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Perimenopause and Menopause: An Overview

Updated: May 12, 2023

Part One - Defining Perimenopause and Menopause

Perimenopause is a stage of life that is becoming more popularly known as a 'second puberty'. It's a temporary phase, that may last as many as 7-10 years for some women. Perimenopause may begin as early as in a woman's 30's, but generally occurs throughout the 40's and up until actual Menopause occurs.

This final stage of a woman's life known as menopause accounts for up to a third of a woman’s lifetime. Menopause is defined as the stage of life that commences after twelve consecutive months without a menstrual cycle. The average age of menopause in Ireland is 51 years. (1)

Starting out in childhood with low hormones, (moving into normal 'healthy' cycles), female hormones rise in puberty and beyond, to create robust cycles throughout our reproductive years.

Then comes perimenopause, a time in a woman’s life when hormones are starting to decline to similar levels to those in childhood.

It is the 'erratic behaviour' that occurs with fluctuations of hormones (upsetting the hormonal balance or ratios) that may lead to the common signs and symptoms of perimenopause that many women experience.

It’s important to understand that perimenopause is not a ‘condition’ that needs fixing, but a natural time and transition in life, that women experience.

Learning how to manage those aspects of both nutrition and lifestyle that are within your control may go a long way to helping alleviate many of those symptoms.

In the next in this series, you will discover more about the menstrual cycle itself.


Briden L. Hormone Repair Manual. 1st ed. Greenpeak Publishing; 2021.

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