Supplement for hormonal imbalance
Hormones are essential for regulating nearly every process in your body including growth, fertility and sexual function, metabolism, blood pressure, sleep, mood, and emotions. Therefore, even minor fluctuations in hormone levels can greatly impact your well-being.
One of the best ways to naturally combat hormonal imbalance is adopting a diet rich in nutrient-dense foods and making healthy lifestyle choices. However, incorporating certain supplements into your routine can also prove beneficial in naturally restoring hormonal equilibrium.
After thorough research, I’ve compiled a list of supplements for hormone imbalance, all of which have science-backed evidence.
But, first let’s grasp common causes and symptoms of hormonal imbalance.
Causes of hormonal imbalance
Individuals, particularly women, go through hormonal disruptions at various stages of their lives such as puberty, pregnancy, and menopause.
Nonetheless, there are numerous other factors that can lead to fluctuations in hormone levels.
- Poor diet – overconsumption of saturated fats, processed foods, fast foods etc
- Chronic stress and mental health disorders
- Exposure to environmental toxins such as BPA, parabens, phthalates, fragrances, heavy metals
- Medications e.g. long term use of OC pills, antidepressants, steroids
- Tumors, adenomas
- Damage or injury to an endocrine gland
- Autoimmune conditions
Common Signs That Your Hormones Are Out of Balance
- Weight gain
- Mood swings, nervousness, irritability and depression
- Trouble sleeping, brain fog
- Hot flashes
- Decreased sex drive, infertility
- Breast tenderness and pain, breast enlargement in males
- Heavy or missed periods, vaginal dryness in females
- Brittle hair, thin and dry skin and acnes
The Best Vitamins & Supplements for Hormonal Imbalance
✔️Omega 3 fatty acid
The role of omega-3s in maintaining hormone equilibrium is significant, primarily due to their anti-inflammatory properties.There exists a bidirectional relationship between inflammation and hormones—inflammation contributes to hormone imbalance, and hormone imbalance contributes to inflammation. Thus, the anti-inflammatory effects of omega-3s not only aid in restoring hormonal balance but also serve as a protective shield against chronic inflammatory conditions such as diabetes and heart disease.
Additionally, omega-3s are essential precursors for the production of estrogen, progesterone and testosterone.
In a preclinical trial, omega-3s have been demonstrated to significantly control PCOS ( one of the leading causes of female subfertility) and balanced FSH and testosterone.
Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that can help restore the natural balance of bacteria in the gut, which can help regulate hormones.
According to a 2017 study, it was found that gut microbiota has the ability to influence estrogen levels. Consequently, an imbalance in gut bacteria can potentially lead to alterations in estrogen levels, thereby contributing to the development of various conditions such as obesity, metabolic syndrome, endometrial hyperplasia, endometriosis and polycystic ovary syndrome.
Furthermore, scientific investigations have unveiled that women with hormonal imbalances tend to possess less healthy gut bacteria compared to those without such imbalances. As a result of these findings, probiotics are recommended for rebalancing hormones.
✔️ Vitamin D
Vitamin D is different from other vitamins due to its hormone-like characteristics and its significant contribution to numerous bodily processes. The active form of vitamin D, known as calcitriol, has demonstrated its ability to enhance the immune system, cardiovascular function, endocrine system, and various metabolic pathways. Therefore, if your vitamin D levels are low, you are very likely to experience a hormonal imbalance.
Although it is commonly known that sunlight provides an ample source of vitamin D, research reveals that forty-one percent of Americans suffer from a deficiency in this essential nutrient. Consequently, it becomes crucial to incorporate a high-quality vitamin D supplement, particularly during the winter months to ease and prevent hormonal fluctuations.
B vitamins have a soothing effect on the nervous system and assist in reducing symptoms of anxiety and stress, both of which contribute to hormonal imbalances.
B vitamins serve as essential cofactors in the detoxification process carried out by the liver. This metabolic function breaks down excessive hormones and cellular waste. Insufficient intake of B vitamins can hinder this detoxification process, resulting in an accumulation of surplus hormones within the bloodstream.
Vitamin B6 stands out among other B vitamins as it has been proven effective in alleviating symptoms associated with premenstrual syndrome (PMS), specifically mood swings. It also aids in progesterone production and provides relief for women experiencing hormonal symptoms during perimenopause and menopause.
Furthermore, B vitamins play a significant role in testosterone production. For men facing declining testosterone levels due to aging, these vitamins offer potential assistance by potentially increasing testosterone levels naturally over time.
Vitamin E serves as a potent antioxidant, safeguarding the body from inflammation and stress. This essential vitamin plays a crucial role in maintaining reproductive function and hormonal equilibrium.
In menopausal women, incorporating vitamin E into their regimen can provide relief from certain symptoms. It aids in mitigating the intensity of common menopausal manifestations such as insomnia, hot flashes, night sweats, and vaginal dryness.
Furthermore, consuming Vitamin E supplements one week prior to and after the menstrual cycle can effectively alleviate cramping, anxiety, and cravings associated with premenstrual syndrome (PMS).
The mineral magnesium is crucial for maintaining hormonal equilibrium. It plays a vital role in calming the nervous system and preventing excessive release of cortisol, commonly known as the stress hormone.
Furthermore, magnesium aids in the production of thyroid hormones by enhancing the conversion of T4 thyroid hormones into more active T3. Additionally, magnesium promotes balanced secretion of estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone – the primary sex hormones within the body.
A study published in Neuropharmacology revealed that magnesium deficiency could induce over-reactivity in the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal HPA axis that controls reactions to stress and regulates many body processes. Magnesium supplementation was found to help calm the HPA and return stress hormone production to normal levels.
Zinc is an essential mineral, required for more than 300 processes in the body including regulating hormones.
In women with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), zinc helps to reduce testosterone levels and improve androgen symptoms such as acne and hirsutism (facial hair). Moreover, zinc nourishes ovarian follicles and therefore promotes regular periods and ovulation. It also reduces inflammation and alleviates period pain.
One study suggested that use of a zinc supplement in combination with mefenamic acid was superior in reducing primary dysmenorrhea compared to mefenamic acid alone. A recent clinical trial conducted on 69 female university students has found that zinc Supplementation can significantly improve premenstrual (PMS) symptoms.
Additionally, zinc is essential for the conversion of T4 thyroid hormones to active T3, so its deficiency can result in thyroid hormone imbalance and symptoms of hypothyroidism.
Ashwagandha, an ancient herbal remedy, is gaining recognition in mainstream nutritional science. It possesses adaptogenic properties, which means it can normalize hormone levels by restoring both excess and deficient hormones to their optimal range.
Recent research indicates that ashwagandha effectively balances thyroid hormones and stress hormones such as cortisol.
For example, a study involving 60 adults who consumed ashwagandha root extract twice daily showed reduced stress, improved sleep and lower blood cortisol levels after eight weeks. Moreover, another study conducted on individuals with subclinical hypothyroidism revealed that ashwagandha treatment effectively normalizes thyroid hormone indices.
Though larger clinical trials are needed on this topic, the current findings highlight the potential benefits of ashwagandha for hormonal balance.
Other Natural Ways to Rebalance Your Hormones
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Include hormone-friendly foods like eggs, nuts, sweet potatoes, carrots, radishes, cruciferous vegetables, flax seeds, cherries, apples, pomegranates, and avocados in your diet
- Exercise regularly
- Manage your stress
- Get good quality sleep
- Reduce exposure to toxins and chemicals by choosing healthy foods and environmental-friendly household products
My personal advice
Hormonal imbalance can have negative impacts on both the physical and emotional well-being of an individual. To counter these effects, the aforementioned supplements offer a natural alternative to synthetic hormone replacement therapies, free from unwanted side effects.
It is essential to recognize that although fluctuating hormone levels are a normal part of life during various stages, there are other potential causes as well. Thus, seeking medical advice at the first signs of hormonal imbalance is pivotal in restoring hormonal equilibrium promptly.