From controlling our moods to weight, hormones are responsible for various functions in our body. They are chemical messengers needed for the overall well-being. An imbalance in hormones can lead to a number of health issues.
“Diabetes type 2, hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, obesity, PCOS, heavy periods, infertility, stiff joints, acne, and hirsutism (excess hair on the face) are caused by the hormonal imbalance in the body,” wrote Renu Rakheja, a nutritionist, in her Instagram post.
Hormonal imbalance is likely to be caused by a number of factors including a diet devoid of essential nutrients. The expert tells us various disruptors that mess up our hormones.
*Sugary and processed foods increase insulin levels and cause inflammation in the body. Also, the increased insulin levels cause obesity and push up the levels of estrogen and testosterone.
*Dairy, especially milk, messes up with our hormones. It can cause inflammation in the gut and irritate the system.
*Sugar, alcohol, caffeine, stress, and lack of sleep increase cortisol levels, the stress hormone. Cortisol, which is a very dominating hormone, causes the disruption of major hormones in our body.
*Synthetic chemicals present in plastic bottles, containers, shampoos, fragrances in perfumes and deodorants, and pesticides can also cause disruptions in the functioning of hormones.
*Lack of exercise and movement that includes a sedentary lifestyle leads to a decreased amount of sex hormones. She recommends moderate exercise to decrease the stress hormone (cortisol).
What can you do to improve your hormonal health?
According to Renu, eating well-balanced, high nutrient meals with complex carbohydrates, protein, and good fats help improve hormonal health. She also suggests choosing organic foods and decreasing stress in life besides doing exercise.