Hormone Health FAQ

The Importance of Hormone Health

Hormone Health – Optimal Health Starts Here

The “right” amount of hormones varies throughout your lifetime. Too much or too little of any hormone can affect both your physical and mental health. Unfortunately, there are a variety of internal and external issues that may impact hormone production, including:

  • Age
  • Medications
  • Chronic disease
  • Stress
  • Acute injury

FAQ

How many types of hormones are there and what are they?

We are most concerned with treating the following hormonal imbalances:

  • Cortisol: Produced by the adrenal glands, cortisol is responsible for maintaining blood sugar levels, metabolism, and blood pressure, as well as helping your body deal with stress and regulate fluid retention. Cortisol also helps control inflammation throughout the body.
  • Insulin: Produced by the pancreas, insulin helps your body absorb glucose (sugar). People who don't generate enough insulin, or whose bodies don't process it properly, may develop diabetes.
  • Melatonin: Produced by the pineal gland, melatonin controls your body's natural sleep cycles.
  • Oestrogen: Produced by the ovaries, oestrogen controls the growth of female sex organs and reproductive tissues, strengthens bones, and helps protect heart health.
  • Progesterone: Another hormone produced by the ovaries, progesterone helps prepare the uterus for fertilization and the breasts to produce milk.
  • Testosterone: Produced by the testes, testosterone helps produce sperm. It is also vital to muscle development, strong bones, and the growth of hair on the head and body.
  • Thyroxine: Produced by the thyroid, thyroxine controls heart rate, metabolism, and body temperature.

How do hormones affect a person’s daily life?

Hormones control nearly every function of your body, including:

  • Appetite
  • Body temperature
  • Growth
  • Heart rate
  • Metabolism
  • Mood
  • Reproduction
  • Sexual function
  • Sleep
  • Stress response

Hormonal imbalances can cause issues with all of these – and more. Signs that your hormones may be out of balance include:

  • Decreased libido (men and women), erectile dysfunction, and/or vaginal dryness
  • Hot flashes, night sweats, and other temperature sensitivities
  • Irritability, depression, anxiety, and/or feeling overwhelmed by minor stressors
  • Loss of appetite and/or uncontrollable hunger
  • Trouble sleeping or feeling tired even after sleeping eight hours
  • Unexplained weight gain or weight loss

How do hormones affect human behavior and emotions?

Hormones play a large role in regulating behavior and emotion. In women, estrogen and progesterone play a significant role in emotional wellbeing. But when your body creates more estrogen than progesterone, it can cause mood swings and irritability (in addition to bloating, irregular periods, and other physical symptoms). For men, testosterone is the driving hormone behind emotional health. When levels fall outside the healthy range, it often results in depression, mood swings, and fatigue or low energy. For both sexes, in imbalance in thyroid hormones often leaves you susceptible to depression, fatigue, and an inability to cope with stress.

How do hormones affect women’s health?

Progesterone and estrogen are the two hormones that have the greatest impact on women's health. Imbalances may cause:

  • Bloating
  • Blood sugar problems
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Fatigue
  • Hair loss
  • Heart disease
  • Irritability, depression, and/or anxiety

How do hormones affect men’s health?

When testosterone levels drop, men may experience:

  • Depression and/or anxiety
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Fatigue
  • Heart disease
  • Reduced libido
  • Weight gain and loss of muscle mass

Do hormones change your personality?

No, hormones will not change your personality – even if levels fall outside of the healthy range. However, they can affect your mood and behavior.

For example, adrenaline, also known as epinephrine, is what engages your body's fight or flight response. It does this by increasing your heart rate, which causes a surge in blood flow to the brain and muscles, which helps you react quickly in highly emotional or stressful situations.

When you're stressed, your body releases cortisol, which is a healthy response. However, chronic stress may lead to abnormally high levels of cortisol, which can weaken your immune system and lead to feeling overwhelmed, anxious, and depressed.

Dopamine is your body's feel-good hormone. Your brain gives you a little hit every time you accomplish something, which motivates you to keep going. The most famous example is the "high" many people experience with exercise, which is courtesy of dopamine.

What are the main functions of hormones?

Hormones work as your body's messenger service. These "signals" travel through the bloodstream and help regulate mood, appetite, metabolism, sexual function, cell growth, sleep patterns, reproduction, and more.

What are the main functions of hormones?

Yes, your hormones play a large role in your mental health.

  • Adrenaline increases blood flow to the brain in response to stress.
  • Cortisol also helps your body deal with stress by protecting you against inflammation and increasing glucose levels in the blood.
  • Dopamine is released when you do something you enjoy, like eat, exercise, or have sex; it's your pleasure hormone.
  • Estrogen helps regulate emotions in both men and women.
  • Norepinephrine works with adrenaline to control your fight or flight response and regulate anxiety and sharpens your ability to pay attention.
  • Oxytocin is sometimes called the love hormone, because it is released during physical contact and sex (among other things) and plays a big role in relationships – both romantic and platonic.
  • Testosterone is mostly associated with males, but it plays a role in the libido for both men and women. It also affects cognitive function and mood.

What hormone gives you strength?

When it comes to strength, most people immediately think of testosterone. And this hormone does play large a part in muscle development, bone health, and other hallmarks of the "male" physique. But estrogen also plays a role in building bone tissue and increasing muscle mass, particularly in regards to increased collagen production in the tissues connecting bone to muscle. (These two hormones are found in both men and women.)

Which hormone is responsible for energy?

Thyroxine, produced by the thyroid gland, is the key energy hormone. Every cell in your body has a thyroxine receptor. Of course, few hormones act alone. Thyroxine gets an assist from progesterone, oestrogen, and testosterone.

Can hormones affect your energy levels?

Yes, when hormone levels are too low, it most definitely affects your energy levels, particularly the energy-producing thyroid hormones. When those are out of whack, you'll feel tired and sluggish.

Are hormones affected by exercise?

Yes, a number of hormones rise when you exercise, as well as after you finish.

  • Increased dopamine production is responsible for the "runners' high" many people experience, because dopamine is your feel-good hormone. Dopamine is also why you feel less stressed after a workout.
  • Working out for 30 minutes a day boosts estrogen levels, relieving some of the symptoms of menopause.
  • Exercise also increases serotonin production, which you'll feel later, since it helps you fall asleep at night.
  • You'll also get a testosterone boost when you exercise regularly, which could help slow common signs of aging.

You'll improve hormone production by engaging in regular exercise, preferably a mix of cardio and strength training. Shoot for at least 30 minutes a day, five days a week.

What hormone causes back fat?

There are a few hormones that may cause your body to store fat when levels fall outside of the healthy range.

The biggest contributor to lower body fat is estrogen, which occurs in men as well as women. Testosterone is another culprit that affects both genders, as it can cause muscle to sag when levels get too low.

Cortisol, your body's stress hormone, can also lead to fat storage when your body produces too much of it. This is common in people living with chronic stress. Low insulin levels can also cause fat buildup. Insulin is how your body processes glucose. When it doesn't produce enough, the glucose stays in the fat cells.

Finally, you can also experience weight gain if your body produces too much ghrelin, the main hormone responsible for appetite. Overeating is the main contributor to an unhealthy weight.

At what age do your hormones begin to level out?

Hormonal changes happen throughout your life, but puberty is the time your body seems to really wake up. Voice changes, skin changes, hair changes, body changes, all starting at different times for everyone, which is just one more reason people hate puberty. But most people start puberty in the 10 to 12 years old range. By your twenties, most of those changes are finished and your hormones level off until you hit middle age – unless you have a baby, of course.

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