9 Ways to Balance Your Hormones Naturally Part 2

This is a 3 part series, this is part 2 of 9 ways to balance your hormones naturally. To refresh yourself or read the previous bog please check the website for my latest posting.

  1. Sleep

Sleep is one of the most important activities for your body alongside breathing, hydration and food. Inadequate sleep leads to an increase in cortisol and sugar cravings.

A study by Trenell, M et al, 2007, found the less sleep you have the more insulin resistant you get, this promotes hunger as a stress response.

Action steps you can follow:

  • Try a chamomile tea before bed, and make sure you have good sleep hygiene.
  • This includes the removal of all external lights, make sure the room is darkened and set at a temperature your body feels comfortable.
  • Avoid screen time 30 minutes before bed.
  1. Diet

Did you know your gut produces many hormones? When your gut isn’t functioning well, it can cause hormone imbalances

Increasing fibre in your diet helps the gut to sweep away toxins and other garbage from the GI. This allows the gut to regulate hormones for appetite and energy.

A study by Huber-Buchholz, H, H., et al (1999), found overweight women who lost 11% of central body fat showed an improvement in insulin sensitivity leading to normal ovulation.

Its important to treat your body like a high performance car, by providing it with the correct fuel.

Action steps you can follow:

Foods high in fibre include:

  • Whole grains
  • Bananas
  • Oranges
  • Green leafy vegetables
  • Beans and legumes
  • Artichokes, bitter gourd, cabbage, spinach, lettuce, kale, zucchini squash, celery and parsley, these are not only a good source of fibre and vitamins A, C, iron and potassium but they also lower blood glucose levels and aid in weight loss (high fibre foods keeps you fuller for longer)
  • Avoid refined sugar, as this will raise insulin levels and put a strain on the liver causing an imbalance of hormones.
  1. Exercise

 Such an essential part of everyone’s daily habits, exercise not only keeps the body mobile and blood flowing, but it aids in stress relief and naturally supports hormone heath by helping to balance blood sugar levels.

Depending on your level of stress depends on the type of exercise that is better suited to you.   High intensity exercise can increase cortisol when already highly stressed. In this case a gentle exercise such as a brisk walk or a kind yoga practice would be much more beneficial.

Action steps you can follow:

  • Incorporate at least 30 minutes exercise into your daily routine, as exercise improves insulin sensitivity in skeletal muscle and fat tissue. Exercise also reduces body weight, lowers blood pressure, lowering triglyceride levels and increasing high density lipoproteins (HDL) levels

Please keep checking the website for part 3 of 9 ways to balance your hormones naturally.

References:

Cobellis, L., Colacurci, N., Trabucco, E., Carpentiero, C (2009). Measuement of bisphenol A and bisphenol B levels in human blood sera from healthy and endometriotic women ‘Biochemical Chromatography,’ 23, 11, 1186-1190.

Goldin, B. R, Adlercrutz, H., et al. (1982). ‘Oestrogen-excretion patterns and plasma-levels in vegetarian and omnivorous woman.’ New England Journal of Medicine 307, 1542-1547

Huber-Buchholz, M, M., Carey, D, G, P., Norman, R, J., (1999). Restoration of Reproductive Potential by Lifestyle Modification in Obese Polycystic Ovary Syndrome: Role of Insulin Sensitivity and Luteinizing HormoneThe Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism’ 84, 4, 1470–1474.

Kyrou, I and Tsigos, C (2009). Stress hormones: physiological stress and regulation of metabolism “Current Opinion in Pharmacology” 9,6,787-793.

Trenell, M., Marshall, N., Rogers, N (2007). Sleep and Metabolic Control: Waking to a Problem? “Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology and Physiology”. 34, 1-2, 1-9.

Sanders, K., A and Bruce, N., W (1997) ‘A prospective study of psychosocial stress and fertility in women.’ Human Reproduction 12, 10, 2324-2329.

 

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