What are they?
Hormones are incredible chemical messengers in our body that affect everything – our brain, heart, bones, muscles, skin, and reproductive organs.
Hormones are an essential part of the workings of every cell in the human body. Hormones also work best when balanced. However, things like stress, poor food choices, inadequate sleep, synthetic hormones, and sedentary lifestyles can throw hormones out of balance and create real health problems.
When your hormones are out of balance, it can contribute to migraines, insomnia, weight gain, hot flashes, mood swings, and low libido, to name a few. Over time, hormone imbalances can lead to rapid aging and increase risk for disease.
When hormones are balanced, on the other hand, you can regain your sexual vitality, sleep better, have more energy and just feel better.
What to do?
There is good news! There is an array of things you can do to create and achieve hormone balance.
- Get in touch with your own unique hormonal rhythms. Pay attention to any symptoms you may have to identify patterns. Such as, do you feel worse in the morning after eating a big sugar dessert the night before? Do you have headaches that are triggered by three cups of coffee? Does your energy flag after two days of no exercise? Learn your body’s reactions and preferences and you will learn what to do to get balanced.
- Journal how you feel for two weeks. This can be as simple as writing short words about your mood, energy and overall well-being in the morning, afternoon and at night. Look for any patterns and think about choices you are making that may be triggering the feeling or symptom.
- Track your menopausal symptoms for a month. For example, record your hot flashes, dates of night sweats, length of periods, dates of headaches (time of mid-period or ovulation, pre-menstrual, during period). This is wonderful information to share with your primary healthcare provider as a way to pinpoint the imbalance issues and improve your care versus generalized symptoms reporting.
- Have your hormone levels tested. There are several ways to test your hormones. Please work with your provider to find the best one.
- Create a plan of action. Work with your healthcare provider to find a plan that addresses your hormone imbalances.