A hormonal imbalance can wreak havoc on our physical and mental health. Sometimes, an imbalance is temporary, for example the start of puberty or your period causing major but temporary changes. Other times, disruptions and imbalances in our hormones can be more mysterious and worrisome. For many girls and women, our hormone factories (AKA thyroids) turn out to be the source of the imbalance.
“According to the American Thyroid Association, around 1 in 8 women will be affected by a thyroid condition at some point in their lives, a rate ten times higher than that of males.”
Faulty Hormone Factory?
Thyroid disorders can cause a range of subtle symptoms—prolonged fatigue, depressed mood, increased sensitivity to cold, constipation, dry skin, weight gain, puffy face and more. If you’ve felt changes that you can’t explain, having your hormone levels checked by a doctor or a home kit may be a good place to start. While there are thyroid issues that require more intense treatment and medication, some women experience difficult side effects and want to find more holistic solutions. Fortunately, we found bevy of easily accessible natural, homeopathic remedies that have been shown to help rebalance the thyroid.
Finding Natural Relief
Whether you chose to take western medication or not, homeopathic support should be considered as part of overall care. Some basic things to keep in mind when starting your natural journey:
Eat a diet that balances your microbiome and reduces inflammation in the gut
Get regular with your vitamin routine. Vitamins like B-12, selenium and zinc, and herbs
Ashwagandha and gum guggal can easily be added to most women's daily vitamins to help counter some of the endocrine disruptors we encounter all around us.
Most importantly, the Institute for Natural Medicine recommends finding a licensed naturopathic doctor (ND) to help create an individualized diet and supplement plan designed to your body’s needs. The main thing to note about supplementation and herbs is that they are NOT one size fits all.
They’re Everywhere! (Chemicals)
And then we have chemicals. Both the Environmental Protection Agency and the Endocrine Society have warned us for almost two decades that chemicals and plastics in our everyday household and beauty products can disrupt our hormones, contributing to adverse health consequences. In fact, they call these insidious substances “endocrine - disrupting chemicals” (EDCs), chemicals like phthalates, parabens, BPAs and toxic metals. Meanwhile, they continue to be used everywhere and can be tough to avoid.
The good news is that more and more companies are developing natural products that peel back our desperate clutch on plastics and other EDCs. In addition to filtering your water, avoiding the use of plastic in your microwave and reducing stress, as well as finding products with all natural ingredients, especially when it comes to feminine hygiene and food, is the best way to protect your hormonal balance from chemical or other disruptors.
A few of our favorites places to find natural products that are good for your body and the planet are:
Making small changes, one step at a time, can lead to major improvements in your hormonal balance and overall wellness.
- With Love, Afia