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Ask most people what they visualize when they hear the phrase “hormonal imbalance” and they’ll describe a middle-aged, PMS-ing, menopausal woman. But what many don’t realize is that hormonal imbalance affects both men and women equally, and is partly to blame for major health epidemics such as obesity, low sex drive, and depression.
Thankfully, there are ways you can reverse problems with hormonal imbalance naturally without having to rely on prescription medications and costly invasive treatments.
Check out these 5 healthy ways to regulate and re-balance your hormones.
1. Eat healthy whole foods
Your diet could be a major contributing factor to hormonal imbalance. Processed foods are loaded with additives, preservatives, and sugar that cause insulin resistance, weight gain, and wild hormone fluctuation. Start eating healthy, whole foods such as fruits and vegetables to get your hormones back on track.
2. Get more sleep
Lack of sleep disrupts and causes a shift in hormones — including hunger hormones leptin and ghrelin, which regulate your appetite. Without enough sleep, your body will experience problems with healing itself and regulating hormones. Start going to bed earlier each night, and improve your sleeping environment as needed to get more sleep.
3. Exercise regularly
Exercise naturally helps relieve stress, improves your sleep habits, and regulates insulin — all of which are factors that can lead to hormonal imbalance if not properly managed. Renowned naturopathic doctor Natasha Turner, MD suggests limiting your workout session to less than 45 minutes to avoid elevating your body’s cortisol (stress) levels. Start exercising on most days of the week to naturally regulate your hormones.
4. Limit caffeine intake
While you may rely on a daily cup of coffee (or two or three) to make it through the morning, evidence shows that consuming too much caffeine increases the risk for hormonal imbalance and hormone-related diseases such as hyperthyroidism, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), and breast cancer.
Limit your intake of coffee and soda, and stick to drinking sources of caffeine that are healthier and less intense on your body, such as green and black teas (my favorite green tea is this roasted Hojicha green tea from Chota Tingrai Tea Estate). When you do drink coffee, make sure you’re drinking coffee that lacks preservatives, additives, and “natural flavors” (which are often derived from natural ingredients and made in a lab, and aren’t always natural).
5. Get better at managing stress and anxiety
Feelings of stress, depression, and anxiety often indicate your body is in serious need of some type of nourishment. Chronic stress causes your body to release stress hormones cortisol, adrenaline, and norepinephrine, which can override and throw off other important hormones such as estrogen, testosterone, and hunger hormones leptin and ghrelin.
Instead of resorting to antidepressant medication, find healthy, natural ways to relieve stress that won’t offer negative side effects. Start exercising or doing yoga, practice deep breathing, or engage in activities that help you relax, such as spending time with friends and family, taking a long, warm bath, or watching your favorite movie.
Problems with hormonal imbalance can be reversed naturally as long as you stay consistent and make the commitment to living a healthier lifestyle. If you’re a man or woman who continues to experience problems with hormonal imbalance even after making healthy lifestyle changes, consult with your healthcare provider about natural and less invasive treatments that can help correct problems with hormone imbalance.
Content on this website is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, please call 911. Always consult your healthcare provider before making any changes to your medical treatment.