Is A Hormone Imbalance Causing Fatigue, Hot Flushes, Weight Gain, Low Sex Drive, Depression Or Anxiety?
What contributes to a hormone imbalance?
Hormone imbalance is facing almost every woman. Today more than ever, women are faced with a barrage of complex health issues. Long working hours, combined with the demands of family and friends, is taking a toll on general wellbeing. It seems more and more women are presenting with reproductive difficulties and conditions associated with hormonal imbalance.
Hormone imbalance for both men and women is made worse by constant high levels of stress.
Conditions such as endometriosis, fibroids and polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) are major hormone health issues affecting millions of women worldwide. They have an extremely debilitating effect on physical and emotional health and quality of life for increasing numbers of women, young and old.
The problem is that in our modern lives, factors such as job pressures and emotional ups and downs sometimes cause us to live in a state of stress for long periods. It is this stress that can contribute to an underactive thyroid, worsening PMS, weight gain and conditions mentioned above.
Apart from stress, other factors can cause a hormone imbalance such as oestrogen dominance and environmental oestrogens.
Women with conditions such as endometriosis and fibroids are thought to be exposed to high levels of oestrogen for too long. Such conditions may also occur because the growth promoting effects of oestrogen are not in balance with other hormones such as progesterone. This is called oestrogen dominance.
The main reason why women today are affected by more oestrogen is simply because they are having more periods per lifetime. The average age of a woman’s first period is becoming progressively earlier, the average age of menopause is getting later, and women are having fewer children.
Oestrogen excess does not occur because the ovaries make too much oestrogen; on the contrary, there is usually a problem with availability and clearance of oestrogen.
Our hormone system is a complex system of glands and hormones which control development, growth, reproduction and behaviour. When the delicate balance is disrupted by oestrogen excess, many hormone problems can occur.
Symptoms may include heavy periods, clotting, breakthrough bleeding, period pain and PMS. Increased incidences of endometriosis, fibroids, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), fertility problems, miscarriage, breast and uterine cancer have been associated with oestrogen dominance.
Toxic compounds in our environment are emerging as significant risk factors for hormone health problems.
Apart from exposure to environmental oestrogens, our lifestyle, poor diet and weight gain can also contribute to oestrogen dominance.
Hormonal conditions are major healthcare concerns, affecting millions of women worldwide, and are seemingly increasing in incidence. They have an extremely debilitating effect on physical and emotional health and on quality of life for large numbers of women, young and old.
Oestrogen dominant conditions such as endometriosis, fibroids and PCOS are associated with:
- Exposure of oestrogen through food, water and other environmental sources
- Underactive thyroid gland
- Weight gain
- Sluggish liver function.
All of these are, in turn, inter-related.
- Excessive exposure to environmental oestrogens or poor liver metabolism of oestrogen can result in poor progesterone production and menstrual irregularities.
- An underactive thyroid gland is related to weight gain, and excess fatty tissue increases oestrogen storage.
- Insulin resistance contributes to weight gain and PCOS.