Hormones are very well known by all of us. As a woman, you get to hear it at around the time of your period, as far as we are told, that is the only time that we may feel a bit nutty because of our hormones. But hormones affect all of us, even men. I personally noticed over the last few months that even though I am losing some weight thanks to some habit changes and exercise, the amount of weight lost is very small for the efforts involved. After a review of every ingredient used, and considering the results of a blood test I took, it may have to do with my hormones. I seem to produce very little thyroxine, meaning that my metabolism is super slow. An article that you can read if you feel in a similar situation was The 5 Signs Your Hormones Are Out Of Whack. Doctors and dieticians are considering this more and more as they find cases where the classical diet & exercise falls short.
Read more: 5 Signs Your Hormones Are Out Of Whack
These are some of the most well-known hormones:
Melatonin – > ☀️Feeling happier when it’s sunny? That’s it in a nutshell.
Serotonin – >The one in charge of the mood, appetite, and your sleep cycles 💤.
Thyroxin –> A form of thyroid hormone, thyroxine increases the rate of your metabolism and also affects protein synthesis, which is the process that cells go through to build protein. You can see if you produce little or too much of this one with a blood test (hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism)
Epinephrine –> (🚩also caused by STRESS) also known as adrenaline. The cause of your “fight or flight” response. The thing is that our brain does not distinguish between a real life-threatening danger and the stress of the exams and some people may produce just as much adrenaline as if they were chased by a lion. As we can all imagine, how do we end up if we are running away from lions every day?
Norepinephrine or Noradrenaline-> that controls the heart and blood pressure and things like our sleep, arousal, and emotions.
Dopamine -> In charge of the heart rate and perception
Oxytocin – > 💕A hug from a friend, an evening of cuddling with your partner, all produces oxytocin that has been showed to reduce the levels of cortisol in your body.
Estrogen 🌸 is the well-known female hormone but an estrogen imbalance (too much estrogen in your body) can be the cause of a slower metabolism for example. Women with Endometriosis seem to usually have high levels of estrogen in their bodies and it is what they should avoid.
So with all this in our body and the different interactions, we have to be careful especially with stress as it will make a mess in our hormonal balance. So my advice when you feel very unbalanced, stressed?
✨A few tips on how to gain strength in stressful times and lower your cortisol levels:
1.- Try lavender oil or just the diffusers. I have this one at home and I wish I got it earlier this year as my former job was extremely stressful.
2.-Take bigger doses of green tea or a supplement like green tea or L-Theanine. I had anxiety for a while with the ‘fantastic’ panic attacks in full splendor and only this helped me. It is an amino acid that helps to change your mood for the better and it does not make you sleepy like valerian root would do (it is more a muscle relaxant). And at least it is natural so defo something to try.
3.-Remove SUGAR, COFFEE (with caffeine at least). ALCOHOL, FLOUR, WHEAT, PROCESSED FOODS from your diet. All these will help you feel more anxious, will not help you feel good physically and will make you more prone to feeling drained.
4.-If you have a bath, or the sea close by, a bath or a dip in sea/salted water. It has super benefits for stress. If you can do it at home once a week even better! Use some Epson salt and some bubble bombs to make it more fun.
For inspiration check this video:
5.- Sip some black tea to cut cortisol in half.
We associate tea with comfort and calm—here in Ireland they love tea, every day, all the time!. As it turns out, science confirms the great properties it has. It is suspected that naturally occurring chemicals like polyphenols and flavonoids may be responsible for tea’s calming effects when performing stressful tasks so let’s have a cuppa!
6.-Hang out with that funny friend you have or watch a hilarious comedy. Similar effects than cuddling your cat, your partner, it helps you release oxytocine and it is the best way to cut in half the nasty effects of cortisol.
7.- Do something completely useless and totally fun (for adult standards: like pottery, drawing, doodling or singing in a choir, basically a hobby!)
Thank you for reading and let me know what you think on the comments below!