According to a new study, at least 47% of American women between the ages of 30 and 60 have experienced hormonal imbalance in their lives. What’s even more staggering is that 72% of the women were unaware of their issues and only started treatment when the condition had become chronic! Needless to say, hormonal imbalance in women is extremely common, and yet there isn’t much awareness of the same. In this article, we’ll discuss our top ways to balance your hormones so you can live a healthy life.
Why is it important to learn about our hormones?
Hormones are extremely important to our physical well-being. The endocrine system not only regulates mood and overall daily functioning, but it also has deeper implications on fertility, thyroid dysfunction, reduced metabolism, and bone density. It also impacts lesser-known factors like mental clarity, sleep, and memory. The most common ways it manifests are hot flashes, menstrual disorders, rapid weight gain, and even digestive issues.
Hormones are internal chemical messengers secreted by the endocrine glands that oversees the proper functioning of our entire system as a whole. Therefore, its implications go further than the symptoms it presents.
What are the causes of hormonal imbalance in women?
Hormone imbalance in women can happen due to multiple reasons. A woman’s body goes through many different life cycles, and each change places a different demand on the body’s requirement of certain hormones. The body is naturally able to regulate hormones depending on these phases. The problem arises when something interferes with the endocrine system’s ability to do its job either internally or externally.
Hormones are intricately tied to our monthly cycles, pregnancy, post-partum health and menopause. Each of these stages have different demands from the endocrine system. So what is considered a normal hormonal range in a teenager may not be considered normal for a woman just after childbirth. It’s a dynamic process that changes as we age.
Other factors that can cause hormonal imbalance are hereditary reasons, aging and certain medical procedures.
How does lifestyle affect hormone regulation?
Lifestyles factors are some of the biggest causes of hormonal imbalance in women. Too much screen-time, not sleeping or resting well, poor nutritional choices, severe stress, and lack of exercise – all of these negatively impact us. Going back to the basics of good health is integral for proper hormone regulation. Poor lifestyle causes a chain reaction of being unable to do basic bodily functions such as going to sleep or metabolizing food, which then makes it even more difficult to change our habits. After all, how can you spend an entire day making healthy choices when you’re exhausted, and sleep deprived?
What are the steps we can take to regulate our hormones?
First and foremost. If you think you might have a hormonal imbalance, seek medical help. If left untreated for long, it can morph into chronic conditions that are difficult to treat. Doctors can also prescribe hormone supplements (also known as Hormone Replacement Therapy) which are meant to help with any deficiencies present.
Once you’ve consulted a physician and created a treatment plan, you can then proceed to follow our top tips for balancing hormones to create a long lasting, healthy lifestyle that complements medical treatment.
Top tips to regulate your hormones by creating lasting lifestyle changes
- Get a good night’s sleep: this is non-negotiable. You need to allow your body to rest and get into its natural state of healing and recovery and sleep is essential to the process. If you’re used to staying up late and binge-watching a series, for example, try to schedule downtime earlier in the evening. If you’re extremely busy to the point where the only alone time you get for yourself is late at night, its important to do an evaluation and see how this can be changed. Schedule regular breaks to rest and relax throughout the day. Spend some time with yourself evaluating what your priorities are. You’ll be surprised to see how many things we consider urgent are actually not!
- Practice meditation and other activities for stress reduction: try to spend 5 mins every morning and evening meditating. Try breathing exercises, include some time for self-pampering, or create a habit of stretching in bed. When stress is properly regulated, you’ll find it a lot easier to disconnect and go to sleep at night.