Let’s talk a little more about hormones.
Hormones play an essential role in growth and development. They are fundamental for every cell to function, thrive, and age gracefully.
Hormones allow our bodies to balance metabolism, cope with stress, regulate our immune system, provide physical energy, amongst many other things.
For many of us, hormone talk is quite common. Often it can be a great source of tension, especially when we’re attempting to manage our hormones and the symptoms that come with hormone imbalance, like:
- Hot flashes
- Low libido
- Brain fog
- Weight gain
- Hair Loss
You may frequently see articles or journals about hormones with a stock photo of a woman either in pain or showing some sort of discomfort, alluding to the idea that hormones and their natural cycles are something to dislike or view in a negative light.
Certainly no one enjoys the symptoms that accompany hormonal imbalances and while it’s completely valid to feel as though something is wrong and begin making strides to address the problem, it’s also important to know that not all hormone fluctuations are bad.
As women, we naturally experience monthly fluctuation of hormones, as well as daily hormone shifts. Our bodies are meant to do this.
These fluctuations are part of the body’s natural rhythm — your body is always adjusting.
For example, when speaking about menstruation, estrogen increases during the first half of your cycle and progesterone increases during the second half of your cycle. All hormone levels decrease right before menstruation begins.
Similarly, estrogen levels are higher in the morning, progesterone levels are higher at night. Cortisol is also higher in the morning and decreases at night. These shifts serve a very specific purpose, but if they become even slightly off track, they can produce the less than desired symptoms of hormone imbalance.
That said, balancing hormones is a very complex art.
It’s hard to balance something that is meant to fluctuate, but we do the best that we can by adding or increasing the hormones that are missing, working to reduce the hormones that are being produced in excess, and supporting the liver in cleansing the body of toxic hormones.
So what can you do to show your hormones a little love and find balance?
Listen and reflect on what they’re trying to tell you.
Your hormones are special chemical messengers created by your body to bring purpose, structure, and life to every function in your body.
I find that it is helpful for my patients to journal and reflect during times of hormone imbalance. I recommend that they connect and reflect on each hormone and ask for their guidance in how to improve their health. I also suggest examining what might be missing in their lives. Everything is connected. A missing hormone could be an indication that something is missing in life — the young, lively, strong energy of estrogen and testosterone; or the calming, soothing, yin energy of progesterone.
Take the proper steps to help your hormones get back into alignment.
This means more than just simply recognizing that your hormones might be off track. It means diving deeper by testing your levels and learning exactly where your hormones are. It means supporting your hormones through natural hormone replacement therapy and assisting your liver in ridding your body of all of the toxins blocking your path to health.
By using this process of natural hormone treatments, detox protocols, and spiritual reflection, I’ve been able to help my patients maintain balanced hormones 80-90% of the time. However, they can’t be completely controlled, so 10% of the time they are naturally fluctuating — being guided by your body’s inner intelligence.
Remember that there’s no such thing as perfect.
This is true even for me. I do everything I can to keep my hormone levels balanced, but I also know that despite my best efforts, I will still retain some amount of water during my period. I will also experience breast tenderness and fatigue which is normal and natural as hormones change. I observe these symptoms and flow with them, rather than fight against them.
Embrace change and learn to speak your truth.
As women, our regular cycle gives us the opportunity to cleanse and start anew each month. Our menstrual cycles serve as an opportunity to let go, literally and figuratively — we release an unfertilized egg, but we can also consciously make an effort to let go of anything that isn’t serving us in life.
The hormone fluctuations that occur during our menstrual cycles also create space for us to feel more deeply, every emotion from sadness, anger, and frustration to joy and peace.
Instead of fighting these fluctuations when they happen, it’s important to simply ride it like a wave. There is a natural ebb and flow, with natural highs and lows.
Honor where you are in this flow when it happens.
Understand that there will be times when you’ll need to rest, often before your cycle. Make space for that. On days when you’re feeling clearer and more energized, honor that as well and use that time to work on things that feel meaningful to you.
If you’ve moved past menstruation and are menopausal, you can honor this cycle with gratitude — thank your body for everything it’s taught you from youth until now. Be grateful that you no longer have to experience monthly cycles and all that comes with them.
We live in a society where the natural fluctuations that occur in women’s bodies are often misunderstood and unappreciated, but as women it’s important for us to know that even if we have the most perfect lab work, we will still experience some of the symptoms that come with natural hormone fluctuations.
As women, it is those natural hormonal ebbs and flows that give us the sacred ability to create life and sustain it. This is truly a beauty beyond comprehension and often overlooked.
When we talk about being “balanced” it means letting your hormones be in the flow, not necessarily achieving a certain number on paper and making it stay there indefinitely. If you stop fighting against your hormones, you will find more fulfillment, peace, and joy as you flow with them. I’ve seen it first hand – the more we speak negatively of our hormones, the more we’re frustrated and angered by them – the more out of balance they become.
Honor your body and its wisdom, everything that occurs (even the imbalances) are there for a reason.