By Erin O’Hara
Hormones have a profound effect on women’s mental, physical, emotional health. These chemical messengers play a role in controlling your menstrual cycle, mood, appetite, sleep, body weight, energy, and fertility. The endocrine glands produce enough of these hormones needed for the body to stay in balance. However, the environment we live in, the foods we eat, and lifestyles we live can create imbalances in our hormones.
In a woman’s body, there are three main reproductive hormones; androgen, progesterone, and estrogen. The most common imbalances due to the modern-day lifestyle and diet are high estrogen, low progesterone, and high androgens. These can relate to the following symptoms:
● High Estrogen. It can present in the body as brain fog, difficulty focusing, poor memory, fatigue, decrease muscle mass, difficulty sleeping, diminished orgasms, weight gain, night sweats, mood changes and endometriosis.
● Low Progesterone. Progesterone is critical to regulating the menstrual cycle and maintenance of pregnancy. Low progesterone can cause headaches, anxiety, depression, infertility, and irregular or absence of the menstrual cycle.
● High Androgens / Testosterone. Although testosterone is considered a male sex hormone, women produce small amounts of testosterone in their ovaries and adrenal glands. High Androgens can cause acne, excess hair growth on the face or body, irregular periods, loss of libido, mood changes, reduction in breast size, increased muscle mass, hair thinning or balding, and PCOS (polycystic ovaries).
Our diet and lifestyle influence your hormone balance to allow you to feel and perform to your optimum.