Balance your hormones naturally with these diet and lifestyle tips
Balancing our hormones requires a holistic approach which goes beyond supplementation and considers dietary and lifestyle changes. It’s important we build these healthy habits into our daily routine so that we assist our bodies to fine and maintain hormonal balance long term. Please use the following as a practical guide to improve your health and specifically balance your hormones:
Avoid or significantly reduce:
- Canned food – Most cans are made from aluminum and are lined with BPA a form of plastic that releases molecules into the blood stream which mimic estrogen (these are called xeno-estrogens and often contribute to high estrogen levels in the body when ingested)
- Plastic water bottles/Food in plastics – Once again plastics leech into our food, especially when exposed to heat or light, and this increases our estrogen levels (please note even if a plastic says ‘BPA Free’ There are many other chemicals in plastics which are still xeno-estrogens and can disrupt your hormones – such as ‘Thalates’ which is why it is best to move away from plastics all together.)
- Never microwave or put hot leftovers in plastic containers
- Avoid Xeno-estrogens – these can also be found in commercial pesticides and sprays so aim to buy organic fruits, vegies, meats, eggs etc)
- Avoid conventionally farmed animal products – animals raised conventionally or in concentrated feed lots are prone to being injected with hormones to speed up growth, egg and/or milk production, these hormones can be passed to us when we eat these foods. They also feed or inject them with antibiotics, GM food and other nasties, not to mention the cruel environment the animals are raised in. So all round it is best to only buy grass feed, free range, certified organic animal products. It’s good for you and the animal J
- Avoid Phyto-estrogens – these are mainly found in soy and all soy products so please avoid these unless you are in post menopause (when your estrogen naturally drops so we are happy to have extra in our diet)
- Switch plastic water bottle to glass or BPA free stainless steel.
Foods to include:
- Certified organic animal products – This is of utmost importance because as I mentioned earlier this is the only way to ensure our meat, poultry, eggs or dairy is free of added hormones such as estrogen and antibiotics and GM feed. Also protein is a building block for our hormones, if we don’t have enough we will struggle to make our hormones.
- Healthy fats – i.e. Avocado, nuts and seeds, LSA, extra virgin coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil (not for cooking), flaxseed oil, cod liver oil, UDO’s oil, organic butter, organic ghee + The reason being that most of our hormones are ‘steroid’ hormones meaning that they are made from fats and therefore REQUIRE fats to be in the diet to make these hormones.
- Certified organic fruits and vegetables – As the pesticides & sprays used on conventionally farmed produce has been shown to disrupt hormones.
- Cruciferous vegetables i.e. broccoli, broccoli sprouts, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, cabbage + These vegetables have higher levels of a chemical compound called ‘Indoles’ which help the liver process estrogens and remove them from the body. Specifically Indol-3-Carbinol (IC3) and diindolymethane (DIM) these are very powerful Indoles which have been researched extensively for their effects on clearing excess hormones from the body. We can extract high amounts of these from these foods and use as a supplement in the short term to expedite the process but ultimately we aim to get this in the diet long term for maintenance of hormonal balance.
- Sulphur rich vegetables i.e. onion, garlic + these also help the liver with detoxification
- Green leafy vegetables - these are also very cleansing for the body and supportive of the liver
- Drink 2 Litres + of Filtered water a day – its important to make sure it’s filtered as there are many chemicals which contaminate our drinking water these days which can affect hormones – not to mention if you live in an area which uses recycled water – this means you will be drinking water that has had urine from women who are on the pill and hormone replacement therapy in it – which can still possibly affect your hormone levels.
Additional Lifestyle tips:
- Lower your stress
- Get a good nights sleep – See Angela’s sleep hygiene tips by clicking here.
- Meditate – Try this great free mindfulness meditation app “Headspace”
- Breath deeply
- Do something fun or relaxing for 15mins everyday which gives you energy and brings you a feeling of pure indulgence and bliss! (this will support your adrenals and therefore your hormones!)
Please remember: this list is not only for women but also for men and children. If you think about it is almost more important they are not exposed to additional estrogens and estrogen mimicking molecules in their food and water as they only need limited amounts of these strong female hormones. When they receive an excess, children can progress through puberty far too quickly and men can develop female characteristics and have imbalances with their testosterone (their main male hormone) throwing their hormones and development out of whack.
I encourage you to pick even just 1 thing from this list and start practicing it daily you can begin to rebalance your hormones, creating a new healthy habit that will help you maintain the healing you achieve!
Yours in vibrant health,
Angela Busby Nat. Nut. H.Med.