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    A Preventive Approach to Menopause and Perimenopause

    Meet Dr. Dawn Cannon, one of our speakers at the recent Take Back Your Health D.C. event! Dawn spoke on “Women’s Health in Menopause and Perimenopause: A Preventive Approach” and gave an overview on female reproductive physiology, the path to menopause, and preventive strategies for female health across the lifespan.


    Q: Why are you passionate about this topic?

    A: Actually, my internship, back when that was what it was called, was in Ob/Gyn, so women’s health has long been one of several interests. 

    As I mentioned in my talk, our ovaries are “asleep”, then they wake up, then they go back to sleep again. Whatever your current age, think about you as a little girl, then a tween, then your adolescence, and all of the changes your body went through.  You may not have understood all of this as normal, but it was, and it continues as long as you live. 

    I’m [passionate about] prevention and healthy habits that can help us through the cycles and support the body and mind.  Lifestyle habits, nutrition, exercise, understanding and addressing toxins – it all matters – and these are things we can control! 


    Q: What are the most common myths you hear from your patients about women’s health?

    A: That menopause is routinely horrible and a prescription for hormones is the best way to manage. That no one is having an orgasm. That (insert your age) is too old to start exercising. That (insert your weight) is too heavy to exercise. That it’s high intensity exercise, or nothing. That if my mother had it, then I can look forward (in a bad way) to it!


    Q: What are a couple of the most important changes someone can make to improve their hormone balance and health?

    A: It can’t be overstated – I think lifestyle changes cover a multitude of ills: optimize your diet, hydrate (garbage in, garbage out), engage in physical activity, minimize your stress and the effects of stress, etc.


    Q: What are a couple of healthy habits that have made the biggest difference for your health?

    A: Hydrate and stretch. Always thinking about how I can move more even though this sometimes involves discomfort. Breathing through my nose deeply instead of shallow anxious mouth breathing. Slowing my heart rate through breathing. Asking myself, “How am I placing myself in space? Am I hunched over with my neck and shoulders contracted in some weird position?” Don’t bring work to bed or the dinner table. Detoxing myself from other people’s negative energy. 


    Q: If you could give a little advice to someone who is just beginning their journey to take back their health, what would it be?

    A: Look in the mirror and say that you deeply love and appreciate yourself. Then do something health-focused daily to show yourself how much. I hope that is not too touchy feely. But, really, take small steps and honor your progress.


    Learn more about Dawn Cannon and schedule a visit with her to balance your hormones at National Integrated Health Associates.

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