Study: Exercise Does Not Ease Hot Flashes, Helps Slightly With Sleep Quality

ATLANTA (CBS ATLANTA) — The easing of hot flashes among menopausal women is not among the benefits of exercise.

A new study published to the online journal Menopause finds that exercise among menopause or postmenopausal women had small effects on their sleep quality, insomnia and depression, but had no significant effect on hot flashes.

“Midlife women cannot expect exercise to relieve [hot flashes and night sweats] but may reasonably expect it to improve how they feel and their overall health,” study author Barbara Sternfeld, of the Kaiser Permanente Northern California Division of Research, and colleagues wrote.

The research collected data from 248 women who were either approaching menopause or were considered postmenopausal. Nearly half of the women took part in aerobic exercise three times a week for 12 weeks, while the other group continued their usual daily routines. The women kept daily diaries of their hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, depression and anxious feelings.

According to a press release from the North American Menopause Society, the findings of this study that concluded exercise had little effect on hot flashes and night sweats have been supported by other recent studies.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as women near menopause, they may have symptoms from the changes their body is making. Some women may not have any other symptoms at all. Symptoms that some women experience near menopause include hot flashes (getting warm in the face, neck, or chest), night sweats or sleeping problems that led to feeling tired, stressed or tense.

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