More than menopause…

As I continue on this journey of wellness , one of the things that is affecting me the most has nothing to do hormones, hot flashes or mood swings…it is not something that you complain to your friends or spouse about on a regular basis. I am not sure I have ever seen a blog about it (nor have I looked for one) and I will never post it as my status on my Facebook page: Diane is CONSTIPATED!

As I began experiencing menopausal symptoms the last few years it seems it seems like my bowel movements were fewer and further between, until it got to the point before I saw Dr. Grossman, that I was having only 1 or 2 a week! No, I am not exaggerating…I was miserable! I always felt bloated, gassy, full, and dirty inside. And when I did finally go it was hard as a rock, painful, and I never felt completely empty.

Back in April when I discussed this with Dr. Grossman he prescribed 2 things from University Compounding Pharmacy for me to help with this; a very high grade, expensive fiber and Ultra Flora Plus.

Fiber, as we know, helps provide extra bulk in our diet which aids in waste elimination. The Ultra Flora Plus “is an enhanced potency, probiotic formula designed to help relieve bowel irritation and related digestive discomforts. Through promotion of an optimal bacterial balance, this formula may help support normal intestinal motility and address abdominal discomfort, bloating, and cramping.” You can get it in some yogurts and other foods but apparently not in the dosage you get from a supplement.

Unfortunately after seeing how expensive the hormones and other prescriptions were I chose not to get these 2 supplements. This was a big mistake, because even though I was reaping the benefits of the hormones I was still constipated.

About 2 months ago I decided to do a 7 day detoxcolon cleanse. Part of my morning ritual was a tablespoon of psyllium seeds with a glass of juice each morning. After the first day I noticed a difference and for the next week I had a bowel movement almost every morning. They were still painful, and hard, and I could tell I still was not emptying completely, but at least it was better than before.

By the time I went back for my 2nd BodyLogicMD appointment I had started to get constipated again. I talked to Dr. Grossman about it, and told him that I had never gotten the probiotics or fiber that he suggested. He didn’t scold me, but encouraged me to just give the probiotics a try for a month, and that if I didn’t feel significantly better to just not renew my prescription. He also said the psyllium husks I purchased were just fine, but that I should double my intake.

All I can say is that I wish I had listened to him back in April! I finally got the Ultra Flora Plus and increased my psyllium husks from 1 tablespoon to 2, splitting between mornings and evening. Within 3 days I noticed a significant difference! The first thing I do now when I wake up in the morning is evacuate! It is soft, long, and when it is over I feel clean on the inside. Over the last few weeks I have significantly less gas and I don’t feel bloated.

Both Ultra Flora Plus and psyllium can be purchased without a prescription and I truly feel it is one of the best this things you can do for yourself – I am so happy that I finally “made the move”. J


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Comments: 11

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  • Bioidentical hormones are products that are chemically identical to what’s made in a woman’s body.
    Some are approved as medications; others are supplements. Learn more about it from professionals in the field.

  • Dee

    I saw in your last post about Gluten. I cut out Gluten back in February due to gas and bloating (daily–from the first meal of the day until I went to sleep). I tested for Celiac disease and it came back negative but I was told that you don’t have to have the disease to be intolerant to Gluten. Within a week of cutting out gluten the gas and bloating disappeared! Entirely! Now if I accidentally eat something with gluten in it (ie. soup thickened with flour) I know within a half hour by the way my stomach bloats up. Try it. You may be pleasantly surprised. If it is not gluten it might also be casen since both can have the same sypmptoms. (Casen is in milk/dairy products.)

  • Monica

    I laughed when you mentioned your Facebook status update! Haha! I am glad you have found relief! It sounded miserable!

  • Jacqueline

    Sorry you had to go through this — sounds horrible. I guess I’m wondering — did you ever find out the underlying cause of this? For example, in pregnancy, taking iron pills can cause constipation as can hormonal changes – the body’s digestive system naturally slows so every nutrient can get sucked out of the food before it passes. But what about menopause?? I think I’ll put my “google cap” on for this one. I did find this good article on probiotics and gut health from Women to Women — worth a read and good luck!! Probiotics — for life!

  • Diane

    Jacqueline and Dee, I “think” the reason I went through this was two-fold – I believe I do have a gluten intolerence, and giving up the gluten helped move things along quicker 🙂 I also think that the probiotics restored the “good bacteria” that years of dieting and an unhealthy lifestyle destroyed, helping my digestive system to get back to normal. Does this make sense?

  • Jeffrey

    Thanks for the article. My wife and I have been learning a lot about how to treat her menopause. We have learned a lot about bioidentical hormone therapy and here is a website that I would like to share,


  • Monica

    Hi Jenny,

    I do have an irritation on my scalp and I don’t know if it’s related. My hairdresser keeps pointing it out. I am going to the dermatologist next month. Have you had it looked at by a doctor?

    Good luck!

  • Hi Jenny,

    I have never seen this as a hormonal issue and cannot comment without an exam. There are too many things it could be. If it does have a hormonal component, it is probably that the change in hormones has resulted in a change in skin and the bumps and sores are a result of an interaction between the “new” skin and environment. Auto-immune / connective tissue disorders, bacterial and fungal infections are some of the things I would consider before a direct hormonal cause.

    Good luck!

    In health,
    Dr. Travis Deuson
    BodyLogicMD of Encino

  • Has anyone had Pruritus Ani Itchy butt.Please let me know if this is a hormone thing.Thanks

  • Diane

    Jenna, I have to admit when I saw your question I thought you were making fun of us, but then I when to my google mama and sure enough, it’s real!
    I am happy to say I have never experienced PAIB and have no idea if it could be homonal related. Although so many things are that I would not be surprised. I would definately aske your doctor!