Have You Tried Everything And Are Still Struggling To Get Rid Of Belly Bulge It Turns Out Your Hormones May Be The Answer Find Out Why A Hormonal Imbalance Can Cause You To Hold Onto Fat In Unexpected Places And How To Get Rid Of Hormonal Belly Today
Unexplained weight gain can be frustrating, especially when you feel like youre doing all the right things. Sometimes, though, a sudden belly bulge or stubborn abdominal weight you cant seem to lose is a sign of something deeper going on with your hormones. Your hormones actually play a big part in regulating metabolism, hunger, fullness, and energy. And because your hormones are always talking to each other, they form a tangled web of communication to keep your body regulated.
A number of hormone-related conditions can cause abdominal weight gain including an underactive thyroid, polycystic ovary syndrome , or menopause. Outside of specific conditions, general hormone imbalances, which can be the result of obesity, environmental triggers and toxins, chronic stress, or medications, may also be at the root of your resistant hormonal belly fat. If you think youre dealing with a hormonal belly, here are a few signs to look for.
Incorporate Stress Reduction Techniques
No surprise here. Stress causes your body to go into fight or flight modeits just the way were wired. And when were stressed, cortisol rises. In turn, elevated cortisol affects your hormones, including ovulation. Chronic stress can lead to late periods. From stress-relieving yoga poses to stress-reducing teas, there are a variety of ways to bring more om into your life. Making time to de-stress does wonders for your mind, body, and hormones.
Image by Michelle Nash
Hormone Balancing Tip #: Support Hormone Detoxification
Our liver and gut are the two major organs responsible for breaking down and clearing hormones once they have been used in the body. It’s so important that these systems are working properly to prevent build-up of hormones which contributes to hormonal imbalances. Heres a brief overview of how to support these two systems of detoxification.
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What Causes Hormone Imbalance
Virtually everyone experiences imbalanced hormone levels at some point in their livesparticularly us women! These imbalances are often a result of natural changes that occur with age, such as puberty and menopause. When you were growing up, hormones triggered bone and muscle growth. They also set in motion the reproductive changes that led to menstruation and fertility in young women, and sexual maturity in young men. This surge of hormones is behind the acne, mood swings, and other teen issues that affect most adolescents.
Understand How Insulin Impacts Weight
Insulin is one of the most important hormones when it comes to weight loss and weight gain. Made by the pancreas, insulin is responsible for storing blood sugar, or utilizing it, depending upon your bodys needs of the moment. After you eat a large meal, a substantial amount of insulin releases itself into the bloodstream. It also enters the bloodstream as needed throughout the day, ensuring that blood sugar levels remain stable.
Another key function of this essential hormone is fat storage. Insulin decides how much fat to store, and how much to convert for energy expenditure. Chronically high levels of insulin can lead to a condition known as insulin resistance, which is linked to an uptick in blood sugar as well as continued elevated insulin levels.
Preventing this insulin imbalance is crucial, as it leads to weight gain, and eventually type 2 diabetes. When insulin levels remain high over an extended period of time, obesity and metabolic syndrome are often the unfortunate outcome.
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Biohack Your Way To Better Sleep
When life is busy, often the first thing we sacrifice is sleep. Sleep or rather inadequate sleep quickly throws our body off balance. This is why its one of the first things our doctors ask about when patients come in for their initial visit. In a small study testing the impact of prolonged sleep restriction, participants that slept only 4 hours versus 10 or 12 hours experienced an increase in ghrelin, a hormone responsible for appetite regulation, alongside a decrease in leptin, a hormone responsible for communicating satiation. For many of us, 10 or 12 hours might be hard to achieve. Thats why here at Parsley we recommend getting at least 8 hours of sleep per night. The benefits of adequate sleep will not only increase your glucose metabolism and leptin concentrations but increase your bodys secretion of growth hormones responsible for cell reproduction and regeneration, which all take place during periods of rest.
How To Balance Hormones
Hormones are the chemical messengers that affect your mental, physical, and emotional health. They are your bodys chemical messengers, traveling to tissues or organs in your bloodstream. Hormones work overtime and affect several different processes throughout the body, including growth and development, metabolism, sexual function, mood, and more. Typically, the body produces a precise amount of each hormone needed for various processes to stay healthy. Contact our obgyn in Lake Success for help with hormone balancing.
Eat Your Veggies Especially Broccoli
The amazing nutrients in plant foods deserve their own special mention for balancing hormones. Among the benefits of vegetables, theyre a good source of fiber to help balance estrogen levels. Fiber helps you have healthy bowel movements, which gives excess estrogen a healthy way to be eliminated from your body.
Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, and kale also contain a beneficial phytonutrient called diindolylmethane that helps break down and detox estrogen before it can recirculate and worsen issues like PMS, estrogen dominance, and certain estrogen-sensitive cancers .
My favorite types of fiber-rich plant foods are:
Hormones And Your Health
Hormones are chemical messengers that help your cells communicate and trigger various actions. Theyre the bedrock of your bodys endocrine system, which regulates growth, reproduction, metabolism, temperature, and even your mood.
Hormones and the endocrine system keep your body in a balanced state of homeostasis. Therefore, having a hormonal imbalance too little or too much of a certain hormone can have harmful side effects.
Oxidative stress, infertility, and endocrine disorders like thyroid disease are just a few conditions that can result from hormonal imbalances (
Whats more, Nigella sativa extract exhibits estrogenic activity, meaning it acts similarly to the hormone estrogen in your body .
In fact, some studies in rats are exploring whether nigella seed extracts could be an alternative to hormone replacement therapy during menopause, a time when the body typically produces less estrogen than it used to .
Concentrated Nigella sativa supplements are becoming increasingly popular and sometimes marketed as black seed or black cumin seed. Whole nigella seeds have an herby aroma and are easy to add to bread, salads, and other dishes .
Still, keep in mind that most studies on nigella seeds and hormones were conducted in animals and used concentrated extracts or isolated thymoquinone. Thus, while using whole seeds in cooking can be healthy and delicious, it may not confer the same benefits.
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Fertility Problems Caused By Hormone Imbalances
Another common time women ask for a hormone checkup is when trying to conceive. Typically, 84% of women get pregnant after a year of unprotected sex. When conception doesnt happen, one reason could be a hormonal imbalance. To learn more, read our extensive article about fertility challenges here.
Again, its important to track your menstrual cycle, including the dates you have unprotected sex, to give your doctor a picture of what your reproductive cycle is doing. Keep in mind that your partner should also be tested for structural or hormonal issues if you have been trying to conceive for some time.
If youre having your period too often , then your uterus cant sustain a fertilized egg. If your periods are too far apart , your ovaries may not be releasing eggs often enough into your fallopian tubes.
Top 5 Signs Of Hormonal Imbalance And How To Fix It
We have seen that a hormonal imbalance can cause symptoms such as unwanted facial hair, acne, excess weight, and more serious conditions including polycystic ovary syndrome .
Hormones are not all bad theyre an essential part of our well-being contributing to our energy levels, digestion, moods, and so much more. However, when our hormones are out of whack it can impact us in seemingly devastating ways like hormonal acne, debilitating fatigue, and brain fog.
There is hope! With just a few key changes in diet and lifestyle, our hormones can get back on track. Weve got the lowdown on the warning signs of imbalanced hormones and how to bring those hormones back to balance.
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Final Thoughts About Hormonal Imbalance Signs
Looking at all the physical and mental symptoms that come with a hormonal imbalance is depressing. Many of the symptoms listed above I have dealt with and I am still dealing with them.
I was looking for an answer on how many women suffer from hormonal imbalances.
I could not find an estimated number. This could be from one of two reasons
Either all of the women reporting these symptoms are just imagining these many symptoms. Or many women do not recognize the symptoms and doctors dont acknowledge it.
Im guessing we women are not crazy and were not just hormonal.
Yes, hormones fluctuate from month to month. But if you experience hormonal imbalance signs that negatively impact your life, then it is not normal hormone fluctuation.
Youre probably experiencing hormonal imbalance women symptoms.
If youve found yourself saying yes to the many hormone imbalance signs and hormone imbalance women symptoms listed above, but you need to focus on what helps to balance hormones.
You dont have to take drastic measures like immediately trying hormone replacement therapy to conquer a hormonal imbalance.
Simple life changes can be applied like better sleep and healthier food options to ease the symptoms of an imbalance.
The most important take away from this article is that you know yourself best!
If youre feeling unwell with the symptoms of hormonal imbalance, incorporate natural remedies into your life.
Lower Your Sugar Intake
Minimizing added sugar intake may be instrumental in optimizing hormone function and avoiding obesity, diabetes, and other diseases.
The simple sugar fructose is present in many types of sugar, comprising up to 43% of honey, 50% of refined table sugar, 55% of high fructose corn syrup, and 90% of agave .
In addition, sugar-sweetened beverages are the primary source of added sugars in the Western diet, and fructose is commonly used commercially in soft drinks, fruit juice, and sport and energy drinks .
Fructose intake has increased exponentially in the United States since around 1980, and studies consistently show that eating added sugar promotes insulin resistance regardless of total calorie intake or weight gain .
Long-term fructose intake has been linked to disruptions of the gut microbiome, which may lead to other hormonal imbalances .
Whats more, fructose may fail to stimulate the production of the fullness hormone leptin, leading to decreased calorie burning and increased weight gain .
Therefore, reducing your intake of sugary drinks and other sources of added sugar may improve hormone health.
Diets high in sugar have been shown to promote insulin resistance, disrupt your gut microbiome, and reduce leptin production. Thus, lowering your sugar intake may aid hormonal health.
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Period Problems And Period
A common complaint of women who visit Madison Womens Health is irregular periods or unexpected changes to their periods. A period is considered irregular when it occurs more often than before or less often than before, or if the amount and duration of bleeding has changed significantly for repeated months. Is your period suddenly much heavier than it has been? Or are you not having a period at all?
Keep track of your cycles, when you begin to bleed, and for how long. A popular app among our patients for tracking cycles is Period Tracker Period Calendar , although there are many options. Let your doctor know how many days there are between your periods and what your typical flow is like. Discuss what is different and why you are concerned. Let them know if youre under more stress than before, if youve changed your diet or exercise recently, or if you have a family history of irregular periods.
These changes could have a structural cause having to do with your cervix or uterus or a hormonal cause. Your doctor will likely want to perform a physical exam and may also check specific hormones on a specific day of your menstrual cycle.
Pms And Low Sex Drive
Low testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone are all associated with a decreased sex drive in both men and women. This is especially common after age 50 when estrogen and testosterone production declines. Since estrogen is one of the main hormones regulating a womans menstrual cycle a decrease in production can also lead to irregular periods that are too long, too short, unpredictable, heavy, or painful, infertility, hot flashes, mood swings, or painful intercourse.
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Youre Waking Up At Night
Not sleeping well at night should be a major heads up to re-examine your overall health as well as lifestyle choices. Consistent, and adequate sleep is literally one of the best tools for health, anti-aging, and balancing hormonesI formulated Sleep Savior with this in mind . So, not only is it a sign that hormones may be imbalanced, but it can also help you balance hormones.
If youre in your 30s or older, one hormone youll want to keep an eye on is cortisol. This hormone is produced by stress, but as long as it stays balancedyoure in the clear. Because it regulates energy levels, it should be highest in the morning and lowest at night.
If cortisol is high all day long or spikes at night, its a sign that your adrenals are taxed and your hormonal imbalance is likely caused by stress.
The Quickest Ways To Balance Your Hormones Fast
To regain balanced hormone levels, youll want to start with the two most important pillars: nutrition and lifestyle.
First, youll want to begin by tracking your cycle, and evaluating the feedback your body provides. Then, you can begin eating and making lifestyle changes in a way that better aligns with your hormones.
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The Bottom Line: Correct Hormonal Imbalance Holistically
You dont need to take drastic measures to re-balance your hormones.
A daily hormone balancing supplement, diet changes, and other lifestyle changes will do the trick.
If you experience unexplainable symptoms like the ones above, try one of these hormone balancing tricks. They are simple, relieve your hormone-related symptoms, and lead to an overall healthier lifestyle.
Introduce Meditation To Your Lifestyle
Meditation? Boring already nope heres the scoop:
Your brain is a regulator chemical in your body that dramatically impact how you feel overall. Cortisol, the stress hormone thats very easy to skyrocket in our non-stop-repeat culture, can be seriously lowered with some meditation practice. The impact that meditation has in your body and mind is remarkable. Even 5 minutes a day will do! Also, there are apps that you can download to your phone where you can meditate or even have some quiet time. I like The Calm app meditation to relax, focus and sleep better .
Early morning meditation for focus and a night meditation for much better sleep. An important recommendation power down all gadgets 45 to 60 minutes before bed then settling into a meditation length of your choice will help you counteract insomnia fall under a deep, serene sleep.
Your turn What are your go to foods or lifestyle changes to address hormonal imbalances? Id love to hear your tools to combat hormonal imbalances.
Learned something new? Share this with friends or family who may be displaying any of the symptoms. We can always help each other and answer any questions you may have.
To your best health,
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What’s The Best Way To Start A New Exercise Routine
If you’re experiencing hormonal imbalance, it may be extra hard to get motivated. Hormone issues can zap your energy and make working out feel like a chore and this can lead to a frustrating cycle of weight gain and energy loss. Conditions that involve hormonal imbalance are also often linked to inflammation, which can make working out even harder. In this case, its important to find ways to make exercise fit into your life as smoothly and with as little difficultly as possible.
Physical Activity and Insulin Sensitivity:
Effects of 8-week Pilates exercise program on menopausal symptoms and lumbar strength and flexibility in postmenopausal women:
Eat Enough Protein At Every Meal
Consuming adequate amounts of protein is extremely important.
Not only does protein provide essential amino acids that your body cant make on its own, but your body also needs it to produce protein-derived hormones also known as peptide hormones .
Your endocrine glands make these hormones from amino acids. Peptide hormones play a crucial role in regulating many physiological processes, such as growth, energy metabolism, appetite, stress, and reproduction .
For example, protein intake influences hormones that control appetite and food intake, communicating information about energy status to your brain .
Research has shown that eating protein decreases the hunger hormone ghrelin and stimulates the production of hormones that help you feel full, including peptide YY and glucagon-like peptide-1 .
One 3-month study in 156 teenagers with obesity associated a high protein breakfast with increased PYY and GLP-1 levels, which resulted in weight loss due to increased feelings of fullness .
Experts recommend eating a minimum of 2030 grams of protein per meal. You can do this by including high protein foods such as eggs, chicken breast, lentils, or fish at each meal .
Eating sufficient protein triggers the production of peptide hormones, some of which suppress appetite and help you feel full. Aim for a minimum of 2030 grams of protein per meal.
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