Hormone issues like Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) affects about seven in every 100 women in the UK. Not only can hormonal issues play havoc with your periods, conceiving, moods and general wellbeing, but excess hair growth can be a frustrating symptom.
Personally, the pill had a huge influence on my hormones, so much so I can no longer take it. It’s worth checking with your doctor if you’re having the same issue and seeking advice on different non-hormonal contraceptive options, or look into alternatives like Natural Cycles. This is a safe, healthy and easy-to-use fertility app for women based on their body temperature, which is used to prevent, plan and monitor pregnancies.
Those looking to tackle PCOS should see their doctors first to check for any serious underlying issues, but in the meantime, here are some natural approaches to balancing out your symptoms.
Cut down on sugar
Too much sugar not only affects your ability to maintain a natural weight and energy levels, but it affects our hormones too resulting in insulin resistance. To help your hormones, keep your refined carbs, sugar and processed foods to a minimum (preferably completely for a few months, to balance out your system) then reintroduce on special occasions. You can replace these types of foods with whole grains, and whole foods like fruit and veg, nuts, seeds, plant-based protein and animal protein for non-vegans.
Reduce your alcohol intake
Alcohol is classed as a sugar, and in excess, can cause stress in the body. Try removing for a few months then re-introduce low sugar drinks like vodka and soda water with the occasional glass of wine after that.
Caffeine in excess, can cause stress in the body and prevent decent sleep needed to help your body to heal. If you’re drinking more than one cup of coffee a day, then try at least reducing to one cup before 12pm, initially. If you’re feeling brave, then remove all caffeine for a few months then reintroduce a coffee as a treat at the weekends. You’ll sleep much better, and your energy levels will skyrocket.
It’s easier said than done of course, but reducing your overall stress levels can have a huge impact on balancing hormones. Overloading the body with stress places huge amounts of pressure on the adrenal glands and in access, plays havoc with our hormones and weight.
Try yoga, meditation, and even high-impact exercise to reduce your stress levels. But be careful with too much high-impact exercise which can end up having adverse effects. Sometimes, you need to listen and tune into your body. So if it’s telling you to rest, then listen!
Get plenty of sleep
Sleep is the time when your body can heal itself. If you’re getting less than 8 hours or are drinking lots of alcohol, coffee or looking at your phone or work emails right before bed, then you’re placing unnecessary stress on your body. Either it will take you hours to nod off, or you get interrupted sleep, meaning you’ll crave more caffeine, more sugar and processed foods. The very things your should be cutting down when trying to balance out your hormones!
One tip I’ve found useful is to limit all caffeine until mid-day. To read in bed instead of watching TV. To switch my phone on ‘night mode’ (which omits the blue light tricking your brain into thinking it’s daytime) at least an hour before bed. You can do this through most phone settings.
I found MyOva to be incredibly helpful, as part of a balanced diet, following the above guidelines have really helped balance out my hormones by regulating my weight and moods.
Myo-Inositol + Folic acid + Chromium promotes hormonal balance & normal ovarian function. The Chromium contributes to normal macronutrient metabolism & the maintenance of normal blood glucose levels.