Monthly Archives: January 2010

Are you counting calories or nutritional value?

meno-nutrition copySMALLCounting calories helped me conquer the menopause bulge! Thanks to Dr. David Katz, director and co-founder of the Yale Prevention Research Center who created a nutritional scoring system called NuVal, I was able to watch calories and eat nutritious foods!

Dr. Katz, nutrition columnist to “O” Magazine and medical contributor for ABC News, created NuVal to make your life easier when making food selections. If you ask yourself “what are the healthiest breads, snack bars, cereals, and pastas,” then Dr. Katz has a solution for you.

Should you buy wheat or oatmeal bread? Are pretzels more nutritious than tortilla chips? These are the decisions that NuVal scores can help you make – in seconds – as you’re walking down the supermarket aisle. NuVal is currently in use in more than 525 supermarkets in 18 states. Click here for grocery store locations.

The Nuval Scoring System assigns the healthiness score to various food items on a scale from 1 to 100. The scale uses criteria like vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and healthy omega three fat content in the rating. Also, the system takes into account the sugar and cholesterol content of the food.

The Menopause Makeover supports good nutrition, and the NuVal scoring system can make your life easier when making food choices. Do you know the healthiest breads or salty snacks? You may be surprised. Click here for the scores of your favorite foods.

Recently, The American College of Preventive Medicine (ACPM), a leading organization of some of the country’s top physicians committed to preventing disease and promoting health, has officially endorsed the NuVal Nutritional Scoring System as an easy and effective way to help consumers learn about the foods they buy.

“When we created NuVal, our primary goal was to address the public health crisis related to food choices, including obesity and diabetes, with a simple solution that was accessible to everyone,” Dr. Katz said. “We feel we have created that in NuVal and are delighted to gain the acceptance of an organization that shares our passion for health promotion.”

It is never too late to improve your health with good nutrition.

NuVal takes all the guesswork out of identifying truly more nutritious food. When you are battling the menopause bulge, good nutrition is the ticket to good health.

NuVal is Menopause Makeover approved!

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Posted in nutrition

The Menopause Makeover Challenge!


Meet Jayne. She is doing The Menopause Makeover and blogging about it on

The Menopause Makeover is a crash course in surviving “the change.” Take on The Menopause Makeover Challenge. Join Jayne and say “I do” to a new you!

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Posted in tips

Weight Gain and Menopause


Dear Crabby,

My menopause symptoms have been moderate and I feel lucky to have escaped hot flashes. But I am getting fatter by the second. I am 5 foot 3 inches tall, 46 years old and have weighed 130 pounds most of my life. Within one year I have gained a whopping 15 pounds. I am having problems with high blood pressure and I look and feel terrible. I would rather have hot flashes than turn into the Pillsbury Dough Girl. Help!

The Pillsbury Dough Girl from Minnesota

Dear Pillsbury Dough Girl:

Weight gain may be the most difficult change that occurs during menopause. We live in a society that celebrates young, skinny women. When we start to gain weight, whether it’s from childbirth, bad eating habits, lack of exercise, aging or menopause it is emotionally depressing. Your weight history seems stable and healthy, no doubt you have good eating and exercising habits. As your hormones fluctuate during menopause you start shifting fat to your mid-section because your progesterone and estrogen levels decrease. Progesterone increases your metabolism. As it decreases during menopause, so does your metabolism.

Women gain an average of one pound per year starting in their late thirties due to a loss of muscle mass and slowing metabolism. This can add weight as well. You are 46 years old, and if you started gaining that one pound per year starting at 38, that equals eight pounds. Over half the additional weight you are now noticing during menopause.

Fluctuating hormones during menopause can cause an increase in weight and natural aging. Poor food choices and lack of exercise are unforgiving at this time in your life. If you already have a good exercise program, you may need to increase the time and intensity of your routine. If you eat well, cutting portions may yield results.

Start keeping a food and exercise diary. Record your menopause symptoms. According to the BMI (Body Mass Index) charts you are not obese, but considered slightly overweight for your height. This is the perfect time to make food and exercise adjustments. As you have experienced, being overweight raises your risk of many diseases such as high blood pressure. Doing 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week may help maintain your current weight. Exercising one hour a day is optimum. Studies have shown that people who briskly walk 30 minutes daily lost up to 30 pounds over time and lowered their blood pressure.

Try incorporating a 30-minute power walk most days of the week, cutting your eating portions and discuss hormone therapy with your doctor. For faster results, exercise 60 minutes a day.

A Zipped Up Dear Crabby

Write to Dear Crabby and get advice about your menopausal symptoms.
If you have:
• Hot flashes
• Itchy skin
• Breast tenderness
• Mood swings
• Memory lapses
• Fuzzy thinking
• Night sweats
• Sleep problems
• Loss of libido
• Dry vagina
• Irregular periods
• Headaches

Dear Crabby has tips to make your life easier.
She wants to hear from YOU.
Send your questions to:

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Posted in ask the expert