapies and menopausal symptoms-a systematic review and meta-analysis. JAMA. 2016;315(23):2554-2563.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.