4 Books on Menopause You'll Actually Read
By Dana Wood | September 3, 2019
The leaves aren't quite crackling underfoot yet, but the urge to park it on the sofa with a cup of herbal tea and a good book is quintessentially September. And with a page-turner that helps you navigate the menopause waters? Even better.
If only there weren't billions of books about menopause to sift through. Heck, Amazon alone stocks 4,000+ titles on the topic.
Help is at hand. By sneak-peeking at a few of our favorites, allow us to help you whittle all those choices down to a nice, tidy little nightstand stack.
1. The closest thing we've got to a bible:
"The Wisdom of Menopause: Creating Physical and Emotional Health During the Change" by Christiane Northrup, M.D. (Bantam Books, 2012). Clocking in at a staggering 745 pages, this wildly famous best-seller is more like an encyclopedia than a book, per se. Crunchy and borderline woo woo in tone, Northrup weaves-in a fair amount of her own personal journey (including a mid-life divorce) into the mix, all with a central, "it's the hormones" theme. But at the end of the day, she's a doctor who has spent the bulk of her career laser-focused on what makes menopausal women tick. By giving equal weight to our emotional state, Northrup provides genuine insight and comfort.
2. The self-care mindset-shifter:
"The Essential Oils Hormone Solution: Reclaim Your Energy and Focus and Lose Weight Naturally" by Dr. Mariza Snyder (Rodale, 2019). No matter how you slice it, there isn't an ounce of downside to incorporating high quality essential oils into your self-care routine. (You do have a self-care routine, yes?) Even if you're still a teensy weensy bit skeptical they can move the needle on your health (note: there's ample documentation they can), essential oils are just so insanely lovely to be around. With this in-depth guide, Snyder, a functional wellness practitioner, clues us in to the most effective oils for all manner of menopause-related symptoms, from loss of libido and disrupted sleep to hot flashes and brain fog. Cue the thyme and geranium.
3. The measured rant against synthetic HRT:
"What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Menopause: The Breakthrough Book on Natural Hormone Balance" by John R. Lee, M.D. with Virginia Hopkins (Hachette Book Group, 2004). It's a choice each and every one of us will face at some point: to hormone, or not to hormone. With a cover blurb by none other than Christiane Northrup, this no-stones-unturned treatise, by one of the country's leading authorities on natural progesterone, is unequivocal in its stance that lab-hatched chemicals are baaaad. Still, it's so densely info-packed that, after reading it, you'll be hyper-informed about the way your body works. That alone is worth the price of admission.
4. The literal - and literary - comic relief:
"I Feel Bad About My Neck: And Other Thoughts On Being a Woman" by Nora Ephron (Knopf, 2006). Ephron, who passed in 2012 following an illness she kept hidden from even some of her closest friends, nonetheless lays it all out here. In her opinion, menopause pretty much sucks. And if we're honest, it kinda does sometimes. With her gimlet eye and acerbic wit, Ephron, the Oscar-nominated screenwriter of a handful of little films you might have heard of (e.g., "When Harry Met Sally," "Sleepless In Seattle" and "Julie & Julia"), was somewhat of an expert on the female psyche. When she talks mustache-removal and putting tank tops on ice, you might want to listen.