Foundational Supplements for Peri and Post Menopause with Dr. Amanda Tracy- Transcript from MenoLounge


Julie Gordon White: Hi, everybody. Welcome to the MenoLounge. I'm Julie Gordon White, CEO of MenoWell, menopause energy and protein bars formulated for women just like you and me and all of us in the stages of menopause. We've got a great doc on today, Dr. Amanda Tracy, but before we jump in, I wanted to make sure you had the most important books happening right now.

I just came back from New York. Celebrating Dr. Mary Claire's, “The New Menopause.” Here it is. Let me back up right here. fantastic book that is the new definitive word on menopause. So make sure you're getting that book. And then I'm flying to Chicago on Thursday to celebrate this one.

Actually, we're going to the Let’s Talk, Menopause Summit. Both of these incredible docs are speaking and we get to celebrate Dr. Sharon Malone with “Grown Woman Talk.” So if you don't have them already, get this one, Dr. Sharon's book and get this one, Dr. Mary Claire's book. You won't be disappointed.

Must have in our midlife library. Great resources. Remember what to expect when you're expecting books when you had a baby? Well, these are the same kind of things. I can go back to it, go to the chapter that speaks specifically to what you're going through. Or just read the whole thing or book club. So highly recommend.

Okay, let's bring up Dr. Amanda because both Dr. Marie Claire has great supplements, uh, Dr. Sharon comments on. So here we have a direct source, Dr. Amanda Tracy. She's a naturopathic doctor. Hi, Dr. Tracy. How are you? Hi! Sounds good! I always get, since you have two first names, like Dr. Tracy, Dr. Amanda, Amanda Tracy, all the things, right?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Yes. I've been responding to Tracy all my life, so I just, yeah.

It works both ways, Dr. Amanda Tracy. So glad to have you back! This is your second time on the Meno Lounge!

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Yeah! I'm happy to be back. I'm excited to talk about supplements because last time we dove into food so well, right?

Julie Gordon White: Well, let's jump right in because I know women are confused about what supplements to take, should they supplement, should they just eat whole foods combination. And I know you've got some incredible insight on that. Why don't you tell everybody a little bit about your background again for those who are new to your world. And because I just want, you know, them to understand why this conversation about supplements is so important with someone exactly like you.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Sure. I'm a licensed naturopathic doctor. I've been practicing since 2006, and I had a wellness center in Massachusetts for many years, and I always focused on women's health and hormone balance outside of fertility. So all of the other great things that happen to us in our lives outside of having babies.

And through my practice, I found lots of great tips for nutrition and lifestyle and supplements that help women balance their cycles naturally through their 30s, 40s and 50s. And a few years ago, I moved to California and I transitioned my practice online and I decided at that point to solely focus on helping women in their 40s and 50s.

I really love working with women in perimenopause before they're hitting the menopause transition because there's a lot of fluctuations. In our hormones during that time, causing lots of symptoms, but there's so much power in naturopathic medicine as far as nutrition, lifestyle changes, supplements, herbal medicine, homeopathy, that can help these symptoms and help women be better prepared for menopause.

Julie Gordon White: I love that. And especially in perimenopause, because it's such an unsettling time, all these things happening to us, you don't know what this is, why do I feel this way, and I used to feel that way, and I can't fix it myself, it's, it can be really scary, so, whatever we can do to, uh, get ahead of that a little bit, so.

Yes and you don't know how long it's going to last. It could be years, or it could be months. 10 years for me, you know, was the journey. So, let's talk about it. Do you want to talk about supplements overall? Do you want to talk about it by symptom or experience? You know, like sleep or weight loss?

What do you think is the best way to jump into the conversation?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Well, I know what a lot of women are confronted with or what the media is telling them to take are some things that might be trendy or in vogue or attached to one symptom or another to get the attention. But I really wanted to start with talking about foundational supplements.

I mean, they may not be as sexy as some of the hot flash remedies, but really having a good, solid foundation can help you to not even need to go to those other types of remedies.

Julie Gordon White: I love it. Okay, people, ladies, get out your pen, your phone or whatever, because this is a take notes kind of MenoLounge.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: So yes, even I have my cheat sheet here, so I don't forget to tell you everything.

Julie Gordon White: I love it. Notes are good. Okay, so let's jump in, foundational supplements. We're going to start there.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Yes. So being a naturopathic doctor and an advocate of plant-based nutrition and whole foods nutrition, we do want to get our macronutrients from nutrition, really focusing on protein and fiber.

However, there aren't many micronutrients, which are your vitamins and minerals, that you can get completely from diet. Partly because our food supply is very depleted. Uh, the soil is depleted from years of over farming. So fruits and vegetables just don't have the quantity of vitamins and minerals that they used to have a hundred years ago.

Julie Gordon White: So you'd need to eat a lot, a lot, a lot, right? To achieve the amount we’re looking for?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Yes and fruits and vegetables have different compounds in them that actually limit the amount of minerals and vitamins you can absorb at one time, which is how our body is meant to be, so that we're, most of our vitamins and minerals we're using in our metabolism, and then we're eliminating them, so we're not necessarily built to ingest five grams of vitamin C at one time, or a thousand grams, milligrams of calcium, so fruits and vegetables have phytic acid in them and fiber, which moderates the amount of vitamins and minerals we absorb at one time.

So even if you're eating them throughout the whole day, it's hard to get everything you need. And when you're looking at vitamins and minerals, I have a lot of patients ask me questions about the percent daily value and the RDA because sometimes you look at a multivitamin and it says something that sounds initially scary, like 2,000 percent of your daily value.

And it sounds like, oh, is this too much? Do I really need this? But really, it's important to realize that the RDA levels were established in the 1930s and 40s when we were just discovering what vitamins were, which, I mean, yeah, it's almost 100 years ago, but really, that's just a short amount of time that we've known about these compounds in medicine.

So, we're still learning more about this. But the RDA was really established to figure out what amount of a vitamin or a mineral would prevent you from dying. So not necessarily being healthy. Oh, that's a really good point.

Julie Gordon White: So it's not what you need to feel healthy. It's what you shouldn't have more of, so you don't die.

Dr. Amanda Tracy:  It’s the amount that you need so you don't die. So that you don't have rickets. So you don't have scurvy.  

Julie Gordon White: So you need to have at least this much so you don't die. Not that if you have this much, you're going to die. If you exceed this. It's not the exceed, it's the low side. You need this much in order to survive? Right?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: And then they doubled those numbers for good measure. So technically you need 30 milligrams of vitamin C to not die. So they said, okay, if you get 60, you're probably good. They didn't look into how much really of each vitamin or mineral. Is it for optimal function? And those numbers haven't really been evaluated again.

They were adjusted in the 1990’s, which the change to the percent daily value instead of the R. D. A. But again, it's not for optimal function. So, I just want people to be not scared of the labels when they say 2,000 percent.

Julie Gordon White: I love that you started with that because even I, you know, as I go deep on all of this and you look at the milligrams or percentage, you think why that is a huge amount like that is terrifying.

So, and then we'll talk about. People's feelings about that when you over indulge on supplements, what happens to that?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Right. Right. All right. I mean, it's still possible to overindulge. Again, this is not, you're looking to help your body function, not replace food. It's, a lot of it does have to do with the quantity and timing of things you're taking.

So even, I do get a lot of questions on this topic about multivitamins, because there's a lot of information in the press or misinformation, conflicting views of they don't do anything. You shouldn't take one. You should get everything from food. Yes, technically in our modern lifestyles with food access that most of us have, we should be able to get it.

Most of the RDA level of vitamins from food, so we can stay keep up. We can keep a lot of them. Yes, but often I suggest a multivitamin for women, especially in perimenopause. If you're still having menstrual cycles, finding a multivitamin, that's really high in certain minerals that help with hormone balance and reducing PMS symptoms often can be really helpful without having to start to add herbs into the plan.

So we want to make sure that we're getting B6 that is in the active form, which it will say pyridoxal 5 phosphate or P5P next to it. So, when you're looking at your multivitamin, look at the parentheses and the forms of the vitamins. That's an active form of B6 that helps to improve the actions of progesterone, helps with PMS depression and mood changes and sugar cravings and things like that.

So, you want to make sure if you have B6 in your multi that it's the right form.

Julie Gordon White: Say that again, what is the right form of the B6?  

Dr. Amanda Tracy: It’s P5P. Which is paradoxal 5 phosphate. 5 P. Okay. Even if you just remember that it should have the 5 in the middle, it'll be the correct form. Because the other form doesn't have the 5 in the middle.

There you go.

Julie Gordon White: Okay. This makes me think about my 25 year old daughter. Would that help her? With PMS?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Yes, so the levels that we use at PMS, as far as doses are between 50 and 200 milligrams, and in a multivitamin, you're probably going to find around 25, which is appropriate for a multivitamin. Okay. So, a little bit different when you're looking at foundation versus therapy.

Julie Gordon White: Ah, there's another nuance, foundation versus therapy. Okay, we're still on the foundation. Yes. Okay, got it. Multivitamin. that has the p5p.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Other things to look for in a multivitamin for women especially in perimenopause is iron and looking to see it that it has between 18 and 25 milligrams of iron just to compensate for the blood loss every month.

Iron helps with energy. One of the symptoms that most women check off on their symptom surveys when they come see me, or sometimes it's even the primary reason is hair thinning and hair loss. And one of the two most common causes of that are iron deficiency and stress. Sometimes both. So, we always want to make sure that you're getting enough iron in your multivitamin and some of the higher quality multivitamins have iron in more absorbable forms that won't cause stomach upset or anything like that.

So, 18 to 25 milligrams for iron.

Julie Gordon White: And is that a place where, if you want to have food, so red meat, can also help with that?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Yes, and lentils as well. Lentils, peanuts, and chocolate are also pretty high in iron. Oh, good. Okay.

Julie Gordon White: Oh good. Okay. But not too much. Okay.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Right, not too much of those things. Um, post menopause, you don't need to look for the iron.

Julie Gordon White: No bleeding happening over here. All right?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Right? Another mineral that's really helpful to help with hormone balance is zinc. And this is before and after menopause. So, for all women, making sure you're getting 25 milligrams of zinc in the multivitamin is really helpful. It helps ovulation and helps immune support and helps to prevent your testosterone from going crazy.

So if you're noticing hair changes, like loss on the head and hair coming out other places, you want to make sure you're getting 25 milligrams of zinc.

Julie Gordon White: Yeah. When I was in New York, with Marie Claire Haver last week she was talking about the persistent chin hair. Like, oh my god. No fun. No, you're right.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: For sure. And this is assuming that you're also having good food sources of zinc, like pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds in your diet. So, A for pumpkin seeds. I love pumpkin seeds. Um, the other things that a lot of people take, and can also be found in a multivitamin, like vitamin D and vitamin E.

So, if you find a good quality multivitamin, it can have all that you need for the B vitamins, vitamin D, iron, zinc. But sometimes we do need to add on top of that, but one of the common complaints I get when I start working with women is that, oh, I'm already taking so many pills, I don't want to take any more remedies or any more pills during the day. But once we go through the list, we're usually able to consolidate things into more therapeutic formulas instead of taking everything in single nutrients.

Julie Gordon White: And save dollars too, because all those supplements start to add up. But you said an important word is quality.

And so how do you know what is a quality multivitamin? You know, you go to the drug store or wherever, even natural food store, there's so many. And how do you decide, what is the one that has extra things in it that you don't want? Or what, what is quality? How do you define that?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: That is, it is really difficult because the supplement industry, the smaller companies aren't regulated.

So, you do want to find a somewhat larger company because then you can look to see if they are doing 3rd party testing, which makes sure that they are testing the labels. So, what it says on the label is in there and it's tested by someone else, not just by the company. So that's one marker.

And then the other marker is really looking at the forms of the vitamins. If the vitamin B-6 has that P5P form in it, they know what they're doing. If the vitamin B-12 is a methylated cabomelon. If it just starts with methyl for B-12, then they know what they're doing. If the vitamin E says mixed to copper alls because there's eight forms of vitamin E and the lower quality supplements will just use one, the cheap form, and not put the mixed form in.

So, there's a little bit of clues on the label as far as the forms of vitamins and minerals that will tell you the quality.

Julie Gordon White: That's excellent. So that's why I said we need our pens and paper today because those little things will help you know which ones are taking a shortcut and which ones are the higher quality.

Ingrid asks, “Is there a particular company that you recommend?”

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Yes, there are specific companies that I do use and recommend to my patients. I'll say right up front, they're not paying me to say this. So, I may mention some specifics today, but it's just really for your education and information for women in perimenopause and before menopause.

Metabolic Maintenance makes a good multivitamin called FemOne. It's a one a day, but really potent as far as everything I've already mentioned supplement wise is in it. Pure Encapsulations makes a good prenatal, that I will recommend for women, looking for fertility purposes, some women that may not want to do a lot of B vitamins.

They may be taking out separate B vitamins or B complex or other things. And we're looking for a basic multi with the minerals in it. For prenatal nutrients, it's a good one and it's easy on the stomach.

Julie Gordon White: Excellent. Don't forget about us post women. Can we still take those two?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Yes, you don't need the FemOne, unless you are having symptoms of low iron or you know you need more iron, like hair loss and lack of energy.

The, O N E multi, by Pure Encapsulations is really high in B vitamins and antioxidants and minerals, and it's appropriate for men and women post menopause. And again, one a day, it doesn't have to be six capsules a day.

Julie Gordon White: Is that what it says? Six capsules a day? Or you're just saying…

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Some of the other high-quality ones, which they are still high quality, are between three and six capsules a day. Which those are wonderful, but I haven't had patients really love doing those.

Julie Gordon White: Sounds terrible. So, asking for a friend… If I take one of those, If I take one of those multivitamins and I'm already taking B12 and D-3 and K-2, I could just drop those as long as they're covered in the multi, or am I over supplementing if I continue to take all that stuff?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Well, vitamin D, often is something that we do add on top of the multi, especially D with K2 or in a more complex bone support formula for post menopause. So that would include some other things like calcium and magnesium and boron, silicon. So, it would be more formulated for bone support or you could do just a separate D3K2.

Julie Gordon White: Okay. Asking for a friend.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Yes. Thanks. Of course.

Julie Gordon White: Okay, good.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: I should also mention, because you did ask the question of what you don't need in a multi that's often put in there. Some of the brands, which they have good intentions, but they're putting in things that are, we'll say, extra antioxidants or food based nutrients, you may see, or herbs, it may say, like, women's balancing formula and list a lot of herbs or, some food extracts and list a bunch of things.

Those things are okay. Usually not needed and usually definitely not at a therapeutic level when it's included in the multi. So, it's making it look fancier and, you know, brings the price up a little bit. But really in your multivitamin, you're looking for vitamins and minerals and nothing else.

Julie Gordon White: Just straight, just the core things that we need.

Tracy Renee said, “Wait, that's me. My energy seems to have plummeted lately and my hair has been shedding/thinning.” So now you know what to do.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Yes, so you definitely want to get your iron tested or an at home test that you can do to see if you're maybe a little bit low in iron is, looking at your nail beds under your fingernails.

If you don't have painted nails, you'll see that they're like slightly light pink. And if you press, they get white or lighter in color. And the color should spring back immediately when you let go. If it kind of just slowly fades in, in a few seconds, that means your iron can be low.

Julie Gordon White: Oh, look at all these tips and tricks. I love it. Um, I'm skipping around. Beauty Biz says, “I joined late. Calcium?” No worries. We didn’t get to calcium yet.

Dr. Amanda Tracy:  So, I can jump to calcium for sure. Calcium is one of the things that you mostly want to get from food sources. For women, pre-menopause, we're looking to get around a 1,000 milligrams per day, mostly in food.

And you know, I work with my patients and we go through their diet journals, and we figure out their average calcium intake per day. And then usually we're adding somewhere between 200 and 400 or 500 milligrams as a supplement. That's fine. So, we definitely want to make sure you're getting pre-menopause 1,000 milligrams per day, post menopause 1,200 milligrams a day.

Or 1,500 milligrams a day if you have osteopenia or osteoporosis. But again, it still wants to be at least 800 of that in food because you don't want to overdo with calcium supplements. That's one of those supplements that our body doesn't. We're not designed to intake a lot at one time, and our body doesn't use it very well.

It will store it in the wrong places if we're taking too much. Women over 70 could increase calcification in our arteries if we're taking too much in the supplement form. So, it's really something that you want to do about 80 percent in diet and the rest in supplements.

Julie Gordon White: Yes.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Our body doesn't handle it very well. So, it's either going to form stones, increase calcification in our blood vessels, and also our body has natural mechanisms to prevent this. We do have, our intestines, we only absorb about 500 milligrams at most at once. So that's also something to look at when you're looking at supplements.

You don't want them to have per serving more than 500 milligrams because you're basically just wasting it. It's not even going to get into your system.

Julie Gordon White: So, I am known for eating a ton of broccoli. What are your thoughts about that? It's a great source of calcium, yeah? Broccoli is a great source of calcium.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Tofu as well as lentils. A lot of beans and, and green vegetables have a couple hundred milligrams per serving. Again, because the fruits and vegetables have phytic acid in them, that's the compound that like moderates the calcium absorption. You can't overdo it with broccoli, for calcium purposes.

Julie Gordon White: I, especially during the COVID years, I literally had at least a head of broccoli every single day. I love it. And all the great things that it does. I'm just such a huge fan of what it does for our bodies. But then I started thinking, Oh, my gosh, am I going to give myself kidney stones with all this calcium that I'm ingesting?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: So, no. there’s no way you could possibly do that with food, maybe dairy because dairy doesn't have any fiber, so it doesn't have that phytic acid that you can absorb all the calcium from the dairy. But again, only 500 milligrams at once. But if people are going like overboard with dairy, they could end up having stones.

Julie Gordon White: I love cottage cheese and Greek yogurt, but that's, you know, too much of those things. Okay. Good. Good. Good. Okay. We're still in the foundational, right? This is excellent.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: We touched on calcium. The other major mineral for foundational is magnesium. So pretty much along the lines of calcium, like most Americans only get about half of what they need in their diet and aren't getting enough.

Magnesium is needed in over 500 chemical reactions in our body. And I mean needed. Like if we don't have the magnesium there, those reactions don't happen at all. So, thinking of magnesium is really for optimal function. We need magnesium to make progesterone. We need it to make GABA to help our body function, mind and body to relax. We need it to prevent constipation. We actually need magnesium for after our muscles contract. They don't let go if you don't have magnesium. So that's why we get muscle cramps, um, lack of magnesium. So that's often a foundational supplement. Um, there are good nutritional sources of magnesium, nuts and seeds and beans, but often we just don't eat enough to get the 400 milligrams a day that we need.

Julie Gordon White: 400 milligrams of magnesium. Yes. Plus, if you had that much nuts and seeds, I mean, the amount of fat that you're getting is a lot more than what you want.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: And then, and that much in beans, we would start thinking about gas and bloating, so it's just not really a feasible thing to do to get enough magnesium.

Therapeutically, even for women in peri-menopause, we're really focusing on that second half of their cycle and preventing PMS and helping sleep. The therapeutic levels are closer to 600 and sometimes even 800 milligrams a day, like the week, you know, a couple of days before your period. So that's really hard to do without supplements.

So, magnesium is something that probably almost all of my patients are taking in some form. So, magnesium 400 milligrams.

Julie Gordon White: Yes. Okay. Did you hear that? Let's see, is it, um, Ian Penney says “There's so many types of magnesium, it gets confusing.” So hopefully that was helpful.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Okay, well the 400 milligrams is for total, and there are different forms of magnesium, so if you're looking to help more with your bowels and preventing constipation, then magnesium citrate is a good form to use. If you're looking for helping more with sleep and reducing anxiety and helping your mind, magnesium Threonate is the better one to choose.

If you're not sure, and you're like, I want it to help my mind, I want it to help me sleep, I need to help my gut, I just need the magnesium, then using a chelate, which is going to be multiple different forms, you know, a little bit of each form is what to look for, or glycinate, which is sort of like the mildest form of magnesium.

Julie Gordon White: This is so good. We're going to transcribe this and put it on at So if you miss this, you can go to the blog, give us a few days and we're going to get that up there so you can have it for yourself. So good. So good because supplements are so confusing. It's, just like Penny was saying, you know, that it just makes you feel like, how much am I taking? Too much? Or am I creating some toxicity in my body because of that, or it's just a waste of money, like all the things.

So, this is very, very helpful. Really good. Oh, good. Okay.You think you know what you want in your head and then you get to the aisle and you're like, Oh, there's 50 different vitamins. What am I looking for again? And like, it's kind of like wine. Where's the cute bottle. Right.

Here's the pink and the purple one. I think I'll have that. Like, that's not a good way to choose your supplements. Although, you know, packaging, packaging kind of matters. Um, let's see quickly here. Tracy says she “uses ionic magnesium. Is that a good option?”

Dr. Amanda Tracy: That just means it’s…How do we get into this without doing chemistry lessons?

Julie Gordon White: Give her a thumbs up, yes!

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Right, I mean all minerals are either bonded or ionic, so it doesn't really mean much at all. It's a descriptor, right? Yeah, like I think it's a marketing thing, but it doesn't mean that it’s bad.

Julie Gordon White: It's just regular magnesium, right? It's ionic. It's a lot sexier that way.

Okay, good. All right. What else do you have? Dr. Amanda Tracy? All right.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: So, another one that might be surprising as foundational is vitamin c. It often gets overlooked. I mean we think of it with colds and flu season, but vitamin c. Yes, you can definitely get your RDA with a piece of fruit per day, or, you know, it's very easy to get in your diet.

It's in so many good foods. You definitely want to be eating your high vitamin C foods like red bell peppers and, um, fresh lemon water and strawberries, especially this season. But vitamin C in therapeutic levels. is really helpful for, again, in peri-menopause, for helping progesterone levels. So, at that point, we're looking at trying to get 500 to 700 milligrams a day, which is a lot to eat.

But not too crazy when you're looking at vitamin C supplements, that's, you know, a moderate amount to really help with peri-menopause and PMS symptoms. It also helps reduce allergy symptoms, which seasonal allergies and food allergies are something that can crop up more in our immune system when we're going through peri-menopause and menopause.

So having vitamin C on board helps to decrease the histamine and decrease those reactions. And then the most important thing may be to your audience, is that it helps build collagen. So, collagen is basically made out of vitamin c

Julie Gordon White: Get out of here. I have never heard that before.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Really? Everyone thinks it's this fancy protein, but it's made out of vitamin c.

That's our main. The main thing that we use vitamin C for in our body is cell repair and collagen. So, especially in peri-menopause where you still have the signals there to create collagen, you don't necessarily need a collagen supplement, like increasing vitamin C is going to help. You may notice as you start looking at collagen supplement labels that some of them do have vitamin C in it too.

Post menopause, that's a time where we look at maybe adding in collagen with the vitamin C, especially if we're looking for support and other actions that collagen can help with, but really improving vitamin C intake is helpful as foundational and can help prevent needing some of the other remedies for hot flashes and skin health and allergies.

Julie Gordon White: All the conversations I've had, all the research, all the things I've been doing for years, I have never heard that. So that is incredible. Shout out to Dr. Amanda. Okay. So, here's something about vitamin C that I have heard though. Is it better? I'll ask you two questions around this. Is it better to have it continuously during the day, like a drink where you're sipping vitamin C all day or just take it once as a supplement?

And then I'll throw in sideways… What do you think about gummies?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Okay, so vitamin C is one of those nutrients that we don't store too much of. It's a water-soluble vitamin, so you can't necessarily take a bunch of it in the morning and have it for the rest of the day. You do want to spread it out throughout the day.

We do store it in our adrenal glands, which is why vitamin C also helps a lot with stress, which is also one of the major reasons to take it. But other than that, we're using it to build collagen and repair cells, but we don't really have a reservoir of vitamin C. So, throughout the day is the best way to take it.

For most patients having a buffered vitamin C, meaning that it has a little bit of minerals in it, which are like electrolytes, that help to buffer the acidity of the vitamin C. So, that's helpful if people have trouble with heartburn or acidic foods or things like that.

You take a buffered form and, um, gummies, I'm not against gummies if they actually contain something besides gummies.

Julie Gordon White: Besides the sweetness. I mean, they just taste so good, you know, like, cute.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: So, I will absolutely say you're not going to find a gummy multivitamin that has gummies, and that's everything that I listed, because most of the things that I listed, zinc, iron, B vitamins, they taste horrible. They're not going to be in a gummy.

The gummy is going to be A and C.

Julie Gordon White:  I know I tried all of those in raw form as we were formulating, like, oh, horrible. You cannot hide those things.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Capsule is best for them. Vitamin C doesn't taste bad. I mean, and it's also a nutrient that's pretty easy to concentrate in something like a gummy. So, you might be able to find a gummy that has a good 400 to 500 milligrams and not be exceedingly high in sugar. You might be able to do D or C in a gummy. But at the same time, those things don't even need to be in a capsule. Vitamin D can be in drops, it concentrates really well in oil. Vitamin C can be in a powder that you're adding to water and sipping throughout the day.

So those are things that I wouldn't put towards my diet, yummy sugar allowance for the day.

Julie Gordon White: I love it. Okay, that's interesting. Good to know. Good to know. It's wonderful that we have all of these formats to consume these things, but you just want to be knowledgeable about what you're actually eating and which form is best for you.

Tracy, you're full of good questions. She said, “What about sublingual forms?” Yeah, when you said the drops, like that's an easy approach as long as they taste good.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Yes. So, when we are able to absorb things sublingually, a little bit better with fat soluble things. So, vitamin E, vitamin D, those types of drops sublingually.

Vitamin C. It's just you would need too much of a volume, probably, because it would be more of like a powder you're adding to a drink to really do sublingually.

Julie Gordon White: Yeah.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: And there again, there's homeopathic and herbs that we can do sublingually too.

Julie Gordon White: So many choices. You're going to have to reach out to Dr. Amanda Tracy directly if you want to ask her more questions about your personal situation. It would be a good conversation to have. So, one more thing about that. If I had three oranges a day, one in the morning, one at lunch, one after dinner. Would that achieve the goal? And you get all that fiber. I'm all about the fiber.

You know, all our bars have 25-32% of your daily fiber. So, what about that?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: So, you would be around like, probably between 200 and 300 milligrams with doing three oranges of vitamin C.

Julie Gordon White: Or a bucket of Cuties. The Cuties are hard to stop eating.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: You're on sugar. But I would say having a red bell pepper if you can do that. And maybe some strawberries in a smoothie. Then you'd hit it for sure.

Julie Gordon White: Fair enough. Okay. I'm gonna go back to the powdery drink. Okay. Good, good, good. Okay. What else do you have over there? This is so fun. Oh, I'm just letting you run with your supplement list. I'm so intrigued. Okay, good.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: So, we've got pretty much went over most of the foundational things for peri-menopause.

A probiotic is something most people ask me about as well and also get confused of in the store. Because it is overwhelming with those. In general, that's definitely something I do personal recommendations on because there are different strains of probiotics. There are different levels as far as billions per capsule and intensity and has a lot to do with what we're trying to do in your overall health.

But yes, humans need some source of probiotics pretty much in our modern lives. They're needed for hormone balance. They help to recirculate, help to prevent recirculating estrogen so they can help like balance estrogen levels. They help with gut health. We make 90% of our serotonin from our probiotics.

So, when we're thinking about sleep and mood, you'll be looking at a probiotic. Also, vitamin D is activated with probiotics and other things for bone support. So, there's many reasons to take a probiotic, but it's hard to give a general recommendation because there's so many different forms. And then some people also do really well with eating fermented foods as a source of probiotics, which ancestrally and traditionally, that's how we did it.

Some of my patients don't do well with that. I have patients with Gita and SIBO. And they just don't like it. So that's where we're looking at capsules too. But that's often when you're thinking about foundation, you need to have a probiotic discussion. And being figured out.

Julie Gordon White: We don't really talk about prebiotics, but our fiber, like the Chicory root fiber that we use in the bars is a prebiotic and the probiotics need the prebiotics to feed them, right?

So, we don't really talk about that relationship.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Right. I mean, that is something I would say if you're looking at a probiotic label and trying to say, like, do I need this or not? A lot of them are adding in prebiotics now, which would be an inulin or chicory fiber. But that's only really needed if you can't eat those things.

Like, if you really have a gut issue and you can't handle any fiber, you can't do radicchio or whole grains or other vegetables. If you can't eat these foods. You have prebiotics. You don't need to buy the fancy capsule of them. It's really just some fiber or you have the meno bars, have a source of it. So that's something you don't need to really pay for.

Julie Gordon White: Okay. So, I'm going to sneak this in here since we're talking. You just mentioned the bars. You know, Maca is something that we love and have in our bars. And do you want to talk about Maca?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: I definitely have that as my almost foundational foods.

It's the food/supplements. It's kind of on the line there for menopause, peri-menopause. It gets a little confusing sometimes by how, depending on how women are cycling. Sometimes it can trigger some spotting mid cycle or before period. So, I'm a little wary of recommending it as a foundation for peri-menopause.

But post menopause it has really good, Maca has really good research on helping with hot flashes, improving mood, increasing stamina, and actually improving bone density. So, that's something that we want to do continuously in our food and supplements. I do like to use Maca root as a powder for some patients because they, if they're doing smoothies, they can hide it in there a little bit.

Um, MenoWell bars are a good source of it. I also like using the Feminessence Pro by Symphony Naturals because it's a well-researched form of Maca root. I mean, we think, we say Maca kind of like as an overall arching thing, but it's kind of like just saying. Adaptogen, there's many of them. There's many different forms of Maca, right?

You think of it as like a, a potato kind of, in South America there's many different colors of potatoes. There's many different types. And so, you want to make sure that the Maca that you're having in a supplement or in a food is grown at high elevation and is the right type of Maca for you. So that's something that people want research for.

Julie Gordon White: Absolutely. Yeah. Really good. Okay, good. Alright, so we've got the foundational in there. What else?  

Dr. Amanda Tracy: So, for peri-menopause, therapeutic, two things that are helpful, just we'll say more in general is what's happening. All women in peri-menopause are B6, which we already touched on for your daughter, using a paradoxal five phosphate form of B6 and a higher dose, sometimes between 1,500 milligrams per day. And then sometimes even doubling that the week before your period really helps with mood changes, bloating, breast tenderness. Think of like classic PMS symptoms. Basics can often be really helpful for that. And then even prevent us needing to use herbs or hormone replacement. So, it's definitely something that's usually well tolerated. As far as nausea and side effects, things like that.

But you know, everyone's different. Some patients do have nausea with it. So, I had to try that out. But that's sort of like the next level of foundational for peri-menopausal women. The other is evening primrose oil. Again, it works really well with B6 and vitamin C and vitamin D.

Helping to decrease inflammation because often in peri-menopause, we're having estrogens going wacky. It's high, it's low, it's triggering inflammation, and evening primrose oil helps to dampen down that effect. It also really helps if women are having breast tenderness, um, and hot flashes and night sweats, but still getting periods.

So, evening primrose oil is one of my first go-to's for night sweats and hot flashes When women are having periods or even within that first year since their last period if you're like close to menopause, it tends to work really well.

Julie Gordon White: Where were you and it doesn't five years ago? Okay, seven. Hormone replacement, although I've now learned that that's probably not true, because my mom had a hysterectomy in her early 40s. She always told me that hormone replacement was not for our family, like that. That was a family message. So, which is why I started Menowell in the first place, because I was looking for other ways to calm my body, to feel better, sugar cravings, fiber, blah, blah, blah. And, I didn't know about all these supplements that could have also helped as well.

There you go. Well Tracy, Tracy's spilling all the tea today. She said “I'm 263 days without a period, and these hot flashes and night sweats are horrible.” You're in the home stretch, sister. You're almost there.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: You she's right on the line of like, should we use evening primrose? And, or Maca, or just both, because she's right there.

Julie Gordon White: All things. Yes. Yes. Love it. Okay. Keep going. So, and then for?

Dr. Amanda Tracy: I'm thinking for post menopause, because those are two sort of like slightly therapeutic, a little bit foundational for peri-menopause, Maca is definitely something I recommend.

Higher amounts of calcium post menopause, collagen, and not evening primrose oil, but some other form of essential fatty acids. So, it could be fish oil, could be flax oil because of the changes in estrogen, lower estrogen levels and losing a layer of cardiovascular health we’ll say our disease prevention.

We definitely want to make sure your inflammation levels are really low. First thing to do that is higher amounts of essential fatty acids and then maybe looking at other things that may be foundational. The magnesium again to help with blood sugar and balance, and improving insulin sensitivity, because it's a lot of like changes, that are happening with blood sugar and menopause, is some of the foundational supplements are depending on the individual. Like what's happening in their health and their family history, but definitely increasing the insulin sensitivity.

Essential fatty acids and fish and flax oil.

Julie Gordon White: I love that. I have flax meal every morning and a little bit of oatmeal, and chia seeds and I take fish oil. All the things, all the things. Of course, I'm on it every day. So, okay, good, good. Oh, this is so good. So good. All right. Um, I need to up my, Who else here needs to up their vitamin C?

I'm not getting enough for sure. Um, all right. What else do you have in your bag of tricks? Did I drain your bag of tricks? I know there's not, that's not possible, but for our timeframe today.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Right. That we definitely, I feel good that we covered foundational for sure. And the reason I really want people to know about the foundational supplements is again, because you may be told to take one thing for hot flashes or another thing for sleep.

And sometimes if it's really that these foundations aren't covered and that's why the symptoms are more severe than they really need to be. So, I would caution women to before they're looking at some of the other herbs and supplements to make sure that they're getting their foundation straight and, you know, covered and then look at other things.

Julie Gordon White: I love that. You know, often it's the, we skip over as a society, we skip over the foundation and we go for whatever the shiny object is. And yes, the shiny object is probably good, but there's so much that we can benefit from just with the basics. And if we're consistent with the basics, usually we can handle most things, but we're just so attuned to like what's new and shiny.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Right. And I know it sounds like it'll work quicker and things like that, but a lot of the components in these foundational supplements, the minerals and the vitamins are really working on a preventative level. So, they're preventing the future symptoms and that's where it really does make the benefit.

Julie Gordon White: Get ahead of it. That's the whole thing. Well, Dr. Tracy, Dr. Amanda Tracy, just in case you're confused. Thank you. This was just incredible. As I said, we're going to transcribe this. We'll put it on our blog. We will add links back to your site. I see more questions have come in, but we're at our end of our time.

Otherwise, I'm sure we could be here all afternoon, which would not be terrible. But oh, I'm so glad you enjoyed it. And so, go and follow Dr. Amanda Tracy on Instagram. Facebook, I'm sure.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: I’m Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram, all at Amanda Tracy.

Julie Gordon White: There you go. And ask her your questions directly.

Book a call with her, invest in yourself. You know, this isn't here to sell you, but invest in yourself. This is why we have these conversations because we don't need to go through this experience alone, unaware of tools and resources and people that are experts to help us through, so invest in yourself.

Go have a conversation with Dr. Amanda. And now that confused you. Thank you so much. And I really appreciate everybody being here and being so engaged with awesome questions. Cause I know other people have those same questions too. Until next time, think about your next topic.

We’ve just got to keep you coming.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: All right. I love it. Absolutely.

Julie Gordon White: All right. Thanks everybody. Be well, you're welcome. Tracy, you're welcome. You're welcome. Until next time. And actually, we're coming back tomorrow for a special MenoLounge with one of the most incredible fitness professionals in the UK. If you're not following her already, follow Cara Metz, Cara_Metz.

I think she has 400,000 followers and we're going to be talking about how to get strong and fit in15 minutes a day and just think you add that to the supplements we talked about, you're cooking with gas. During all the stages. So, I hope you come back and follow it. Follow us tomorrow and check out that conversation.

Dr. Amanda, you'll like it too.

Dr. Amanda Tracy: Absolutely. All right.

Julie Gordon White: Yes. All right. Be well everybody, until next time on the MenoLounge. Take care. Thank you. Bye.

You can learn more about Dr. Amanda Tracy and her peri-menopause and menopause support programs at here.