Your hormones can be just like orchestra players. In perfect sync, they can deliver amazing results, empowering your body to function optimally. In cohesive harmony, they work together to regulate your system's various processes, ensuring that no over- or under-performance can upset your physiological balance.
So, when hormones get out of whack, this can lead to all sorts of health issues. Fortunately, in many instances, there are steps you can take to fix this imbalance without resorting to medication. However, because your body is a sophisticated machine, you need a holistic approach to address hormonal imbalance. We're talking about your entire lifestyle. Sounds like an overhaul? Worry not! In this article, we'll share practical things to help you learn how to fix hormonal imbalance in no time!
What are hormones?
Before we go any further, let's take a closer look at the definition of hormones.
So, hormones are chemical substances produced by specialist cells, typically from the endocrine glands. Examples of the glands that make up the endocrine system are the thyroid, pituitary, and pineal glands. Additionally, more hormones are churned out in other body parts (men from their testes and women from their ovaries).
Once they are produced by the specialist cells, these hormones are launched into the bloodstream, where they travel to tissues and organs. And their trips are not merely indulgent. They carry critical messages that help cells figure out what they're supposed to do.
For example, the pancreas releases the hormone insulin that tells cells to use glucose, a type of sugar, for energy. If you're passionate about your sweets, these can flood your body with glucose. So, in response, your pancreas will get all hyped up and overproduce message-carrying insulin. Over time, your cells will stop "listening" to this particular hormone, resulting in a condition called insulin resistance. This can lead to pre-diabetes and, eventually, to Type 2 diabetes if left untreated. So, as you can see, insulin and the rest of the hormones are vital in ensuring that bodily functions are properly regulated.
How to tell if you have hormonal issues
Hormonal imbalance is a common problem that can affect anyone, from teenagers to older adults. In some cases, genetics and other underlying health issues can be the culprit. Thus, it’s always best to see your doctor if you suspect yourself of having hormone disorders. Here are some of the most common symptoms:
- Mood swings
- Weight gain
- Irregular periods
- Depression or anxiety
- Slow or rapid heartbeat
- Inexplicable weight loss or weight gain
However, in addition to genetic predisposition, disordered hormones can also be caused by various other factors such as stress, poor diet, and lack of exercise. And this is why making lifestyle changes can make you a hero to your hormones.
The good news is that you can address hormonal imbalances by tweaking your lifestyle.
How to fix hormonal imbalance by tweaking your lifestyle
Check out these easy-peasy hacks to bring out the best in your hormones:
1. Get enough sleep.
Getting enough sleep is crucial for hormonal balance. Lack of sleep can increase levels of cortisol, the stress hormone. They can also disrupt the production of other hormones like estrogen and progesterone, which are essential to reproductive health. The sleep-wake cycle also helps regulate insulin and adrenaline, hormones that can affect things like appetite and anxiety levels. Aim for at least 7–9 hours per night for optimal health, and establish a consistent bedtime routine.
Exercise is an excellent way to balance your hormones. Regular workouts have been shown to fine-tune hormones like estrogen and testosterone. As mentioned, these are important for fertility and sexual health in both men and women. Physical activity can also decrease cortisol and enhance insulin sensitivity. Target at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise, such as brisk walking, cycling, or weight lifting, at least five days per week.
3. Eat whole foods.
Avoid processed and sugary foods that often contain artificial ingredients, which interfere with hormone production. Over time, this can lead to hormonal imbalance. Instead, choose whole plant-based foods with essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber which your body needs to balance hormones and function at its best. Also, look for nutrient-dense foods such as fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats like fatty fish and flaxseeds, which can help reduce inflammation and help boost hormonal health.
4. Reduce stress.
When stressed, your body produces cortisol and other stress hormones, which can throw off the rest of the hormonal entourage. That's why managing your nerves is important. To keep anxiety and tension at bay, incorporate stress-reducing activities into your daily routine, such as yoga, meditation, deep breathing, or taking nature walks.
5. Limit caffeine and alcohol.
Alcohol has been known to disrupt hormone production, so limit or avoid drinking altogether as part of a healthy lifestyle plan that supports hormonal balance.
In addition, too much caffeine has been linked to increased cortisol production (the stress hormone), which we already know won't help stabilize our hardworking chemical messengers.
You don't have to give up your "drinking" habit altogether. Instead, consider switching to green, which has polyphenols that protect the body against oxidative stress (when there are more harmful substances than antioxidants in your system). Or better yet, stay hydrated with plain old H2O (at least eight glasses daily)!
6. Stop smoking.
Smoking has been found to diminish levels of estrogen, among other hormones. Therefore, one must ditch the nasty habit. However, this is easier said than done. When you feel like having a smoke, try nicotine replacement therapy and counseling. You may also get into physical activities and even relaxation techniques to help keep your mind off it. There are many other ways to help you control the urge, but you'll first need to avail yourself of these options to get your foot in the door.
7. Light up with Red Light therapy!
Your healthcare professional may recommend red light therapy as an effective adjunct to your hormonal care routine.
Red light therapy makes use of low-level radiation that comes from the visible region of the electromagnetic spectrum. Its long wavelengths can safely penetrate deep into the mitochondria, the cells' power generators, to deliver healing energy. As a result, the body can repair and rejuvenate cells and tissues affected by symptoms and disorders from hormonal imbalances.
For instance, researchers have discovered that red light therapy can help treat hormone-induced skin disorders, such as hyperpigmentation and acne. It may also be beneficial in treating polycystic ovary syndrome or PCOS, a hormonal condition typical in women of childbearing age.
But that's not all! Healthcare professionals have also leveraged red light therapy to help patients with thyroid problems. In addition, the modern innovation can boost the pleasure hormones of endorphin, serotonin, and dopamine. Thus, it can go a long way in managing depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders.
The perfect balance with HigherDOSE
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Learning how to fix hormonal imbalance is a cinch with HigherDOSE! So take your hormonal health to the next level—shop at HigherDOSE today!