A recent study published in Nutrition provides evidence that an antioxidant-rich diet may help improve common symptoms of menopause. Antioxidants protect cells from damage, and are most prevalent in tea, vegetables, fruits and juices.
The study, conducted in Iran, surveyed around 400 middle aged, postmenopausal women. Participating women were given a food frequency questionnaire to estimate dietary intake, and then asked whether they had experienced menopausal symptoms related to hot flashes, sweating and trouble sleeping (somatic); depressive mood, irritability and anxiety (psychological); vaginal dryness, sexual problems and bladder complaints (urinary-genital symptoms). Each subject was then given a Menopausal Rating Scale (MRS) to rate the extent of their symptoms.
When researchers compared results, they found that a higher intake of total antioxidants was associated with lower total MRS scores. Specifically significant was the reduction of hot flashes, sleep problems, anxiety, and exhaustion. Fruits and fruit juices were one of the top three food groups that significantly contributed to antioxidant intake for study participants.
These findings suggest that an increased consumption of antioxidant-rich foods could benefit middle aged women experiencing somatic and psychological issues related to menopause. Surprisingly, urinary-genital symptoms did not decrease with higher antioxidant consumption, showing an inverse relationship. Study authors believe this may be due to unaccounted confounding factors.
Known for their beneficial properties, antioxidants can help support an overall healthy dietary pattern and lifestyle. An easy way to grab your dose is with a glass of 100% juice. Tasty sources include pomegranate, orange, apple, and grape juice. To learn more about the nutritional value of your favorite juices, check out our Juice Varieties page. For more information on the important nutrients found in 100% juice, visit our Vitamins & Minerals page.