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Written by Danielle on February 29, 2012 – -
- by Brenna Taylor
Feeling a bit off lately? Moody? Not feeling much love for yourself, your significant other, or anyone around you? With the lives we live today we can easily throw off our hormones, the balancers and regulators of our bodies. Those mood swings may be your body trying to tell you something.
I suggest you listen.
There are many different symptoms of hormonal imbalances such as low energy, PMS, mood changes, depression, infertility and many more. Ignoring or covering up those symptoms instead of addressing the root cause could cause serious health and reproductive issues. Here are some tips to restore your hormonal balance, get rid of excess estrogen and start feeling back to your normal, happy, healthy, gorgeous self.
Food can be the most powerful medicine or the slowest poison, you have the power to choose. When studying and experimenting how to fix my hormonal system I noticed HUGE shifts of decreased pain during my menstrual cycle when taking the following out of my diet (and studies show many others do as well).
Coffee first thing in the morning on an empty stomach can cause your blood sugar to crash & spike for the rest of the day while your body tries to reset itself to a normal balance. If you MUST have coffee have it after eating something. A much healthier option is either tea or even better a green smoothie powering up your body with vitamins, minerals and tons of healthy energy.
Alcohol damages the liver and prevents it from excreting excess estrogen.
Dairy consumption worsens hormonal imbalance because there are so many hormones present in milk. The same goes for meat. Our body is trying to rid of excess estrogen so adding hormones in (and un-natural ones from another mammal at that) is clearly not helping our cause.
Toxins from pesticides (sprayed on non-organic food) and pollution from dry cleaning, antibacterial soaps and other toxins behave like estrogen in your body. Choose natural products and find new, healthier ways to wash your clothes, body and home.
Whether it be from nutritional stress, environmental stress, external stress, emotional stress, or even simply worrying about stressful situations, it’s all the same to your body. Dealing with stress is critical to hormone health.
Your adrenals are an essential part of your hormonal system in your body, they produce DHEA which responds to stress in your body. They are very hard working little adrenals for everything we put them through. Dealing with stress helps relieve the pressure of your adrenals. Take baths, go for walks, practice meditation, breathing methods or take yoga classes.
Slow down and breathe
Exercise is very important for overall health, stress relief and of course, balancing hormones. So move your body! You have time. For even 10 minutes. Do something. Aim for 3-5 times a week of either cardio & weight training to build human growth hormone which is a key hormone for strength and longevity.
Constipation worsens hormonal imbalances because your body cannot excrete excess estrogen. When this happens estrogen is re-circulated and dumped back into your bloodstream through the gut after your liver has done the work to get rid of it.
Optimal bowel movements are 3 times a day after each meal. To go more often increase fiber in your diet from vegetables, fruit, nuts, seeds and beans. Flax seeds in particular are especially helpful in correcting constipation and balancing hormones. Put them in a shake or sprinkle them on salads or food. Flax seeds contain lignans that help balance hormone metabolism and block the negative effects of excess estrogens.
Imbalances in gut bacteria increases the amount of re-absorbtion of estrogen back into the body. Replacing healthy bacteria in the gut also helps normalize estrogen and hormone metabolism. The best way to get healthy bacteria in your gut is to through delicious fermented vegetables.
I try my best to recommend nutrients from whole foods but there is no getting around supplements because the food quality is not what it used to be. A few that have been shown to help ease hormonal imbalance symptoms in the female body are:
A little bit of raw chocolate provides a lot of healthy magnesium for your body and can help ease PMS issues. Enjoy my healthy recipe below:
3 cups raw coconut
1 ½ cups raw cacao powder
1 cup raw honey
½ cup raw coconut oil
Mix together, drop by spoonfuls, refrigerate and ENJOY!
Healthy Little Tip:
After cooking up your delicious treats, coconut oil can be used as a moisturizer and stress reliever after taking a nice long bath (or try the oil in the bath!) . It’s a wonderful pampering treat and your skin will soak it right up.
Please take a moment in the comment box to let me know what tips you’ve tried to keep your hormones happy! We’d love to share your tips on the blog! If your tip is shared, we’ll gift you with a full monthly menu planner of our best recipes to help put you in the mood and keep your hormones happy! (Please be sure to leave your email address in the comment section so we can send you your menu planner!)
Brenna Taylor is a Certified Holistic Health Coach and a Board Certified and Accredited Member of The American Association of Drugless Practitioners. She helps people create a completely personalized “roadmap to health” that suits their unique body, lifestyle, preferences, and goals.
She specializes in working with women who have hormonal issues with symptoms ranging from weight-gain, lethargy, mood swings, PMS & cramps, to irregular periods or infertility. You can find out more about Brenna and her work by clicking here.
Check out Brenna’s previous posts, How to Find Love in All the Right Places, Are You Thinking Your Way to Love and How to Create Love This Valentine’s Day.
Besides the Evening Primrose Oil and Wild Yam you mention above, I also use Black Cohosh Combination #2 for hormones (from Genestra) and GSF Complex (Genestra) to calm my adrenals. If my perimenopause symptoms are on the rise, I add essential oils. I use Dragon Time and Lady Sclareol blends by Young Living, which have both been formulated to help women balance their hormones. Dragon Time contains Clary Sage, Fennel, Lavender, Marjoram, Blue Yarrow and Jasmine essential oils. Lady Sclareol contains Rosewood, Vetiver, Clary Sage, Orange, Geranium, Ylang Ylang, Sandalwood, Sage Lavendar, Jasmine and Idaho Tansy. Lastly, I add ground-up flax seeds to my smoothies from Day 1 of my period to mid-cycle (ovulation, about Day 13 or 14) and sunflower seeds from Day 13 or 14 to the start of my period. I agree about how important sleep is and shifting hormones can cause insomnia in some perimenopausal women. I haven’t managed to resolve that one yet completely. I know that avoiding sugar, alchohol and coffee is key for me. No problem for the alchohol and coffee but the sugar is a different matter. I have major sugar cravings before my period. I will try that fabulous-sounding recipe in your article. Maybe it will satisfy my sugar cravings without keeping me awake at night. Any other ideas out there that might help me sleeping like a rock again during perimenopause? Thanks very much.
Good article by the way. And thank you for that recipe.
Maca from a good source remember organic but that it has also been tested for heavy metals..do check quality of what you are supplementing /eating..cannot spell this but something like this ashawagdha,coconut oil, minerals ,fulvic acid,the right exercise ie if your adrenals are understress becareful !! Recent studies show long distances walking/running etc can increase oxidative stress and stress adrenals and make you age quicker.pay attention to body symptons keep a dairy not only noting your dates of menstration but also quality of bleed ,mood etc.If you have questions about health find someone with knowledge and ask if you get fobbed off go ask and keep asking till you are satisfied with an answer. Remember just because something worked for your friend does not mean it will work for you ..also make sure you find the best dosage for your body which may well be out side the recommended dosage or could be less..with hormons get tested and get the right tests done go prepared to say what tests you want run or do private lab test at home where you will get your results to study your self.Remember just because the Doctor says your thyroid or hormons are fine ..that does not cut it ask for numbers then do your research ..do you want to be fine ?? No you want to have your levels in the highest / best place you can . The doctor could tell you , your hormon levels are fine when in reality you are just at the bottom level of being ok..remember no one owes you anything ..you are your best friend ,you are the keeper of your body ,you have to work at keeping it healthy do not think going ot see an expert or specailist means you blindly follow what they tell you..question and understand what is going on for you.And do not make excuse for not caring for your self ..like oh the kids need me etc bottom line if your ill well thats no good to anyone..but they will still love you