Some of my clients in Raleigh find that they’re overweight because of a hormone imbalance. It may seem like your body is fighting you, but the truth is, you have a potential to turn it around and take control. You notice that I said you have a potential to turn it around. That’s because you may not be able to control all factors, but you can control many of them. It’s especially difficult for women going through menopause where hormone levels are consistently changing. You also might be quite surprised at the hormones that are probably giving you the biggest problems.
Hormones need to be balanced for you to be at your fittest.
There’s a delicate balance between estrogen and progesterone levels. At menopause, the balance disappears and scrambles your system. You might expect estrogen levels to be dropping, and you’d be right. Often a high level of estrogen is the cause of weight gain, which makes it even more confusing. However, your progesterone levels are also dropping and if they go down faster than your estrogen, you have estrogen dominance. Estrogen dominance or higher estrogen levels cause weight gain, during menopause and even at other times in your life.
Hormonal imbalance doesn’t stop at estrogen dominance.
There are other types of hormones that play a role in weight loss or weight gain. Leptin, insulin and cortisol are three other hormones that affect your weight. They also determine where those pounds migrate to in your body. Leptin, cortisol and insulin are also important hormones that affect your weight. Cortisol is a hormone created when you’re under stress. When you have too much of it or it’s not burned off by fighting or fighting—or the exercise equivalent to it—it builds up in your body. It plays a role creating visceral fat—belly fat. If you have an excess of leptin—the hormone that tells you that you’re full—it can lead to leptin resistance. That means your body doesn’t get the signal that you’re full and you keep eating. Insulin resistance and an imbalance of insulin can make weight loss difficult, too.
You can aid in balancing your hormones without medication in many cases.
Just working out can burn off excess cortisol. It acts like the actions taken by the body for fighting or flight. Not only does eating healthy and cutting out sugar and processed foods help balance insulin, it also helps with other hormones. Strength-building exercises can provide balancing relief to your body, just as mild cardio does. Walking is a good way to start until you build up endurance and your hormones start to get back to a normalized state.
- Cut back on caffeine and consume less red meat to help balance your hormones. Make sure you have adequate healthy fat in your diet and consume a rainbow of colors in fruits and vegetables.
- Consider supplements, even if you’re already eating healthy. Vitamin D3 shortages are frequently found in a wide number of people, especially since sunblocks are so popular. It’s a vitamin your body makes from the rays of the sun. Add the B vitamins and magnesium.
- Getting adequate sleep is necessary for a healthy hormone balance. The body adjusts and regulates hormones during sleep.
- Your digestive system plays a huge role in hormone regulation. Make sure you have a healthy balance of bacteria by using probiotics and prebiotics.