Author: Dr Faeeza Abdullatief (Unani Tibb Practitioner)
As women, your female hormonal balance plays a major role in regulating important functions including your metabolism, mood, skin health, bone health and fertility.
During the various stages of a female's life cycle from childhood, through puberty and into adulthood and later menopause there is a complex balance that needs to be maintained in order for us to function normally. However, many factors can influence this sensitive balance e.g. our diet, lifestyles, stress, genetics and other disease.
What causes hormonal imbalance?
Hormonal balance can be influenced by stress, diet, lifestyle, genetics, certain medication and the presence of other existing illnesses.
So how can your diet influence your hormonal balance you ask? Simple, foods contain various substances depending on the quality of foods we take in, it can either nourish our bodies or cause accumulation of toxins e.g. eating excessive red meat or dairy which may contain excess hormones that influence our cycle; intake of foods that cause accumulation of estrogen-like or hormone disruptor substances include plastic storage for foods which contain BPA, chemical perfumes or fragrances, pesticides. In addition, processed foods, high sugar intake and smoking and a high BMI can also disturb your hormonal balance.
How do I know if I have a hormonal imbalance?
Signs of hormonal imbalance can present differently depending on the age and life stage a woman is in e.g. irregular periods, acne commonly occur on puberty and early adulthood and can persist in later years; menopause is more when hot flashes and night sweats occurs. Some of the common signs and symptoms of hormonal imbalance are the folllowing:
Pain during and around your period time
Male pattern hair growth (upper lip and chin area)
Weight gain especially around the stomach area
Breast tenderness or cysts
Insulin resistance: can present with increased appetite, weight gain, sugar levels that are slightly higher than normal range
Changes in libido
How do I get my hormonal balance back of track?
The millions dollar question indeed... let me break it down for you. It's not as simple as a quick fix. At first, it is best to approach treatment from a holistic perspective by consulting a qualified natural medicine practitioner. In this way you will benefit from a thorough investigation into your medical history, analysis of lab/blood tests (if required) as well identifying key factors in your diet and lifestyle that are contributing to your hormonal imbalance. This is completely individualised and therefore treatment will be tailored specifically to what you need to address the underlying cause. Some of the examples of treatment would be to eliminate certain foods out of your diet, increase certain foods that would assist with providing the nutrition you need to support your hormonal balance in conjunction with herbal medication (to address the underlying cause), supplementation and alternative therapies e.g. Cupping therapy in line with treating full aspects of the individual.
The information and other content provided in this blog, or in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice, nor is the information a substitute for professional medical expertise or treatment. Please consult a qualified practitioner if you suffer from any of the conditions mentioned.
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