Maintain A Moderate Weight
Weight gain is directly associated with hormonal imbalances that may lead to complications in insulin sensitivity and reproductive health.
Obesity is strongly related to the development of insulin resistance, while losing excess weight is linked to improvements in insulin resistance and reduced risk of diabetes and heart disease .
Obesity is also associated with hypogonadism, a reduction or absence of hormone secretion from the testes or ovaries. In fact, this condition is one of the most relevant hormonal complications of obesity in men .
This means obesity is strongly related to lower levels of the reproductive hormone testosterone in men and contributes to a lack of ovulation in women, both of which are common causes of infertility .
Nonetheless, studies indicate that weight loss may reverse this condition. Eating within your own personal calorie range can help you maintain hormonal balance and a moderate weight .
Maintaining a moderate weight is crucial for hormone health, as obesity is strongly related to hormonal imbalances that may impair insulin sensitivity and fertility.
For example, when your gut microbiome ferments fiber, it produces short-chain fatty acids such as acetate, propionate, and butyrate. Both acetate and butyrate aid weight management by increasing calorie burning and thus help prevent insulin resistance (
Here are some tips to improve your gut bacteria to positively affect your hormones.
Consider Following The Mediterranean Diet
Estrogen is a hormone involved in both female and male reproductive health, as well as blood sugar balance, bone and heart health, and immune and brain function
However, estrogen levels that are either too low or too high have been linked to acute and chronic health conditions, including obesity, metabolic disorders, and various cancers
However, dietary choices may contribute to changes in your estrogen levels.
Research shows that the Western diet primarily composed of refined sugars and animal products is linked to higher estrogen levels, which are a risk factor for breast and ovarian cancers
On the contrary, following a Mediterranean-style diet rich in whole grains, seeds, fish, legumes, and cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower may help reduce estrogen levels and, thus, cancer risk
Similarly, long-term adherence to the Mediterranean diet may reduce breast cancer risk during and after menopause stages that are characterized by low estrogen levels
Researchers believe that this diet increases your intake of protective plant compounds such as polyphenols and lignans
Replacing a diet high in red meat and processed and refined foods with a Mediterranean-style diet rich in whole grains, legumes, and fish may help you manage your estrogen levels.
Fruits Good For Hormonal Imbalance
Fruits can cause insulin levelsto spike, which can affect cortisol and estrogen levels, so they should be eaten regularly but in moderation.
When fruits are consumed in the right amounts they can positively affect hormone levels.
Have a look at these three fruits to learn how they not only rank as food for hormonal balance but provide a host of other benefits as well.
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What Should I Eat To Balance Hormones
Swap refined carbs for whole foods: Cutting back on added sugars and refined, or simple, carbohydrates will reduce insulin resistance. Refined carbohydrates are found in salty snack foods such as pretzels, crackers and chips, fast food, white bread and pasta, regular soda, and sweets such as cookies, cakes, candy and pastries.
Try replacing some of these processed carbohydrates with natural, whole foods such as vegetables, fruit, beans, chickpeas and lentils.
Try healthy fats: To support healthy leptin and ghrelin levels, incorporate foods with healthy fats into your eating plan. Examples include fish, walnuts, other nuts and seeds, and olive oil.
Look for protein: Eating protein at every meal, but especially at breakfast, can help reduce your ghrelin levels. Lower ghrelin levels, in turn, may reduce overeating later in the day. Try eggs or Greek yogurt for breakfast.
Relieve menopause symptoms: While you can’t get estrogen from your diet, foods containing phytoestrogenslike flaxseed and soycan help relieve symptoms.
Eat enough iodine: Fish, seaweed, iodized salt and eggs are good sources of iodine.
Feel fuller with fiber: Fiber can keep you full longer, too. Oatmeal, or a high-fiber, high-protein breakfast cereal will help you start the day in a healthy way.
Eat foods rich in vitamin D: Vitamin D, which is found in tuna, egg yolks, and fortified milks and cereals, is an important nutrient for women.
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Pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, sesame seeds and sunflower seeds contain zinc and selenium that ensure the health of the thyroid glands. This helps in balancing the hormones.
Nutritionists say that including fruits and veggies of various ways is an incredible way to eat healthy. This ensures wholesome nutrition.
Purple – Eggplants, purple cabbage, blackcurrant, grapes
Blue – Blueberries
Green – Broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, kale
Yellow – Yellow bell pepper, saffron, avocado
Red – Apple, plum, watermelon, cherries, strawberries, beetroot
White – Bananas, mushrooms, ginger, cauliflower
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Swap Carbs For Healthy Fats
Foods that balance hormones include a variety of fat-containing foods that provide short-, medium- and long-chain fatty acids. Your body needs various types of fats to create hormones, including saturated fat and cholesterol.
Not only are these essential fats fundamental building blocks for hormone production, but they keep inflammation levels low, boost your metabolism and promote weight loss.
Healthy fats have the opposite effect of refined carbohydrates, which lead to inflammation and can mess with the balance of your hormones.
My four favorite sources of anti-inflammatory, healthy fats include coconut oil, avocados, grass-fed butter and wild-caught salmon.
- Coconut oil uses are plentiful. For example, coconut oil has natural antibacterial and fat-burning effects.
- Avocado benefits include improving heart health, lowering inflammation, controlling your appetite, and contributing to your daily intake of fiber and nutrients, such as potassium.
- Salmon nutrition is also impressive. Its one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which are known to lower inflammation and help with cognitive functions. Omega-3 fatty acids are a large component of brain-cell membranes and are important for cell-to-cell communication in the brain. Research shows that omega-3 fatty acids help protect against hippocampal neuronal loss and reduce pro-inflammatory responses.
Side Effects Of Pesticides On Humans
We are constantly exposed to pesticides in the air, water, and soil in which our crops reside, research over the past 10 years has revealed substantial evidence confirming various adverse health effects that pesticides have had on human health, particularly relating to risk for various cancers. and more recently impairments in thyroid function.
As mentioned, glyphosate, a broad-spectrum systemic herbicide inhibiting the growth of weeds is the most widely used chemical to support mass food production. While we could talk for hours about the impact of factory farming on modern-day wheat and its link to food sensitivities, we discuss why being gluten-free may be healthier as a result of our conventional farming practices in an entire post.
Animal studies have demonstrated that the endocrine disruptor glyphosate may cause negative developmental changes in fetuses. In humans, not only has glyphosate use been linked to cancer, it has recently been found to negatively impact estrogen metabolites and risk for breast cancer cells, even at low doses. This antagonistic agent binds to estrogen and androgen receptors in the body thereby interfering with the proper metabolism, creation, and excretion of natural hormones.
While all health effects of pesticides are widely unknown, there is growing evidence that the use of synthetic chemicals disrupts the hormone system, driving reproductive alterations, cancer risk, obesitythe list goes on my friends.
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The Best Foods For Hormone Balance
Carrie Gabriel, MS, RDN, clues us in on the best foods to eat for hormone balance.
When we think about hormones, we often immediately think of reproductive health. But theyre not just heavily involved in keeping the reproductive system functioning: Hormones can affect your mood, stress levels, appetite, and overall health. If our hormones are off balance, we might feel more fatigued than usual. Even further, we might experience irregular bowel movements to irregular menstrual cycles, heightened stress, and general irritability. Yikes!
Many of us dont think about turning to food first as a remedy for hormonal issues too often, we tend to steer toward medication. And unfortunately, hormone production isnt something we can directly control.
Diet is integral to hormone health, especially by regulating your gut health . Thankfully, there are certain foods that can help you balance your hormones, so we can select the best foods that regulate hormones and fuel our bodies with those. Heres everything you need to know about treating hormonal imbalance with a hormone-balancing diet and other positive health habits.
Inside this article:
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For the same reason, even minute changes in your hormones can have serious effects throughout your whole body. Both men and women are equally prone to be affected by the hormonal imbalance. Hormonal imbalance is mostly treated by meditation and making some necessary lifestyle changes. You have to eat healthy and exercise daily. But at times even healthy food can make your symptoms worse. Here are 5 healthy foods that must consume in moderation when dealing with hormonal issues
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How Chemicals And Food Additives Disrupt Hormones
Sowhat causes hormonal imbalance problems? Food particles or chemicals from food enter into the body and choose from a few potential scenarios:
Overstimulation or inhibition You know when you get into work and some big shot has hijacked your parking spot?! Endocrine disruptors have a similar fate by binding to the receptors of hormones they dont belong to with zero invitation, consequently impairing the natural hormones binding capacity. This may overstimulate, under-stimulate, or prevent the response of the natural hormone altogether.
Mimic or block the bodys response to endogenous hormones Endocrine disruptors can mimic real hormones in the body, preventing the actual hormones from being activated all together.
Alter biosynthesis or degradation of endogenous hormones Many endocrine disruptors have been shown to interfere with the natural elimination of breakdown, potentially increasing or decreasing normal levels of hormones. Natural detoxification may be altered, inflammation is exacerbated, and appetite often takes a plunge.
Some chemicals, food sources like refined sugar and other processed foods serve as obesogens, meaning they, disrupt bacterial diversity in the gut, alter metabolism, increase fat storage, and promote weight gain. For example, estrogen dominance may be driven by the overgrowth of bacteria in the gut or even excess adiposity.
Excess body fat à more fat cells à surge of estrogen in the body!
Supplement To Fill Nutritional Voids
While a healthy diet is key for all aspects of health, its sometimes necessary to supplement in order to fill nutritional voids that can be leading to a hormone imbalance.
Here are the top supplements to focus on in order to balance hormones:
Evening Primrose Oil
Evening primrose oil contains omega-6 fatty acids, such as GLA, that support overall hormonal function. Supplementing with evening primrose oil can help relieve premenstrual and PCOS symptoms. It also helps to create a healthy environment for conception.
What is the best vitamins to take for hormonal imbalance? Vitamin D is definitely one of them, since it almost acts like a hormone inside the body and has important implications for keeping inflammation levels low.
This is why people who live in dark areas often suffer from seasonal depression and other health problems unless they supplement with vitamin D. Sunshine is really the best way to optimize vitamin D levels because your bare skin actually makes vitamin D on its own when exposed to even small amounts of direct sunlight.
Most people should supplement with around 2,0005,000 international units daily of vitamin D3 if they live in dark areas, during the winter and on days when theyre not in the sun.
Probiotics are healthy bacteria that can actually improve your production and regulation of key hormones like insulin, ghrelin and leptin. They can also aid in repairing your gut lining, which in turn can balance your hormones.
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Dont Forget Vitamins B And D
Taking a high-quality vitamin B-complex supplement can help when youre in the throes of hormonal ups and downs. This is one group of vitamins that you might want to supplement with in addition to eating foods high in these vitamins. Vitamin B-complex is involved in both the production of testosterone and the regulation of energy production in the body. There are nine B vitamins in total, and certain foods contain specific B vitamins.
For example, wild-caught salmon is an excellent source of many B vitamins. Leafy greens, like spinach, kale, collard greens, and even romaine lettuce contain B9also known as folate. Other foods with notable amounts of B vitamins are eggs, sunflower seeds, milk, yogurt, and animal protein. Vitamin D is essential, too. In fact, numerous studies show its importance for mitigating symptoms of PCOS.
Image by Belathée Photography
Top Sources Of Added Sugars
It doesnt take a rocket scientist to know that Grandmas apple pie and our good friends Ben and Jerry are laden with this addictive agent, yet too frequently our health foods are sabotaged by sneaky companies whose life goal is to feed this addiction that our brains and bodies are unfit to fight.
Top food sources with added sugar/artificial sweeteners include but are not limited to:
While some sugar can be part of a well-balanced diet, it is often hidden in the most deceiving ways, resulting in sincere dependence on this addictive drug and consequently the most uninvited sugar cravings as a result of hormone imbalances!
Interested in finding a few replacements for sweets? Check out our post on Sweet Swaps: Healthy Swaps for Junk Food.
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Cons Of The Hormone Reset Diet
There are more disadvantages and risks than benefits to the Hormone Reset Diet, despite the creator’s medical credentials.
If you have an actual hormonal condition that requires treatment from a medical professional, this diet likely will not help you. As well, your condition could worsen if you arent receiving treatment. Speak to your doctor before trying the Hormone Reset Diet, especially if you have or suspect you may have hormonal health issues.
Foods That Are Beneficial For Hormone Balance
1. Healing Spices
Yogurt has Vitamin D which helps with the balance of hormones, and it is essential for aging. Yogurt is abundant in calcium, and calcium is good for the health of the bones. Also, yogurt can increase healthy bacteria in the gut.
3. Vegetables that are high in antioxidants
These include kale, collard greens, spinach, and cilantro are good if you want to have proper hormonal balance.
The avocado contains healthy fat. In addition, avocado is rich in folic acid, magnesium, potassium, Vitamin E, and B, and fiber.
5. Fatty Fish
Fatty fish have omega-3 fatty acids that might prevent health conditions and diseases such as depression, heart disease, inflammatory disease, and hypertension. They also can be good for cellular health.
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Hormones are chemical messengers of the body, which travel to different parts of the organs and tissues directing them to function efficiently. Secreted from the endocrine glands, hormones play a crucial role in the proper functioning of the body. Right from boosting your metabolism to the reproduction, hormones regulate all these processes.
Foods That Mess With Your Hormones
High-Fructose Corn Syrup
Unsurprisingly, processed sugars are the first no-no on the list. Research on diabetes management has found that fructose found in a wide range of processed foods doesnt seem to boost our satiety hormone, leptin, as well as other carbohydrate-containing foods, which, in turn, may lead us to consume more calories over time.
In women, there is also concern about reproductive disorders like polycystic ovary syndrome . One systematic review looked at a wide variety of diets and their impact on PCOS symptoms and found that following a diet low on the glycemic index carried the greatest benefits. Want to kick your sugar habit to the curb? Try swapping added sugars like corn syrup, honey, maple, molasses, and white sugar for fruit that comes bound with fiber to help slow down the hormonal insulin response.
Packaged Fried Snacks
You dont need an article on hormones to tell you to keep a watchful eye out for sources of trans fats. Packaged fried convenience foods are always a suspicious source. One study on male reproductive health found that men who consumed the highest amounts of trans fats in their diets had impaired testicular function related to lower testicular volume and higher luteinizing hormones. Other research has concurred, finding that men with the highest intakes of trans fats had 37 percent lower sperm count! If baby-making is in your plans, its best to kick those fats to the curb.
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These Dietician Recommended Foods Will Help You Combat Hormonal Imbalance
Hormonal imbalance can significantly impact overall health. A dietician recommends foods that can help maintain hormonal balance and hence, improve health.
When you have too much or too little of a hormone in your bloodstream, it leads to the development of hormonal imbalances. You probably already know that hormones play an essential role in the functioning of the body. Hence, even minute hormonal imbalances can cause an overall decline in health.
What are hormones?
Hormones are essentially chemicals that are produced by glands in the endocrine system. They usually travel from the bloodstream to the tissues and organs, delivering messages that tell the organs what to do and when to do it.
The effect of hormonal imbalance
Hormones are mandatory for regulating crucial bodily processes. So, a hormonal imbalance can affect a wide range of bodily functions. Hormones assist the regulation of metabolism, heart rate, sleep cycle, reproductive cycle, sexual function, general growth, physical development, stress level and body temperature. Hence, suffering from a hormonal imbalance often leads to symptoms such as joint pain, fatigue, high blood pressure, headaches and much more.
Almonds act as a helping hand in the regulation of blood sugar levels. In the long term, it can reduce the risk of developing type II diabetes. They also help in reducing bad cholesterol in the body. You do, however, need to enjoy almonds in moderation because theyre high in calories.