Natural Ways to Keep Hormones Balanced
Estrogen is an endogenous hormone, meaning it is created in the body. It provides many benefits such as managing or maintaining metabolism and body weight, strong bones, cholesterol balance, cardiovascular protection, cognitive function, fertility, libido, and sexual health. There are different types of estrogen, but to keep this simple, we’ll refer to the group as estrogen. The majority of estrogen hormones are produced in the ovaries, but estrogen is also produced in fat cells. The amount of estrogen in the body is influenced by many factors including diet, stress, medications, and chemicals that disrupt the endocrine system. These chemicals can be found in the environment, and cosmetics, and are influenced by diet. If hormones become imbalanced, this can cause estrogen dominance. This doesn’t mean one has too much estrogen, but that there is an imbalance of too much estrogen in relation to progesterone.
Symptoms of estrogen dominance:
|Heavy or irregular periods||Water retention|
|Painful periods||Breast swelling and tenderness|
|Premenstrual syndrome (PMS)||Fibrocystic breast changes|
|Headaches, migraines||Hair loss|
|Weight gain||Mood swings|
How does estrogen dominance occur? Consider stress for example – stress causes increased cortisol production which diminishes progesterone production, and a result is estrogen dominance relative to low progesterone. Reducing stress helps to re-balance the hormones.
Suggestions to keep hormones in balance:
- Avoid constipation
- Eat healthy, high fiber foods such as fruit, vegetables (including cruciferous), quality protein, garlic, and onions
- Take time to relax and enjoy activities that reduce stress
- Sleep a minimum of 7 hours nightly
Estrogen is a very beneficial hormone, but when hormones are out of balance, it can cause havoc on the body. Enjoy a healthy lifestyle to keep your hormones balanced. Your heart, bones, and mood will appreciate you for it!