4 Ways to Avoid a Hormonal Imbalance for Optimum Health & Weight Loss

Posted on Posted in General Tips, Just For Women, News

bloated womanMany women suffer from hormonal imbalances that interfere with not only fertility but also with their weight loss efforts.

Most hormonal disorders are still poorly understood, leaving a lot of women confused about their lack of weight loss.

The most common conditions caused by hormonal imbalance are Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome and Endometriosis.

What are PCOS and Endo?

PCOS is a syndrome primarily in which a woman has numerous benign cysts on her ovaries. It is a condition caused by hormonal imbalance due to genetics, diet, stress, and/or lifestyle.

Endometriosis, on the other hand, is a painful disorder in which the tissue that normally grows on the inside of the uterus starts to grow elsewhere in the abdomen. When the body signals for the walls of the uterus to shed every month, these 150934694-630x420misplaced cells also shed at the same time which can cause severe pain.

Often, both conditions are associated with estrogen dominance, meaning the body is unnaturally high in estrogen and/or low in progesterone production. High amounts of estrogen are associated with depression, water retention, food cravings, anxiety, irregular periods, and increased weight.

How can you avoid estrogen dominance? There are a number of likely offenders of which you should be aware that encourage hormonal imbalance.

Diet

kiwi-fruitIn today’s world, one of the biggest causes of hormonal imbalance is poor diet.

A diet full of processed sugars and carbohydrates encourage hormonal imbalance and estrogen dominance.

On top of that, the consumption of alcohol and/or caffeine further tax the liver so that it cannot easily rectify the imbalance of hormones.

Gluten is also a culprit and in many women can cause inflammation which only adds to the problem.

Of course, the key is to enjoy things in moderation, but being aware of the effects of grains, sugars, alcohol, and caffeine to allows your liver to clean up and clean out any excess estrogen.

It is also important to eat organic food when you can, especially concerning “The Dirty Dozen”. Meats should be free of antibiotics, grass-fed or pastured, or at least as local and liberated as possible. Your average supermarket meat selection sells from packed factory farms where animals are administered added hormones and antibiotics, and given little room or quality of life.

When the animal hasn’t lived a free, happy life, its meat will just not as nutritious or balancing to your body. So be wise about the meats that you choose. Free range and organic is best.

Stress

Stress is one of the biggest contributors to hormone imbalances and health issues in general.

Woman SleepingWherever possible, try to get yourself out of the daily grind of traffic jams, work deadlines, personal dramas, negative media and stressful situations in general. It’s essential to make time to do the things that you enjoy and that get you into a state of flow and calm. Life is short, so don’t waste it on negativity and drama.

Stress can also be compounded if you aren’t getting enough, good quality sleep. Prolonged lack of sleep can stress the body and cause it to lag behind on the cleanup of excess hormones, making things far more likely for your weight loss efforts to go awry.

Aim for 7-9 hours a night, or whatever you feel your best after. Yoga and meditation can also be very beneficial.

Exercise

tired-womanToo much intense, strenuous cardio can negatively impact the body, with the excessive stress causing your body to trigger a constant state of the fight and flight response and potentially leading to adrenal burnout. At this point, your body is sluggish and overburdened, meaning hormones can spiral out of balance fast.

On the other hand, a sedentary lifestyle is also no good for the body and can also cause stress of another kind.

The key is to engage in enjoyable, moderate, consistent activity. It can be any form of exercise, from walking the dog to playing tennis. The most important thing is that it should be fun so that your body doesn’t perceive it as stressful.

Chemicals

BPA in canned foodsThere are estrogen-like chemicals all around us, known as xenoestrogens.

These are unnatural and man-made toxins that pollute our bodies and can cause absolute mayhem with our hormones. The influence of chemicals may be the hardest to control because they are everywhere around us in today’s modern world. From household chemicals, the chemicals in food, air pollution and medicines, these chemicals have a direct impact on our hormones.

 

But not to worry. By making an effort  to cut back on unnecessary  chemicals and by adding certain things to your diet (like spirulina, chlorella and leafy greens) that can help filter them out of your body you will be able to keep on top of things to minimise their effects.

If you do suspect that you have hormonal imbalance issues, consult your doctor or naturopath for further information.

 

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