Did you know days 15 to 24 of your cycle is the best time to quit drinking? Me either.
About to take the dog for a long walk and listen! Question for your next one: I’ve been dealing with depression most of my adult life - managed pretty well through therapy, meds, acupuncture, etc. As I entered perimenopause last year, my depressive episodes got WAY more frequent. They come almost every month now and usually the week after my period, where it used to be 1-2x a year or even every few years. It’s like I’m just recovering from one bout of it and then it’s already that time again. The old tools aren’t working. It’s really distressing. Is this common? What can I do about it? I’ve heard a little bit about hormone therapy for menopausal depression and plan to ask my doc about it next week, but I don’t have a lot of faith going into that knowing it seems to be a blind spot in healthcare.
I did the mantra project. Highly recommend it.
Question for the episode on perimenopause and menopause and recovery: everything! There is nothing out there for non-scientists on this topic beyond "your hangovers will worsen." Based on my experience, I wonder if estrogen and lack thereof affects our ability to metabolize alcohol. I had worse hangovers after menopause, but I learned that even then the uterus makes a little bit of estrogen. After a hysterectomy my ability to metabolize alcohol has disappeared entirely. Which is very helpful in the quest to quit, but the change is so stark, it seems strange to me to not be able to find any information on the link between estrogen and alcohol. Looking forward to learning.
It's amazing to me how much we don't know about our bodies. I had undiagnosed fibroids for who knows how long, which led to a hysterectomy in my early thirties, and no physician ever tested my hormones, or, asked me about my alcohol consumption. So I kept on drinking and a little over a decade later was diagnosed with breast cancer. I asked my surgeon if I should be worried about drinking and a cancer recurrence and she just shrugged her shoulders and told me not to worry about it; actually, she told me to "stay thin," which immediately spurred my distrust, so I started the process of quitting drinking. As Dr. Schmidt said, causal conclusions cannot be drawn in the case of fibroids, or breast cancer, but certainly I fueled both through my 28 years of drinking (estrogen is the culprit in both health issues). Now I have no way to track my cycle, either, because all the tools I used to use (getting a period, the sensitivity of my breasts) to do so are gone. It is heartening to hear that there is increasing research on varying bodies rather than on a singular "universal" body. So glad to be 6 months sober!!!!
Holly-please check out “In the Flo” by Alissa Vitti. It’s an excellent book on how our cycle affects every aspect of our life and how to live in sync with this cycle. It’s covers the history of how we’ve been conditioned to view our cycles and how that impacts our lack of understanding of our bodies. Thank you for covering this previously unspoken of topic! Sharing to everyone now.
At 62 years of age and being a retired nurse I learned so much in this podcast. Thank you so much for covering this topic and I simply cannot wait to hear more on menopause.
This was so interesting. I cannot wait for the next discussion regarding menopause, hormones and alcohol. I have been question for a few years now how much my tolerance and my reactions to alcohol have drastically changed. I always suspected hormones could be playing a big part but could not find much information.
One of the things I find interesting are the narratives around menopause and menopausal women. These can tend toward impressions of lack of sexual desire, limited power, not being seen by society, and in general stories of diminishment. My mostly artist friends report otherwise, including an eldering process that includes an expansion of power, desire, and choices that are aligned with greater wisdom and strength. My 50s and early 60s are the most erotic and productive of my life, especially following the cessation of menstruation. I'm curious if there's any physiological or other narratives within health and medicine that report that menopause isn't a disaster for bodies and psyches.
I loved listening- so much great information. I had a question though, does being on oral Birth Control change anything about what was outlined in the discussion? Or do the hormone fluctuations apply differently for someone on BC? Thanks!!
I'm late to this and can't believe I missed this podcast until now. I agree with your reader Kristen Ava that Dr. Gunter is the current go-to on the subject of menopause. Her book "The Menopause Manifesto" is an incredible resource. She is definitely the most current and up-to-date with her research on hormones and menopause specifically though I haven't seen any research from her on menopause and addiction so a special pair you two would make for certain. Your research on subjects is so thorough and since you are admittedly "new" to this subject - though far less so now it would seem - she is an amazing resource.
Thank you for doing this. As someone who is in recovery at my 11th month as well as just stepping into menopause this year AND entering my fourth month on HRT I really look forward to part 2 of this topic. Thank you as always Holly. Your work is life changing and necessary in this world.
I love all of this. Can I place an enormous YES vote for Holly and Jen Gunter having a conversation about all things alcohol, hormones, cycles and menopause? A feminist-in-recovery's dream come true. Peri-menopause and menopause had everything to do with waking me up (literally, as it happens) to the fact that I needed to kick alcohol out of my life. https://medium.com/@madeleineshawgreatergood/from-winer-to-wise-woman-90f5aad1f688