So you’ve been feeling out of sorts lately? Dealing with hormonal acne? Maybe you have been noticing your hair thinning, getting more headaches, have trouble sleeping or regularly feel fatigued. Perhaps you have been getting breakouts that you know must be your hormones out of whack. Have you considered that you may have a hormone imbalance? Perhaps you even think you feel great…but didn’t realize that what you are feeling could be signs of something more.
It’s no secret that a woman will experience hormonal changes at some point in her life. However, many suffer with hormonal imbalances long before they are expected and some may not even know that their hormones are the culprit of the unexplainable symptoms. I’ve been there. I thought my fatigue was just because I wasn’t sleeping well. I thought I wasn’t sleeping well because I had too much on my mind. I thought my hair was falling out because I was just getting older. I am here to tell you, that all the excuses or justifications you have come up with to explain you not living your best self, are just that, excuses.
I am going to provide you with 3 steps that you can take to balance your hormones, naturally.
Rest and De-stress
Did you know that your hormones are one of the most important aspects of your health and well-being? Your hormones are always changing throughout the month and affect your moods, weight, energy-levels, cravings, and so much more. One of the most influential hormones in your body is known as cortisol, the “stress hormone”. Cortisol increases sugars (glucose) in the bloodstream, enhances your brain’s use of glucose and increases the availability of substances that repair tissues. Cortisol also curbs functions that would be nonessential or detrimental in a fight-or-flight situation.
So what happens when we experience prolonged periods of stress? Our bodies are constantly flooded with cortisol, causing rapid weight gain, high blood pressure, changes in the skin, muscle weakness, and mood swings which manifests as anxiety, depression, and irritability.
Sometimes we just are not able to avoid stressful situations. We have families to care for, jobs that demand our best and aging parents that need caring for, but trust me when I tell you, pouring from an empty cup will never lead to a positive outcome. I know it’s difficult to just relax and it might take practice, but your longevity counts on it. Be still. Your skin and your hormones will thank you.
Avoid Hormone Disrupting Chemicals
It was unbelievable to me that there were ingredients lurking in my products that could be contributing to my inability to naturally conceive. Between the excessively itchy skin and my struggles with infertility, I knew something needed to change. I was shocked to discover there are chemicals that have been linked to hormone disruption hiding in my food, skincare, cleaning products, soap, laundry detergent, deodorant, and so many more. Learning to be more savvy at reading ingredient labels was crucial for me to live my best life and perhaps you are realizing you need to make this change in your life also. Here are 3 of the key things I try to avoid in my products to help my hormones remain healthy and in balance.
Pesticides. This can be so difficult depending on where you live and your access to organic foods. Living where we currently are in the midwest, we have limited access to organic foods, but still we try our best, ordering from online vendors when we can. The chemicals used in the pesticides in the growing process of traditional, non-organic foods have been proven to not only disrupt hormones but can also affect your long-term health. According to the National Breast Cancer Foundation, 1 in 8 women in the United States, will develop breast cancer in their lifetime (source). A recent study done by the Breast Cancer Fund, indicates that women’s health problems are on the rise and researchers are concerned that endocrine disrupting chemicals found in many products may be a key contributor to the increase in breast cancer as well as endometriosis, a leading cause of female infertility (source).
Fragrance. According to the International Fragrance Association (IFRA), the global representative body of the fragrance industry, there are more than 3,059 ingredients masquerading under the term ‘fragrance’ or ‘parfum’ in the ingredient lists of your products (source). Companies are not required to disclose the ingredients that make up the fragrance blend because they are considered proprietary. This is concerning because many fragrance ingredients you find among that list of 3,059, are known carcinogens, endocrine disruptors, developmental toxins, neurotoxins and more. In short, I stay clear of anything that has ‘fragrance’ or ‘parfum’ in the ingredients list and it’s also why you will never see fragrance in any of our products. We believe in transparency.
BPA. This nasty chemical is found in the plastic liner of canned foods and on thermal receipts; it is a hormone disruptor and has been linked to everything from breast cancer to reproductive problems, obesity, early puberty and heart disease (source). You can avoid BPA by eating fresh instead of canned food and get digital receipts when possible.
I know, I can hear you now. We all know exercise is good for us, but sometimes we need a little nudge. Whenever this topic comes up, a quote comes to mind from one of my favorite movies I loved when I was young, “Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy.” When you engage in high-intensity exercise, your body and brain produce hormones that have a positive impact on your mood, memory, energy levels, and give you a greater sense of well-being. The best thing you can do to naturally balance your hormones is adopt a regular workout routine; exercise releases endorphins and helps to lower stress, effectively keeping cortisol levels in check.
A hormonal imbalance does not have to keep you from living your best life . There is hope. If you make some critical changes in your lifestyle, you will notice your body come back into balance. You will witness your body repairing itself. You will feel better, look better, and live the life you were designed to live.
Be sure to check out our collection of hormone friendly skincare that will help you to live healthier while nourishing your natural beauty. Check out the collection here.
References: EDC-2: The Endocrine Society’s Second Scientific Statement on Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals. A. C. Gore, V. A. Chappell, S. E. Fenton, J. A. Flaws, A. Nadal, G. S. Prins, J. Toppari, R. T. Zoeller. Endocr Rev. 2015 Dec; 36(6): E1–E150. Published online 2015 Nov 6. doi: 10.1210/er.2015-1010 | https://ifrafragrance.org/initiatives/transparency/ifra-transparency-list | https://www.yourhormones.info/hormones/cortisol/ | https://healthcare.utah.edu/healthfeed/postings/2017/10/cortisol.php#:~:text=Cortisol%20is%20best%20known%20for,threat%20or%20leave%20it%20behind. | https://static.ewg.org/pdf/kab_dirty_dozen_endocrine_disruptors.pdf