Are Menopausal Woes Universal Among All Women?

signs of menopause
At mere mention of menopause, American women usually feel fear and anxiety creeping up their spine. Women view menopause as something as scary as a ghost that slowly and gingerly crawls up at the back to startle and surprise them. And they are right, menopause is a phenomenon that should be greeted with dread and loathing.

It is not really surprising that many women in the US feel this way because of the many annoying symptoms that this condition can cause. Hot flashes, mood swings, irritability, unwanted weight gain, insomnia, memory lapses, slow responses, not to mention decline in sexual appetite are just some of the many signs that a woman is already experiencing The Change, which is what many experts call this stage.

If you think that all women across cultures feel the same way about menopause, you should think again. Although all members of the female gender will have to experience this phase in their life, NOT all of them welcome menopause with dread and fear. If you want to know more about how menopause is viewed in other cultures, then read on and learn.

Perception Of Menopause In Tribal Societies

Some tribal societies in Guatemala and Mexico, particularly those who descended from the Mayan people, view menopause in a very different light. When interviewed by experts whether women experience symptoms of menopause, women from these places do not recall experiencing any of them or they simply just do not talk about it.

Researchers believe that the lack of information on the matter is not really because women do not experience them in this part of the world, but rather because it is a taboo in their society for women to publicly talk about menstruation and menopause. Experts theorize that women in this part of the globe just suffer in silence or find ways to alleviate their symptoms by taking traditional and herbal remedies, which are abundant in these places.

But in reality, in places where shamanic beliefs are still strong, menopause are welcomed because it is a time when women can start accessing their healing and shamanic powers. Mayan women and even Canada’s Cree women believe that those who still have menstrual blood are bestowed with the power to create life. However, after the cessation of menstruation, women are now ready to embrace wisdom and healing powers as the blood that has power to create life is kept within them. Old women in such communities start to be spiritual leaders and soothsayers. There is a big probability that the symptoms they feel during this period in their lives are embraced as necessary in order to be transformed to greatness.

Japan And The Hot Flash

Linguists believe that you will know the importance or relevance of a thing, feeling or phenomenon within a society depending on the number of ways it is described or called in that society. For example, in many Asian countries where rice is a staple food, rice-related words or derivatives are plenty. They have a name for rice that is uncooked, just harvested, steamed, fried, spoilt or even overcooked rice. In the West, however, rice is simply called rice, whatever form, color or state it is in.

It is a known fact that Japanese people are precise and detail oriented. You can see these traits in the way they manufacture cars and equipment, and even in their language. Until recently, however, there is no word for hot flashes or hormonal imbalance in this country. This shows that hot flashes experienced during menopause is either not important in Japanese women or they simply do not experience it. However, in the spirit of globalization, the Japanese media coined the words horumon baransu for hormonal imbalance and hotto furasshur for hot flash.

But probably one of the reasons why hot flashes and other signs of menopause are not so apparent in Japan is due to their love of soy and soy products. Tofu and other soy-based food are staples in this country. Research has proven that soy contain isoflavones, a phytoestrogen that mimics the effect of estrogen in the body, which is important during The Change when the levels of estrogen starts to dwindle.

The knowledge of how menopause is perceived and experienced in other countries may not relieve your symptoms; however, this might help you address the changes that you are feeling. If Japanese women are not feeling the symptoms because of eating soy or other soy products, then maybe you can change your diet and find ways to incorporate soy and other foods rich in isoflavones and other phytoestrogens to minimize hot flashes, mood swings, and hormonal imbalances among others.

If you are not keen on eating tofu or you are not sure what foods are rich in such nutrients or you do not expect to be a soothsayer in your neighborhood, then you can always take supplements, such as Menersa, which contain soy and other herbs that can help ease your menopausal woes. For more information on how this product can help you, just visit

By: Janet Martin

About the Author:

Janet Martin is an avid health and fitness enthusiast and published author. Many of her insightful articles can be found at the premier online news magazine.

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