Lung Function & Menopause

New information has been released that shows lung function begins to decline substantially with the onset of menopause. Linked to hormonal changes that are related to systemic inflammation that affects the lungs, the decline in lung function may cause an increase in shortness of breath, reduced work capacity and fatigue.

This aging effect on lung function among women is similar to a habitual twenty-cigarettes-a-day smoker. It is obviously further exacerbated if the woman is a smoker.

Pre-menopausal, younger women smokers may not experience these symptoms, but instances of lung disease will be realized later on in life when the lung function has declined with age. The key is to avoid smoking and to protect your lungs before the effects of aging have manifested.

Improve lung health and function by opting for a healthier lifestyle. Don’t smoke, avoid secondhand smoke and exercise regularly.

Questions about your lung health? Need help to quit smoking? Schedule a consult today. Call 865-546-1642.

For Memory’s Sake

For generations, women have claimed that they have a better memory than men. A new study proves just that. Middle-aged women outperformed age-matched men on all memory measures – at least until post-menopause.

For both sexes, memory loss is a consequence of the aging process. About 75% of older adults report memory-related problems. Women report increased forgetfulness and “brain fog” during the menopause transition. In addition, women are disproportionately at risk for memory impairment and dementia compared with men.

We all wish to preserve our memories and brain function for as long as possible. Think of your brain as a muscle, you have to use it or lose it.

Here are a few tips to help you do just that:
• Eat right: fresh vegetables and healthy fats, and avoid sugar.
• Exercise: increases oxygen and stimulates nerve cells to multiply.
• Avoid multi-tasking. (Multi-tasking makes you prone to errors and forgetful.) Set the phone down when you’re putting away groceries.
• Get a good night’s sleep. Not only does sleep enhance memories, certain brain connections strengthen during “downtime.”
• Play games or master a new skill. Stimulate your brain with new information and tasks that are important to you and can hold your attention.

Aging can take a toll on memory. The aging of brain tissue, reduced hormones and reduced blood flow can all interfere with cognitive abilities. If memory lapses become frequent enough or sufficiently noticeable to concern you or a family member, talk to your doctor. Now may be a good time to take steps to prevent a small problem from becoming a larger one. Call us today at 865-546-1642.