Natural Health with Megan Sheppard: Stopping snoring, Get your libido back after menopause

What do you recommend for snoring? My husband has always snored, but it has now become so much of a problem that I can’t sleep in the same room, let alone the same bed. I have tried a number of very expensive earplugs with no luck.

The best place to start with snoring is the diet. 

While some individuals are prone to snoring based on the physiology of their nasal passages, it is very common for inflammation and excess mucus to be a contributing factor.

Simple changes to the diet are certainly very effective.

Cutting back on meat and dairy can help some people, particularly where there is a sensitivity or intolerance involved. Patrick Holford of the Institute of Optimum Nutrition found that meat-eaters were far more likely to have a snoring problem than vegetarians.

Getting plenty of antioxidant foods, and even taking an antioxidant supplement, will help to clear free radicals that cause deterioration and damage to mucous membranes and help to reduce inflammation.

Choose fruits and vegetables that are brightly coloured, such as carrots, capsicum, berries, and tomatoes.

A supplement containing vitamins A, C, and E along with selenium is a great idea. This group of antioxidant nutrients helps by reducing inflammation, supporting the immune system, and protecting and repairing mucous membranes. 

They work best when taken together as a combination.

If your husband has gained weight this will also be a contributing factor when it comes to his snoring. 

A brisk daily walk together will help to move blood and lymph, manage weight, and is also a great start to re-establishing the connection that is often lost when couples are forced to sleep in separate beds or rooms due to health issues.

One last supplement that has worked well for many snorers, but is not a guaranteed fix for everybody (and should be taken alongside any appropriate dietary and lifestyle changes) is NeverSnore by Higher Nature. 

It’s a natural blend of enzymes and herbs designed to repair and protect the nasal membranes whilst breaking down and removing the excess mucous. The formulation is available from health stores where 30 capsules cost €10.60.

I am 52, female, and since starting the menopause I have found that I no longer have any interest whatsoever in sex. My partner is very understanding, but I have always enjoyed sex and would like to do whatever I can to get my libido back. Are there any natural remedies I can use safely to help with this?

Dong quai (angelica sinensis) is one of the best herbal remedies for women who find themselves with a flagging sex drive as a result of menopausal changes. This Chinese herbal remedy can also relieve symptoms such as hot flushes, along with boosting energy levels.

While I’m on the subject, energy levels are an important factor when it comes to libido. 

Ginseng is a powerful herbal remedy that helps to give you back your get up and go, plus it has been used for thousands of years as an aphrodisiac as well.

Ayurvedic medicine also includes herbs to treat stress, anxiety, and overwhelm when treating female libido and hormonal issues — such as ashwagandha root (withania somnifera) and shatavari root (asparagus racemosa).

During this time of a woman’s life, it is common for extra weight to be an issue, particularly around the middle. Many women choose a low-fat diet to try and lose weight, which can deplete levels of vitamin A, low levels of which can trigger a lack of interest in sex.

The B vitamins are also important when it comes to energy levels and hormone balance. Vitamin B3 (niacin) plays a key role in sexual function, orgasm in particular. B3 works because it is crucial for the release of histamine, and women who have low levels of histamine can have trouble achieving orgasm.

You can get good amounts of niacin through your diet by eating fish, poultry, and peanuts or you can take a non-flushing niacin supplement.

NOTE: The information contained in this column is not a substitute for medical advice. Always consult a doctor.




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