Hormones affect everything… and we mean everything! A lot of times when we feel our bodies acting up and we don’t understand what exactly is going on… it could be our hormones! What exactly are hormones? Well, putting it simply, hormones are the “chemical messengers” that are created in the endocrine glands and which travel through our blood stream towards our organs controlling most bodily functions. It is normal for hormone levels to fluctuate before or during your period or due to pregnancy or menopause but a more severe imbalance can cause our bodies to feel out of sync and this is when we need to intervene. So how do we know if our hormones are all over the place? Read below for some of the most common signs of a hormonal imbalance and check them up with the professionals!
1 || Irregular Periods
One of the most common signs of a hormonal imbalance is having irregular periods. If your period doesn’t come between the normal range of 21-35 days, or if it skips months, this could mean that your estrogen and progesterone levels are not right, or this could also be a sign of (PCOS) polycystic ovarian syndrome.
2 || Acne
An occasional breakout is normal but if you are suffering from cystic acne which would typically appear on your chin, or if your breakouts aren’t clearing up this could be a sign that the male hormones (the androgens) are in excess. Which means that the oil glands are working in overdrive which clogs pores and causes acne.
3 || Chronic Fatigue
If you can’t seem to shake out your tiredness no matter how much rest you get you might want to check out your progesterone levels or your thyroid.
4 || Mood Swings
If there is no justification to your moody blues, then they could be affected by a drop in estrogen. Unfortunately, estrogen affects important brain chemicals such as dopamine and serotonin which contribute to feeling down in the dump.
5 || Weight Gain
This is directly connected to the point above; when estrogen levels go down this can play with the levels of leptin; which is the hormone that regulates our relationship with food. Additionally, when dopamine levels drop as a result; studies show that we seek out foods that can help up us increase dopamine levels. Changes to cortisol (stress hormone) can also contribute to weight gain especially in the abdomen, chest and face.
6 || Forgetfulness
If you feel it is becoming difficult for you to remember things, or you feel like there’s some sort of “fogginess” in your brain; this can also be linked to your hormones, especially if there are changes to your estrogen and progesterone levels.
7 || Digestive Problems
Believe it or not some of your digestive problems be they diarrhea, stomach pain, nausea and bloating; can be attributed to changes in – again – estrogen and progesterone! A sure sign these are hormonal issues would be if these problems are accompanied with fatigue, acne or any of the other symptoms.
8 || Bodily Changes
If you notice changes in your breast density or if you notice vaginal dryness or a loss of libido these are also signs of a hormonal imbalance.