In our modern world, hormone balance is top of mind. If you’re experiencing menopause, fertility challenges, irregular periods, brain fog, difficulty sleeping, low mood, low energy, low libido and/or weight gain, you know what we’re talking about. From healthy fats and adaptogen herbs to essential oils and other natural supplements, Community Natural Foods is a source for the best options to achieve optimal hormonal balance.
Hormone balance isn’t just for women — men often experience hormone imbalances as well, finding their lives sidelined by insomnia, weight gain around the belly, breast enlargement, brain fog, infertility, depression, anxiety, diabetes, low libido, erectile dysfunction and hair loss. Fortunately, there are practical solutions.
Hormonal imbalances may be caused by a variety of issues, including poor gut health, inflammation, high amounts of stress, genetic susceptibility, exposure to chemicals, poor diet and more. Keep in mind, however, that balancing hormones isn’t a result of a one-time solution. Rather, hormonal equilibrium is achieved through lifestyle changes, both big and small.
Here are a few tips basic tips for hormone balancing (be sure to consult your healthcare provider if you have a serious concern).
Eat healthy fats.
Hormones are primarily made from fats, so it makes sense to have a sufficient amount of fats in your diet. Community Naturals coconut oil, avocados, grass-fed butter and wild salmon are good sources of healthy fats.
Take care of your gut health.
The better your digestive health, the more balanced your hormones will be, so make sure to eat fermented foods that are full of beneficial bacteria. Plain yogurt, tempeh, sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir, Kombucha and lacto-fermented veggies are great examples.
Avoid inflammatory foods.
Highly processed foods, refined sugars, fatty red meats, alcohol and (for some people) gluten, lactose and dairy foods create inflammation because they are difficult to digest. When your gut health is not optimal, it can cause an inflammatory cascade that can affect your hormone balance and production.
Balance hormones with supplements.
Even if you’re eating a well-balanced whole foods and organic diet, there are times when there may be gaps in your nutrition. A busy lifestyle, pregnancy, illness or a medical concern may require a multi-vitamin such as Life Choice Balance Female Multi. Additional supplements may be required during these circumstances as well.
Support your liver.
The liver is the great alchemist through which all processes pass. If you want balanced hormones, then it is best to support the liver. A greens supplement or a dandelion or milk thistle supplement may be in order.
Take helpful herbs.
Adaptogenic herbs such as ashwaganda, maca and holy basil work to balance hormone excess or deficiency in times of stress. They help to boost the efficiency of the sites where hormones bind with the cells.
Get your probiotics.
The better you digest, the better your hormone balance will be. Probiotics are an easy and convenient way to keep your gut healthy, especially if you are not a fan of fermented foods.
Steer clear of harmful chemicals.
Avoid harmful chemicals which can bind to hormone receptor sites and cause imbalances. These chemicals can be found in food, cosmetics, the general environment and more.
Managing stress makes all the difference in any health condition, however, when cortisol levels are constantly high (due to stress), they affect the production of sex hormones, slow down thyroid function and imbalance blood sugar levels. They also make it hard for your body to create those “feel good” hormones like serotonin.
Get moving (but not too much).
Exercise moderately, as intense exercise such as long-distance running, HIIT workouts, triathalons, hockey or other high-intensity sports can create hormone imbalances in the body. Instead, stick to activities like swimming, walking or yoga until your hormones are in balance.
Use essential oils.
Explore essential oils such as clary sage, frankincense and thyme to reduce anxiety, lower stress hormones and more.
* These recommendations shouldn’t take the place of medical supervision.
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