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How fitness can help you through menopause

From the right way to exercise, to what to eat and drink and the case for HRT, experts explain how women can prepare for midlife changes to their bodies.

Sometimes your body notices things before your mind does: you might think you’re so far away from the menopause that a hot flush is just a thing you can fake to get out of a boring situation, but your midriff knows better. Lucinda Meade, 57, is a physiotherapist and personal trainer. She has trained many clients through the menopause and says it tends to start with surreptitious weight gain around the middle, which they then can’t shift. It may be accompanied by aches and pains in smaller joints, and an unappetising smörgåsbord of “mood changes, sleep changes, annoying visits to the GP to be given antidepressants”.