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Health

5 Natural Ways To Improve Hormonal Imbalances & Mental Health 

Updated on 6 May 2020 • 3 minute read
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Our entire personality, our energy level, and how we cope is hormonal.

– Sandra Tsing Loh

Balanced hormone levels are crucial for mental, emotional, and physical well-being and high quality of life.

Hormone imbalance can lead to a variety of symptoms like:

  • mood swings / moodiness / mood disorders
  • irregular menstrual cycle
  • panic attacks
  • weight gain/ weight loss
  • difficulty concentrating / brain fog
  • mental illness / mental disorders
  • memory loss

Our psychology is our biology. 

That means that the chemicals and molecules our body produces directly impacts how we think, how we feel, how we interact with others, how creative we are, and how we perceive the world around us.

It’s crucial to address any hormonal imbalances and discover the root cause of the situation before mild symptoms become more serious issues.

 

What are hormones?

Hormones are a type of bodily ‘chemical messengers’; they are signal senders. 

They can be considered the biochemical correlates of our emotions and moods:

Hormones are produced by the glands of the endocrine system.

For example the hypothalamus, the pituitary gland which produces endorphins, the adrenal glands which secrete noradrenaline, and the thyroid gland.

There are different hormones for different functions for example:

 

Sex hormones:

The two main ones are testosterone (produced by the testes) and estrogen (produced by the ovaries).

If you have low levels of either hormone you may experience low libido and also surprisingly, mood changes.

 

Stress hormones:

Your nervous system and hormonal systems work together through a mechanism called the HPA axis to produce stress hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline.

These hormones are meant to mobilize energy in your body to prepare you to fight or flee from dangerous or stressful situations.

The problem with most of us today is that we activate this stress response too much and don’t give our bodies time to recover.

Having too high a level of these hormones can lead to health problems such as heart disease, chronic inflammation, and other degenerative diseases.

 

Female Hormones:

 

The two main female hormones (aka reproductive hormones) are estrogen and progesterone.

The adrenal glands and ovaries also produce a small amount of testosterone.

Hormonal changes occur throughout the big stages of a women’s life cycle.

 

Estrogen is a key element of puberty, menstrual cycles, pregnancy, and menopause.

It also impacts other body parts like for example your brain, cardiovascular system, bones, and muscles.

Estrogen levels fluctuate more when a woman enters perimenopause – the pre-menopause period.

Perimenopausal women experience emotional and physical symptoms like anxiety, insomnia, hot flashes, night sweats.

 

Disorders & Syndromes Commonly Caused By Imbalanced Hormones:

 

Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS):

Symptoms that occur after a woman’s ovulation up until her period.

They include increased hunger, food cravings, moodiness, fatigue, tender breasts, bloating, and irritability.

 

Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD): 

Symptoms are much more severe than PMS and include extreme fatigue, brain fog, severe depression, anger, rage, or anxiety.

 

Postpartum Depression: 

It’s normal for women to experience mood fluctuations after giving birth as the body goes through a great deal before, during, and after labor.

In some women, symptoms may worsen and be prolonged.

Symptoms include difficulty bonding with the baby, insomnia, loss of appetite, and intense anger or reactivity.

 

Hyperthyroidism & Hypothyroidism:  

The thyroid is a gland that sits at the front of the neck.

Thyroid hormones help keep the brain and body healthy.

Hyperthyroidism refers to an excess of hormone production that speeds up bodily processes.

This can make you feel jittery and anxious.

Hypothyroidism refers to a deficiency in hormone production which slows body processes down.

This can make you feel tired, foggy, and lethargic.

(source: AmenClinics.com)

 

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome:

This occurs when the ovaries become enlarged and grow tiny cysts on the external areas.

Symptoms include irregular or missed periods, facial hair growth, acne, and weight gain.

 

5 ways to naturally balance hormones and feel chill AF:

(source: giphy.com)

The following are simple, doable lifestyle changes that can help you re-balance your hormones, nervous system, and body intelligence.

Remember that most of us tend to have higher than normal stress hormone levels.

This creates a chain reaction that impacts other bodily systems and hormones.

That’s why it’s imperative you learn to self-soothe, self-nurture, self-regulate.

 

1. Manage your stress and emotions

2. Breathe deeply and intentionally.

3. Meditate regularly.

4. Practice yoga or simply just move your body.

5. Ensure consistent and proper sleep.

 

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