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  • Kelly Carter

Hectic Hormones!


Hormone fluctuations occur naturally, such as in puberty, menopause and perimenopause. During these times we can see increased weight gain or flocculation. Your hormones are responsible for your personal fat distribution patterns. Hormone imbalance may also be caused by toxins or an unbalanced lifestyle – which attributes to the foods we consume and the products we use day to day. In some cases it takes more than “cleaning up” your diet to balance your hormones — and that means detox.

You know you need a hormone detox if you’re experiencing any or many of the following:

  • Painful, heavy, or irregular periods

  • Hot flashes and night sweats

  • Mood swings, irritability, depression, and/or anxiety

  • Bloating, weight gain, or breast tenderness

  • Sluggishness, fatigue, or exhaustion

  • Acne breakouts, eczema, or psoriasis

  • Hair loss or excess body hair

What foods trigger hormone imbalance?

Anything that is unnatural, and also foods consumed in great amounts over a long period of time. Specifically I am talking about highly processed, fried, sugar filled foods that have very little nutritional value and high caloric intake.

Soy is a more natural food that when consumed in great amounts can cause imbalances with estrogen and testosterone!

Moderation and clean eating is the best way to improve your hormone levels.

The most common hormone imbalances are linked to the following:

  • Estrogen dominance: changes in sleep patterns, changes in weight and appetite, higher perceived stress, slowed metabolism

  • Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS): infertility, weight gain, higher risk for diabetes, acne, abnormal hair growth

  • Low estrogen: low sex drive, reproductive problems, menstrual irregularity, changes in mood

  • Hypothyroidism: slowed metabolism, weight gain, fatigue, anxiety, irritability, digestive issues, irregular periods

  • Low testosterone: erectile dysfunction, muscle loss, weight gain, fatigue, mood-related problems

  • Hyperthyroidism & Grave’s disease: anxiety, thinning hair, weight loss, IBS, trouble sleeping, irregular heartbeats

  • Diabetes: weight gain, nerve damage (neuropathy), higher risk for vision loss, fatigue, trouble breathing, dry mouth, skin problems

  • Adrenal fatigue: fatigue, muscle aches and pains, anxiety and depression, trouble sleeping, brain fog, reproductive problems

  • Referenced by Dr. Axe

Women who have excessive fat on the back of their arms are likely to have elevated insulin levels or low DHEA levels.

Men who have the characteristics of man-boobs are likely to have high levels of estrogen (often combined with high insulin and low testosterone)

High Insulin

Causes

  • Eating too much over-processed, nutrient deficient carbohydrates – fast food, frozen dinners, pop, fruit drinks, sugary foods, processed diet foods…you know. Crap.

  • Eating too little protein – real protein, not processed McNugget protein

  • Eating too little fat – real fat, not trans-fat

  • Not enough fiber in your diet – no need for supplements, you should get enough protein from fruit & veg

  • Unmanaged high levels of chronic stress

  • Not enough exercise

  • Poor liver function

  • Environmental toxins

  • Poor sleep patterns

  • Aging

Solutions

  • Diet – Sugar/Insulin control diet – Paleo/Atkins/Medierranean

  • Increase consumption of fiber

  • Increase consumption of fish oils

  • Weight loss

  • Exercise

  • Sleep

  • Get your hormone levels checked

Low Testosterone

Causes

  • Aging

  • Damage to the testicles

  • Radiation

  • Testicular or Pituitary tumors

  • Serious viral infections

  • Vasectomy

There are a variety of lifestyle causes:

  • Obesity– low test causes obesity and obesity causes lowered test

  • Exposure to pesticides

  • Exposure to hormones used in factory farm meat and poultry production. These hormones act like Estrogen in your body, and…

  • Phthalates (found in soap, cosmetics and plastics) are another estrogen like compound that suppresses testosterone.

  • Alcohol - especially beer

  • Sleep apnea

  • Narcotics

Solutions

Female

  • Diet – increase your healthy fats

  • High Intensity exercise

  • Get your hormone levels checked

Male

  • Diet – increase your healthy fats

  • High Intensity exercise

  • Get your hormone levels checked

High Estrogen or Estrogen Dominance

Causes

  • Pregnancy & menstrual cycle fluctuations

  • Unmanaged high levels of chronic stress

  • Obesity – obesity causes high estrogen which causes obesity…

  • Poor diet – processed foods, a high fat diet, a high sugar diet, excessive caffeine, low levels of magnesium and B6

  • Birth control pill

  • Exposure to hormones used in factory farm meat and poultry production. These hormones act like Estrogen in your body, and…

  • Phthalates and other xenoestrogens (found in soap, cosmetics and plastics)

  • Low testosterone

  • Lack of exercise

  • Lack of sleep

Solutions

  • Improve your diet – Paleo/Atkins/Mediterranean/increase your fiber

  • Reduce your exposure to hormones and xenoestrogens

  • Get more sleep

  • Exercise more

  • Get your hormone levels checked

Low Estrogen

Causes

  • Aging – Menopause

  • Premature failure of the ovaries

  • Surgical menopause

  • Unmanaged high levels of stress

  • Smoking

  • Low-fat diets

  • Extremely low body-fat

Solutions

  • Get your hormone levels checked

High Cortisol

We all have stress in our lives. The problems begin when we can’t handle the stresses that are thrown our way. That is when stress starts negatively impacting our health. Chronic elevated levels of corisol is just one symptom of that impact.

Causes

  • Unmanaged high levels of chronic stress

Solutions

  • Stress management – meditation, breathing techniques, psychiatry, psychotherapy, mindfulness practice, biofeedback + a million more techniques available on late-night infomercials and the inter-web.

  • Insulin control diet – Paleo/Atkins/Mediterranean

  • Supplements – Multi-Vitamin/Mineral, magnesium, B5, B6, Phosphatidylserine, adaptogens such as ginseng – talk to your naturopath.

Low DHEA

Causes

  • Aging

  • Unmanaged high levels of chronic stress

Solutions

  • DHEA supplements – talk to your naturopath

  • Stress management – meditation, breathing techniques, psychiatry, psychotherapy, mindfulness practice, biofeedback + a million more techniques available on late-night infomercials and the inter-web.

  • Insulin control diet – Paleo/Atkins/Mediterranean

  • Supplements – Multi-Vitamin/Mineral, magnesium, B5, B6, Phosphatidylserine, adaptogens such as ginseng – talk to your naturopath.

Referenced https://healthhabits.ca/2009/08/11/hormones-problem-areas-and-your-body-fat-map/


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