There are many ways to define "healthy eating" and sometimes even with the best attempts, hormones can still be off and causing issues with brain fog, fatigue, or weight gain.
Hormones, including cortisol, thyroid, insulin, progesterone, estrogen and testosterone can all impact our day to day energy and activities.
Here are ten ways to balance your hormones naturally:
1) Keep caffeine minimal.
One to two cups of coffee in the morning can be okay, but too much caffeine raises cortisol and deplete the adrenal glands leading to more energy highs and lows, and ultimately, adrenal fatigue.
2) Incorporate plant based saturated fats
Avocados and coconut oil as well as nuts and seeds are crucial to boost and balance many female hormones as well as testosterone.
3) Use a pure Omega 3 supplement
One of the best ways to balance hormones is with Omega 3 fatty acids, generally from oil fish or vegan algae oil. Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) is found in chia, flax and walnuts but is more difficult to convert to usable Omega 3. I use Omegaguard for it's guaranteed purity and potency.
4) Limit Omega 6 fatty acids, and all trans fats
As you keep the Omega 3 fatty acids high, you also need to keep the Omega 6 fatty acids low- limit highly processed oils like vegetable oil, corn oil, soybean oil, canola oil and any margarine or shortening. Trans fats are the worst offenders for health and hormone imbalance and can be identified with the ingredient hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils. Instead, stick to real butter and coconut oil for high heat and olive oil for low heat or salads.
5) Cut out white flour
Many women benefit from cutting out wheat all together, but to begin you should at least eliminate the white flour products like crackers, pretzels, bread, pasta, bagels and excess white sugar. These foods can lead to energy imbalances like brain fog, fatigue and raise insulin, which is connected to hormonal issues including polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
6) Daily greens
Add in green vegetables at least once a day! Aim for a serving of leafy greens each day (lettuce, kale, swiss chard, spinach) as well as other green veggies (broccoli, zucchini, cucumber). Additional colorful fruits and vegetables will also help to boost your fiber intake to clear out excess estrogen and gently "scrub" your insides.
7) Supplement with Vitamin D
This is especially crucial if you live in the northern part of the United States but everyone can benefit from additional Vitamin D as sunlight is not always enough. Deficiencies are linked to low energy, weight gain, allergies and cravings.
8) Lower stress
Try to incorporate deep breathing, meditation or yoga to help lower cortisol- the stress hormone. High levels of cortisol are linked to belly fat and will mess with your hormonal balance.
9) Avoid unnecessary hormonal intervention
If possible, go off birth control and track your cycles naturally so you know what is really going on with your body.
10) Clean out your cleaning supplies
Many of your cleaning supplies and beauty products are toxic and contain known endocrine disruptors. Switch to natural cleaning products to improve your hormonal health, as well as the health of your whole family.