Are your menopausal symptoms going from bad to worse? You must do something about it, for the sake of your heart health. According to a latest study, menopause, associated with frequent and severe symptoms such as sleep disturbance, hot flashes and depression, may spike the risk of developing cardiovascular disease. 

The findings published in the journal Menopause, revealed that menopause transition is often marked with a number of adverse health effects. Some of the severe symptoms may include hot flashes and depression. According to the study, vascular ageing could also be one of the adverse health effects of menopause. Vascular ageing is typically characterized by artery stiffening and endothelial dysfunction.

The frequency, but not severity, of hot flashes was specifically found to have associations  with greater arterial stiffening and reduced endothelial function. "Perimenopausal and early menopausal women are more vulnerable to increased risk of cardiovascular disease," said JoAnn Pinkerton, executive director at the North American Menopause Society in the US."With fluctuating and then declining estrogen during the menopause transition, it is important to monitor mood, blood pressure, lipids, blood sugars, and body composition because of the increased risk of abdominal fat. "Healthy eating and exercise are encouraged, with individualised discussion about benefits and risks of hormone therapy," Pinkerton added.The team examined 138 menopausal women for the association of mood, symptoms, and quality of life measures with the key markers of vascular aging, a major risk factor for the development of cardiovascular disease. It was also revealed that across the stages of menopause, arterial stiffening and vascular dysfunction were associated with more frequent and severe menopause symptoms. 

Strokes and heart diseases have emerged to be one of the biggest concerns across the global health and nutrition circuit. According to a study, heart diseases happened to be the biggest killer in 2016 globally. Try these foods that may help in keeping your heart safe from various health hazards.

1. OatsOats are said to comprise of a type of fiber that helps to bind bile acids and expel them from the body. These bile acids are made from cholesterol. A diet including oats may help reduce cholesterol levels in our body.

2. BerriesBerries are packed with antioxidants and help to significantly reduce blood pressure. They also boost good cholesterol or HDL that help endeavor towards a healthy heart.

3. SalmonSalmon is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids and digestible protein that aides in strengthening the heart muscles.

4. LegumesLegumes are great for the heart, considering they have antioxidants, proteins and fiber. They are a great source of folate that helps in increasing the platelet count.

(With Inputs IANS)