Best known for her roles in Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice, actress Kate Walsh admits her transition between the two primetime dramas wasn't as easy as fans may have thought it was due to personal reasons. In an exclusive interview with PopCulture.com, Walsh revealed that she entered menopause at the age of 39 amid the premiere of Private Practice, "it was a real crazy, crazy time."
"My body started changing," Walsh told PopCulture.com of the chaotic transitions. "Hot flashes and night sweats and mood swings, and sudden tears and 'Oh my God!' And I was just working, I was transitioning from Grey's Anatomy to having my own show on Private Practice. [And] newly married, it was a real crazy, crazy time."
She went on to say how "lonely" and "scared" she felt during that time, not only because it was a wild transition, but because there is an evident lack of social conversation in our society surrounding the epidemiology.
"It was gnarly," she said. "It was really scary to be honest, because there was a lot of information in the culture, [but] there wasn't a lot of support for it. And there was a lot of fear around it and I hated that. I had to sort of learn by just asking random older women like, 'Hey, did you have to do this? What are you doing? How are you doing it?'"
To take a stand and help empower the discussion, the 13 Reasons Why actress partnered with EQUELLE, a company that provides naturally derived, plant-based supplements for women entering and going through menopause. With an objective to raise more awareness about an otherwise not-popular topic of public conversation, Walsh shares she is humbled to be a part of it.
"I think one of the things that freaks women out is like, 'Oh, I either have to do hormone replacement or nothing,'" she said. "And so it's a choice between, you know, one fear or another."
Walsh adds that the one thing she loves the most about the hormone-free supplement is that it is chock-full of natural ingredients, including the S-equol, a naturally derived component from plants that shares a similar structure to estrogen and binds to select estrogen receptors in the body.
"I love that EQUELLE's naturally derived, it's plant-based and it just reacts with our natural estrogen receptors in our body and helps alleviate symptoms of heat, and muscle aches and pains, that come along with menopause," she explained.
Walsh recommends that for many woman going through menopause or those about to enter it, it is important "to breathe and go easy on yourself."
The 52-year-old adds while her schedule remains busy with work, she finds ways to slow down — especially when it comes to managing her own symptoms. Even if it's closing her eyes for three to five minutes while taking a couple deep breaths, she says it goes a long way and can really help.
As for what's ahead for Walsh, she is keeping busy with both TV and film, with the upcoming movies, Sell By and 3022 alongside Omar Epps and Miranda Cosgrove. The award-winning actress also teased she's working on a "top secret" project, but couldn't give out any more details than that.