How Do Hormones Work?
Your glands secrete hormones to cells awaiting commands in your tissues and organs. When your hormones are out of sync and the commands are blocked or otherwise confused, then mixed (or no) messages are sent to tissues and organs. This prevents your body from attaining homeostasis, and disrupts metabolic balancing of your body's systems.
Hormones such as estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, thyroid, cortisol, insulin, and melatonin are responsible for this homeostasis.
Here are a few simple things you can do to keep your hormones in balance:
Maintain a healthy weight. Excessive fat tissue (called adipose tissue) can act as an endocrine organ, producing more estrogen in your body. By maintaining a healthy weight, your body is not stimulated to overproduce certain hormones
Eat thyroid supportive foods. These foods are rich in iodine and include: kelp, Himalayan salt, beans, organic cultured yogurt, organic sugar-free cranberry juice, and fresh organic strawberries.
Eat enough protein, which influences the release of hormones that control appetite and food intake. Research has shown that eating protein decreases levels of the "hunger hormone" ghrelin and stimulates the production of hormones that help you feel full.
Eat healthy saturated fat (coconut oil and avocado). Cholesterol is needed for formation of healthy cell membranes and is a precursor to steroid hormones (progesterone, estrogen, FSH, etc.). You cannot have proper hormonal balance without adequate amounts of saturated fats.
Avoid refined grains, sugar, and processed foods. These interfere with the hormone leptin, which helps regulate appetite and metabolism. When leptin resistance sets in, you suffer from cravings and your metabolism slows way down.
Avoid Bispheonol-A and phthalates. Commonly found in plastics and can liners, these endocrine disruptorsbasically mimic actual hormones replacing the beneficial benefits with a toxic phony that provides nothing of value to the body.
Support your adrenal glands. The adrenals regulate the “stress hormone,” cortisol. To keep them in top shape, limit your intake of alcohol and caffeine, and commit to getting to bed by 10 pm. Your body creates growth hormones while you sleep, so prioritizing bedtime is an important step in staying balanced.
Avoid both under and over eating, which may result in hormonal shifts that lead to weight problems. Overeating increases insulin levels and reduces insulin sensitivity, especially in overweight and obese people who are insulin resistant. On the other hand, cutting your calories too much can increase levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which is known to promote weight gain when it's elevated. One study found that restricting food intake to less than 1,200 calories per day led to increased cortisol levels. Interestingly, a study from 1996 even suggests that very low-calorie diets could potentially trigger insulin resistance in some people, an effect you might expect to see in people with diabetes. Eating within your own personal calorie range can help you maintain hormonal balance and a healthy weight.