At the age of 39, I figured I had about 10 years before I personally needed to read a book on menopause. But as my job also requires that I review books that may be of interest to women, I recently spent some time getting acquainted with The Secret Pleasures of Menopause by Christiane Northrup M.D.
I’ve long envied post-menopausal women and how utterly liberating it must be to no longer be concerned with PMS, menstruation, bloating, cramping, contraception and unplanned pregnancy. Of course I’ve heard all the horror stories about perimenopause and having been on the receiving end of one or two of my own mother’s hormonal driven rages, I can testify as to the dangers inherent when ticking off a menopausal woman. But after the storm had passed I found my mum to be a most agreeable human being.
Never before have I seen my mother so happy, so content, so completely at peace with herself and the world around her. At 63 she has more energy and zest for life than I could ever imagine is possible for myself – oh, how I envy this woman. And so the question must be asked: How does one achieve this enviable state of being as quickly and painlessly as possible? The answer according to Christiane Northrup is Nitric Oxide or as the scientific community prefer to call it, NO.
Nitric oxide or NO, is an odourless gas produced naturally by cells in the body. Nitric oxide improves blood circulation and stimulates the physical processes in your body that are required for optimal health. Simply put, when your body is producing sufficient levels of nitric oxide you are giving yourself the gift of optimal health. Of course, nitric oxide is produced in your body every day of your life, but the particular changes that occur in your mind and body during perimenopause can actually increase the levels of nitric oxide released by your cells.
So how does one increase the levels of nitric oxide in the body? By saying NO. Say NO to feeling guilty when taking pleasure from all that life has to offer. Say NO to negative thoughts and unhappiness. Say NO when they try to silence you. Say NO to artificial stimulants. Say NO to being taken advantage of. Say NO to denying yourself the best sex of your life! Say NO…well, you get the idea.
Although we’ve known for quite some time that eating a well balanced diet, exercising regularly and thinking positive thoughts, are the keys to achieving optimal health and well-being, Northrup and the scientists whom she consulted when writing this book, provides us with a plausible explanation as to the ‘why’. Northrup then takes it a step further by applying this Nobel prize-winning science directly to the changes that occur in a woman’s mind and body during menopause – so instead of fearing it, the reader actually embraces it.
The Secret Pleasures of Menopause by Christiane Northrup M.D., is published by Hay House
About the Author
Christiane Northrup, M.D., is a board-certified OB/GYN physician who helps empower women to tune in to their inner wisdom and take charge of their health. She is the author of the New York Times bestselling book Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom (Bantam, 1998); editor of the monthly newsletter Health Wisdom for Women; and the host of four successful public television specials. Her #1 New York Times best-seller, The Wisdom of Menopause, was published in March of 2001. Her work has been featured on The Oprah Winfrey show, the Today show, NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw, The View, and Good Morning America. She and her family live in Maine. For more information visit her website: www.drnorthrup.com