What are hormones? Hormones are chemicals that control many processes in the body. Getting and keeping them balanced is vital not just to be healthy and function optimally, but also for your skin. A typical hormonal imbalance is literally having too much of one and not enough of another. Like everything else in our body, hormones rely on the food that we eat. There are key milestones in our lives when we will experience hormonal fluctuations, such as puberty, PMS, pregnancy and menopause. Even through these times diet and lifestyle play a huge role in balancing these hormones thus allowing for clearer healthier skin.
How do hormones affect our skin? The skin can reflect hormonal imbalance in many ways. Acne flare-ups can be related to hormone imbalances. Post-menopausal dry skin can be caused by imbalances, as can eczema, pigmentation, rosacea and premature aging (wrinkles). Other symptoms such as hair growth, mood swings, bloating, depression, breast tenderness and irritability can be attributed to hormonal imbalance. Tearfulness, lack of energy, hair loss, sugar cravings, insomnia, vaginal dryness and weight gain may also factor.
How to improve hormone balance: balancing sugar levels in the blood is crucial. An adequate intake of essential fatty acids (omega 3&6) is imperative, as is increasing phytoestrogens (lentils, beans etc…).
Diet tips to balance hormones
Eat nuts and seeds (omega 3 & 6)
Eat organic meat & eggs
Eat as much organic fruit & vegetables as possible
Eat oily fish twice a week, salmon, trout, and kippers etc…, tuna – 1-2 times a month
Balance sugar levels
Increase intake of phytoestrogens
Reduce intake of animal fats, red meat, milk and dairy
Avoid stimulants – coffee, tea, smoking and alcohol
Eat a balanced diet and eat regularly
Avoid sugary snacks
Avoid refined foods
Lifestyle tips to balance hormones
Regular exercise is essential (15 minutes each day)
Filter drinking water
Minimise exposure to soft plastics, known to disrupt hormones
Consult a nutritional therapist
Top hormone balancing nutrients
Essential Fatty Acids (EFA's)