- Women's Health
Excessive Estrogen Cures: Preventing and Treating Estrogen Dominance Naturally
Excessive levels of the hormone estrogen, also known as estrogen dominance, are tied to many health problems in both women and men, including PMS, menstrual cramps, impotency, endometriosis, PCOS, uterine fibroids, and breast cancer.
Estrogen dominance is caused by an imbalance in the levels of hormones within the body. In some cases, levels of estrogen are normal and levels of other hormones, such as progesterone and testosterone, are too low. More commonly, levels of other hormones are normal and estrogen levels are simply too high.
Fortunately, in most case, estrogen dominance can be successfully reduced, or even cured, providing relief for many of its side effects. There are medications that can help restore or maintain healthy hormone balance, but in most cases, diet and lifestyle changes work just as well without causing side effects or dependencies.
Here are tips for preventing or curing estrogen dominance naturally:
Maintain a Healthy Weight
Weight gain is both a cause and a symptom of estrogen dominance. Estrogen is produced by fat cells, so the more overweight you are, the more likely you are to be estrogen dominant. Unfortunately, estrogen also has several interactions within the body, especially with the hormone insulin, that make it easier for estrogen dominant men and women to gain weight, and harder to lose it.
This can quickly trap people in a vicious cycle: estrogen dominance causes weight gain causes greater estrogen dominance causes more weight gain and so on.
The key to breaking the cycle to to maintain, or restore, a healthy weight.If you are estrogen dominant, a few things are especially important for you:
- Exercise regularly. Exercise is not only a great weight loss tool, regular moderate exercise has also been linked in studies to reduced symptoms of PMS, menstrual cramps, migraines, and many other uncomfortable side effects of estrogen dominance.
- Eat a diet high in fiber. Fiber is a very important part of any healthy diet plan because it is high in bulk, but has no calories, so high-fiber foods fill you up faster with fewer calories than low fiber foods. Eating a fiber-rich diet is especially important for people with estrogen dominance because fiber also plays a major role in maintaining healthy hormone balance:
Maintain Healthy Digestive and Urinary Systems
A healthy body maintains normal hormone balance in part by removing waste estrogen from the body through the digestive and urinary systems.
Fiber not only plays a major role in maintaining a healthy digestive system, it also actually binds to waste estrogen in the
digestive tract and removes it from the body before it can be
reabsorbed. A high fiber diet increases the amount of fiber available to serve this function.
The longer waste estrogen remains in the digestive system, the more likely it is to be reabsorbed, so chronic constipation can be another contributing factor to estrogen dominance. Fiber also helps maintain hormone balance by preventing or reducing constipation.
The urinary system is also used to flush waste estrogen out of the body, so it is also important to stay well hydrated. Drinking plenty of plain water is the best choice to maintain a healthy urinary system, and is also an important weight loss aid. Soft drinks, fruit juices, and other drinks are among the largest sources of "empty" or near-empty calories in many people's diets. In fact, some recent studies have found that people who replaced soft drinks with water in their diets often lose significant amounts of weight without making any other lifestyle change.
Reduce Exposure to Xenoestrogens
Xenoestrogens are foreign, generally man-made, substances that mimic the behavior of estrogen in the body. Although their role as endocrine disruptors remains controversial in some circles, a growing number of scientists are voicing concerns that xenoestrogens are contributing to an expanding epidemic of estrogen dominance around the world.
The bad news is that xenoestrogens are nearly ubiquitous in modern society: found in everything from baby bottles to shampoos to many foods.
The good news is, a little conscientious shopping can help you avoid many of the worst offenders. Xenoestrogens occur most commonly in:
- soft plastics such as cling wrap and plastic food storage containers
- cosmetics and toiletries
- foods treated or raised with use of chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and growth hormones
To learn tips and tricks for minimizing your exposure to xenoestrogens, visit Reducing Exposure to Xenoestrogens.
Do you suffer from menstrual cramps? Excessive estrogen levels in your body can make them worse. Learn how you can fight estrogen dominance and relieve your cramps in 20 Ways To Relieve Menstrual Cramps.