Are Your Hormones Unbalanced? Fix That – Naturally!
Are Your Hormones Unbalanced? (Here’s How to Fix That, Naturally)
Is your body going through changes? Is it changing so much you don’t even feel like the same person anymore? Has it gotten to the point where it feels like your body has a mind of its own?
If so, you’re not alone. And it’s perfectly natural. There’s a distinct possibility that—like so many women before you—you’ve developed a hormonal imbalance.
Fluctuations in your hormone levels are to be expected from time to time. It’s a natural occurrence during pregnancy and menopause, for example. But sometimes the changes come on abruptly. Or unexpectedly. And they can have undesirable side effects.
In this article, we’ll look at some of the common problems associated with hormonal imbalances in women. We’ll also examine some ways to help get your hormones back in balance, naturally. And without any of the risk factors associated with synthetic hormone replacement therapies.
Common hormonal imbalances in women
Hormones are microscopic signaling molecules produced by glands throughout your body. The glands release the hormones they produce into your bloodstream. And your blood carries the hormones around your body to the organs where they’re needed. Once there, hormones signal the organs to perform specific functions regulating your physiology and behavior.
Hormonal imbalances happen when one of your glands produces either too much or not enough of a particular hormone.
The most well-known hormonal imbalance issues in women are premenstrual syndrome (PMS), polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), and menopause. But given the wide range of glands in your body, the number of things that could potentially go wrong is staggering.
The major glands of the female body are:
- the pineal gland which releases melatonin, the hormone that regulates your sleep cycles
- the pituitary gland which manages a lot of things, including growth; blood pressure; functions of the sex organs, thyroid gland, and your metabolism; aspects of pregnancy, childbirth, and nursing; as well as temperature regulation and pain relief
- the thyroid which influences your metabolic rate and the synthesis of proteins
- the thymus which produces T cells vital for a healthy adaptive immune system
- the adrenal gland which produces adrenalin (hence the name) as well as steroids like dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) and cortisol
- the pancreas, which produces hormones like insulin, glucagon, and somatostatin
- the ovaries, which in addition to producing ova also release hormones related to your menstrual cycle and fertility
As you can see, hormones control a lot of what’s going on in your body. And if they’re out of sync, it’s easy for you to feel out of sync yourself. Usually an excess of one hormone will cause a deficit of another and vice versa. And sometimes it seems like it’s cascading with no end in sight.
How to tell if you have a hormonal imbalance
Symptoms of hormonal imbalance could include:
Fortunately, there’s a lot we can do to remedy hormonal imbalance naturally. Are you concerned something’s not right with your hormones? Read on to find out about the testing and evaluation of hormonal imbalances and some effective natural treatments that can help you restore that balance.
Initial testing and evaluation for hormonal imbalances
We take women’s health seriously at NDcare. As such, the first stage of treatment for any suspected hormonal imbalance is thorough testing and evaluation to ensure we make a proper diagnosis.
Based on your symptoms, this could include blood or saliva tests. Perhaps both. What we’re particularly concerned about in these tests are your progesterone, estrogen, thyroid hormone, cortisol, DHEA, testosterone, and dihydrotestosterone (DHT) levels.
If there are concerns regarding your thyroid, a urine iodine test will also be required. The mineral iodine is a major building block for the thyroid hormone, and the urine test is the best way to gauge your iodine levels.
Natural treatments and remedies for hormonal imbalances
Once we have a proper diagnosis of exactly how your hormones are imbalanced, we can take steps to remedy the situation. But, as you might have guessed by the long list of symptoms, hormonal imbalance can be different for everyone. Treatment plans must be customized on a case-per-case basis.
Depending on your specific needs, your treatment plan might incorporate:
1. Vitex and saw palmetto
Vitex, or chasteberry, is a common herb used for balancing progesterone and estrogen. It helps with menstrual irregularities—like an irregular cycle, heavy cycle, spotting, etc.—and acne.
If your testosterone is elevated, we can also use saw palmetto to reduce your DHT levels. This herbal product helps relieve chronic acne as well as PCOS.
Indole-3-carbinol (I-3-C), or DIM, is a nutrient found naturally in cabbage. When treating hormonal imbalance naturopathically, it can be used to improve your estrogen metabolism. This is especially helpful when treating PMS as well as ovarian cysts.
3. For the thyroid
Iodine often improves thyroid function. Even small amounts have been shown to make a big difference. Selenium, a mineral that promotes thyroid hormone production, can also be effective.
Other supplements that can help with thyroid function include L-tyrosine, which helps cells synthesize proteins, as well as fish oil, and B Complex.
4. For low cortisol
Low cortisol can diminish thyroid hormone production, leaving you tired and fatigued. We work to improve your cortisol levels with nutrients like B5 and B6, Rhodiola, adrenal glandulars, and various ginsengs to get your energy levels back where they should be.
5. Other PMS remedies
Some of our PMS treatments focus on boosting your serotonin levels. This helps improve your mood and reduce irritability. To do this, we use 5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) along with vitamin B6 in the form of pyridoxal-5-phosphate (P-5-P).
6. Inositol for PCOS
We use inositol to balance blood sugar and androgen hormones like testosterone in patients with PCOS. In these cases, we also recommend dietary changes to help reduce weight and improve insulin sensitivity.
7. For menopause
If you’re experiencing menopause, your symptoms are primarily due to low estrogen and diminished progesterone. Some dietary changes can help sort that out. For instance, you should cut out coffee and alcohol altogether. And spicy food, too. They’ve all been shown to amplify some symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes.
Herbal remedies like black cohosh, St. John’s wort, maca, and rhapontic rhubarb can also significantly improve menopause symptoms like hot flashes and sleep issues.
Take steps to rebalance your hormones today, naturally
When you have a hormonal imbalance, it can feel as if your body is out of control. Everything’s changing, and you don’t know if you’ll ever feel like yourself again.
The important thing to remember is that we know more now about the glands of the endocrine system than we ever have before. We know where hormones come from and what organs they regulate. And most importantly, we know how to adjust their levels naturally when they get out of balance.
With an evidenced-based approach to naturopathic medicine, you can reduce the severity of your hormonal imbalance. This includes cases of menopause, PMS, and PCOS, among other conditions.
Make suffering in silence a thing of the past. Take control of your hormonal imbalance today.
Book now to have your hormonal imbalance properly evaluated
The first step toward overcoming any hormonal imbalance is assessing the problem and coming up with an effective plan of attack. If it seems like your body has truly developed a mind of its own, this is the best way to go about retaking control.
If you have any questions or concerns about any symptoms that might be related to a hormonal imbalance, book an appointment with Dr. Tara Andresen today.