Well Being

Well Being

 QI’m 51 and going through the menopause. I am chronically tired, putting on weight very quickly and my thinking/memory is fuzzy. I also have slightly raised blood pressure and cholesterol. Can you advise me on how I can get some energy back? Don’t tell me to exercise more — I haven’t got the energy.

APlease, I think you should see your doctor. It is only too easy to blame your symptoms on the menopause when there could be other, unconnected causes. Your doctor will want to take a full history, examine you, and take further tests. You may have, for example, an underactive thyroid. That causes tiredness, weight gain and slowness in thinking and physical activities, all of which you have. If it does turn out to be a thyroid problem, treatment is easy and the improvement in your health will be almost instantaneous.

QI have heard that aspirin can help prevent heart attacks and strokes. My mother died from strokes and dementia. I’m over 50, would a daily aspirin be beneficial?

AThe three main factors raising the risk of heart attacks and strokes are uncontrolled high blood pressure, smoking and a high blood cholesterol level. If you have none of these, you have no need to take aspirin. There are also three subsidiary risks: poorly controlled diabetes, obesity and lack of exercise. The best way of reducing them is to address them directly — people with diabetes should keep it under control (there is evidence that aspirin helps), and the overweight should exercise more. Your mother’s strokes indicate that she was suffering from circulation problems, and in this case aspirin would have helped. But if you don’t possess these risk factors, you don’t need to take it.

Your Questions

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