Though it might feel like one at times, menopause isn’t an illness. It’s a natural part of aging. On average, women in their early 50s start noticing symptoms like hot flashes and mood swings as their bodies signal the end of their reproductive years. If you’re nearing that point yourself, your body’s about to take you on a journey — here’s what to expect over the next two to 10 years.
Hello, weight gain
Many women gain weight at menopause, Anahad O’Connor writes in The New York Times. Whether it’s due to hormone changes, genetics, or it’s simply an unfortunate side effect of aging, it does happen — but it doesn’t have to. Women who are more likely to gain weight during menopause often have to put in extra effort to avoid it, but in many cases, proper diet and exercise helps.