Do you ever feel out of control in your body? Maybe it feels impossible to lose weight or keep it off when you do actually shed a few pounds. You might feel chronically lethargic or moody, but didn’t feel this way a few years ago. You could also be wondering what happened to your body, your skin and your appearance overall.
Believe it or not, it may be your hormones. When you were younger, you probably never thought about having trouble with hormones until you were your grandmother’s age. Menopause may have seemed like the only thing you ever might worry about.
But these days, women are experiencing hormonal imbalance more frequently and much younger in age. Teenage girls, even some as young as 10 years old, can experience unexpected hormonal changes; women in their twenties can begin to feel the effects of hormonal imbalance and women in their thirties, forties and fifties may experience menopause-like symptoms (or menopause itself).
Some of us are turning into endocrine disasters long before we thought possible, and sometimes we’re unsure of what to do about it. We might feel out of control and frustrated with the symptoms we’re experiencing. The way we look and feel can affect the quality of our lives, and it’s important take charge of our hormonal health as soon as possible.
I can remember being diagnosed with PCOS after feeling the effects of what felt like menopause in my twenties. Many of my clients and women I communicate with share stories of horrific symptoms that are all attributed to a hormonal disorder.
It’s not too late to address your hormonal health, and it’s never too early to start living a healthier lifestyle.
There are 5 areas that may be contributing to hormonal imbalance, and we’ll focus on solutions to take control of your body and hormones now.
1. Nutrition. This is the biggest area where most women struggle to create healthy habits. Unfortunately, the foods you eat have an enormous impact on your hormonal health (which affects the way you look, feel and function). The foods you eat and how often you eat them will directly affect your hormonal levels, and overtime can create optimal health or a health hazard.
Quick Tip: Focus on eating healthy, whole foods (re: unprocessed) every 3 to 4 hours starting with breakfast. Make small changes until you nail down a new food choice, as opposed to crash dieting or starvation methods. Eating a variety of vegetables, fruits, healthy fats, ancient grains and lean meats can help you maintain a healthy weight, natural energy and improve many symptoms you may feel.
2. Rest. Your busy life and addiction to technology is actually making you sick. Most women who experience symptoms of hormonal imbalance may benefit from taking out time for some rest and relaxation. The more you stress and stay “busy,” you could be elevating cortisol levels and stressing out your adrenal glands. You’ll also be living life in a state of reaction and will probably feel unsatisfied, anxious or hurried.
Quick Tip: Take time out each morning and just be still. You’ll feel more relaxed, peaceful, positive and more equipped to handle life’s urgencies. You will also benefit hormonally and may notice some of your symptoms improving over time.
3. Products. These days, you can’t be too careful about what’s in your skin care products. Parabens, toxins, dyes and other chemicals are added to make-up products, lotions, soaps, deodorants and many of the items you use every day. Your skin is the largest organ in your body. And as it absorbs these unnatural ingredients, it can create an endocrine disaster, disrupting your hormonal levels.
Quick Tip: Start by replacing one skin care item every time you run out of it. The next time you need more deodorant, shampoo, face wash or concealer, read the label of the product you’re buying and make sure it has safe ingredients. If you’re unsure, look them up online and find out if they are safe for your health. If they aren’t, choose a natural or organic version of the same product. Your health is worth it.
4. Fitness. We need to move. Exercising can be fun, affordable and fantastic for your hormones and overall health. Simple things like walking, taking a yoga class or riding your bike can help you improve your energy levels, regulate your hormones and shed a few pounds. Staying sedentary simply isn’t an option. Get moving and do something you enjoy. You’ll love how your health changes!
Quick Tip: Start by doing something for 15 minutes a day (or an extra 15 minutes if you’re already exercising). Be sure to add in exercises that fuel your mind and body such as Pilates, yoga, dance, hiking, etc.
5. Liquids. I’ll write this once and for all so we’re all on the same page (so to speak): Your body needs water. It doesn’t need cola. It doesn’t need energy drinks. It doesn’t need funky, fancy versions of water. Drinking water will help purge your body of toxins and rid it of impurities. So many times we think we’re ill and we’re really just dehydrated. Poor digestion, fatigue, chronic headaches and skin problems can all be improved by drinking more water.
Quick Tip: Bring a large BPA-free jug of water with you every day and make sure you’re drinking half your body weight in ounces. Replace any soda or extra cups of coffee with water (so you can wean yourself off of it instead of going “cold turkey”), and increase the amount you drink every week. You will start to look as radiant as you feel.
Hormonal imbalance is not something that can be overcome in a day. But by focusing on these 5 areas you may drastically improve your symptoms and feel a whole lot healthier. Get started by making small improvements each week and continue until you have the healthy, fit body you’ve always wanted.
– Katie Humphrey
As a keynote speaker, empowerment coach, author and spokesperson, Katie Humphrey inspires women to feel fit, confident and motivated. Her dynamic Revolution of YOU brand helps overwhelmed and stressed out women confidently reach their goals.
Visit Katie’s Website at KatieHumphrey.com