[NOTE: The following commentary by William A. McGarey, M.D. is a general overview of the Cayce approach to menopause. The treatment recommendations discussed in the Cayce readings for this condition are diverse and reflect the tremendous variability in how menopause can manifest for each unique individual.This overview should be viewed as one perspective on how to apply the Cayce approach.]
It is well known and understood that some women pass through the "change of life" without serious symptoms or difficulties, while others have a long, drawn-out menopause that becomes a major health problem and requires medical attention -- often, however, with little response.
During menopause, the woman moves from the child-bearing age to a balance of the body wherein much less estrogen is available to the body cells, resulting in the inability to become pregnant.The symptoms of menopause begin sometime during the latter years of the third decade, but more commonly around the age of 40 to 45. Again, it is uncommon for menopause to continue beyond age 50, but some women experience symptoms well into the late years of their 50s and occasionally into their 60s.
Surgical menopause comes about when a woman's ovaries and uterus are removed.This may occur at any age and is much more sudden and frequently more disastrous in its effect.
Symptoms can be multitudinous and, therefore, lead some observers to credit the problems to a psychosomatic origin, so that the woman is referred to a psychologist or psychiatrist.However, physicians who clearly observe the nature of the body -- its unity, its coordination or lack of it, and the manner in which function in the body comes about through the nervous system, the glandular influences, and the activities of the body's life-support systems understand that most symptoms have their bases in the physical body and its workings.
Symptoms observed most frequently are hot flashes, insomnia, fatigue, headaches, constipation, general aches and pains, tensions, nervousness, visual changes, tachycardia, discomfort in the heart area, indigestion, and a variety of mental/emotional disturbances ranging from mild to very severe.The Cayce readings regularly refer to the nature of the human being as body, mind, and spirit; so it is not strange that they lead us to understand some of the disturbances in these relationships.
The readings suggested to  that the distresses she was experiencing had to do with the organs of the pelvis and with those of the eliminating system. (1100-28) And in nearly every instance in those readings studied, there was an incoordination between the autonomic and cerebrospinal nervous systems.The organs of the pelvis, of course, produce estrogens, so the glandular imbalance is disturbed.
Hypochondria was a problem in reading 2054-1, but this was not an unrelated condition.Instead, it was -- at least in this instance -- due to circumstances within the body while under the influence of the menopausal changes.These brought about an "indeterminate reaction of impulse between the two systems. . ." (autonomic and cerebrospinal), causing a glandular incoordination and "at times the losing of self almost to the incoordination between the reflexes from the sympathetic system, and the coordinant reaction through the cerebrospinal system." Thus, in this instance, hypochondria resulted, so that the body reacted "not always to the suggestion but always to the suggestion there is a reaction." (2054-1)
The Cayce source also saw some of the difficulties as arising from a disturbance through the upper hepatic circulation that needed to be normalized.
With the variety of problems that accompany a "change of life," so to speak, it needs to be understood that mental/emotional/spiritual attitudes and influences lay the groundwork for changes that accompany the decrease in estrogen level -- often the only chemical change that can be demonstrated.Thus, every woman can have a different kind of menopausal experience, depending upon what she had done with her life experiences, her stresses, her heredity, her diet, her beliefs, and the manner in which she faces life and her purpose for being here.
The readings had this to say about the glands and their activity:
"... the glandular forces make for disturbing activities at times, but keeping the mental and physical balance as has been outlined, with the adjustments, the activities in the physical and mental fields, the glands respond.For the glands are that through which the relationships are kept established as it were between the spiritual body and the mental body." (1158-13)
Is it any wonder, then, that there are differences between the manner in which women go through the change?All symptoms have an origin, and most of the underlying difficulties can be dealt with constructively.This is the message of the Cayce readings.
II.Rationale of Therapy
In understanding therapy for menopausal symptoms and in obtaining the best responses, one needs to pay attention to the ongoing process in the physical body and also to recognize that every woman probably has a set of physiological imbalances completely different from the next.
The process in the menopausal woman is an adjustment to the gradual (or sudden) decrease of female hormones circulating in the system.This adjustment can occur in an individual whose body is already disturbed by a variety of imbalances or it may come about in a completely normal person.The reaction in these two instances is always markedly different.This may explain why some women experience little disturbance during the "change of life" while others undergo all sorts of problems.
In the readings given for different women, the suggestions for reestablishing a balance in the body were grouped into six different categories -- the specifics always dependent upon the needs of the individual for whom assistance was offered.
- General Care of the Body
Adequate rest, a diet that is balanced yet corrective in its nature when needed, and exercise.These three therapies were always suggested when there seemed to be a deficiency or a need. One woman was instructed to spend six to eight weeks relaxing and resting in the sand and sunshine in Clearwater or Clearwater Beach, Florida, for a couple of hours each morning and each afternoon, when the ultraviolet rays from the sun are not too strong. (2966-2) This, combined with her massages and shortwave therapy, was intended to relieve the headaches, the hot and cold flashes, the irregularity of the heart, and the feelings that portions of the body were going to sleep too easily.Another woman was told that she needed to keep more balanced, more rested, and not to bring about an overactivity or overstimulation of the vital forces of the body, especially as related to the activities of reproduction." (1158-17)So rest is often highly important.
A diet oriented toward alkaline-reacting foods was most frequently recommended for menopause.No fats, no fried foods, rarely beef -- this was the injunction given to a 38-year-old woman who had undergone a complete hysterectomy.(3386-1)
A special diet was recommended for a woman whose digestive system was giving her problems of as and regurgitation. Her reading (1713-21) suggested a cleansing regimen: oranges only or oranges and lemons for five days, as many as desired; or apples (Delicious) for three days; or grapes for four days.Any of these would be helpful for cleansing the system from impurities and thus prevent inclinations for gas formations, etc.After the cleansing diet, then half a teacup of olive oil was suggested to be taken.A note of caution: If one has gall bladder problems, this amount of olive oil may cause a surgical emergency forcing stones down into the bile or common duct. Lesser amounts of oil are recommended in most of the instances wherein this kind of cleansing is given.
Exercise -- plenty of it -- was a frequent recommendation. It is understood from the general tone of the readings that re regular exercise, preferably walking, was a basic undergirding of a therapy program leading to health and balance.
Specifics aside, it can be seen that a woman going through the difficulties of menopause would best care generally for her body with rest, a good diet, and exercise.
- Working with the Structural Portions of the Body
Grouped under this heading are osteopathic treatments, chiropractic adjustments, massages, electric vibrator treatments, and hot packs on the back.All of these are in a very real sense related, since they relax or adjust or move the muscles or vertebrae of the spine and bring about a more balanced function of the portions of the body which these areas (in relation to the spinal cord and its functions) actually supply.Primarily in the instance of the menopausal woman, the ovaries, the uterus, and the thyroid are the most important structures involved in this kind of therapy.However, the circulatory system, the nervous system, the assimilation and elimination, and the entire glandular system are affected and may become more normalized through such assistance.
The following extract tells the story of what goes on with manipulation, massage, etc., and the importance of these therapies:
Q-2.Should other glands be stimulated which have not been?
A-2.As just indicated, these should be stimulated, but from the centers from which the impulse for their activity emanates!
Let's describe this for a second, that the entity or body here may understand, as well as the one making the stimulation:
Along the cerebrospinal system we find segments. These are cushioned.Not that the segment itself is awry, but through each segment there arises an impulse or a nerve connection between it and the sympathetic system-or the nerves running parallel with same. Through the sympathetic system (as it is called, or those centers not encased in cerebrospinal system) are the connections with the cerebrospinal system.
Then, in each center -- that is, of the segment where these connect -- there are tiny bursa[e], or a plasm of nerve reaction.This becomes congested, or slow in its activity to each portion of the system.For, each organ, each gland of the system, receives impulses through this manner for its activity.
Hence we find there are reactions to every portion of the system by suggestion, mentally, and by the environment and surroundings.
Also we find that a reaction may be stimulated internally to the organs of the body, by injection of properties or foods, or by activities of same.
We also find the reflex from these internally to the brain centers.
Then, the science of osteopathy is not merely the punching in a certain segment or the cracking of the bones, but it is the keeping of a balance -- by the touch -- between the sympathetic and the cerebrospinal system!That is real osteopathy!
With the adjustments made in this way and manner, we will rind not only helpful influences but healing and an aid to any condition that may exist in the body-unless there is a broken bone or the like!(1158-24)
- Influencing the Electrical Systems of the Body
Treatments to the body's structural portions certainly have an influence on the neurological system and thus on this portion of the body's electrical system.In the readings, however, a flow of energy was described that moves through the body in the form of a figure eight.It crosses at the umbilicus and forms the basis for another kind of therapy -- the radio-active appliance, whose manufacture and use are described in the readings.It should be noted here that this device theoretically functions by taking electrical charges too numerous in f the body and moving them to other areas which are deficient.One individual, , was to use this appliance with one attachment on the 12th dorsal area and the other on the pubic center (directly over the pubis).In this instance, the appliance would be used daily for a month, or through the menstrual period, left off for a few days, and then perhaps repeated.
In case , the violet ray was recommended for use alongside the spine just before retiring, apparently to bring a degree of relief to bodily tensions and to balance the neurological system more adequately.
The violet ray was also recommended for . She had severe difficulties in her menopause, which affected her pineal gland and caused periods of near mental blackout.She was given the formula for a bitter syrup to take internally.For the hot and cold flashes, cold feet, and general irritation, an Epsom salts hot sitz bath was to be taken, followed by a thorough rubdown, and then the violet ray treatment, both along the cerebrospinal system. And she was told to walk or ride in the open air, to keep pleasant company, and "be pleasant to others."
- Local Therapy
It is always helpful to treat the body locally where the problem lies.The helpfulness may have to do with the consciousness, as stated in the readings, that lies within each cell, each atom of the body.Perhaps these cells need comfort, need to know that they are being cared for and recognized because they have problems. For whatever reason, local therapy always helps.In menopause, the sitz baths just mentioned can be of aid in increasing the circulation to that area of the body.
Between -- not during -- menstrual periods, douches with Atomidine were often suggested for pelvis problems.A 41-year-old woman was given directions to take such douches, apparently to aid in alleviating the problems of the beginning changes in the system the readings' description of early menopause. (1713-21) First she was told to take Atomidine douches, a teaspoonful to a quart and a half of water. Later on, in another reading-at this point menopause was really upon her -- she was instructed to take also Glyco-Thymoline douches, a tablespoon and a half to a quart of water.
One woman was told to use the violet ray with a vaginal applicator. (528-28) Massage to the lower back and osteopathic treatments in that area can also be classified as local therapy, although they bring about a different kind of response.
Of all the medications used for menopause, oral and intramuscular injections of hormones probably rate as number one. The readings recommended them frequently.Atomidine, taken orally, was nearly standard therapy, for it is intended to normalize the function of the glandular structures in the body.Calcios -- a calcium product -- was often added to the regimen.During those years when the readings were given, Tonicine was suggested as a hormone additive to be taken orally; it contained extracts from the ovary and the thyroid.Other medications were seldom suggested.
- Constructive Use of the Mind
The mind needs to be kept in a constructive phase. The reality of the human being as a body, mind, and spirit is constantly reaffirmed in these readings.To one woman Cayce had this to say:
Do these; keeping the body mentally constructive. That is, as the very nature of the mental influences of the body would be as constructive forces, know that their application does not consist of formulas or ritual but just being kind, gentle, patient, even with those that apparently would torment thee.This is magnifying those influences that keep a body mentally, physically, spiritually balanced. For the mind is the builder.Hence it is both material and spiritual.
If spiritual constructiveness is used, then, that builded into the experience must be of those very constructive natures. (1457-1)
To another, he said, "Sing a lot." (3386-1)
To still another, ". . be pleasant to others!" (4290-9)
In 1540-3, Cayce pointed out that "As to the constructive forces-know that the spiritual is the source of health, of light, of understanding; and necessarily the source of all happiness."
III.Suggested Therapeutic Regimen
Lacking the psychic ability to look into the body and ascertain what incoordinations exist, where the body is malfunctioning, what attitudes are not constructive, and how severe the menopause really is, one must rely on a general approach toward correcting the menopausal syndrome.
Always a direction should be taken toward balance: balance in the nerve supply, in the circulation, in the hormonal system, in the structural setup of the body, and between assimilation and elimination. And much attention should be paid to the attitudes, emotions, and beliefs of the individual.
So what would be a general therapy program for such a person? Perhaps the following would be helpful, no matter how mild or severe the conditions may be:
- A basic alkaline-reacting diet, eliminating fried foods, fats, white flour and white sugar, pork, with only occasional beef. Protein as in fish, fowl, or lamb. Lots of salads, fruit, cooked vegetables;
- Adequate eliminations;
- Adequate rest;
- Osteopathic manipulations. Massages and use of violet ray if these are not available;
- Atomidine, taken orally in cycles;
- Alternate Atomidine and Glyco-Thymoline douches -- one of each every week for the space of several months, avoiding the douches when periods come. One teaspoonful of Glyco-Thymoline to a quart of water;
- ". . keep the mental attitudes towards all helpful influences. . (1100-28) Use the mind constructively, meditate regularly, seek to apply the fruits of the spirit in one's life day by day.
In all likelihood, the individuals with menopause for whom Cayce gave readings were not exactly in the same condition as anyone else you might meet. However, there are enough similarities in the symptoms experienced that a regimen such as that shown above might be utilized, and other treatments Cayce suggested (as listed earlier in this discussion) might then be added if applicable.
Menopause is a changing of the life situation, and it can be met with equanimity if the body is balanced in its function. Life's daily experience can be encountered with a smile and a song, but the body must be attended to and the attitudes must be looked at and corrected.
[Note: The preceding overview was written by William A. McGarey, M.D. and is excerpted from the Physician's Reference Notebook, Copyright © 1968 by the Edgar Cayce Foundation, Virginia Beach, VA.]