Nutrition Made Easy For Busy People

Managing Heavy or Painful Periods & Dealing with PMS – The Happy Menopause Podcast

Season 2 • Episode 10
Joyce Harper, Professor of Reproductive Science

This episode is all about periods, because long before you hit menopause day – which is officially 12 months since your last period – you’ll have experienced changes. The hormonal rollercoaster of the perimenopause can cause a lot of period havoc and it may all start sooner than you’d think and last longer than you’d expect. For many women, periods can get closer together and become heavier and more painful, long before they start to get lighter and further apart. They might stop and start or you might find that life turns into one big period for a while. Many women really struggle with their periods throughout their 40s and yet they just keep juggling all the various balls in their life while they suffer in silence. Does that sound familiar? So in this podcast, I want to be loud and proud about the issue of periods and PMS, so I’ve called in the big guns with Joyce Harper who’s a Professor of Reproductive Science at the Institute for Women’s Health at University College London so she can help us understand what’s going on and what we can do about it.

Professor Joyce Harper is an author, academic, scientist and educator and Head of the Reproductive Science and Society Group and Director of Education at the Institute for Women’s health at University College London.

She’s worked in the fields of fertility, genetics and reproductive science since 1987, written over 200 scientific papers and published three books. Her latest book, Your Fertile Years, What you need to know to make informed choices comes out in April this year. Her years of research and expertise in the field of female health make her just the woman we need to help us navigate the perimenopause and the havoc this can wreak on our periods.

Joyce explains in simple practical terms exactly what’s going on with your monthly cycle and why things change as you move into your 40s. We discuss heavy and painful periods, why they happen, and diet and lifestyle strategies to manage them. We also look at PMS and menstrual migraine, that nagging headache that usually starts in the days before your period and tends to be relieved on the first day of bleeding.

I really hope this podcast and Joyce’s expert insights will help to shine some light on what might be going on with your periods so that you can take steps to manage your symptoms.

Show Notes

You can find out more about Joyce and the work that she does by visiting her website.

Pre-order Joyce’s book Your Fertile Years: What You Need to Know to Make Informed Choices.

Check out her work at the UK Fertility Education Initiative and download their Fertility Education Poster.

Visit Global Women Connected, the women’s health online community founded by Joyce.

Follow Joyce on Twitter, Instagram and Linked In.

Useful Resources

For diet and lifestyle advice on managing heavy, painful periods and PMS, check out Chapter 3 of The Happy Menopause.

Check out Embrace, the social impact documentary mentioned by Joyce which explores the issue of body image.

Visit the NHS page on periods to find out more.

Download the Clarity app which focuses on mindfulness for women, to help with PMS-related anxiety.

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