How to Tell When Your Hormones are Outta Whack
In the last blog, What are “Female” Hormones?, we learned that our hormones are the chemical messengers in our bodies that help it function properly. Hormones effect the brain, heart, bones, muscles, and reproductive organs and are an essential part of the workings of every cell in the human body. As you can see, having balanced hormones is a very important part in overall health and wellbeing. So in this blog I will discuss how hormones get thrown outta whack as well as how to tell if your hormones are balanced or not.
How do Hormones Get Out of Balance?
Our bodies are ingeniously designed machines and they withstand many years of torture from our toxic life styles. Hormone balance is deeply connected to the foods we consume, the amount of movement that we do, how many toxins we take in, how much weight we carry and the stresses that we deal with. Let’s do a quick review of a few of the many factors that can throw off your hormonal balance.
Consistent high levels of stress: When stress takes center stage in our lives and becomes chronic, Cortisol, a hormone produced by the adrenal glands, floods the system and total hormone production is disrupted. The body tries to compensate for this disruption by stealing its own supply of available progesterone, to make more cortisol, thus depleting this key hormone. Prolonged stress tears up our bones, melts our muscles, robs us of vital energy and strength, lowers our libido and overwhelms or immune system. All of these factors put our bodies at serious risk of chronic illness, cancer and autoimmune diseases.
Poor food choices: Insulin, serotonin, cortisol, and dopamine, not to mention estrogen and testosterone are each affected by the food choices we make. Xenoestrogens in animal products and byproducts all throw off your hormonal balance (more on Xenoestrogens below).
Inadequate sleep: Sleep deprivation has been shown to lower the appetite-suppressing hormone known as leptin and increase the hormone that stimulates hunger known as ghrelin. Chronic sleep deprivation wreaks havoc on your bodies stress response hormone, cortisol. Having these hormones out of whack will affect your brain function, ability to keep off weight as well as damaging your immune system.
Taking synthetic hormones: Synthetic versions of Estrogen and progesterone hormones may change the way your body absorbs or discards critical nutrients and can also have an adverse effect on your mood. They can also impact the hormones that make your body interested in sex so that you find your libido pretty much non-existent.
Sedentary lifestyle: Lack of movement or exercise cause a host of problems in the body, hormone imbalance being only one.
Xenoestrogens: These man-made toxins mimic the estrogen that is naturally created by the body. Unlike natural estrogen, these fake hormones severely overstimulate cellular activity, wreaking havoc on the internal balancing mechanisms of the body raising the estrogen burden and along with it the risk of breast cancer. Xenoestrogens are found in beef and dairy that is pumped full of synthetic growth hormones, in personal care products, household cleaners, in plastics, acetone (paint thinners, removers & even fingernail polish remover) and in pesticides, fungicides, herbicides and more. The scariest thing about these Xenoestrogens, is that once they are introduced into the body, they are not easily removed.
SIGNS THAT YOUR HORMONES ARE OUTTA WHACK
Even when only one unbalanced hormone is present, it may result in the following hormonal imbalance symptoms in women. This list is not all encompassing, please remember that hormones are messengers and if they are not functioning properly you will have some sort of dis-ease of the body.
Symptoms of Hormonal Imbalance in Women
- Fatigue not relieved by rest
- Tired all the time/no energy
- Difficulty getting up in the morning
- Poor sleep
- Craving for salty or sugary foods
- It takes more effort to perform every day tasks and duties
- Decreased sex drive
- Decreased ability to handle stress
- Increased time to recover from illness or injury
- Light headed when standing up quickly
- Light headed, dizzy, or nausea after periods of not eating
- Hirsutism (excessive facial hair)
- Lack of enjoyment or happiness
- Weight gain/loss
- Food intolerance
- Sinus problems
- Alcohol intolerance
- Excessive allergies
- Digestive disorders
- Dry and thin skin
- Excessive hunger
- No hunger
- Hair loss
- Unexplained headaches
- Immune deficiencies
- Inability to concentrate
- Liver disorders
- Chronic pain
- Blood pressure problems
- Low body temperature
- Hot flashes
- Night sweats
- Mood swings
- Poor memory
- Sleep disorders
- Tender breasts
- Difficulty building muscle
- Fluid retention
- Slow metabolism
- Chronic illness
- And more and more and more
Today we learned about the causes of hormone imbalance as well as common symptoms. Check back tomorrow for different natural ways to balance these hormones during the Maiden, Mother and Matriarch Phases of life.
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