In our bodies, hormones play a huge role in many different functions. The delicate balance of our hormones is important for overall well-being, influencing everything from metabolism and reproduction to mood and sleep.
Let’s explore what hormonal imbalance can look like, its signs and symptoms, and look at potential management solutions and supplements for overall health.
What is Hormonal Imbalance?
There are 50 known hormones in the human body. Most of them, including the surrounding tissues and glands, create and release hormones to make up your endocrine system.
Hormones act as the body's messengers, regulating processes such as metabolism, growth, sexual function, and mood. The endocrine system (your hormonal system) produces and releases chemical compounds.
Our hormones control different bodily processes such as metabolism, homeostasis, growth and development, sexual function, reproduction, sleep cycle, and mood.
When there's an excess or deficiency of one or more hormones, a hormonal “imbalance” occurs. This umbrella term encompasses various hormone-related conditions, some acute, others more chronic.
Signs & Symptoms of Hormonal Imbalance
Recognizing the signs and symptoms of hormonal imbalance is always important to address the issue effectively.
Hormonal balance issues can manifest in many different ways, affecting every woman differently. It might look like:
- Irregular Periods
- Diabetes or metabolic disorders
- Thyroid disorders
- Mood Swings prior to your period
- Low Libido
- Insomnia or Poor Sleep
- Unexplained weight gain or weight loss
- Digestive Issues
- Skin Problems (eczema, psoriasis, even hives before your period)
- Weak Bones
- Vaginal Dryness
- Period pain
- Elevated stress levels or chronic stress
- Menopausal symptoms (insulin resistance, hot flashes, night sweats, thinning hair, & more)1
- Elevated estrogen levels, as well as other hormone levels
Recommendations for Those with Hormonal Imbalance
If you suspect a hormonal issue, consult with your healthcare provider first. The following recommendations outline a comprehensive approach to managing hormonal imbalances in women’s health:
Consult with a Doctor
Schedule a consultation with a healthcare provider to discuss your symptoms, concerns, and medical history.
Hormone Level Testing
Your doctor can order blood tests to assess hormone levels and identify any issues that may be leading to your symptoms.
Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)
Your doctor may recommend hormone replacement therapy for menopausal symptoms or based on test results. This can involve oral medications or injections to restore hormonal balance.
Lifestyle Changes for Balancing Hormones
- Sleep Habits: Prioritize quality sleep, aiming for 7-9 hours per night.
- Diet and Nutrition: Focusing on fiber, protein, and regular meal times throughout the day can be beneficial with several different hormone balance issues
- Exercise Routine: Regular activity in whatever way you enjoy it (walking, biking, hiking, sports, etc)
- Stress Management: Finding ways to get into your parasympathetic nervous system throughout the day is helpful for maintaining healthy cortisol levels and happy hormones. Breathing exercises, yoga, and other slower activities can help you wind down and may even alleviate chronic stress.
Supplements for hormonal support
In addition to traditional approaches, supplements can play a supportive role in managing hormonal issues.
- Women's Health Probiotic - Probiotics are a great way to help support your gut health and help with hormone regulation
- Raspberry leaf tea - Helps to strengthen and tone the uterine muscles and has B vitamins and magnesium to help relieve period pain and cramping during your menstrual cycle
- Vaginal moisturizing gel - For those experiencing dryness and irritation, this is a great way to soothe your tissue and alleviate discomfort
Navigating hormonal issues requires a multifaceted approach that combines medical intervention with lifestyle modifications and integrative support.
When you understand the signs and symptoms of imbalanced hormones, you can be better in tune with your body and understand what it needs most.
- C V, Sathya Bhama et al. “Analysis of the degree of insulin resistance in post menopausal women by using skin temperature measurements and fasting insulin and fasting glucose levels: a case control study.” Journal of clinical and diagnostic research : JCDR vol. 6,10 (2012): 1644-7. doi:10.7860/JCDR/2012/4377.2646