Is a hormonal imbalance causing your weight problem?

A hormonal imbalance can be the cause of your weight gain as well as other more serious health problems. Achieving a hormone balance is essential to a woman's health. If you have difficult periods and/or experience emotional ups and downs but you can't say why, it could be due to this common hormone problem.

From the minute your menstrual cycle begins, you are vulnerable to fluctuating hormones. Childbirth only adds to the problem and by the time you reach menopause, your body has had to adjust to all kinds of situations where hormone balance is at risk.

One type of hormonal imbalance is called estrogen dominance, a phrase popularized by the late John R. Lee, MD. It is a condition where excess estrogen combined with a decreasing level of progesterone causes too much estrogen in your body.

This hormonal imbalance can trigger many serious health problems for women today, including weight gain,menstrual disturbances,fibroids, Endometriosis, pre-menstrual syndrome,ovarian cysts,and Fibrocystic Breast Disease.

Other reasons for hormonal imbalance

While menopause (and peri-menopause) are blamed for most hormonal imbalances, it can also be the result of xenoestrogens. These are estrogens that we take in through our environment which imitate the actions of naturally-produced estrogen within our bodies.

Examples of xenoestrogens include pesticides on our produce and the feed eaten by livestock and poultry, growth hormones given to livestock and poultry, and chemicals in plastics used in food and drink packaging which leach into our food.

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An unhealthy lifestyle can also cause hormonal imbalance. Eating a modern diet of processed foods, refined sugars and little to no fiber coupled with a lack of exercise leads to insulin resistance, obesity, digestive problems and cardiovascular disease. All of these lifestyle factors affect your hormone balance because they make you gain weight in the form of fat and fat produces estrogen. The more fat you have, the more estrogen your body makes.

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Stress can also cause a hormonal imbalance because it releases cortisol which calls on your body�s progesterone store. If you are in menopause or perimenopause where progesterone is already low, your body could be seriously depleted of its progesterone when you suffer from too much stress and cause more hormonal imbalance.

A dysfunctional liver can also cause a hormonal_ imbalance and cause estrogen dominance if the processes to filter out excess estrogen in the liver are not working properly.

Re-set your hormone balance

Increase your fiber intake. Excess estrogen is excreted through your bowel. If there�s not enough fiber in your diet, the excess estrogen will eventually be re-absorbed into your body, causing more hormonal imbalance.

Use dietary supplements and routinely do a liver cleanse to promote bile circulation which helps to get the excess estrogen out of your body.

Use a progesterone supplement, either a non-prescription cream or a prescription from your doctor, whatever works for you.

Increase intake of phytoestrogens, plant-based substances that naturally imitate estrogen in a healthy way. Phytoestrogens are found in soybeans , licorice, yams and alfalfa.

Avoiding xenoestrogens

Wash your produce thoroughly with soap and water or a pesticide remover that you can find in most grocery store�s produce department.

Avoid using plastics for drinking or re-heating and storing food. Use glass, porcelain or ceramic insead.

Eat only lean, organic meat and dairy products that are hormone-free.

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