“Moderate-intensity exercise may not cut your hot flashes, but it will help with some other menopause-related problems, including sleep, depression and anxiety”.1

Umbrella
What may the Physical Activity and Menopause Umbrella include?

Depending on the Source (DotS) this Umbrella may include:

  • Active Living
  • Exercise
  • Fitness
  • Menopause
  • Perimenopause
  • Physical Activity
  • Postmenopause

Definition

What is physical activity?

DotS the definition of physical activity may vary. The World Health Organization’s (WHO) definition is:

“WHO defines physical activity as any bodily movement produced by skeletal muscles that requires energy expenditure. Physical activity refers to all movement including during leisure time, for transport to get to and from places, or as part of a person’s work. Both moderate- and vigorous-intensity physical activity improve health”.2

Health Benefits

Is there an association between health benefits and physical activity?

In Physical Activity the WHO elaborate on:

“Regular physical activity is proven to help prevent and manage noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes and several cancers. It also helps prevent hypertension, maintain healthy body weight and can improve mental health, quality of life and well-being”.3

Menopause

Is there an association between menopause and physical activity?

In Sitting Can Sabotage Your Health Habits: But Don’t Give Up Your Workouts the North American Menopause Society elaborate on:

Physical Activity and Menopause“Here’s what exercise can do for women at menopause and beyond:

  • Aerobic exercise improves memory and thinking skills and increases blood flow to key regions of the brain, especially areas linked to thinking skills in later life and to Alzheimer’s disease
  • Moderate activity (like brisk walking) cuts your stroke risk, helping offset the increased risk with hormone therapy
  • Moderate-intensity exercise may not cut your hot flashes, but it will help with some other menopause-related problems, including sleep, depression, and anxiety…”.4

Hot Flushes

Is there an association between hot flushes and physical activity?

DotS, yes or no. The (Australian) Jean Hailes for Women’s Health (JH) explain:

“Some studies have suggested that exercise can reduce hot flushes, but overall there is insufficient evidence to show this”.5

Mood

Is there an association between mood and physical activity?

In Depression: How Can I Take Care of Myself? the (United States) National Institute of Mental Health note:

  • “Try to get some physical activity. Just 30 minutes a day of walking can boost mood”.6

In Physical Activity Basics: How Much Physical Activity Do You Need? the (United States) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention explain:

“The evidence is clear—physical activity can make you feel better, function better, and sleep better. Even one session of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity reduces anxiety, and even short bouts of physical activity are beneficial. Being physically active also fosters normal growth and development, improves overall health, can reduce the risk of various chronic diseases”.7

Never Too Late To Start

Is it never too late to start physical activity?

According to the JH:

“It’s never too late to become more physically active. Beginning or resuming exercise at any age will benefit your health”.8

Physical Activity

How much physical activity do adults require?

In Top 10 Things To Know About the Second Edition of the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans: 4. the (United States) Department of Health and Human Services elaborate on:

  • “… To attain the most health benefits from physical activity, adults need at least 150 to 300 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, like brisk walking or fast dancing, each week. Adults also need muscle-strengthening activity, like lifting weights or doing push-ups, at least 2 days each week”.9

Weekly Activity Diary

Where may I find a Weekly Activity Diary?

In Physical Activity & Exercise: Tools To Help the JH include a Weekly Activity Diary and elaborate on:

“A weekly activity diary helps you become more aware of your activity needs and the importance of not trying to fit too much in”.10

Health Care Provider

What if I am going to start doing physical activity?

If you are going to start doing physical activity, it may be in your best interest to choose to talk to your health care provider about this.

In Physical Activity: Information – Getting Started the (United States) MedlinePlus note:

“IMPORTANT NOTE: Talk with your health care provider before starting an exercise program if:

  • You have diabetes, heart disease, lung disease, or another long-term illness
  • You are obese
  • You have not been very active lately
  • You get chest pains or shortness of breath when you are active”.11

In Fitness: In-Depth – Exercise: 7 Benefits of Regular Physical Activity – The Bottom Line on Exercise the (United States) Mayo Clinic caution:

“Remember to check with your doctor before starting a new exercise program, especially if you have any concerns about your fitness, haven’t exercised for a long time, have chronic health problems, such as heart disease, diabetes or arthritis”.12

The JH also caution:

“If you have a medical condition, are overweight, are pregnant, over 40 years of age or have not exercised regularly for a long time, see a health professional for medical advice before increasing your activity. They can refer you to an accredited exercise physiologist who can help you design an activity plan that is safe and helpful to your individual needs”.13

Health Topics A-Z

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Links

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Sources

Where may I find the Sources quoted?

You may find the Sources quoted at:

Sources

  1. Sitting Can Sabotage Your Good Health Habits: But Don’t Give Up Your Workouts. North American Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org/for-women/menopauseflashes/exercise-and-diet/sitting-can-sabotage-your-good-health-habits Accessed: 23 December 2021
  2. Physical Activity: What Is Physical Activity? 26 November 2020. World Health Organization https://www.who.int/en/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/physical-activity Accessed: 23 December 2021
  3. Physical Activity. World Health Organization https://www.who.int/health-topics/physical-activity#tab=tab_1 Accessed: 23 December 2021
  4. Sitting Can Sabotage Your Good Health Habits: But Don’t Give Up Your Workouts. North American Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org/for-women/menopauseflashes/exercise-and-diet/sitting-can-sabotage-your-good-health-habits Accessed: 23 December 2021
  5. Menopause Management: Healthy Living – Lifestyle & Menopause Symptoms. Last Updated: 13 July 2021 | Last Reviewed: 17 December 2017. Jean Hailes for Women’s Health https://jeanhailes.org.au/health-a-z/menopause/menopause-management/ Accessed: 23 December 2021
  6. Depression: How Can I Take Care of Myself? Revised: 2021. National Institute of Mental Health https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/stress/index.shtml Accessed: 23 December 2021
  7. Physical Activity Basics: How Much Physical Activity Do You Need? Page Last Reviewed: 08 May 2021. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/index.htm Accessed: 23 December 2021
  8. Physical Activity & Exercise. Last Updated: 15 January 2020 | Last Revised: 17 February 2014. Jean Hailes for Women’s Health https://jeanhailes.org.au/health-a-z/healthy-living/physical-activity-exercise/ Accessed: 23 December 2021
  9. Top 10 Things To Know About the Second Edition of the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans. 4. Department of Health and Human Services https://health.gov/our-work/physical-activity/current-guidelines/top-10-things-know Accessed: 23 December 2021
  10. Physical Activity & Exercise: Tools To Help – Weekly Activity Diary. Last Updated: 15 January 2020 | Last Revised 17 February 2014. Jean Hailes for Women’s Health https://jeanhailes.org.au/health-a-z/healthy-living/physical-activity-exercise/ Accessed: 23 December 2021
  11. Physical Activity: Information – Getting Started. Update Date: 03 May 2021. Page Last Updated: 30 November 2021. MedlinePlus https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/001941.htm Accessed: 23 December 2021
  12. Fitness: In-Depth – Exercise: 7 Benefits of Regular Physical Activity – The Bottom Line on Exercise. 08 August 2021. Mayo Clinic https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/in-depth/exercise/art-20048389 Accessed: 23 December 2021
  13. Physical Activity & Exercise: Starting An Exercise Program – Exercise Physiologists. Last Updated: 15 January 2020 | Last Revised: 17 February 2014. Jean Hailes for Women’s Health https://jeanhailes.org.au/health-a-z/healthy-living/physical-activity-exercise/ Accessed: 23 December 2021

Topic Last Updated: 26 January 2022 – Topic Last Reviewed: 23 December 2021
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