Are Your Hormones out of Balance?: By Kerri Abbott, Naturopath
How do our hormones get out of wack? Isn’t our body designed to keep them in check?
Good question. Yes our body does keep our hormones under control given the right circumstances. However, we live in an environment where we are constantly exposed to pesticides, fungicides, plastics and hormone injected animal foods that are all disruptive to our delicate hormone balance.
Add to this our poor diet, excess body fat, lack of sleep, stress, lack of exercise or even too much exercise and it’s no wonder our bodies can’t keep up.
What are the signs of hormone imbalance?
- Early puberty – when a child’s body starts changing into an adult before age 8 or 9
- PMS – premenstrual syndrome – breast tenderness, mood swings, bloating, sugar cravings
- Absence of periods
- Painful or heavy periods
- Irregular periods
- Poly cystic ovarian syndrome
- Uterine fibroids
- Unexplained weight gain or fatigue
- Recurrent miscarriage
- Menopause symptoms
- Menstrual or menopausal migraines
- Hair loss
- Adult acne
How can we minimise the risk of hormone imbalance?
- Eat a healthy well balanced diet – protein, good fats, fibre
- Increase your intake of cruciferous vegetables such as cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, kale
- Limit alcohol – Extremely inflammatory and affects hormone production
- Limit caffeine – Can increase menstrual pain and oestrogen levels
- Reduce weight if you are not at your ideal weight – avoid extreme weight loss.
- Limit amount of processed foods consumed
- Reduce exposure to food chemicals by eating locally produced fruit and vegetables and organic if possible.
- Limit your exposure to chemicals from personal care items such as hair, body, skincare and makeup. Try adding up how many chemicals you put on your body before you even get out of the bathroom in the morning. You’d be amazed. Use as natural as possible or not at all.
- Reduce stress
- Exercise – but not to excess