More than 85% of menstruating women report one or more premenstrual symptoms. (1) Many include the following:
- Mood swings, anxiety or depression
- Digestive issues; bloating, constipation, and or gas
- Sleep disturbances or Insomnia
- Low libido
- Painful Cramps
- Breast tenderness
- Leg pain
- Brain fog, memory loss, poor concentration
- Continuous weight gain
- Extreme fatigue
- Heavy or irregular menstrual cycles
- Migraines and headaches
- Hot flashes
- Hair loss
Millions of women are suffering every month with Hormonal imbalance such as PMS, Menopause, Endometriosis, Fibroids and cystic ovaries. The treatment for many of these conditions is adding more hormones to the picture, such as birth control pill or hormone replacements. This approach doesn’t address the cause of the imbalance – it is basically chasing symptoms while adding gasoline to an already burning fire.
Want to Know More About Hormone Health?
Let’s look at the four leading causes of hormonal imbalance and how you can get back on track.
- REDUCE STRESS: The number one cause of Hormone imbalance is Stress! PMS is not more likely to be diagnosed in women with higher levels of stress, however, women who have PMS may not tolerate stress as well as women who do not have PMS. (2)
How does stress impact your hormones?
It’s called the Pregnenolone steal. When your body has stress, and for many of us that’s all day and for some all night also, we make a hormone called cortisol. Cortisol gives us that get up and go. The ability to Fight or Flight the situation. Most of us love this state of hyper-aware. We are more productive, concentration and focus are great, and we feel energized. We then crave this state, putting ourselves in a state of constant high stress. For us to make this hormone, progesterone is one of the building blocks to make cortisol. Our body steals progesterone, and pregnenolone which makes progesterone and the other hormones creating a different state.
The other problem with elevated cortisol is that it impacts your neurotransmitters deleting serotonin and dopamine. These two are responsible for enhancing your mood and have a significant impact on mood swings, anxiety, and depression with PMS and every day.
The other problem with Stress and hormones that I hear every day in practice… “I handle stress well”; “my stress levels are manageable.” And that’s entirely accurate, but the way you handle stress mentally is completely different than the way your body processes it physically.
We have an easy in-house test that will give us an idea of how your body is physically managing your stress levels.
2. LEARN TO LOVE YOUR LIVER: Your liver makes and breaks down every hormone in your body. When your liver is overworked with clearing out other medications, metabolic waste, and toxins, it can’t keep up with hormone productions. Take a load off of your liver and start eating clean, reduce your chemical exposure (makeup, perfume, organic food and environmentally friendly house hold cleaners)
Another process the liver is responsible for is Methylation. One of the primary functions of methylation is in the liver, with the eliminate hormones from the body, in particular estrogen. Poor methylation can lead to an increase in estrogen and a sign of sluggish detoxification. The increase in estrogen combined with improper detoxification/elimination of estrogen have been shown to have an increased risk of Breast cancer.
One of the hormones tests available to us can measure hormone and methylation levels, assessing the risk of potential cancer.
- YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT, ABSORB AND ELIMINATE! Digestion: How well is your digestive tract working? If your digestive tract isn’t functionally optimally chances are you’re not absorbing as well as you should be. There are many nutrient deficiencies associated with hormonal imbalances such as Vitamin B6, Folic acid, magnesium, calcium and Essential Fatty acids.
We remove estrogen from the body by binding it to fiber and bile (from our gall bladder). If we have a low fiber diet (not enough vegetables) and are not having regular bowel movements (daily), then the estrogen is reabsorbed back into our body!
- THYROID FUNCTION: Have your thyroid tested. Progesterone plays a major role in thyroid function. Also hypothyroid can have very similar symptoms as many PMS symptoms. You need to rule it out.
Hormone Testing: we have many options for hormone testing, it’s important because it takes the guess work out, helping you feel better quicker. One of the main reasons for testing is to determine the estrogen progesterone ratio. You can have the same Estrogen to progesterone ratio’s if your estrogen is normal but your progesterone is deficient vs. if your estrogen is high, but your progesterone is normal. Both leading to a progesterone deficiency but with different treatment plans.
Are you ready to reset those hormones and feel in control again?
Dr. Danby is here to help you every step of the way!
CLICK HERE to book in with Dr. Danby to learn how you can restore your Hormones naturally!
- Stout et al., J Psychosom Res 1985;29:621–629. • Steiner M. Premenstrual syndromes. Annu Rev Med 1997;48:447–455.
- Beck LE, Girvertz R, Mortola JF. The predictive role of psychosocial stress on symptom severity in premenstrual syndrome. Psychosom Med 1990;52:536–543.