Menopause can really throw a curve ball at your day-to-day life. And since, on average, humans spend about one-third of their lives on the clock, it’s natural for those hormonal changes to impact the way you show up at work. Brain fog, sleeplessness, anxiety, and poor temperature regulation can all impact your ability to put your best foot forward at the office. But 70% of working women going through menopause don’t tell their employers about their symptoms—an unsurprising statistic when you consider that 90% of women’s offices offer zero support for employees going through the big change.
Hot flashes—or hot flushes in some areas of the world—are easily one of menopause’s best-known and least appreciated side effects. Thought to be caused by hormonal changes in the brain’s thermoregulatory center, hot flashes aren’t just uncomfortable. They can also be stressful and embarrassing, especially if you feel like your peers are taking notice.
As we start to think about transitioning back to the office after a year-plus of working from home, it’s natural to wonder how you can manage those pesky heat waves in a shared environment. Here, we’ve gathered four ways to take back control of your temperature during the workday.
Adjust your diet.
A diet high in healthy fats like omega-3 (think salmon, seeds, or nuts) has been shown to help reduce hot flashes in menopausal women. Filling the rest of your plate with plenty of fruits and vegetables can also offer antioxidants and other nutrients to keep you feeling your best. Avoid spicy foods, which can trigger hot flashes, and try to limit your intake of alcohol or caffeine. For immediate relief, look for foods that are physically cold, like salads and sandwiches, as well as foods with high water content, like watermelon or cucumbers.
Speaking of water, make sure you’re drinking plenty of the stuff: Dehydration can cause brain fog and dry skin in addition to body temperature fluctuations. Water—especially in combination with an adaptogen like Ashwagandha, found in Kindra’s Core supplement—can also manage your body’s production of the stress hormone cortisol, lowering your anxiety and balancing your circulation.
Take a circulation-balancing daily supplement.
For noticeable hot flash relief without the use of estrogen, more and more women are turning to Mother Nature. Many natural ingredients such as evening primrose oil, magnesium, and Vitamin B-6 have been shown to reduce the frequency and severity of hot flashes in menopausal women. But we're especially partial to Pycnogenol, or French Maritime pine bark extract. The superhero antioxidant—a primary ingredient in Kindra’s Core, sleep-enhancing, and energy-boosting supplements—has been shown to boost your mood and brain function in addition to mitigating hot flashes, all by balancing out your circulation. In fact, women who took daily Pycnogenol supplements observed a 33% improvement in hot flashes and night sweats after just four weeks of regular use—a gamechanger for day-to-day comfort.
Do what you can to optimize your environment.
All of the prep in the world isn’t going to help you stay cool and comfortable if you’re working in an old building with poor ventilation. But regardless of the general temperature of your workspace, you can take small steps to make it a breezier, more palatable place to be. If you can’t control the office thermostat, see if you can choose a desk near a vent or window. Invest in a fan at your desk—we like this old-school model by Vornado—or turn off unnecessary overhead lights. Keep a glass of ice water at your desk, and dress in lightweight, breathable layers that you can add and subtract as needed throughout the day.
Researchers have long drawn connections between anxiety and hot flashes. So it’s no surprise that running late can raise your body temperature, whether it’s from the stress of feeling pressed for time or the actual running from one appointment to another. Fortunately, you can eliminate this needless strain by making small adjustments to your schedule. Plan extra time for your commute every morning, or try placing buffers on your calendar before important meetings or events. A few extra moments to collect your thoughts and move at your own pace can do wonders to lessen anxiety and keep your body balanced.
Daily supplements can play a role in stress reduction, too. Women who took Kindra’s energy-boosting daily capsule saw a 30% improvement in anxiety after four weeks and a 32% improvement in nervousness after 12 weeks—in addition to the noticeable decrease in hot flashes. Checking in with how you’re feeling, both physically and mentally, can be the key to unlocking a cooler, more balanced menopausal experience, both at work and at home.
Navigating Menopause While You Work? We created an encompassing guide to help.