Want to lower your risk for early menopause? Eat your vegetables

By: Women's Care Florida Staff

There are many benefits to incorporating more vegetables into your diet, such as weight loss or weight maintenance, more energy and better digestion. And now, new research suggests that women who eat a high amount of vegetable protein may lower their risk for early menopause and prolong their reproductive function.

According to Science Daily, researchers at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and the School of Public Health and Health Sciences at UMass Amherst conducted an ongoing study of 116,000 women ages 25 to 45. Throughout the study, they asked participants to report how often they ate a single serving of 131 foods. They found that women had a 16 percent lower risk of early menopause when they ate approximately 6.5 percent of their daily calories as veggie protein compared to women whose intake was at 4 percent of their calories.

Not sure where you can find a good source of vegetable protein? According to Science Daily, vegetable protein can be found in foods such as whole grains, soy, and tofu. “Consuming enriched pasta, dark bread and cold cereal were especially associated with lower risk,” the article said, “while they observed no similar relation to eating animal sources of protein.”

Here’s a list of other foods high in vegetable or plant-based protein:

  • Lentils
  • Black Beans
  • Quinoa
  • Green Peas
  • Artichokes
  • Oatmeal
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Chia Seeds
  • Edamame

Early menopause is when women experience menopause before the age of 40. Even though it’s rare, women who experience premature menopause often experience other health risks associated with loss of estrogen, such as colon and ovarian cancer and osteoporosis.

To learn more about how you can lower your risk of early menopause, schedule an appointment with one of our board-certified OB/GYNS.