Eating for hormone health pt. 1
10 Tips for Creating a Hormone-Healthy Diet
Before we dive into eating for hormone health, it’s essential to understand; dieting does not work long term (not even the so-called healthy ones). I want to help you ditch the diet mindset. Instead of moving from one ‘it’ diet to the next, focus on eating real food and making the most strategic lifestyle changes needed to optimize your hormone health. I don’t suggest calculating macros or counting calories either! Girlfriend, that’s not sustainable (remember you are in this for the long haul).
Create a Well-Balanced Plate
Macronutrients (fat, protein, and carbohydrates) play a major role in how hormones function in the body. They influence the synthesis, the absorption, and the behavior of the hormones. If the meals we eat are not macronutrient balanced, it can affect the way our bodies function. So, be sure to build a balanced plate with fat, protein and the right carbohydrates. The right carbohydrates are complex nutrient-dense carbohydrates like sweet potatoes and whole oats.
Skipping meals is never a good idea for women, especially when it comes to hormonal health. A woman's body is different than a mans and is very sensitive to caloric restriction. When you skip a meal, for example, breakfast, your body interprets it as a threat. It starts saving fat just in case, leading to a surge in belly fat. At the same time, this response triggers the production of ghrelin, which is also called the hunger hormone. The result? When you get a chance to eat, you will eat like you are eating for two...or three.
Skipping meals also makes your body to send out hormones like cortisol, the stress hormone, which further changes the way your body metabolizes food and stores fat. Skipping meals can also lead to fatigue and mood swings. If you would like to practice intermittent fasting, do it overnight. For example, if you close your eating window at 7:00 p.m. and reopen it at 8:00 a.m., that’s a 13 hour fast!
Mindful eating is a technique that you can use to gain control over your eating habits. You can use it to promote weight loss and reduce binge eating. At its core, mindful eating is all about eating slowly without distraction, eating only until you are full while listening to your hunger cues, and distinguishing between real hunger and non-hunger triggers.
Eating mindfully means engaging all your senses and noticing the flavors, textures, smells, and colors of the food you’re eating. Mindful eating can go a long way in helping you learn to cope with food-related guilt or anxiety and maintaining your overall health and well-being. It will make you appreciate food more, have a healthier diet, and achieve hormonal balance.
As you will see, certain foods can help promote hormone balance. However, sometimes, no matter how healthy and nutritious your diet is, you may notice that some of these issues just won't go away. When this happens, it means that there is a good chance something else is in play. In many cases, endocrine-disrupting chemicals are to blame.
Endocrine disruptors are substances that alter the functioning of the body's endocrine system, or the hormonal system. It is impossible to avoid endocrine disruptors altogether. They are found almost everywhere, from plastic packaging to beauty products to pesticides in the food supply.