Eating large amounts of carbohydrates can approach the menopause

Eating large amounts of carbohydrates can approach the menopause

Eating lots of pasta and rice was associated with reaching menopause one-and-a-half years earlier than the average age of women in the United Kingdom of 51.

A loss of bone density, a higher risk of heart disease, and a loss of sexual desire are only some of the consequences of premature or early menopause.

The results could have implications for women at risk of a hard menopause, Janet Cade, a professor of nutritional epidemiology and public health at the U.K.'s University of Leeds, explained in a statement. "But there are fewer studies that look at the impact of diet", said study lead author Yashvee Dunneram, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Leeds in Britain.

In particular, a diet dominated by carbohydrates, can accelerate the onset of menopause, whereas regular consumption of fish, peas and beans can be postpone menopause. On the other hand, those who ate a lot of oily fish (salmon, sardines, and mackerel) generally saw it begin three years later than usual, reports Live Science.

The research is published online in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health.

The researchers collected data from the women which included a detailed diet questionnaire, along with their reproductive history and general health, through a survey.

More than 900 women between the ages of 40 and 65 had experienced a natural start of their menopause at the time of the follow-up survey, meaning they had not had menstrual periods for at least 12 consecutive months and menopause had not been brought on by such things as cancer, surgery or pharmaceutical treatments. The team took factors including weight and use of hormone replacement therapies into account, but could not consider genetic factors.

Eating large amounts of carbohydrates can approach the menopause
Eating large amounts of carbohydrates can approach the menopause

The study involved 914 women in the UK.

The researchers said a higher intake of zinc and vitamin B6 also appeared to slow down the onset of the menopause.

Among women who had not had any children, a higher intake of grapes and poultry was linked with later menopause.

Women who ate lots of vegetables such as green beans and peas went through the menopause around a year later than those who did not eat them.

According to the study's discussion, fresh legumes and oily fish are good sources of antioxidants, which could partly explain the association, as egg maturation and release are harmed by chemicals containing oxygen.

Also, omega-3 fatty acids, which can be found in oily fish, are thought to trigger antioxidant activity within the human body. This can interfere with the activity of sex hormones and boosting oestrogen levels, leading to quicker depletion of egg supply, the researchers said. "Unfortunately, a big limitation of these observational studies, is their inability to prove that dietary behaviour actually causes early menopause", she said in the statement.

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