Have you been feeling a little off lately and not being able to understand why?
While it could be due to many things going wrong in your life, ever wondered if hormones was one of them?
Here are a few questions and if you check most answers then I have news for you.
· Your energy level has hit a sudden low
· You are having a tough time remembering things as your brain is foggy most of the time.
· You can’t keep off sugary and carb rich food and find yourself reaching for it more than usual.
· You’ve slept well all night but still wake up tired.
· Your stress and anxiety have gone up
· You can spot sudden changes in your skin, hair and body.
· You seem to break down into tears at anything slightly emotional.
· You can’t seem to control your moods and find yourself lashing out at people around you more than often.
Well, if you got most of the above going for you, then it might be your hormones. Hormones are chemical messengers running the show, day in, day out. They control everything. We’re all hormonal. Hormones are ongoing, at every age and phase of life across all genders and ages, even kids. Being hormonal, means being alive. It is only when the balance is disrupted and they go out of control that it starts causing havoc.
So if the body is regulated by so many hormones, which hormone exactly could be causing this upheaval in your life?
The answer is Estrogen. Estrogen is ONE of our sex hormones. While all sexes have estrogen, people with ovaries have more. Estrogen plays an important role in nearly 400 functions in the body. Especially for those who menstruate, it fluctuates with our cycle. During the follicular & ovulatory phases it rises and is the highest before ovulation. In the second half of the cycle, it drops & progesterone is boosted (when we ovulate, that is).
If estrogen remains dominant during the second half of the cycle that’s called being estrogen dominant, which can sometimes happen. Estrogen dominance can happen during perimenopause when there’s a shift in ovulation. And during menopause when estrogen and progesterone are out of balance.
What causes Estrogen Dominance?
Estrogen is health-supportive, meaning that it supports energy, sleep, libido, mood, skin, metabolism, & more when it’s in optimal amounts throughout our cycle, or when we are menopausal. It is mainly eliminated via bile & poop. But when this is not being excreted properly from the body, it gets recirculated adding estrogen dominance.
Estrogen Dominance can also happen if we’re exposed to too many estrogen-like chemicals in our environment like plastics, household cleaning and beauty products. These are called xenoestrogens or even endocrine disruptors. Alcohol can raise estrogen too. Estrogen is broken down & packaged up in the liver & gut so healthy liver & gut functions are important.⠀
With recent fad diets, eliminating entire food groups and prioritizing weight loss over nutrient content could cause suboptimal levels of these important nutrients. This can also lead to estrogen dominance symptoms. It’s also been connected with breast health and cancers.⠀
Important factors that affect estrogen production
· There are three main types of estrogen produced in the body: estrone (E1), estradiol (E2), & estriol (E3).
· Estrone is produced by our fat cells. The more we have, the more estrone we produce. Estrone can convert to estradiol.
· Estrone & estradiol influence our body shape (estradiol = pear, estrone = apple).
Estrogen production is facilitated by these nutrients: zinc, magnesium, boron, B vitamins, vitamin D, vitamin E. But it begins to decline in our 30s or 40s, depending on the women. Many lifestyle factors can affect when this happens, and our experience. During menopause natural estrogen is at its lowest.
Heavy training, exercises, stress, head trauma, birth control, hysterectomies, or other factors can suppress our natural health-supportive estrogen. When this isn’t flowing optimally before menopause, it can result in no periods which can in turn stop progesterone production too.⠀
Make sure you get these nutrients from foods which is one reason why good balanced nutrition for women is so important. ⠀
– B2, B3, B5, B6, B9, B12⠀
– Vitamin C⠀
– Amino acids (from protein)⠀
– Phospholipids (from fats)⠀
– glutathione (comprised of amino acids)⠀
Knowing your hormones can help you work with them and regulate them to keep them in balance and control making sure that you enjoy good health.
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