What are the Signs of Hormonal Imbalance? How to Regulate Your Hormones
It’s no secret that our bodies go through many changes as we get older. From our teen years to the big 50 and beyond, the body’s hormones are constantly changing to keep up with the times.
Unfortunately, not all changes are created equal. If you have noticed unpleasant side effects to the aging process, you might be dealing with a hormonal imbalance.
But, what exactly does it mean to have unbalanced hormone levels? And what are the signs of hormonal imbalance? In this article, dive into the top 5 signs of hormonal imbalance, what it means for your overall health, and how you can regulate your hormones.
Before we get too ahead of ourselves, let’s first discover what a hormonal imbalance is.
What is a Hormonal Imbalance?
In simple terms, a hormonal imbalance occurs when too much or too little of a specific hormone or set of hormones are produced in the body. When the levels of your hormones become unregulated, they can cause you to experience different symptoms, such as weight gain, moodiness, fatigue, pain, and sexual dysfunction.
Although there are many hormones in the body, some that are commonly affected by imbalances include:
- Cortisol (stress hormone)
- Growth hormones
- Thyroid hormone
These imbalances can take place in several locations of your body, including the adrenal glands, pituitary gland, kidneys, ovaries, thyroid gland, testes, and hypothalamus. Many of these parts of the body are found in the endocrine system, which uses hormones to regulate the body.
Hormonal Imbalance in Men and Women
As you can probably guess, there are some key differences between hormone levels found in men and women. For instance, men naturally have more testosterone than women, and women have more estrogen and progesterone than men.
Here’s the problem: When a man or a woman is not producing the right levels of each desired hormone, it can cause some bodily function issues. In men, this commonly appears as sexual disfunction, reduced muscle mass, tenderness in the chest area, and lowered metabolism. In women, it can show up as irregular menstrual cycles, hot flashes, moodiness, low sex drive, and more.
In this next section, you will learn the 5 common signs of hormonal imbalance that can be found in both men and women.
What are the Signs of Hormone Imbalance?
Hormone imbalances may be caused by a number of reasons, including
- Thyroid issues
- Poor diet; eating disorders
- Lack of exercise
- Certain medications
- Diseases like endometriosis, diabetes, etc.
Depending on the reason behind your hormone imbalance and the types of hormones affected, you can experience a range of different symptoms. In general, these are the top 5 signs of hormonal imbalance.
1. Decreased Metabolism & Weight Change
Have you been gaining weight recently and don’t know why? Or perhaps your appetite has changed and you are starting to lose weight?
Unexplainable weight changes are a tell-tale sign of unbalanced hormones. In particular, weight gain is commonly associated with aging because hormone levels that control metabolism begin to drop off as you enter your 30s. This slows down your metabolic rate.
The main glands that regulate metabolic hormones are your thyroids. So, if you are gaining or losing a lot of weight and can’t seem to get back to normal, then your thyroid glands might be the root of the cause.
2. Change in Heart Rate
Blood sugar, blood pressure, and heart rate are all very important bodily functions. When levels of the hormones that control them change in the body, it can damage tissues and organs in your body. This is particularly the case when the hormone levels remain unbalanced for long periods of time.
Here’s what you need to know.
Insulin and glucagon are secreted by the pancreas to manage blood sugar levels and maintain proper blood pressure. However, when one is produced more than another or the overall levels are unable to function properly, you will notice a change in blood sugar, blood pressure, and heart rate. This can signify a hormonal imbalance.
Oftentimes, exercise and a well-rounded diet can help you regulate your heart rate, blood sugar, and blood pressure levels. In other instances, you might need to consult a doctor to help stabalize your them.
3. Interrupted Sleep Cycles
Insomnia and irregular sleep cycles are a common symptom of a hormonal imbalance. Unfortunately, if you find yourself waking up frequently in the middle of the night or you’re excessively fatigued during the day, your internal hormone levels are most likely at fault.
Melatonin in particular is known as the ‘sleep hormone’ and is the main hormone that helps you receive a good night’s rest. Cortisol, the ‘stress hormone,’ also plays a big role in your ability to sleep at night and hold energy during the day. Other hormones that help maintain your sleep cycle include estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone.
Therefore, if your sex hormone levels are off (such as during puberty, perimenopause, menopause, and andropause), you might notice significant changes in your sleep cycle.
Speaking of sex hormones…
4. Irregular Reproductive Cycles & Sexual Dysfunction
If you are wondering what are the signs of hormonal imbalance, then this is it. One of the most well-known signs of a hormonal imbalance is sexual dysfunction.
This may include:
- Erectile dysfunction in men
- Vaginal dryness in women
- Pain during sex
- Low libido
- Delay or absence of orgasm
- Inability to become aroused
At the same time, irregular menstruation in women is also a major indicator that a hormonal imbalance is present.
These dysfunctions and irregularities are caused by wavering levels of sex hormones. As men and women age, it is normal to see a drop off in testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone. This commonly leads to menopause for women and andropause for men.
When seen in younger men and women, sex hormone imbalances are sometimes traced back to genetics, diseases (like endometriosis), and high levels of stress.
5. Increased Stress Levels
Stress plays a HUGE role in the well-being of your body. Scientists have found that significant levels of stress trapped in the body can cause a number of problems, including:
- Chronic pain and illnesses
- High blood pressure
- Muscle tension
- Headaches; dizziness; chronic fatigue
- Hair loss
- Anxiety; depression
- Digestion issues
- Sexual dysfunction
- And yes, you guessed it – hormone imbalances.
When you undergo stress, your adrenal glands secrete cortisol to regulate it. Usually, the stress is managed and dissipates without causing too many problems for your body.
Red Flag for Your Adrenal Glands
But, if your body is frequently flooded with major stressors, like ongoing trauma, pain, and more, it can actually lead to adrenal fatigue or even adrenal failure. This occurs when your adrenal glands are unable to produce enough hormones to regulate your stress and it can cause symptoms like:
- Chronic fatigue
- Cognitive issues (dizziness; brain fog)
- Anxiety; depression
- Compromised immune system
- Low libido
Therefore, if you have noticed a big spike in your stress levels and a difficulty regulating your emotions, stress, and moods, then you may be suffering from a hormonal imbalance.
Can You Balance Your Hormones?
If you are showing the compelling signs of hormonal imbalance, don’t fret. Since so many men and women undergo hormone imbalances every year, the scientific and medical communities have found ways to balance hormones.
One way to regulate your hormones is through hormone replacement therapy, a technique that replenishes your low hormones. In this process, a doctor will test your blood or saliva to see which hormones are unbalanced. Then, the doctor will formulate a customized program that comes in the form of a pill, cream, patch, or spray.
Along with a healthy diet and daily exercise, your hormone levels will begin to balance themselves and you will notice a positive change in your body’s health.
Regulate Your Hormones with Whole Health JC
So, what are the signs of hormonal imbalance? To recap, if you are experiencing unexplainable changes in weight and heart rate, insomnia, fatigue, irregular reproductive cycles, sexual dysfunction, and increased stress, a hormonal imbalance may be at the heart of the problem.
Luckily, you can figure out the root cause of your hormonal imbalance at Whole Health JC. Whether you’re suffering from insomnia, low libido, moodiness, or other symptoms related to unbalanced hormones, Whole Health JC can help you get back on track.