If you’re experiencing symptoms of menopause, you may be tempted to try a home testing kit. Home testing kits measure follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) in your urine. FSH levels increase when you enter menopause, but levels also rise and fall during a normal menstrual cycle. This test can give you an indication of whether menopause has started, but it can’t tell you conclusively.
Get a lot of natural light during the day, and spend at least 30 minutes outside each day if possible. The wide-spectrum of natural lighting helps boost serotonin levels which balance melatonin levels at night. In fact, my doctor routinely recommends that his patients get 30 minutes of sunlight or bright light within an hour of waking when they are working to balance hormones.
“Birth control pills, patches and vaginal rings can help lower testosterone levels and improve excessive hair growth [and] hormonal breakouts,” Lo explains. “Exercise and eating a healthy diet can also help combat insulin resistance associated with PCOS. For women with PCOS who are planning pregnancy, medications such as letrozole or clomiphene citrate may help a woman ovulate.”
Natural Progesterone Cream– PMS and menstrual troubles are often linked to specific hormone imbalances. Especially for those with short cycles or short second phase of their cycle (ovulation through start of menses), progesterone can be the issue. I’ve seen people add only natural progesterone cream and see symptoms greatly reduce. If you do use progesterone cream, do you own research, make sure you have a good brand that is soy-free and only use for the second half of your cycle (ovulation through menses). Check with a doctor or professional before using any hormone supplement.
Sleep helps keep stress hormones balanced, builds energy and allows the body to recover properly. Excessive stress and poor sleep are linked with higher levels of morning cortisol, decreased immunity, trouble with work performance, and a higher susceptibility to anxiety, weight gain and depression. To maximize hormone function, ideally try to get to bed by 10 p.m. and stick with a regular sleep-wake-cycle as much as possible.
Many women experience monthly breakouts before or during their period. However, chronic acne is something different. Acne that does not go away may be due to excess androgens, male hormones like testosterone that both women and men have. Excess levels of these androgens make oil glands extra productive. Androgens also affect skin cells that line hair follicles. Excess oil and skin cell changes clog pores, leading to acne. A doctor may prescribe birth control pills, corticosteroids like prednisone, or anti-androgen medications to treat hormonally influenced acne. High androgens may sometimes indicate polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). Women with PCOS may experience infertility. High insulin levels can stimulate the production of androgens and may be associated with insulin resistance. Weight loss can help reverse insulin resistance.
At Aligned Modern Health, we work with our patients to find those lifestyle factors that are contributing to their imbalances. This starts with a comprehensive blood analysis, followed by a salivary cortisol test to detect adrenal problems. A complete GI panel and tests for food sensitivities will also help pinpoint the cause of the hormone trouble.
Making lifestyle changes is easier said than done, especially if one is accustomed to a certain routine. In addition, while these changes will help alleviate many symptoms, they do not address the problem directly at the hormonal source and further treatment may be necessary. Alternative medicine has proven to be excellent for treatment of hormonal imbalance in a safe and natural way.
Obesity leads to the reduction of SHBG (sex hormone binding globulin) a protein that binds estrogen levels and keeps them out of circulation. When these levels go down, estrogen levels go up, become active, and thus stimulate the growth of breast cancer cells. Over one hundred studies have investigated the links between obesity and breast cancer. Taken as a whole, their findings strongly indicate that overweight or obese women have a 30 to 50% great risk of postmenopausal breast cancer than leaner women. It is known that women who continuously gain weight throughout life have a higher risk of breast cancer.
Supplement smartly. Fish oil and additional vitamin D and B vitamins help balance estrogen. Take these in addition to a good multivitamin and mineral with sufficient calcium and magnesium. Probiotics, antioxidants and phytonutrients (vitamin E, resveratrol, curcumin, n-actetyl cysteine, green tea, selenium), and the anti-inflammatory omega-6 fat (GLA or gamma linoleic acid) can help balance sex hormones. You can find these and other hormone-balancing supplements in my store.
Hi my name is Sindy, i am 30 yrs old. I have been suffering woth estrogen dominance for over a year now. I took the depo provera shot last year Jan 2017 and only one shot and it changed my life. I am always tired, my body aches and have this dizziness around the time of my periods every month. This is annoying and disturbing my daily life now please help what can i do. I have done test and my Progesterone levels are very low.
This primary level of treatment involves the least amount of risk, though conversely it requires the highest amount of self-discipline. Many times some simple changes in lifestyle can reap huge benefits in fighting symptoms caused by hormonal imbalance, and achieving a higher overall level of health. Fundamentally, techniques for stress reduction, such as yoga or meditation, combined with regular exercise and an improved diet, can do a woman great service. Diet in particular is key.
The natural treatments above can still help you overcome your illness and greatly reduce symptoms, but these recommendations shouldn’t take the place of medical supervision. Because hormone imbalances vary so widely in terms of severity of symptoms, always keep track of how you’re feeling, do your research and evaluate how you respond to different treatments.
If you think that hormonal imbalance is limited to causing just weight gain and acne, you are overlooking the broader scenario. Hormonal imbalance can cause several nasty symptoms including interrupted menstrual cycle, loss of libido, pain in breasts, PMS, cellulite, excessive exhaustion and even cancer. The symptoms appear in your body much later than the sneaky entry of the problem itself. Therefore, once you start noticing a hint of hormonal imbalance in your body, you should visit a primary care physician in OKC, who can recommend a specialist to cure the imbalance.
Hormone-regulating supplements. As the name suggests, this variety of herbs doesn't contain any estrogen. They stimulate a woman's hormone production by nourishing the pituitary and endocrine glands, causing them to more efficiently produce natural hormones. This ultimately results in balancing not only estrogen, but also progesterone and testosterone. Hormone-regulating supplements (e.g., Macafem) can be considered the safest way to treat the symptoms of hormonal imbalance naturally, as the body creates its own hormones and doesn't require any outside assistance.
Sandalwood: Sandalwood essential oil can be used to increase your libido, reduce stress, promote relaxation, boost mental clarity and even help you to relax. The powerful fragrance triggers peaceful feelings and results in the overall reduction of stress that can lead to hormone imbalances. Inhale sandalwood directly from the bottle, diffuse it at home or apply 2-3 drops to your wrists and bottoms of the feet.
Dr. Jolene Brighten is a Functional Medicine Naturopathic Medical Doctor and the founder of Rubus Health, a women’s medicine clinic that specializes in women's hormones. She is recognized as a leading expert in Post-Birth Control Syndrome and the long-term side effects associated with hormonal contraceptives. Dr. Brighten is the best selling author, speaker and regular contributor to several online publications including MindBodyGreen. She is a medical advisor for one of the first data-driven apps to offer women personalized birth control recommendations.
Unless you get 7–8 hours of sleep every night, you’re doing your body no favors. A lack of sleep or disturbing your natural circadian rhythm can be one of the worst habits contributing to a hormone imbalance. How so? Because your hormones work on a schedule! Case in point: Cortisol, the primary “stress hormone,” is regulated at midnight. Therefore, people who go to bed late never truly get a break from their sympathetic flight/fight stress response.
The Labs: Mainstream medicine typically just runs TSH and T4 (inactive thyroid hormone) to determine thyroid hormone dosage. A functional medicine thyroid panel involves looking at many other labs such as Free and Total T3 (active thyroid hormone), Reverse T3, and thyroid antibodies to rule out autoimmune thyroid problems. For a full list of thyroid labs and how to interpret them, read my previous article here.
Experts aren’t sure exactly how hormones impact your brain. What they do know is that changes in estrogen and progesterone can make your head feel “foggy” and make it harder for you to remember things. Some experts think estrogen might impact brain chemicals called neurotransmitters. Attention and memory problems are especially common during perimenopause and menopause. But they can also be a symptom of other hormone-related conditions, like thyroid disease. Let your doctor know if you're having trouble thinking clearly.