Nature is amazing. Not only does it provide you with food, entertainment, wildlife, and fresh air, but it can also give your hormones and gut health a boost. How? Here are some natural ways to boost hormones with… Food! You are, as always, most welcome.
Now, it may surprise you to learn that plants have Estrogen. Yup, even they have to put up with it. We’ve no idea if it’s as big a pain in the bee-hind for flowers, but where humans are concerned, Phytoestrogens are simply sensational.
As anyone who’s ever identified as a woman will know, Estrogen is a vital hormone. It helps develop and maintain your reproductive system, regulates your menstrual cycle, and even plays a role in cognitive and cardiovascular health.
If you’re looking for natural ways to boost hormones, then this is a great one. Phytoestrogens are Estrogen compounds that naturally occur in vegetables, fruit, and grain. And here’s why they’re super important. After you’ve eaten any of the aforementioned and conveniently delicious foodstuffs, your body reacts as though the Estrogen is yours. Who knew?
Where can I find Phytoestrogens?
A fantastic variety of vegetables, fruit, grain, and herbs contain natural Phytoestrogens. These include but are in no way limited to:
- Flax Seeds
What are the benefits of Phytoestrogen?
A plant-based diet rich in Phytoestrogens can actually serve as a natural hormone replacement therapy. The way they imitate your body’s natural Estrogen production means that they accomplish many of the same things. And all through eating — what’s not to love?
As you’re probably already aware, your Estrogen levels naturally rise and fall during your menstrual cycle. And that leads to the PMS rollercoaster we’re all so fond of. From sore boobs to seeing red and eating more Dulce du Leche than previously thought possible, it’s all related. But, if you swap the ice cream for some apples, the Phytoestrogen can help rebalance your levels. And that could be one of the best natural ways to boost hormones we’ve come across.
Relief from symptoms of Menopause
As your reproductive system starts to wind down during your mid-40s, you produce less Estrogen. And as you enter Menopause, around age 50, you basically stop producing it altogether. That leads to a whole host of symptoms, including hot flashes, brain fog, and muscle weakness to name just a few.
But one 2014 study pointed to a Phytoestrogen-rich diet having a positive effect on Menopause symptoms. Yup, eating Flax and Soy stopped hot flashes. So, if you’re currently suffering, maybe it’s time to add some to your shopping list?
And if, like basically anyone who deals with Estrogen on a regular basis, you get regular breakouts, listen up. Because there’s research that suggests Phytoestrogens combat the Testosterone that causes acne in women. Bonus!
Do Phytoestrogens come with any side effects?
That would be an emphatic No. Unlike synthetic Estrogens, such as HRT or HBC, which carry a risk of cancer, Phytoestrogens have no proven negative side effects.
In fact, these natural sources of Estrogen have even been found to be helpful in the fight against cancer. A 2009 study concluded that soy consumption actually reduced the recurrence of breast cancer in women.
And while we’re generally big fans of supplements here at Hormona, in this case, we advise caution. Phytoestrogen supplements are often not monitored for purity, quality, or dosage, so please talk to a healthcare professional before taking them.
The best way to get your Phytoestrogens is naturally. So, remember: Eat your veggies! Speaking of…
Gut health and hormones
You may well have heard of Prebiotic and Probiotics, but what the what even are they? And can they really help with your gut health? The answers may well surprise you…
There are bacteria in my gut?
There are literally trillions of bacteria living in your gut. Everyone needs them to exist in the right balance and without them, none of us would survive. The different bacteria that call your intestines home are generally known as your “gut flora” or “gut microbiome.”
A healthy gut is important for a healthy body, and that’s because all sorts of illnesses can be linked to poor gut health. These include things like headaches, allergies, infections, autoimmune conditions, weight concerns, skin rashes, and, you guessed it, hormonal imbalances.
What are Pro and Prebiotics?
A pro or prebiotic is a food, or supplement, that works to maintain the optimal balance of bacteria in your gut.
Probiotics are live bacteria — the good ones, not the moldy bread kind. These live bacteria help to top up your gut flora and keep it healthy.
Prebiotics are foods that are high in fiber, which is handy, because that’s what your gut bacteria eat. Getting plenty of fiber keeps your flora happy, healthy, and in balance.
What does a healthy gut have to do with healthy hormones?
The microbiome of your gut can have a significant influence on your health. And disruptions in the gut flora can also cause disruptions in other parts of your health. One such area is your hormones.
As regular Hormonas will know, your hormones control most things that go on in your body. So if they’re ever a bit off-balance then you’ll likely see some pretty unpleasant symptoms.
But here’s where your hormones and gut health meet. There’s now some evidence that Estrogen, Progesterone, and Testosterone actually interact with your gut flora. The levels of those hormones can change the makeup of your gut microbiome, and your gut microbiome can influence your hormones. Who knew?
And that’s why a healthy gut is important for maintaining a healthy hormone balance. Which means that adding Pre and Probiotic foods to your diet can help to maintain your gut health as well as your hormone health.
What foods are high in Probiotics?
The best sources of Probiotics are Fermented or cultured foods. Conveniently delicious fermented foods include:
What foods are high in Prebiotics?
Prebiotics are found in fibrous fruit and vegetables. Some examples include:
- Chia seeds
- Green bananas
- Pistachio nuts
What if I don’t eat fermented foods?
If, for whatever reason, you’re not into pro and prebiotic foods, then you can always take them as supplements. But, when choosing supplements it’s important to remember that not all of them are high quality. And here’s why that’s super-important.
As you probably know, your stomach is full of acid. And one of its many jobs is to kill any bad bacteria that might make it into your gut from your food. So any supplements you take have to be able to protect the bacteria inside the capsule from your stomach acid until they’re able to get down into your gut.
There is some evidence that taking prebiotics as well as probiotics can be extra beneficial, as they work together to improve their action.
NOTE: It’s important to check with a health professional before you start any new medicines. Even vitamins or supplements can interact with other medicines or medical conditions, so it’s always best to check they’re safe for you.
Food comes with a ton of fantastic natural ways to boost your hormones, help keep them in balance and even reduce any symptoms you might be experiencing. But if your symptoms continue, it’s always worth a conversation with a healthcare type to rule out any underlying conditions.
Otherwise, enjoy the benefits of food-based hormone health!
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