Women’s are considered as the “care takers” of any society. You might agree with me because they are not only giving birth, but also taking care of their children, spouse and loved ones. Not only this, they are equally justifying that approach in their workplace or as a home maker. I mean fearlessly superintending the things endlessly. Bravo!
But this “Wonder Woman” many times shows contributory negligence towards her health and from deep inside grappling with her emotions in a forlorn manner but predicts that everything is okey- dokey.
Here I want to apprise you that most of the times by managing the things for everyone we fail to remember ourselves and start romping with our well-being by neglecting the problems we might be facing in the form of mood swings, Insomnia and poor quality sleep, unexplained weight gain, weariness, libido, skin problems and the list never breaks off. Well, have you ever tried to rectify them by knowing what’s the actual cause? Don’t worry these are just the manifestation of our hormonal imbalances.
Before knowing Hormonal imbalance let’s quickly understand our hormones:
These are the “chemical messengers” which is made up by the specialist cells, usually with an endocrine gland which secretes them directly into our bloodstream and then carried to different organs and tissues of the body to exert their function.
They tend to keep an eye to every minute details of our body processes. What I mean to say that, each and every movement of our body depends on them, as they travel throughout the body and coordinate in complex processes like – growth, metabolism, fertility, heart rate, hunger, mood swings, activation-inhibition of immune system, wake up cycle and much more.
Furthermore, you will be surprised to know that before birth, they guide the development of the brain and our reproductive system. Do thank them if ever you felt that, why our arms are of the same length, why we can turn our food into fuel and how did we change from head to toe at puberty. So never underrate them folks.
Moreover, our perception for hormones is just up to “sex hormones but actually there are about at least 50 different hormones that secrete and circulate in our blood system and continually fluctuate.
See I don’t have any intention to lecture on “Hormones” but yeah will definitely suggest that “ tiny but largely, our body is dependant on hormones to function.” Now what happens when there levels get fluctuated? See any fluctuations occur when there is too much or too little of a hormone as it affects our overall health and well being. I hope you have started correlating with the things discussed above.
Levels of hormones fluctuate throughout the persons life, generally declining as humans age and nobody could deny that women’s experience these shifts throughout their life starting from puberty changes to menstruation cycles following our pregnancy phase from child birth to breast feeding and then finally proceeding towards peri menopause, menopause and post menopause. See how they keep supporting us. But many times these shifts are more sensitive for some of us than others, that’s why we have heard many times some women’s experience on menopause is very unpleasant than others and some might get a post natal depression while others didn’t get bothered at all by the hormonal changes of menstruation and pregnancy.
It doesn’t mean that something is wrong with you. Instead try to sort these symptoms and work on simplifying them. Let’s understand the problems with these shifts which would help every woman to get familiarise with it .
Problems associated with Hormonal Imbalance:
A) Sleep: Many times we miss the good quality of sleep and next day turns out to be a bizarre one. This happens, due to low levels of progesterone which is released by the ovaries that helps us to sleep. Furthermore many of us during our peri menopause and menopause suffer from night sweats and hot flashes, which affects the proper sleep due to low estrogen level.
B) Gastrointestinal problems: Many times we experience abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhoea, constipation, nausea, vomiting during periods with mood changes and fatigue which is due to GI disturbances which happens during monthly hormonal fluctuations.
C) Fatigue: We tend to get tired on several occasions by disturbances in two hormones-progesterone (levels get high making you more tired) and low level of Thyroid.
D) Brain fog: This is specifically related to woman’s in their peri menopause and menopause, many times we see them complaining about their memory and concentration power. Low level of estrogen and thyroid disease apart from many other factors plays a vital role.
E) Appetite and weight: There are two major hunger hormones-Ghrelin and Leptin which remind our brain that either we are hungry or full. This happens especially during our monthly cycles- which triggers mood changes and due to which we crave for some foods, which are high in fats, calories, sugar and after consuming them, they back fire us in different ways like: water retention, bloating, weight gain. So next time please don’t blame yourself for all this but yeah low level of estrogen affects leptin which is a hunger inhibitor hormone.
F) Low sex drive: Low testosterone levels may cause libido. Yes….”testosterone” it is typically considered as a male hormone but females also have them in little concentration in comparison to males. Many women’s after menopause report low sex drive which is due to its reduced level.
G) Mood disturbances: Many times we experience anger, irritability, mood swings, anxiety, depression. Our gonadal hormones-oestrogen, progesterone,testosterone impacts our brain chemistry and influence our moods, emotions, behaviour.
H) Breast changes: Many women notice the breast changes, which is caused due to high or too low estrogen levels. High levels cause lumpy or dense breast tissue, even cyst whereas low levels cause decreased breast tissue density.
I) Heavy- painful periods: Many of us complain painful or sometimes, a heavy period, lower back pain, a frequent need to urinate, constipation – these all are the aftermath of estrogen imbalances.
J) Weakening of Bones: Approximately around 50% women over the age of 50 suffer from Bone Break due to osteoporosis. Actually estrogen helps us to build and maintain strong healthy bones. But after menopause, the estrogen levels start decreasing and results in such problems.
The list is quite long ; although I have tried to cover a few of the major problems which we might face in our day today life. Now we know in depth about problems which are associated with hormonal imbalance.
Causes of hormonal imbalance: They might be caused by external factors such as: stress, unhealthy life style, improper diet, hormonal medications. But they can also be caused by any health conditions that impacts or involves the endocrine system eg: diabetes, thyroid disorders, PCOS etc.
Diagnosis: Talk to your doctor if you find any of the symptoms, get them examined by a qualified health professional so that they could find out the root cause of your symptoms and advice best treatment rather than following personal opinion of others.
Moral of the story: Now we have understood that hormonal balance is a vital need of our body. As I told you earlier that natural fluctuations are normal but when the same fluctuations are caused by the toxins or unbalanced lifestyle patterns then it becomes mandatory to act. Our hormones are deeply connected with the food we eat, the lifestyle we follow, the weight we possess and the stress we carry.
So I suggest in addition to proper medications for leading a good lifestyle:
- Do some excercise or yoga.
- Practice some meditation to lower your stress level.
- Make a fixed sleep routine in which you wake up and go to bed at fixed time.
- Avoid caffeine and alcohol in late afternoon.
- Avoid blue lights specially in night, it disturbs our sleep patterns.
- Consume a balanced diet which we will discuss rather soon.
- Establish a relaxing night time – have a warm bath, essential oil infused candles, sip of your favourite antioxidant rich tea and light music.
For many of you these things are not practical or dreamy but I assure you that if you start practising these things it will bring a huge impact to your lives and never ever make excuses for yourself, it’s not good even start initiating doing little things for you which make you happy because no one from outside will come for you, it’s only yours perception towards your life which can do wonders. Lastly am ending my views from the very beautiful quote of the poetess “Maya Angelou”-
“When woman take care of their Health, they become their best friend”