For many women lack of energy is one of the biggest complaints during perimenopause and after menopause. Menopausal women often lack the energy to improve nutrition, get exercise, and even carry out daily activities.

The causes of low energy levels are varied and intertwined. I discuss several causes of low energy and some solutions to investigate below.

Lack of sleep

This is a big one. Increased anxiety, night sweats and mood swings all contribute to a lack of sleep leaving many women feeling exhausted.

What can you do?

  • Establish a bedtime routine. This has been shown to improve sleep for many people.
  • Keep your bedroom cooler and keep a cooling towel handy if night sweats are a problem
  • Take up meditation. Meditation has a calming and focusing effect that helps with sleep. It also helps to control hot flashes.
  • Magnesium supplements or foods rich in magnesium like dark leafy greens and nuts and seeds help support healthy sleep. Research indicates that low levels of magnesium is associated with insomnia.

Mood swings

The mood swings that accompany menopause for many women can zap your energy.

What can you do?

  • You may want to limit caffeine and sugar to help reduce mood swings.
  • Keep yourself hydrated. Being dehydrated can effect your mood.


If you have hypothyroidism, you may also be experiencing fatigue. This is one of the main symptoms of hypothyroidism. Due to hormonal changes, hypothyroidism often occurs after menopause.

What can you do?

If you are experiencing fatigue, then get your thyroid levels checked.

Gut health

Food sensitivities and irritable bowel syndrome can cause fatigue. If you are having trouble digesting some foods you may not be getting all the nutrients from them that you should. This can contribute to fatigue. Poor gut health can lead to inflammation and immune responses which can also lead to fatigue. There is a link between chronic fatigue syndrome and gut bacteria, but researchers haven’t determined the cause.

What can you do?

  • Eliminate foods which cause digestive issues for you. If you are not sure, you may need to go on an elimination diet.
  • Add a probiotic supplement to your diet to improve your gut bacteria

Hormone changes

Hormone changes contribute to many menopause symptoms that lead to a lack of energy.

What can you do?

Try to maintain a healthy lifestyle so hormone changes are less of a factor.


Anemia or low iron levels is common during perimenopause especially if you have unusually heavy periods. This means that your cells don’t have enough oxygen to function properly so fatigue is a common symptom of anemia.

What can you do?

Get your iron levels tested to make sure you are not anemic. Follow the advice of your physician if your iron levels need to be increased.

Poor diet

If you eat a lot of sugar or processed carbohydrates you will likely experience blood sugar spikes and crashes which contribute to fatigue levels. And if your diet lacks essential nutrients you may also experience fatigue from these deficiencies.

What can you do?

Eat a diet that is based mostly in whole, unprocessed foods. Foods like vegetables and unprocessed meats will provide nutrients that are essential in your diet.

Lack of exercise

This is a difficult one because many women stop exercising during the menopausal years because they lack the energy to do it, but this lack of exercise also makes energy levels worse.

What can you do?

Start with just a little gentle exercise and add more as you feel like it. Even 10 minutes of exercise has benefits. If your energy levels are higher in the morning, then try to exercise in the morning.

Low energy and even fatigue is a common symptom of menopause. Take the steps above to improve your energy levels and consult with your physician if symptoms are severe or relentless. Start your day off with a better breakfast. Download this free guide to 5 Breakfast Ideas to Balance Hormones.