Making sure my diet supports happy, healthy hormones is something I've had a keen interest in since I came off the pill and my hormones went totes cray cray.
Essentially, eating for hormone health means eating a healthy, balanced diet of whole foods. Most important to include is organic plant-based or (small amounts of ) animal protein, good fats (like coconut oil, avocado, and olive oil), plenty of veggies as well as nuts and seeds. Here is a more in-depth guide to exactly what you should be putting in your gob.
To keep things nice and simple I have packaged up eating for hormone health into 2 basic principles:
01. Limit Sugar
Put simply - sugar messes with your hormones, big time. When you eat sugar, your body responds by releasing the hormone insulin from the pancreas, which is part of the endocrine system (ie. the hormonal system). Too much sugar in the diet means the pancreas is overworked. This throws out the balance of the whole endocrine system! This includes the endocrine glands in the brain, the adrenal glands and, for women, the ovaries who are responsible for the production of estrogen and progesterone - 2 hormones that regulate women's menstrual and sexual functioning. Common symptoms of an imbalance in these hormones include acne, irregular or absent periods, PMS, unexplained weight gain or loss, and painful periods.
So what can you do? Start to pay attention to how much sugar is in your diet - yes even fruit counts. Try switching from refined while sugar to rice malt syrup, pure maple syrup, or stevia. In terms of the effect on insulin (and your entire hormonal system) stevia is the best option because it doesn't cause any insulin response at all. While we can all tolerate different amounts of sugar, if you're really focused on healing hormonal imbalance try to limit your sugar intake to 2 pieces and fruit per day and only eat the sweeteners mentioned about in small amounts (ie.no more than a tablespoon) a few times a week. Cutting back or quitting sugar can be tough but, in my experience, the less sugar I eat, the sweeter I am!
02. Limit toxicity
Toxicity in your diet has potential to throw all kinds of bodily functions off balance - your sleep, hunger, sex drive, liver function, mental state, and kidney function all feel the pinch when toxins are hanging out in your bod. Your hormonal balance is directly affected by the functioning of all of the above so it's super important to limit toxicity for healthy hormones (not to mention good health in general!).
Here's how to reduce those nasty toxins in your life:
- Drink filtered water
- Eat fresh, organic food as much as possible and limit processed or packaged food
- Avoid cigarettes and alcohol
- Limit your exposure to pollution like car fumes
- Choose organic beauty and body products or make your own
- Limit your exposure to heavy metals by eating wild, line caught fish, no bigger than the average dinner plate
- Wear only good quality jewellery - that greenish tinge on your skin left by cheap jewellery means that heavy metals and toxins are being absorbed into your system
- Use ceramic or stainless steel cookware - teflon is a very potent toxin
- Buy or make all natural cleaning products
Doing a short detox (from foods like sugar, dairy, and gluten) every few months is a great way to give those toxins the heave-ho so consider making one part of your routine - why not try one this week to kick-start your hormone healing!
I'd love to hear from you - have you tried healing hormonal imbalance naturally or are you planning too? You the buttons below to share this info with any sisters who could use a hand getting back in balance!
Lots of love,