So today I’m gonna be talking about menopause and weight loss. And this is really menopause is, we have a 50% of our population is female, and we’re, heading into a larger . Portion of a population is gonna be over 40, over 50, moving into this phase of life.
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Hi, my name is Tsao-Lin Moy and I’m a licensed acupuncturist and herbalist with a brick and mortar practice in New York City at Union Square. so I’d like to first thank the American Acupuncture Council for having these opportunities to speak about topics of health that are very important to us as practitioners.
And also to our patients. So today I’m gonna be talking about menopause and weight loss. And this is really menopause is, we have a 50% of our population is female, and we’re, heading into a larger portion of a population is gonna be over 40, over 50, moving into this phase of life.
We’ll go to the slides. Okay. So this is weight loss and menopause, like how to help your patients with the menopausal weight game. Lemme go here. Okay, so the key topics that I’m gonna be talking about is we’re gonna do a little review of yin and yang. Really what’s happening. I’m gonna talk about constitution.
I think we often forget to look at our patient’s constitution look at some treatment strategies a little bit about acupuncture, herbs and supplements, and diet, which is gonna be really important. And . Self-care, right? So if your patients are not involved in their health and taking care of themselves when they’re not seeing you or they don’t have homework or something to do, then oftentimes they end up quitting or giving up or just deciding they’re gonna take, drugs or, go on some crazy weight loss diet.
Yin and yang again, is something that is a dynamic balance. It’s not yin or yang. It’s really yin and yang. And women are relatively more yin, right? And in this, picture, it’s, it is the four stages of a menstrual cycle. So women’s biology is actually very cyclical, with, it’s known as a moon phase.
And so even when women stop bleeding, they still have a cycle. And so it’s really important to recognize that women’s biology, . Their cycle is very different from a man’s. It’s not the same. It’s always going through, um, a a blood phase, a yin phase, a chief phase, and then again, into the yang phase, right?
And so even though the bleeding may stop, there is still this phase. And so what often happens is this is a slide that looks at . What is happening with the hormones? So if we look at, pre menopause and we look at post menopause, in the end, both the estrogen and progesterone are going to end up being like the relatively in the same position except for less, right?
So women are relatively more yin, and this is because . It’s part of our physiology is making blood and being able to hold onto life, right? So always as we head towards menopause, we’re looking at, we’re losing the yin part. And so when we have the hot flashes, this is relative yang, but overall both yin and yang are starting to decline.
So the hormonal fluctuations actually cause . The hot and cold flashes, interruption of the circadian rhythm, like sleep interruption of the result of yin and yang kind of trying to stabilize uh, blood deficiency results in more yang excess, but it’s really relative excess. But not like from abundant young, right?
So you can have someone . Who’s hot? A woman will hot flash, but she always gets cold, hands and feet. So we’re really like looking at this kind of circulation. So this is just a little bit of a review. So what happens is this. The dynamic balance becomes a little bit unstable. And so what we can observe is that when this yin declines, it can’t balance the yang.
And that’s that experience, the hot flashes, right? And the night sweats. So losing more of the yin. And eventually though, as you can see in the slide, that the hormones, the yin and yang kind of balance out. But before that, it can be extremely uncomfortable. Now, for menopause complaints, what I’d say hot flashes really at the top.
Weight gain, skin and hair insomnia, usually from the hot flashes. And the ups and downs are also showing. But for the most, what I’ve found, and I’m guessing that. Because there’s the media, because there’s this aspect of we always have to be thin, that when women start to gain weight it’s very upsetting.
wOmen are always trying to lose weight, stay fit, look good, and then as we enter into this particular phase and our body starts to feel a little bit out of sorts, and then all of a sudden what’s happening is this weight gain, and especially around the middle. Weight gain is in general, I would say a sign that there’s something systemically getting blocked or backed up.
There’s also going to be inflammation in the body as weight gain is office excess fluid. It’s often that and fat that will store waste. So when we have metabolic waste or a lot of chemicals, what’ll happen is our body will try, will store it, convert it into fat, and oftentimes it’s going and especially hormonally.
So if as with women are doing fertility treatments and they’re injecting themselves with all kinds of hormones that they tend to gain a lot of weight around the middle. . This is also due to stress, but it’s also due to the fluctuations of hormones. And then there’s this metabolic waste, or we can call it like turbidity, right?
That’s in the system. So one of the things is that you can also be a endocrine problem, such as thyroid. Or fatty liver, which is also metabolic. But for sure we know that this is part of the digestion because this is postnatal, the digestion is gonna be involved, right? So it’s not just diet, but it’s also
The ability to absorb food nutrients and then make the hormones and make the blood, and make the fluids so for the skin and the hair, right? So all of these things, so we’re looking at. We have our jing, or our Jing that we’re born with which is kinda like a blueprint for life.
And then as we develop, our environment is very much a part of affecting, how we develop, right? So we got a blueprint, and then we have the environment, which will give us a range of how tall we’re gonna be. How healthy, like all of those things. But also we’ve got our, genetic makeup that’s there.
And so once we’re born really environmentally, we’re looking at that postnatal cheese. So environment, and then what are we bringing into our body not just food and nutrients, but also, energetically, emotionally, what else is happening for us? And stress is a big issue, right? Because that’s gonna actually affect our our nervous system.
Okay, so a quick overview. Constitutional body types, right? We’ve got yang, we’ve got yin type, damp phlegm, dry, and then we have neutral, so women are gonna be more in the yin and the damp phlegm, and then also neutral. As menopause, like perimenopause starts to come, this is going to show up and be more exacerbated.
In terms of the characteristics. So if we look at, a young body type is gonna be really like sturdy, energetic, that red complexion to. Tend towards like heat preferring cold drinks. So this is they, if somebody who’s tends towards young starts eating a lot of spicy foods, it’s gonna be problematic.
So looking at the constitution of the person. Is gonna be really important because that’s really like that kind of underlying blueprint that they’re born with, right? Something that their constitution. And so always we’re gonna be looking at constitutionally, how is this pattern emerging?
So it’s not just the signs and symptoms where we can say, oh it’s a yin deficiency, it’s blood deficiency. It’s really, we’re like, oh, in a young person or in a yin person, what is that gonna look like? Because that’s gonna, I, that is actually going to direct you towards like how you’re gonna treat that person, right?
Someone who’s very damp and Fleming is gonna be like more watery. But water is inflammation. Even if it’s not hot. We’re looking at, the body is retaining fluid to dilute some kind of inflammation, and over time it can actually get hot. So in, in terms of a strategy, you wanna be careful, someone is cool and damp.
If you heat them up too much, it can actually turn into that damp heat and phlegm, right? And inflammatory conditions. So that’s why going back to the basics and looking at what is their constitutional body type. And from there we’re looking at what is that pattern? It’s emerging for them, not just their, oh, they’re blood deficient.
Yes. But blood deficiency in a particular body type has a different pattern. Although we can still use the same treatments, we might even use the same herbal formulas. We still have to recognize what is the underlying pattern and not just rely on protocols or, or. Really using herbal formulas, like a supplement.
A lot of, practitioners, I would say forget they that they’re, they may have their western mind cap on and or patients think of them as, oh, give me that herb formula again. I really liked it. I felt really good. Which is great. But then we’re looking at
What else can be done? Because maybe they’re not changing their diet, maybe they’re not doing other things unless somebody’s really ill they don’t necessarily need to be on formulas for a really long time. And that’s the determination of what’s a long time. And as we know, it’s very hard to get people to make changes and especially with their diet and lifestyle, but.
This is a really important thing and what makes Chinese medicine practitioners acupuncturists different from a Western model is we’re not looking to fix them. We’re gonna help them to get a better grasp on how their body actually works. I’m gonna stop here and next time there’s gonna be part two where I’m gonna talk about simple methods on how you can treat your patients that are suffering from weight gain and menopause.