Hormones affect your appetite, mood, and overall health. Under the stress of modern lifestyles, our hormones are the first to suffer. But there's no cause for despair just yet. Small lifestyle changes, such as getting enough sleep and regular exercise, can work wonders. A change in your diet can also help.
Read on to know about some healthy foods that can help keep hormonal imbalance at bay.
10 Amazing Foods to Help You Avoid Hormone Imbalance
1. Organic Cruciferous Vegetables
Cruciferous vegetables include veggies such as broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, bok choy, and Brussels sprouts. These vegetables are ideal for processing and removing excess estrogen from your body. They protect you from estrogen dominance and lower your risk of hormone-related cancers like ovarian, breast, and endometrial cancers. The high calcium content in vegetables like broccoli also aid in relieving premenstrual syndrome by reducing cramps and bloating and regulating your mood swings. These veggies are also rich sources of glucosinolates, which lower your risk of lung and colorectal cancers. Regular consumption also nourishes your body with iron, zinc, copper, and manganese.
Flaxseeds are rich in phytoestrogens, especially lignans. These plant-based compounds mimic estrogen and help flush out excess estrogen from our body. They may also offer protective advantages against some kinds of cancer. They are also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and fiber. Fiber is an excellent probiotic, and insoluble fiber in flax seeds helps with bowel movements that detox your body of spent hormones. You could include flaxseed in your diet by adding it to your oatmeal and smoothies.
Avocados have taken the millennial food scene by storm, and now there's even more reason to include this delicious brunch treat in more meals. From managing stress to controlling your menstrual cycle, there's a lot that avocados are good for. They're rich in beta-sitosterol, which helps balance cholesterol and cortisol levels in your body. Avocados also impact estrogen and progesterone levels, which can help regulate ovulation and affect your periods. If that's not enough, avocados are also a rich source of magnesium, fiber, folic acid, vitamins B and E, and potassium. The healthy fats in avocados help stabilize your blood sugar levels and support your nervous system.
4. Maca Root
Maca Root is a tuber of the radish family, commonly grown in Peru. It is a nutritious source of iron, calcium, potassium, fiber, and protein. It can be consumed as a powder or as capsules. Maca root helps improve the functioning of your pituitary gland and hypothalamus. Over time, the nourishing benefits enhance your body's ability to adapt and cope with stress by balancing your adrenal glands and regulating your stress response. Maca root also supports hormone balance in menopausal women by improving symptoms such as hot flashes, insomnia, and depression. It also promotes proper thyroid function and improves bone density, making it a superfood for women.
5. Chicken breast
Chicken breast is ideal for those who prefer a high-protein diet that is low in fat. Chicken is a high-protein food, and according to research, high protein diets promote the secretion of hormones like leptin that keep you feeling full for longer. So, if your healthy diet has left you feeling starved more than once, try adding more protein-rich elements in your meals occasionally. Also, make sure you choose organic or grass-fed chicken meat only. The hormone-injected, grain-fed meat may cause more damage than benefit. Chicken breast is also said to affect the anabolic hormones that help in building muscle, following a weightlifting session.
Nuts, almonds, and walnuts are a boon for your hormone levels. They directly impact your endocrine system and help lower cholesterol and insulin levels while maintaining your blood sugar. The polyphenols in walnuts protect your cardiovascular system against free radicals in the body. Nuts are anti-inflammatory and rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which promote good brain health. Both almonds and walnuts are healthy sources of proteins and antioxidants. They also improve your metabolism and bless you with naturally glowing skin. You can munch on them as mid-meal snacks or add them to your salads.
7. Fatty fish
Fatty fish, such as wild-caught salmon, herring, mackerel, lake trout, or sardines, are good for your health in more ways than one. These are rich in vitamin D, which helps improve testosterone levels. The omega-3 fatty acids help reduce the risk of breast cancer and prostate cancer as well as cardiovascular disease. They also synthesize hormones that control arterial function, blood clotting, and inflammation. The good fats in fish improve the overall hormonal communication, which gives you better mood and cognition skills. These fish are excellent sources of protein, which helps stabilize your hunger hormones, keeping you full for longer.
For those who have insomnia, sour cherries might work better than any other trick you've tried yet. The tangy fruit is rich in phytochemicals such as melatonin, “the sleep hormone” that is secreted by your pineal gland. Studies have found that drinking the juice of sour cherries before bed improves the duration and quality of sleep. Include cherry juice in your evening smoothie or drink some before you go to bed. Cherries are sources of vitamin C and magnesium as well. Magnesium calms your body's stress response by regulating adrenaline and cortisol. Vitamin C helps regulate estrogen and progesterone.
When it comes to balancing your hormones, a daily dose of eggs is one of the best things you can give your body. Among the most nutritious foods in the world, eggs have a positive impact on several hormones in the body, such as insulin, ghrelin, and PYY. Your insulin and ghrelin levels are lower after you have eggs for breakfast, rather than say, a bagel. A wholesome meal of eggs keeps you full for longer, and you end up consuming fewer calories for up to 24 hours. It's a win-win if you're also struggling with weight loss.
10. Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds are rich in magnesium, which comes in handy when you're dealing with stress. During stressful experiences, our magnesium levels drop. Magnesium works as an anti-stress mineral for your body, in tandem with vitamin B5 and vitamin C. Together, they assist the adrenal glands and help to bring down your stress levels. Foods that are rich in magnesium, such as pumpkin seeds, can help you relax during taxing periods. Besides magnesium, pumpkin seeds are also a great source of zinc, protein, unsaturated fats, including omega-3, iron, calcium, and selenium.
The food you eat impacts you physically in more ways than one. You must take good care of your diet to stay fit and healthy always. Listed above were some nutrient-rich foods that can help you keep your hormones in harmony. Start adding these to your meals to make them healthier, more fun, and enjoyable. You can start living your best life as soon as you want.
Author Bio: Nisha has a great passion for writing and loves the idea of sharing. She has written many articles on yoga, fitness, wellness, remedies, and beauty. She keeps reading articles on different blogs that gives a kick to her passion and provides her with different ideas. She is growing day by day and mastering herself in writing appealing articles. She is a regular contributor to StyleCraze.com & Other few websites too.