Here’s what wonderful hormonal balance looks like:
- You have great energy levels throughout the day.
- Your moods are stable.
- You don’t experience cravings.
- Your hair is shiny and full.
- Your skin is clear.
- You have a good libido.
- It is easy to maintain your weight.
If you don’t identify with this picture then the chances are you are experiencing some hormonal imbalances. One important way to improve things is to takes steps to minimize your stress levels. Here’s why:
How does stress impact my hormones?
- When you are stressed your adrenals increase production of the hormone cortisol, which raises your blood sugar levels ready for “fight or flight” activity. This increases your body’s production of the hormone insulin to take that glucose to the cells. When your insulin levels are raised your body will start to store fat, typically around the middle of your body, which is the most dangerous place to have extra fat stores. If your blood sugar is perpetually elevated due to chronic stress and production of cortisol then the cells can become resistant to insulin and it becomes more difficult to control blood sugar levels. This can cause problems with cravings, shakiness between meals, poor mood, anxiety, broken sleep and more.
- Cortisol is a steroidal hormone. Other steroidal hormones are estrogen, progesterone and testosterone – our sex hormones. They are all made from the same base ingredient, cholesterol. When cortisol is needed to handle stress our body can find there isn’t enough cholesterol left to make our sex hormones and we can experience symptoms of imbalance. Take a look at my blog on Sex Hormone Imbalance to find a list of possible symptoms.
- Production of thyroid hormones is in delicate balance with the production of stress hormones so stress can exacerbate hypothyroid conditions and increase symptoms like mood issues, fatigue and weight gain.
I recommend that you do a stress audit. Identify where you are dealing with unnecessary stress in your life so that you can take steps to minimize it. If you want to learn more about other natural ways to balance your hormones then consider joining me for my 2 hour workshop on Nourishment for Hormonal Harmony. I would love to have you join me.