When your hormones are off, it can show up in many different ways. PMS, hot flashes, night sweats, brain fog, and/or weight gain are just a few of the ways that a hormonal imbalance can affect you.
The body is very smart at working toward balance, or homeostasis. And the body is also smart at alerting you of imbalance.
So how to balance hormones and restore homeostasis in your body?
Well, the body is a connected system, so there isn’t just one thing you can do. But there are many things that can help to restore balance. Staying open and exploring more than one method for balance in your body is very important.
Ladies, This Is How a Hormonal Imbalance Impacts Your Health
For the women who have been feeling “off” lately and know it has something to do with their hormones, this one’s for you!
Hormonal imbalance can show up in many different ways. Your hormones are likely imbalanced if you’ve experienced symptoms like:
- Hot flashes
- Night sweats
- Brain fog
- Chronic fatigue
- Weight gain
- Hair loss
- Decreased libido
According to Britannica, hormones are “organic substances secreted by plants and animals that function in the regulation of physiological activities and maintain homeostasis.”
If that definition went over your head, don’t worry! Here’s the scoop on what that means: your hormones regulate and maintain balance within your body.
While you may think hormones only balance you sexually, that is not the case. The human body secretes and circulates 50 different hormones.
Some hormones regulate your stress levels (like cortisol and adrenaline), release feel-good chemicals within your body (like serotonin), and regulate your weight and energy levels.
If your hormones are imbalanced, it seems obvious you would feel off and experience any or all of the above symptoms.
Here Are 4 Natural Ways to Balance Hormones and Bring Back Homeostasis:
When it comes to how to balance your hormones, there are different methods that work for different people. Try any or all of these methods to find out what works best for you.
1. Take a Diet Inventory
Believe it or not, your diet could be contributing to hormonal imbalance.
Research shows that the food you consume affects the production and secretion of hormones. The stomach, referred to as the “second brain,” is a good place to take an inventory to help balance hormones in your body.
The energy and nutrients your body obtains from food represents the raw materials to produce hormones and fuel your body. This is why taking an inventory of what you are consuming is so important.
Your diet could be contributing to hormonal imbalance.
While you are taking a diet inventory, notice how high your consumption of alcohol, dairy, caffeine, sugar, and processed food is. These foods are widely known to disrupt proper hormone function, so lessening and even eliminating these from your diet could help.
Scientific research hasn’t been able to detail exactly what you should eat, but focusing on the amount of fat, fiber, and protein may be a good place to start.
Focusing on these three food groups in your diet helps stabilize your blood sugar, and can help bring balance back into your body and your hormones.
2. Check Your Stressors
While taking inventory of your diet plays a crucial role in how to balance hormones, so does checking in with your stressors.
Common stressors that can turn into chronic stressors if not properly dealt with are:
- The stress that you are running out of time
- The impending stress that the worst will happen in the future
- The stress of feeling helpless in a situation
- The constant stress turned fear of the unknown
Research shows that being in a constant state of stress has pervasive long-term effects on the brain and body.
These effects, in the most extreme cases, can lead to disease, but can also increase aggression, impair proper brain function, and induce depression.
Checking in with your stressors is helpful to maintain a positive outlook on life and to balance hormones. Not all stress is negative, certain stress responses can keep you from danger.
Stress is ongoing, therefore reducing stress must be ongoing.
Yet, chronic stress only knocks you out of homeostasis thus creating a hormonal imbalance. Research shows having a positive outlook on life and good self esteem has long-lasting positive health consequences.
Deepak Chopra says, “Stress is ongoing, therefore reducing stress must be ongoing.” Checking in with your stressors and your ongoing plan to reduce this can take many forms.
From making a meditation calendar, practicing calming yoga, learning self-soothing techniques to use in times of stress, and even working on your mindset can help to balance hormones.
3. Move Your Body
One of the first things women notice when their hormones are off is weight change. Extreme loss or gain usually signifies an imbalance in the body and is manageable.
If you’ve already checked in with diet and have started managing your stress, movement is the next step.
Research shows how movement and exercise positively affects the brain and health.
Asking yourself often, “Am I moving my body?” is a great check in. This question allows you to reflect on your amount of sedentary time and how you can change it.
Don’t think you have to start sweating for hours to achieve benefits to balance hormones. It’s proven that even low levels of physical activity can positively influence your health.
4. Visit a Healthcare Professional
If your hormones are so bad that you feel out of control, haven’t had a period in months, or are battling crippling depression, you should probably visit a healthcare professional.
Visiting a healthcare professional is an empowering choice for your own health. Then, you can allow a healthcare professional to aid you with whatever problem may be happening in your body.
If going to see a traditional Western doctor is not something you feel comfortable with, there are plenty of complementary and alternative healthcare professionals you could see.
Some of the most researched integrative practices are:
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
- Biofeedback and Relaxation Training
- Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction
Trying more than one method could help you piece together why you feel off and how to fix it. Keep up a daily wellness practice to help you track your progress.
The Takeaway on Hormonal Imbalance and How to Balance Hormones
When you have stress in your life, your body internalizes it. Your system may be out of balance and showing up as hormonal imbalance. But there are things you can do to help.
Taking a diet inventory, checking your stressors, moving your body, and visiting a healthcare professional are some of the ways.
You don’t have to do all at once, but incorporate as many as you can to bring you back on track to balance hormones in your body.
Be patient with yourself and allow your body to heal. You deserve it!
All included information is not intended to treat or diagnose. The views expressed are those of the author and should be attributed solely to the author. For medical questions, please consult your healthcare provider.