Hormones play crucial roles in our body functions, physical and mental state. Even a small imbalance in hormone levels has a huge impact on our body’s metabolism.
The food we eat, our lifestyle habits, and lifestyle products we use can affect our hormone levels. In this article, we focus on how a vegan diet helps handle hormone imbalances.
What Factors Influence Our Hormone Levels?
The air we breathe and the stressors we encounter every day are some of the factors that can affect our hormone levels. For example, some makeup products contain xenoestrogens that act as estrogen blockers once they enter our body.
Lifestyle habits like exercise help ensure the proper functioning of leptin, the hormone that regulates appetite and energy burn. Exercise can reduce the levels of adrenaline and cortisol, thereby improving our sleeping patterns and mood. However, excessive exercise puts our body under a lot of stress and raises the levels of adrenaline and cortisol that could adversely affect weight management.
Inadequate sleep increases the levels of stress hormones like cortisol. Good sleep helps regulate the levels of stress hormones and helps the body repair.
Veganism And Hormone Balance
Animals are mostly fed with genetically modified grains, soy, and corn as the farmers are constantly on the lookout for cheaper feeds. When it comes to dairy farming, the cows are kept pregnant most of the time to maximize milk production. This increases the estrogen levels in their body, which means the milk and milk products obtained from them will be high in estrogen. This can have an adverse impact on the hormone levels of users.
Soy has phytoestrogens that mimic real estrogen and block it from entering its receptor cells. Excessive levels of phytoestrogens in our body can affect our thyroid function adversely. If you are on a vegan diet and eats soy products, use fermented soy products like tempeh and miso as they contain lesser phytoestrogens.
If you suspect that you have a hormonal imbalance, check if you have symptoms like migraines, fatigue, skin problems, insomnia, sudden weight changes, anxiety, irregular periods, irritability, and reproductive problems.
Cruciferous vegetables like cabbage, broccoli, kale, bok choy, and turnips support the liver’s detoxification process. When you eat foods like sesame, flax, and sunflower seeds, the gut bacteria convert them into metabolites that have a weak estrogenic effect. This is helpful when the estrogen level in our body is low.
A well-planned plant- based diet promotes better hormone balance and improved health.