Happy & Healthy Hormones

By Carissa Anne Nutritionist {BHSc} – The JCN Clinic

Ahhhh hormones. The complex web of biochemical processes that have synergistic relationships with one another within our bodies that really just confuse the bajeebaz out of most of us ladies and gents.

When everything is functioning well, our hormone function will be quite harmonious. Yet sometimes our hormones can get out of whack and consequently cause a multitude of unwanted side effects.

It’s important to understand that reproductive hormone function is directly impacted by stress hormone function and thus when things are amiss unfortunately, our hormones can go a tad cray-cray.

Our emotional well being can be altered and we can start to suffer from conditions like anxiety and depression and our period can go seriously haywire! Think heavy periods, irregular periods, no period, painful periods and super-symptomatic periods... Hello crying at the drop of a hat or lashing out irrationally at your loved ones. The good news is that there are so many nutritious foods you can eat and lifestyle practices that you can implement to ensure that your hormones function at their best.

MY TOP 5 TIPS FOR HAPPY AND HEALTHY HORMONES

Eat a Well Balanced Diet Rich in Macro and Micronutrients:
Protein’s, carbohydrates and fats are all super essential for healthy hormone production and metabolic function - these guys are your macronutrients. Don’t forget the little guys though – if you eat a diet that is rich in colourful food and diversity you’ll be consuming all the micronutrients you need.

Consume Adequate Fibre: A healthy functioning gut is essential for healthy hormones and a healthy gut NEEDS fibre. These come from the complex carbohydrates such as grains, pulses and starchy veggies and also from most of the other non starchy fruits and vegetables.

By eating an array of these daily you can also be assured that you’re getting pre-biotics – these FEED the good bacteria in your gut and allow happy and healthy hormone production and signalling.

Eat Foods that Reduce Inflammation: An anti-inflammatory diet will help the body maintain a state of homeostasis and thus help your hormones communicate effectively. Wild caught salmon and other oily fish, as well as extra virgin olive oil and other healthy fats (nuts, seeds and avocado) all pack a double punch as they help fight inflammation in the body and also provide the body with Omega’s.

Consume Enough Calories: Our bodies are complex little things and they don’t like to be starved. Girls, if you’re trying to lose weight, please don’t drop your calories down to ridiculously low levels to achieve it. This creates an epic stress response within the body and the brain decides to shut down reproductive hormone function. This will also happen if your body fat % is too low. Ladies – we need a bit of fat on us to make healthy hormones!

Move Daily and Manage Your Stress: Whatever it may be, find something you love that gets you moving each day. Walking and Yoga are great to help chill out your brain and if you can combine that with some form of functional training then that’s even better. It great for your body, great for your head and this makes it fantastic for your hormones.

If you’re struggling with hormone irregularities and feel like you’re nailing all of the above, then this is where I’d recommend seeing a practitioner who specialises in this. There is some damn fine hormone testing available that can really nut out what is going on for you!

Carissa is an accredited and practicing nutritionist at the JCN Clinic in Brisbane. The JCN Clinic is renowned for their focus on Digestive and Hormonal Health and an individualised, balanced approach to eating and nutrition. Carissa is available for Nutritional Consultations in person or via Skype or phone. To find out more contact the Clinic via email reception@jessicacox.com.au. Click here to book online! For 15% off your Initial Consultation, use the code: FWFJCN or mention Paleo Hero over the phone!