After viewing the DVD, Menopause in an Hour, we had an opportunity to interview Dr. Tara Allmen, the featured expert.
Dr. Allmen, you started your career in private practice, but made a decision to focus on menopausal medicine. Why is helping women manage their journeys through menopause so important to you?
I was inspired to pursue a practice in menopausal medicine by my Professor at the University of California, San Francisco, where I did my residency training. At that time, hardly anyone was interested in this part of a woman’s journey. I found myself, however, drawn to the physical, emotional and medical issues that menopausal women were facing. I really enjoy helping with the challenges that present themselves. I feel so lucky to have found my calling in medicine.
In “Menopause in an Hour,” you encourage women to eat more of the right foods. But with a busy lifestyle, it’s hard to get into the right habits. Can you offer any ideas on where to start?
Once women start there menopause journey, there is no more time for excuses! Keep it simple. Eat more vegetables, fruit, fish, lean meat and drink plenty of water. I like Seltzer water, because the bubbles make me happy. And stick to a regular exercise routine. The most important decision a woman will make at this point is to quit smoking. There are many programs available to help with that. The best place to start is with a menopause journal. Write down your goals. Write down specific ways you are going to change to achieve those goals. Write in your journal every day. Perhaps invite another woman to join you and encourage each other daily to stick with it.
Some women tend to want to quick fix for their menopause symptoms, but others try to “tough it out.” How can a woman know which treatment options are best for her?
Now is the time to “graduate” from your beloved obstetrician’s practice and find a gynecologist-only who specializes in menopause. The best website to help with all things menopause in www.menopause.org.
You also mentioned that certain bioidentical hormones aren’t approved by the FDA. How can you be sure that you’re safely treating your symptoms?
There are bioidentical hormones that have been approved by the FDA. This is where a menopause expert can guide you toward the best and safest choices for you, based on your individual situation.
Many of the women in our menopause forum complain that their doctors just don’t understand their symptoms. In fact, one of the women you interviewed in the DVD said that her doctor “didn’t have a clue.” How would you advise a woman to prepare for a visit with her doctor?
I would highly recommend that women watch my DVD, Menopause In An Hour. It comes with a slim, easy to read and understand Symptoms and Solutions guide. With the information learned in just an hour, every woman will be more than ready to have a meaningful discussion about her own treatment options