Hot sweats, bad temper, increased weight… it’s hardly surprising most women don’t welcome the onset of the menopause with open arms.

And although nature chooses when you will go through the menopause and it is probably determined by genetics (ask your mother when she went through hers and this will give you a rough idea) there may be things you can do to postpone it.

Yes, it’s inevitably going to happen. But although it is only natural to go through it, it’s also human nature to want to delay the inevitable!

Here are some surprising and even frankly bizarre ways to put off the menopause for a couple of years longer…

  • CHOOSE SKIMMED MILK

A study conducted in the United States has revealed that women who ate low fat dairy produce – skimmed milk, low fat cheese and yoghurt – could delay menopause for up to three and a half years.

Cow’s milk enzymes are also credited with increasing oestrogen levels which help out the reproductive system.

  • BUY SOME NEW POTS AND PANS

One of the odder things you could be unwittingly doing to bring on the menopause early, is cooking with old pots and pans.

The older type of non stick pans has a chemical called perfluorooctanoic acid in them and this can wreak havoc with the female hormonal system. It was detected that the chemical was present in higher levels for women who had gone through the menopause early.

  • TAKE OFF THE PLASTIC PACKAGING

Plastic packaging has been blamed for changing the hormones within the body and this could include females going through the menopause.

Although it hasn’t been explicitly proven, it might be a good precaution not to use plastic wrapping like clingfilm and certainly take food out of plastic containers to heat them.

  • USE NATURAL BEAUTY PRODUCTS

Although the jury’s out as to whether those expensive beauty creams really do reverse the ageing process on the outside, it is just possible they are speeding it up on the inside!

Chemicals in moisturiser could be affecting the hormones in the body. Not much is known about exactly how this could be happening, but it could be prudent to use more natural creams and potions!

  • EAT MORE FISH

Already known for helping improve general health, fish, containing Omega 3 can also help to balance hormones.

This can have an effect on the menopause and when it begins.

Studies show women who eat fish more frequently started the menopause later than women who didn’t.