Mar 21, 2008

Smoking Linked To Early Menopause

Female smokers are 59 percent more likely to get an early menopause before the age of 45 than non-smokers.

This was revealed by the Norwegian researchers who said that smokers were also the risk of osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease.
Dr Thea F. Mikkelsen of the University of Oslo and her colleagues studied more than 2000 women aged between 59 and 60 years old. They found that smokers started early menopause, especially those who smoked heavily where the risk of premature menopause was nearly doubled.

But former smokers who quit with at least 10 years before the menopause were 87 percent less likely than current smokers to stop menstruating before the age of 45. Second-hand smoke also affects the start of the menopause.

"The researchers found that nearly 10 percent of women went through menopause before age 45. Approximately 25 percent are current smokers, 28.7 percent were ex-smokers and 35.2 percent reported current exposure to passive smoke," said Reuters .

The same link was found by Dr. Jonathan Tilly of Massachusetts General Hospital, that the debt early menopause over a chemical found in cigarette smoke that accelerates the destruction of female egg cells in the ovaries.

"Women who smoke undergo menopause earlier, and we have correlated with exposure to a class of chemicals in tobacco smoke that accelerate the death of egg cells in the ovaries,''said Tilly, who led the six-year study published in the Review Nature Genetics.

The chemicals are called Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs), which are used for making tar, plastics, and paints. They are also found in cigarette smoke and air pollution. In female mice injected into the toxin attaches to egg cells and triggers a chemical reaction that slowly kills the latter.

"You do not see any impact (from the chemicals) until many years on the road. Ovaries will continue to work and the destruction will go on for a while, and boom,''said Tilly.

"The sooner a woman stops smoking, the more protection she signs with regard to an early start of the menopause," Mikkelsen.

Menopause is characterised by the end of menstruation and fertility, and normally occurs at the age of 51. Hormonal changes are responsible for the physical symptoms of menopause that include hot flushes, mood changes, sleep disturbances, increased abdominal fat, and vaginal dryness. This can be remedied by Zalestra, a natural product that balances hormones and weight checks without the harmful effects of hormones.