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Men Can Get Hot Flushes Too

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Men Can Get Hot Flushes Too

Hot flushes are all part of the menopause right?

Well according to recent findings, men who are receiving Luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) blockers for prostate cancer can experience unpleasant menopausal symptoms such as hot flushes, night sweats, mood swings, nipple tenderness and weight gain. Hormone therapy may also increase the risk of heart disease, osteoporosis and type 2 diabetes. Recent research from Prostate Cancer U.K has found that 80 percent of men with prostate cancer who were being treated with LHRH blockers suffer from hot flushes. They also found that 27 percent of these men said this is the most distressing side effect of the hormone therapy.

Natural remedies and a diet high in phytoestrogens are helpful in relieving hot flushes. Phytoestrogens mimic oestrogen in the body. Soya products have the highest content of phytoestrogens. Studies have found that consuming soya can reduce hot flushes within a four week period. Flaxseed and wholegrains also have a large content of phytoestrogens. Herbs which contain phytoestrogens include; hops, thyme, licorice and verbena. Drinking two litres of cold water a day is helpful in relieving hot flushes. Reducing your intake of chocolate, mature cheese and red wine is important because they contain a chemical which can exacerbate symptoms. Limiting your intake of spicy foods and dairy has also being found to be beneficial in reducing symptoms. Dr. Stephanie Faubion, Director of the Women’s Health Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, has found that caffeine intake has being linked to increasing hot flushes in menopausal women.

Other natural remedies which have proven to be effective in relieving hot flushes and night sweats are Black Cohosh, Dong quai, sage and red clover. Vitamin E and C have also being found to help to alleviate symptoms. According to scientific research in King’s College London, prostate cancer patients who have received cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) have noticed a significant reduction in their symptoms. Myra Hunt, Professor of Clinical Health Psychology has said that ‘Beliefs about hot flushes can exacerbate symptoms.’ Stress releases adrenalin into the blood and this increases your body temperature. Therefore if people are replacing their negative thoughts with positive ones, this will help to calm the person and reduce their flushes.

She conducted a study recently involving 68 men who were receiving LHRH therapy for prostate cancer, and were experiencing hot flushes. 34 of the men were told to continue with their treatment with doctors, and the other half had two CBT sessions with a psychologist. They were told to change their sleep and diet, shown breathing techniques and advised to change their negative thinking. After six weeks the group who had been attending CBT sessions experienced a 40 percent reduction in their symptoms whereas the other group only noticed a 16 percent difference in symptoms.

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