New Year. Strong You.

New Year. Strong You.

Energize Your Health: Protein for Robust Bones, Resilient Muscles, and Weight Control

As I sit here, reflecting on the end of the year and my journey through the first part of my 50s, I’m struck by a few key insights. Beginning the XO journey almost a year ago I have had the beautiful opportunity to speak with and listen to many women in menopause. Time and time again I hear about symptoms - including depression, loss of libido and weight gain. They all feed on one another and of the 34 recognized symptoms of menopause (and I am sure there are more) most of us experience more than one. 

We do share two of what I consider to be the most crucial symptoms for long term quality of life as we age - loss of muscle mass and bone health.  Personally,  I have found a powerful ally in my health journey – protein. Menopause isn’t just a phase; it’s a complete shift in how our bodies function, and along with focusing on how to best get protein into this shape shifter body I also had to manage the three symptoms that showed up overnight - hot flashes, itching, and brain fog. I swear that one night I remember before bed not remembering why I was so itchy as I used a towel to wipe the sweat off my face. No joke here. I was that confused. 

The science behind this is fascinating. As women approach perimenopause and menopause, our bodies undergo significant changes. One of the lesser-discussed but vital changes is the loss of muscle mass – known medically as sarcopenia. Research indicates that women can lose up to 3% of their muscle strength each year during this phase. And then there’s bone density; we start to lose it, increasing the risk of osteoporosis. We may escape that itchy leg or that  bloated belly but none of us escape sarcopenia. A super scary word. 

So what can you/we/I do? My personal inspiration through these changes is my mother. Remember when menopause was talked about, “going through the change”, in the not so distant past. In an era when menopause was a whispered word, she navigated her journey quietly but with an inner strength that I only came to appreciate very recently. I witnessed her embracing weight lifting and cutting down on sugar, intuitively understanding the need to support her changing body. She was a silent trailblazer, and I find myself walking a similar path, but with the privilege of voice and community.

Creating XO Jacqui was born out of necessity, but it grew into a mission. I wanted something that supported muscle and bone health, aided in weight management, and didn’t compromise on taste or add to my body’s stress with unnecessary sugar or bloat-inducing ingredients. It was about finding a balance that worked specifically for the menopausal body – a balance that supported, not hindered our efforts to feel at home in our body.

But XO Jacqui is more than a personal solution; it’s a shared journey. We’re here to open up the conversation about menopause, to support each other through the physical and emotional changes. It’s about turning a traditionally challenging time into a period of empowerment and health.

So here’s to 2024! May we be stronger. May we be heard. May we move through this world together with our connection celebrating the wisdom that comes with age, the strength in our bones, the power in our muscles, and the joy in our hearts. 

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