Did you know that dietary changes can ease menopausal symptoms? Menopause can be a challenging time for women, but did you also know that eating high-carb foods can help?
Although there is no one-size-fits-all solution, eating high-carb foods can give you essential nutrients, keep you full, and help keep your hormones in balance.
So, let’s look at the high-carb foods that are great for menopause, find out what they do for women over 50, and figure out how to add them to our diet.
Why Carbohydrates Are Important During Menopause
Carbohydrates are essential for a healthy diet and energy. As you go through menopause, your body goes through changes in hormones that can affect your energy and overall health.
Getting the right amount and type of carbs can help you deal with these changes and make sure you stay healthy and full of energy during menopause.
First of all, good carbs can help keep your blood sugar stable, which is important for dealing with menopause symptoms like mood swings and tiredness.
When your blood sugar levels are in a good range, you are less likely to feel tired and have your mood change.
Second, keeping a healthy weight during menopause is impossible without carbs. During this time in a woman’s life, it’s common for her to gain weight.
Eating healthy carbs can help you keep a healthy weight by giving you the energy you need for exercise and daily tasks.
Lastly, you need carbs to keep your brain working well. Changes in the brain can happen during menopause, like forgetfulness and trouble focusing.
If you eat good carbs, they can give your brain the energy it needs to work at its best, keeping you sharp and on task.
High Carb Foods to Include in Your Menopause Diet
Let’s look at some high-carb foods you can eat during menopause now that you know how important they are:
Whole grains are rich in complex carbohydrates, fiber, and vitamins and minerals. They support digestion, blood sugar regulation, and energy release throughout the day.
Healthy choices include:
Quinoa, a versatile and nutritious grain, is a popular menopause food. This high-carb food is rich in fiber, protein, vitamins, and minerals, which are essential for hormonal balance and overall health during this life transition.
Quinoa’s rich nutrients reduce menopause symptoms like hot flashes, mood swings, and fatigue.
Due to its low glycemic index, quinoa releases energy slowly, preventing blood sugar spikes and crashes that can worsen menopausal symptoms. This antioxidant-rich superfood fights inflammation and oxidative stress, which worsen during menopause.
2. Brown rice
Menopausal women should eat high-carb brown rice, a nutrient-dense whole grain. It contains fiber, vitamins, and minerals and has a low glycemic index to help stabilize blood sugar. During menopause, hormonal fluctuations can cause insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.
Brown rice contains phytoestrogens that may reduce menopausal symptoms like hot flashes and mood swings. Its high fiber content aids digestion and makes you feel full, which can help you manage weight gain during menopause. Brown rice is a delicious and healthy way to support your body during this life transition.
Oats are a nutritious, versatile high-carb food for menopausal women. Oats, a whole grain, contain vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber that can help balance hormones and reduce menopausal symptoms like hot flashes, mood swings, and weight gain. The complex carbohydrates in oats will keep you full for longer and prevent unhealthy snacking.
Oats contain phytoestrogens, which may reduce menopausal symptoms. Oatmeals are a delicious and nutritious high-carb food that supports your body during this life transition.
Barley, Bulgur, also known as cracked wheat, Farro, Millet, Black rice, Red rice, Wild rice, whole-wheat flour, and many others are high-carb whole grains.
READ ALSO: 5 Top Foods to Deal With Menopause Symptoms
Legumes and pulses
Legumes and pulses are high-fiber, nutrient-dense foods that can benefit menopause. They contain complex carbohydrates, protein, and essential minerals. Legumes and pulses can balance hormones and stabilize blood sugar.
Healthy choices include:
Menopausal women should eat lentils because they are high in carbohydrates and nutrients. Lentils prevent blood sugar spikes and crashes by slowly digesting and absorbing complex carbohydrates. Fiber in lentils aids digestion and promotes a healthy gut, alleviating menopausal digestive issues.
Lentils are also high in plant-based protein, which supports muscle mass and health during this transitional period. They contain iron, magnesium, and potassium, which support heart health and manage menopausal symptoms like fatigue and mood swings.
Lentils also contain phytoestrogens, which mimic estrogen in the body and help balance hormones during menopause. Adding lentils to a balanced diet can improve a woman’s health during this transition.
Chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans, are delicious, versatile, and a great high-carb food for menopausal women.
Chickpeas are good for menopause because of their carbohydrate content. Carbohydrates are the body’s main energy source, so eating enough is essential for energy and cognition. Chickpeas contain complex carbohydrates that release energy slowly throughout the day.
They’re also high in fiber, which aids digestion and keeps you full. Chickpeas also provide protein, iron, magnesium, and potassium. These nutrients help regulate hormones, bone health, and cardiovascular health, which are important for menopausal women.
Chickpeas are tasty and easy to eat. They can be added to salads, soups, stews, or hummus. For a crunchy snack or gluten-free baking, roast them. This high-carb food can help you eat healthy and delicious meals during menopause.
6. Black beans
Black beans are nutrient-dense and great for menopausal women. These legumes, high in carbs, fiber, protein, and antioxidants, can help relieve menopause symptoms.
Black beans also contain iron, magnesium, and calcium, which help prevent osteoporosis during menopause. These tiny but powerful beans can also help manage weight and lower bad cholesterol.
Their high fiber content aids digestion and stabilizes blood sugar, preventing menopause-related mood swings. So don’t hesitate to add black beans to your diet as a delicious and versatile high-carb food that will support your health and make menopause easier and more enjoyable.
READ ALSO: 20 Foods to Eat (or Avoid) During Menopause
Colorful Vegetables and Fruits
Colorful vegetables and fruits contain carbohydrates, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that support menopause health. They support hormonal balance, bone health, and a strong immune system with essential nutrients.
Healthy choices include:
7. Sweet potatoes
For menopausal women, sweet potatoes are a nutritious, high-carb food. They supply vitamins, minerals, and fiber to meet the body’s changing needs during this transitional phase.
The high carbohydrate content in sweet potatoes stabilizes mood swings and energy levels during menopause. Beta-carotene and vitamin C in sweet potatoes boost their antioxidant properties, which can help fight menopausal symptoms’ oxidative stress.
Sweet potatoes can reduce menopause symptoms and improve health during this important life stage.
READ ALSO: Top 10 Anti-Aging Foods for Women Over 50
These small, colorful fruits are delicious and full of nutrients that help with menopause. Vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants are found in berries like strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries. During menopause, they regulate blood sugar and hormones. Berries’ high fiber content helps menopausal women manage their weight and digestion.
The antioxidants in berries also fight oxidative stress, which may cause menopause-related fatigue and mood swings. These antioxidants support cardiovascular health and reduce the risk of chronic diseases like obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.
Berries also reduce menopause-related joint pain due to their anti-inflammatory properties. These high-carb foods are tasty and healthy for menopausal women, whether eaten fresh, frozen, or in smoothies.
9. Leafy greens
Leafy greens are high-quality carbohydrates and nutrient-dense for menopausal women. Hormonal imbalances during menopause cause hot flashes, mood swings, and weight gain. Leafy greens contain calcium, iron, vitamins A, C, and K, which can relieve these symptoms.
Kale, spinach, collard greens, and Swiss chard can help you lose weight, maintain bone health, and reduce inflammation during menopause. These high-carb foods contain dietary fiber, which aids digestion and blood sugar regulation. Leafy greens also fight oxidative stress and boost immune health during this transition.
You can add leafy greens to salads, smoothies, or side dishes by sautéing them with garlic and olive oil. Your menopause diet should include leafy greens for high-quality carbohydrates and overall health.
Root vegetables are comforting and versatile in a high-carb diet. They’re high in fiber, antioxidants, and minerals and provide sustained energy.
Healthy choices include:
Beets are a versatile and nutritious food that can help menopausal women. This vibrant root vegetable is full of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients that can relieve common symptoms of this stage of life. Beets provide energy and balance blood sugar as a high-carb food.
Hormonal fluctuations can cause fatigue, mood swings, and weight gain during menopause. Dietary nitrates, found in beets, improve blood flow and lower blood pressure. Betaine, an anti-inflammatory compound found in beets, may also help reduce inflammation during this time.
Beets are easy to add to a menopausal diet. They’re sweet enough for sweet and savory dishes and can be eaten raw, roasted, or juiced. If you’re looking for a high-carb food to help you through menopause, try beets!
Carrots are versatile, nutritious, and good for menopausal women. Carrots are high in beta-carotene, fiber, and antioxidants, which support a woman’s health during this transitional period. They are a high-carb food that stabilizes blood sugar and reduces menopause-related mood swings and fatigue.
Carrots also aid digestion and weight management during menopause due to their high fiber content. The antioxidants also reduce inflammation and protect cells during menopause.
Carrots can improve menopausal women’s quality of life as a snack, side dish, or meal.
Whole Grain Pasta and Bread
Carbs are not equal, contrary to popular belief. Whole grain pasta and bread have more nutrients, fiber, and energy than refined versions. Try whole wheat, spelt, or other whole grains.
Healthy choices include:
12. Whole wheat pasta
Whole wheat pasta is a great high-carb food for menopausal women. It tastes great and has many health benefits. Whole wheat pasta is ideal for combating menopause fatigue because it contains complex carbohydrates. Since metabolism slows during this stage of life, whole wheat pasta’s fiber helps digestion and weight management.
Whole wheat pasta boosts energy and provides B vitamins, iron, and magnesium. These nutrients help balance hormones and support menopause health. Due to hormonal changes, menopausal women are at a higher risk of heart disease, so eating whole grains like whole wheat pasta can lower their risk. Eating whole wheat pasta dishes during menopause can be a tasty way to enjoy high-carb foods and improve health and quality of life.
READ ALSO: Super Creamy Hummus Pasta Recipe
13. Sprouted grain bread
Due to its high carb content and health benefits, sprouted grain bread has become a popular menopause food. Unlike refined grain bread, sprouted grain bread uses whole grains that have germinated. This process releases vitamins, minerals, and enzymes, making them easier to digest and absorb.
Hormonal changes during menopause can cause weight gain, hot flashes, and other discomfort. High-carb foods like sprouted grain bread can boost energy and help manage weight by filling you up.
During menopause, fiber-rich sprouted grain bread helps digestion and heart health. Besides its nutritional benefits, sprouted grain bread tastes and feels great, making it a good choice for high-carb diets.
Menopause can cause energy swings. Keeping high-carb snacks on hand can boost energy and sustain it throughout the day.
Healthy choices include:
14. Nuts and seeds
Nuts and seeds, known for their healthy fats, proteins, and carbohydrates, can help during this transitional phase. They are rich in complex carbohydrates, which release energy slowly. They provide vitamins, minerals, fiber, and plant compounds that support menopause health.
Almonds, walnuts, and pistachios are popular for their crunch and nutrients. They’re a filling snack with protein, fiber, and healthy fats. They also provide vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, and other minerals that support bone health and reduce hot flashes.
Chia, flax, and pumpkin seeds are nutrient-rich. Omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, and antioxidants reduce inflammation, support heart health, and regulate digestion. These tiny but powerful seeds can be sprinkled on salads, smoothies, or baked goods for extra nutrition.
Eat nuts and seeds in moderation for a balanced diet. They are high in calories and carbohydrates, so portion control is crucial. Nuts and seeds boost nutrient intake and help manage menopause symptoms.
15. Greek yogurt
Greek yogurt, a high-carb superfood, is versatile and creamy. It contains complex carbohydrates that release energy slowly to fight fatigue and maintain blood sugar levels. It also contains probiotics, which aid digestion and gut health during menopause.
Greek yogurt is also rich in calcium, a bone-building mineral. During menopause, estrogen levels drop, lowering bone density and risking osteoporosis. Calcium-rich foods like Greek yogurt can strengthen bones and reduce fracture risk.
It’s a healthy base for many meals and snacks, and can be eaten alone, mixed with fruits and granola for a balanced breakfast, or substituted for sour cream in savory dishes.
Choose unsweetened or lightly sweetened Greek yogurt to avoid added sugars. Add fresh fruits, nuts, or honey for natural sweetness. Make sure you’re getting enough carbohydrates and other nutrients by watching your portion sizes.
I know firsthand that eating high-carb foods during menopause is beneficial. Contrary to popular belief, high-carb foods improve menopause symptoms.
Complex carbohydrates like whole grains and fruits sustain energy, stabilize blood sugar, and regulate mood. These nutrient-rich foods can improve menopause symptoms and overall health.
Always choose high-quality carbs and watch your portion sizes to maximize nutrition. You can have more energy, a balanced mood, and a healthy body during menopause with these dietary changes.