Is it possible to have your cake and eat it? It seems so.
At one of my Menopause Yoga workshops a woman called Leyla told us about Menopause Cake, which is said to contain everything you need to prevent, or lessen, menopause symptoms such as hot flushes. As a cake-lover it sounded too good to be true - so I tried baking it.
It's a delicious mixture of nuts, seeds, soya and wholemeal flour, oats, dried fruit, spices and malt extract. I loved Leyla's recipe - very easy to make - though I do recommend that you put the mixture in a blender. The cake/bread was tasty, nourishing and one slice was so filling I didn't feel the need to snack.
I've printed her recipe below, and also, to show impartiality, I've give you some links to other recipes available online. I'm not keen on raisins or sultanas, so I added more ginger. Leyla's version is sugar free but you could add some honey if you felt it needed it.
Can it really prevent or ameliorate Menopause symptoms?
Here's the science bit. It contains:
Phytoestrogens (plant based isoflavones that act on the estrogen receptors in the body) that may boost your estrogen hormone levels a little bit;
Protein that fills you up and prevents you craving snacks
Calcium for bone health
Linseeds for regular bowel movements
Ginger for an energy pick you up
Malt extract for B12 and flavour.
I think you'd need to eat it every day for a prolonged period of time to know whether it can relieve hot flushes, but certainly the ingredients are all part of the healthy Menopause Diet that doctors and nutritionists would recommend.
Let me know what you think of the Menopause Cake, and whether a slice of cake a day could keep the doctor away?
LEYLA'S RECIPE FOR PHYTOESTROGEN OR MENOPAUSE CAKE
4oz/ 100G/1 cup soya flour
4oz /100g/1 cup wholemeal flour
4oz/100g/1 cup linseeds (ground)
2oz/50g/1/2 cup sunflower seeds
2oz/50g/1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
2oz/50g/1/2 cup sesame seeds
2 pieces of stem ginger finely chopped
8oz/225g/ 1 1/2 cups raisins or apricots
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
15 floz/ 425ml/ 2 cups soya milk
1tablespoon malt extract
1. Put all the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Add soya milk and malt extract, mix well and leave to soak for approx. 30 minutes.
2. heat oven to 190c/375 f/ gas mark 5. Line a small loaf tin with baking parchment.
3. If the mixture ends up to stiff (it should have a soft dropping consistency), stir in some more soya milk. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and bake it for 90 minutes. Test with a skewer or knife.
4. Turn out and cool on a wire rack. Eat in thick slices with soya spread.
"Please find attached the phytoestrogen cake, the soya flour and malt extract can be bought in any good health food shop. I am not sure whether you can also buy the malt extract in supermarkets, but you can certainly buy the stem ginger, sometimes it is difficult to buy without it being in syrup etc but it still works. Seeds anD nuts can be again found in all health food shops or supermarkets, try to buy in bulk as small packets work out very expensive.
I don't particularly like raisins so I blitz the raisins and milk in a liquidiser after they have soaked for a hour (I sometimes leave them to soak for longer). A friend suggested including apricots, I have not tried it with this though and do not know if this will alter the balance of the ingredients, so if you don't like raisins like me just liquidise them.
The cake mixture is very stiff, so I find putting it in a mixer helps and just add more soya milk if too thick.
The ingredients will fit in a medium loaf tin, just push it all in. After 45 minutes I take the loaf out and cover in tin foil as otherwise I find it burns the top.
Cut into 12-14 slices, be generous, it takes a little while to get used to the taste, I used to have it with a spread, but now eat without anything.
MAKE SURE you eat the cake the same time each day. Each slice I wrap in clingfilm and store in the freezer, that way you just take out what you need for a couple of days.
Thank you, for me it just help take the edge off the hot flushes and then they went away. I stopped taking the cake for a few months and then the flushes came back again, so I started the cake again and now do not have the flushes again. This cake also keeps you very regular."
Hope it helps