1. Our hormones depend on beneficial fats and cholesterol.
– THINK avocados, coconut oil, butter, nuts, seeds, animal fats, olive oil, grass fed meats, eggs, and full fat dairy (for those who tolerate it). Good quality seafood is also a fabulous source of naturally occurring Omega-3s.
AVOID vegetable oil, canola oil, soybean oil, margarine or other chemically altered fats.
Cholesterol has had a bad wrap over the years, but cholesterol is vital for hormone production. If your cholesterol is high, speak to your nutritionist on what this means for you. The HDL/LDL ratios are important.
2. Stay hydrated.
The habit of drinking enough clean, filtered water (away from meal times) will help balance hormones.
When you’re dehydrated, cortisol increases and testosterone lowers.
3. Part with Plastics.
Toxins containing chemicals that mimic hormones are problematic. Xenoestrogens or endocrine disruptors are a category of chemicals that alter the normal function of hormones. They have the ability to mimic our natural hormones.
Oestrogen is a hormone that is important for bone growth, blood clotting and reproduction in men and women. The body regulates the amount needed through intricate biochemical pathways. When xenoestrogens enter the body they increase the total amount of estrogen resulting in a phenomenon called, estrogen dominance.
Xenoestrogens are not biodegradable so, they are stored in our fat cells. Build up of xenoestrogens have been indicated in many conditions including: breast, prostate and testicular cancer, obesity, infertility, endometriosis, early onset puberty, miscarriages and diabetes.
Cook in glass or non-coated metal pans (no non-stick or Teflon) and avoid heating or storing foods in plastic.
Beauty products are another source of chemical exposure for many people.
4. Limit the Caffeine.
Caffeine increases cortisol, and whilst cortisol is vital to survival, having chronically high cortisol results in blood sugar fluctuations, low DHEA, stubborn belly fat, thyroid issues, altered metabolism of sex hormones – we commonly see progesterone steal. If you are stressed, anxious, not sleeping, wired & tired, I would recommend removing caffeine for a month and then tell me how wonderful you feel. If that’s overwhelming limit to 1 caffeinated drink per day & 2 coffee free days/week.
The adrenal glands are responsible for about 30% of elevated androgens seen in polycystic ovaries & adrenal fatigue is one of the main hormone imbalances seen in women. Slow down on the coffee girls.
5. Prioritise Sleep & support your nervous system.
I can’t emphasise this one enough! Without adequate sleep, hormones will not be in balance. Create a daily routine to help support your natural circadian rhythms. Wake up and go to bed at the same time & get off your phone before bed. That light that comes from screens blocks melatonin. Tune in to the beautiful meditations & mindfulness exercise here in The Motherhood village.
6. Supplement with quality products.
Unfortunately, we live in a world where the food supply is often depleted of nutrients due to over-farming.
Consult with your practitioner for supplement recommendations.
7. Exercise The Right Way.
For those with a hormone imbalance, intense extended exercise can actually make the problem worse in the short term.
I see a lot of women come to see me in clinic that have the best intentions, slogging it out at the gym or doing high intensity exercise everyday, this can raise male sex hormones that cause acne & raise cortisol – which is a vicious circle in stealing our beautiful progesterone – which then contributes to oestrogen dominance. Do you see how one imbalance can throw a cascade of other hormones out?
Strength training balanced with parasympathetic activities like walking, yogo, Tai Chi, gardening, deep breathing is ideal for supporting fitness & balancing hormones. The Motherhood Village subscription provides you with a balance of these workouts.
8. Support Digestive Health.
The digestive system has much more of an impact on hormones than many of us know. An imbalance in the gut can translate to an imbalance in neurotransmitter and hormones. Serotonin, a necessary neurotransmitter for sleep/stress balance is more concentrated in the gut than even in the brain!
9. Love your liver.
It is essential for a hormone production, detoxification, bile production to emulsify fats, protein synthesis, correcting oestrogen dominance and huuuuundreds of other functions.
Start by reducing or eliminating the liver loaders. Coffee, alcohol, processed/fast food & refined sugar.
Implementing a whole foods diet seen in the “Day on a Plate” & “Family Recipes” will provide you with the basic building blocks to creat optimal hormones & neurotransmitters. Eating whole, unprocessed foods is the ultimate tool to start living a healthier life. I know when you are rushed off your feet, kids are screaming, the house is a mess & you have been needing to pee for the past hour but you keep going, it is easy to forget to eat, eat scraps of the kids plates or make poor choices.
I don’t feel you need more motivation to look after yourself, I feel you need to get in touch with how truly fabulous you are and give yourself the unconditional love you deserve. xx