Penny Lancaster has opened up about her “hideous” experience of menopause when her mood swings got so bad at one point she threw plates on the floor.
The 51-year-old TV presenter and model, who is married to Sir Rod Stewart, spoke about her experience as she reflected on the importance of hormone replacement therapy (HRT), saying it should be free for women.
It comes after the government announced it was going to limit the amount of certain HRT products women can access to improve the overall supply across the UK.
The action was taken in response to concerns about a drug shortage which has left women desperate.
Speaking on TalkTV’s The News Desk, Lancaster explained that she suffered so much from mood swings due to menopause that one day, when her children were arguing in the kitchen, she ‘cracked down’ and screamed throwing plates on the floor.
She said the experience was “hideous” and left her in tears, adding: “It was one of those you know, ‘We need to get your mum to the doctor. Something’s wrong.
“Because I’m very easy-going, laid-back. I take everything at my own pace and want everyone around me to be happy, like a lot of mums.
“We’ve kind of balanced everything around us and everyone’s thoughts and feelings come before our own.”
In October, Lancaster joined other famous names like Davina McCall and Mariella Frostrup at a rally in Parliament Square, where crowds celebrated as the government pledged at the time for more support for menopause and reduce HRT costs.
HRT can help relieve serious symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes, night sweats, low mood, anxiety and trouble sleeping.
Reflecting on the importance of treatment, she said: ‘The demand for HRT is due to the confidence that women have now, after many campaigns over the past two or three years, we have no hesitation in doing this.
“We are not shy to talk about it. We are brave enough to go to doctors and demand HRT.
“There should be a checkbox, with very, very simple symptoms that you just have to check off, so that a doctor can finally go ‘okay, assign, assign your prescription.’ Here is the HRT.
“Because it’s really, really devastating, and because of this huge demand right now, pharmacists and manufacturers just can’t keep up with the demand for the drugs that we need.”
She continued, “So I think the message is getting through, and it’s going full steam ahead and hopefully women can get their hands on it and more importantly not have to pay for it. I’m not doing that in Scotland and Wales, so we have to continue with that.
“I believe men can get Viagra for free, so their hormones are taken care of.
“And women play a vital role in the workplace, and so many women have to lose their jobs and leave high profile positions, just where men and women are in that position in their careers, where they could be promoted and become CEOs of companies and very talented women are disappearing.
The News Desk airs weekdays on TalkTV at 7 p.m. (Sky 526, Virgin Media 627, Freeview 237 and Freesat 217) and live and on demand on the TalkTV app and on Talk.TV