LIFESTYLE & COMMUNITY

11 Tips That May Help Improve Hormone Balance

Date October 16, 2017 10:00

Hormones influence many different processes in your body, including metabolism, sleep, and changes in mood. When your hormones are off balance, your health starts deteriorating, and the risk of various health conditions (such as diabetes and heart disease) increases. Hormone imbalance is becoming more and more common these days, and poor diet is often to blame for this problem.

Changes in diet and lifestyle may help bring hormone levels back to normal, but if they don’t, the problem may be more serious and requires professional medical help.

So, here’s what can help stabilize your hormone levels:

1. Consume enough protein.

Eating enough protein is vital for the health of your muscles, bones, skin, and your body in general. Protein also affects hormones responsible for appetite and satiety, such as ghrelin, PYY, and GLP-1. It’s recommended to consume 20-30 grams of protein at every meal.

2. Stay physically active.

The importance of exercise for your health can’t be stressed enough. One of the beneficial effects of physical activity on your hormonal health is its ability to decrease insulin levels and improve insulin sensitivity. Various types of physical activities, including aerobics, strength training, and endurance exercises, can have a profound positive effect on your insulin. Exercise is also important for hormones that maintain your muscles and decline as you age, including testosterone, IGF-1, DHEA, and growth hormone. A combination of intense and light exercises seems to be the most effective, but even light physical activities, such as walking, can help improve your hormone levels.

3. Limit sugar and refined carbohydrates.

Diet high in sugar and refined carbs is one of the factors that can lead to insulin resistance, thus causing diabetes and obesity. Limiting foods high in sugar (such as corn syrup and sugary drinks) and refined carbs (such as white bread) or excluding these foods from your diet altogether can help keep insulin levels within normal and improve insulin sensitivity.

4. Decrease your levels of stress.

In people who suffer from chronic stress, levels of cortisol and adrenaline are constantly high. Chronically elevated cortisol can lead to overeating and weight gain. Adrenaline is less likely to be chronically elevated than cortisol, but when it’s too high, it produces symptoms, such as high blood pressure, anxiety, and increased heart rate. To reduce your levels of stress, you need to find an activity that helps you relax, be it yoga, warm bath, or just a walk. Even if you have a busy schedule, try to fit in 10-15 minutes of relaxing activities daily.

5. Incorporate more healthy fats into your diet.

Medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs), which are found in coconut oil, palm oil, and pure MCT oil, can decrease insulin resistance in people with diabetes and extra weight. Fats from milk and dairy products as well as monounsaturated fat in olive oil and nuts can have the same effect. Healthy fats also trigger the release of satiety hormones, such as GLP-1, PYY, and cholecystokinin (CCK).

6. Avoid diets too high or too low in calories.

Crash diets can cause a spike in cortisol levels; eating large high-calorie meals contributes to increased insulin levels and insulin resistance. Try to keep your calorie intake within the norm recommended for your age, weight, and level of activity. It also important to consume enough minerals, including magnesium.

7. Drink green tea.

Green tea is beneficial for your health in many ways, including its effect on your insulin. Some studies show that green tea can increase insulin sensitivity and lower insulin levels in people with diabetes and obesity.

8. Eat enough fatty fish.

Fatty fish, such as salmon, sardines, and herring, is rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Consuming enough omega-3s can help prevent the increase in cortisol and adrenaline levels as well as improve insulin sensitivity, thus lowering your risk of obesity, polycystic ovary syndrome, and gestational diabetes.

9. Sleep well.

Adults need 7-9 hours of sleep every night to feel well-rested and have enough energy throughout the day. Sleep deprivation can throw many important hormones off balance, including insulin, cortisol, leptin, ghrelin, and growth hormone. Quality of sleep is just as important as its duration. Stick to a stable sleep schedule and practice proper sleep hygiene for the sake of your hormonal health and general well-being.

10. Make sure to include enough fiber in your diet.

Adequate fiber intake is important for hormones that regulate your appetite and satiety, such as PYY and GLP-1. Eating plenty of fiber also helps prevent insulin resistance. Incorporate more foods high in fiber (such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains) into your diet to reduce your appetite and maintain hormonal health.

11. Eggs should also be part of your diet.

Apart from being full of nutrients, eggs also have a positive effect on hormones, such as insulin, ghrelin, and PYY. It’s recommended to eat whole eggs, not just egg whites, for the best effect. Many people around the world eat eggs for breakfast; and hard-boiled eggs can serve as a nice nutritious snack.

Sources: HealthLine, NaturalLivingIdeas

This post is solely for informational purposes. It is not intended to provide medical advice. Fabiosa doesn’t take responsibility for any possible consequences from any treatment, procedure, exercise, dietary modification, action or application of medication which results from reading or following the information contained in this post. Before undertaking any course of treatment, the reader should consult with their physician or other health care provider.

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