What Really Causes Hot Flashes

author avatar Dr. Eric Berg 03/22/2024

Hot flashes are a common occurrence for women who are premenopausal or already experiencing menopause. They can be very uncomfortable to deal with, and many women are not familiar with all the remedies available to them.

Learn about what causes hot flashes and the best solutions for them so you do not have to suffer.

Understanding Hot Flashes

Hot flashes are a sensation of intense warmth experienced by many people, but most commonly among women going through menopause.

Definition of Hot Flashes

In medical terms, the condition of hot flashes is known as vasomotor instability.

The term sounds complex, but it simply describes the fluctuating blood flow due to the dilation and constriction of blood vessels that lead to these uncomfortable episodes.

Symptoms Associated with Hot Flashes

Apart from an overwhelming sensation of warmth typically experienced on the face or upper body, other symptoms include sweating (especially night sweats), palpitations, and anxiety.

If left untreated, frequent bouts can significantly affect one's quality of life, disrupting sleep patterns and causing fatigue during daytime hours. While hormone replacement therapy has been traditionally used for treating hot flashes, many people prefer to seek out natural remedies.

Natural Remedies vs Hormone Therapy: The Great Debate Begins...

The debate between natural remedies and hormone therapy for various health conditions, particularly in the context of menopausal symptoms, is multifaceted.

Natural remedies often include lifestyle changes, dietary modifications, and herbal supplements, while hormone therapy involves the use of medications containing hormones like estrogen and progesterone.

Advocates of natural remedies argue for their holistic approach and potential for fewer side effects. Lifestyle changes, such as regular exercise, a balanced diet, and stress management, are emphasized to alleviate symptoms.

Herbal supplements like black cohosh and soy products are also commonly explored. On the other hand, hormone therapy is supported by research showing its efficacy in relieving menopausal symptoms.

However, concerns exist regarding potential risks, such as an increased risk of certain cancers and cardiovascular issues.

Menopause and its Relation to Hot Flashes

Learn about how this biological transition significantly triggers hot flashes.

Role of Estrogen in Triggering Hot Flashes

The estrogen hormone regulates various bodily functions throughout your life and takes an unexpected drop during menopause.

This sudden depletion often triggers hot flash episodes that are very uncomfortable for women to deal with.

The Functioning of Adrenal Glands Post-Menopause

Your adrenal glands aren't just sitting idle, either. Post-menopausal women rely heavily on their adrenals to produce hormones like estrogen and progesterone once their ovaries have stopped producing as they once did.

Adrenal Weakness as a Cause for Hot Flashes

Your adrenal glands are essential in managing your body's hormones, including estrogen.

The sudden decrease in estrogen levels associated with menopause can trigger hot flashes and other menopausal symptoms.

The connection between Adrenal Weakness and Decreased Estrogen Levels

If you're experiencing frequent hot flashes, it might be due to weak adrenals. This could mean that weakened adrenals may not provide sufficient hormone support during this transitional period, leading to more severe or frequent episodes of these heat surges.

Importance of Maintaining Healthy Adrenals

This includes lifestyle changes like balanced nutrition, regular exercise, and adequate sleep. Supplements designed specifically for supporting adrenal health are also available on the market. Now, it is important to understand how our internal systems contribute to those uncomfortable moments.

Natural Remedies For Alleviating Hot Flash Symptoms

Hot flashes, a common symptom among menopausal women, can be frustrating and disruptive to daily life. Don't despair - natural remedies may help reduce the severity of hot flashes without resorting to harmful hormone replacement therapy (HRT)..

Natural Herb Helpful Against Hot Flash Episodes

The power of herbal supplements in treating hot flashes cannot be overstated.

Black cohosh is a plant that has been used for centuries by Native Americans as a treatment against menopausal symptoms, including night sweats and hot flashes. Recent studies support its effectiveness, too.

The Role Diet Plays In Reducing Severity Or Frequency Of Occurrence

Your diet plays an integral role when it comes down to managing those pesky temperature spikes. Certain foods have been known to trigger hot flashes while others might actually help keep them at bay.

  • Avoid spicy foods, caffeine, and alcohol - they're notorious for triggering sudden bouts of sweating and flushing associated with this condition.

  • Incorporate more vegetables, healthy fats, and proteins into your meals - their nutritional benefits will do wonders for overall health besides reducing the intensity & frequency of occurrences.

  • Cold water instantly cools off elevated body temperatures, so always carry a bottle around wherever you go.

  • Don't forget about regular exercise either. It helps maintain optimal weight levels, thereby minimizing risk factors linked directly towards onset or worsening cases involving vasomotor instability, aka 'hot flushes.'

  • Remember, everyone's experience differs significantly; hence, a trial-and-error approach works best here until finding what fits perfectly within individual lifestyle patterns and dietary preferences.

Young man with sweat marks

Sweating Armpits and Hot Flashes

Sweating in the armpits and hot flashes can be related to changes in hormonal levels and the body's thermoregulation. Sweating in the armpits, axillary hyperhidrosis refers to excessive perspiration in the underarm area.

Hot flashes, on the other hand, are sudden feelings of intense heat that can cause flushing and sweating, often experienced by individuals going through menopause or hormonal fluctuations.

During hot flashes, the body's temperature regulation system becomes dysregulated, leading to a sudden sensation of heat, flushing of the skin, and sweating, including in the armpits.

While not all individuals experiencing hot flashes will necessarily have excessive underarm sweating, the two can occur together in some cases.

Managing hot flashes and excessive sweating can involve various approaches. Lifestyle modifications such as wearing loose-fitting clothing, using cooling techniques, and avoiding triggers like spicy foods and caffeine can help alleviate symptoms.

In some cases, hormonal therapies may be prescribed to regulate hormone levels and reduce the frequency and intensity of hot flashes and associated sweating.

If you are experiencing bothersome hot flashes or excessive underarm sweating, it is recommended to consult with a healthcare professional for proper evaluation and guidance.

They can assess your symptoms and medical history and provide appropriate treatment options tailored to your needs.


Hot flashes are a common discomfort for women during menopause or pre-menopause, often with unknown remedies.

Understanding their causes, including hormonal changes and adrenal function, is crucial.

Natural remedies and lifestyle adjustments, such as diet and stress management, offer relief without risks associated with hormone therapy. Consulting healthcare professionals for personalized guidance is key to managing hot flashes and improving quality of life.

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