10 Warning Signs Your Hormones Are Out Of Balance & How To Fix It

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10 Warning Signs Your Hormones Are Out Of Balance & How To Fix It

Awareness of hormones and the importance of keeping this essential aspect of whole-body health in balance has increased exponentially over the past few years. While the list of symptoms which indicate a possible endocrine system malfunction is fairly short, these warning signs are often attributed to other problems, leading us to overlook the underlying cause – hormone imbalance.

Take a look at the following 10 warning signs of hormone imbalance and the common causes associated with each one. If you regularly experience one or more of these symptoms in your day-to-day life, your endocrine system may be sending you a message that it’s time to take action!

1. Unexplained Weight Gain or Loss

Hormones play a major role in regulating metabolism, including how we burn calories or store them as fat. For this reason, when your body’s hormone levels become unbalanced, you may experience sudden and unexplained fluctuations in weight. While malfunctioning thyroid or adrenal glands are possible causes, often this problem can be corrected with simple dietary adjustments.

Jill Coleman of Wake Forest University in North Carolina recommends recording when you feel hungry, as well as your energy levels and cravings each day using a 1 to 10 scale. If you are prone to excessive hunger and cravings, but your energy levels are generally very low, try increasing your daily protein intake by 20 to 30 grams (about the equivalent of a 3 – 4 ounce chicken breast.) This will help to stabilize your blood-glucose levels and may set your metabolic hormones back on the right track.

For a list of hormone balancing foods including many nutritious high-protein options, check out this great article!

2. Stubborn Belly Fat

Fluctuations aren’t the only weight problems which can manifest from unbalanced hormones. Inability to lose weight, especially around the mid-section is another common symptom. Cortisol, a hormone regulated by the adrenals is known to cause belly fat retention when too much of it is present in the blood stream. This overabundance of cortisol is more often than not a result of prolonged periods of stress.

If you feel like you’ve exhausted every trick in the book and you still can’t seem to burn off that stubborn belly fat, give essential oils a try. Several of the adaptogenic oils detailed in this article have powerful abilities to help you reduce stress, lower your level of circulating cortisol, and ditch that annoying ‘spare tire’ once and for all!

3. Loss of Muscle Mass

There are several hormones responsible for growth and maintenance of muscle mass in the human body – GH (growth hormone, also know as somatrophin or somatotrophin), IFG-1 (insulin-like growth factor 1) and testosterone being the main contributors, with insulin and thyroid hormones also playing auxiliary roles. When these hormones are out of sync with each other, your body’s ability to digest and process proteins from food becomes hindered, leading to muscle atrophy and the inability to build new muscle tissue.

If you are experiencing loss of muscle mass and you believe hormone imbalance may be to blame, here are a few easy natural tips to help you set things right. Follow a regular exercise schedule including both weight training and light cardio for about 30 – 60 minutes per day. Include more protein in your diet and cut back on simple carbohydrates like white bread, white rice, and sugary foods. Also, be sure you are taking time to relax and unwind at the end of the day. Make it a goal to get at least 8 hours of sleep every night.

4. Irregular Digestion

As previously stated, hormones play a major role in proper digestion. If you have an imbalance, chances are pretty good that you’re feeling it in your gut, though you may not have realized what was causing the discomfort. Bloating, excessive flatulence or burping, indigestion, diarrhea or constipation, nausea, and even itching in the nether regions are all symptoms of hormone imbalance which may manifest in the digestive tract.

If that list of symptoms seemed like it was speaking directly to you, check out our Top 12 Probiotic Foods For Better Gut Health which will give you a strong starting point to repair the imbalance.

5. Unusual or Increased Cravings

While cravings for specific types of food are often the result of a simple nutrient deficiency, these urges may also be indicative of a deeper problem. Hormone imbalances in the adrenals, thyroid and pancreas are known to cause cravings for salty and sweet foods as well as feelings of intense hunger when your body doesn’t really need to eat.

Avoid over-consumption of alcohol, excessive indulgence in simple carbohydrates like white bread and sweets, smoking or taking stimulants (coffee, energy drinks, etc) all of which can exacerbate the problem. Then try out some of these 12 Genius Tricks To Curb Cravings Naturally. Afterward, if you still find yourself having those persistent snack-attacks, it may be time to seek advice from your doctor.

6. Excessive Sweating

Both hyper- and hypothyroidism may manifest as profuse sweating. This very uncomfortable but often overlooked symptom can also be the result of reproductive hormone imbalance in women, often caused by menopause or use of birth control medications.

If you are experiencing frequent and excessive sweating, speak with a medical professional about the possibility of testing for a hormone imbalance to pinpoint the exact cause. He or she can then advise you on the best solution to get your body back into proper working order.

7. Anxiety, Irritability, and Mood Swings

It’s no secret that hormone imbalance causes erratic moods and the list of possible causes is extensive. Over-worked adrenals, hypothyroidism, serotonin deficiency, over-abundance of dopamine or GABA imbalance can all throw your emotions into disarray.

Some natural solutions which can help ease these mood swings include eating more high-protein foods, complex carbohydrates and healthy fats, as well as avoiding environmental toxins by choosing organic foods. You may also want to supplement with 5-HTP which naturally increases serotonin and GABA levels.

8. Slackened Libido

The reproductive system is hugely dependent on hormones to maintain proper function. When a body’s hormones fall out of balance, loss of sex drive is a fairly common symptom. Environmental, dietary, and lifestyle factors all contribute to balancing reproductive hormones in both men and women.

As previously stated, eating a nutritious diet which includes hormone-healthy foods can go a long way toward reversing this effect. Also try to avoid environmental toxins such as those found in plastics and household chemicals which can mimic hormones and throw the reproductive system off balance.

9. Insomnia or Irregular Sleep Patterns

The circadian rhythm which regulates energy levels throughout the day and signals the body when it’s time to sleep is directly linked to the endocrine system. For this reason, hormone imbalances often result in sleep disorders like insomnia.

If you’ve recently noticed or if even if you have a long history of unexplainable irregular sleep patterns, hormone imbalance may be to blame. While professional medical advice may be the key to ultimately solving sleep problems, there are also many natural steps which you can take to help yourself get a better night’s rest. Check out these 11 Natural Sleep Remedies That Really Work to learn a few tricks which can help you catch more high quality zzz’s!

10. Persistent and Chronic Fatigue

With all of the symptoms we’ve covered so far, it should come as little surprise that hormone imbalance often makes a body feel completely exhausted on a daily basis. Not only could this be attributed to the decreased ability to digest foods, fluctuations in weight and body mass composition, erratic mood swings and lack of quality sleep as previously-mentioned. Also, keep in mind that when your hormones are out of balance, your body has to work overtime just to perform its basic functions while simultaneously trying to get itself right again.

As previously stated, if one or more of the warning signs on this list seem to apply to you, you will definitely want to speak with your family doctor about the possibility that your endocrine system may be out of balance. He or she can perform tests to confirm or allay your suspicions.

How To Fix Your Hormone Imbalance

In the mean time, you can begin taking to steps to improve your hormone health by following these 10 Ways to Balance Hormones Naturally and add some of these 30 Foods That Naturally Balance Hormones to your diet. (Even if it turns out that your endocrine system is functioning as it should, the natural remedies and foods contained within these two articles can help to further increase your overall health and well being!)

You can also explore how you can use essential oils to heal hormonal imbalance in this article: 9 Essential Oils For Hormonal Imbalance & How To Use Them

The thyroid gland is one of the smallest organs in the human body. It is also one of the most important – directly affecting everything from proper circulation, sleep and digestion to reproductive function, growth and development . Check out these Top 10 Ways To Heal Thyroid Problems Naturally to learn more about the endocrine system and how maintaining proper hormone health can keep your body running at its fullest potential!