Hormones play a big role in everyday life and can either keep the body in balance or send us on an emotional roller-coaster where chocolate may feel like the necessary answer. But how do we know when our hormones are out of balance? And how do we fix them?
Melanie Jaye from Eden Naturopathy shed some light on the topic for us recently in an interview with Bec. She revealed that our stress, diet, minerals consumed and exercise can all affect our hormone levels.
“Simple things that we do every day certainly have a positive and negative impact on your hormones. Stress plays a big role,” described Melanie Jaye.
Stress specifically can cause painful periods, delays in periods, reduce fertility and even affect menopause. All forms of stress whether at home or work can affect these hormones.
So, is the answer just to manage our stress?
Simply put the answer is no, what we do every day such as eating good whole foods and exercising will give the body the best chance for the body to function as it should.
Melanie said that she sees a lot of people who have headaches and migraines a week before their period. She said this gives her the indication that it is directly related to the person’s hormones.
Headaches before a period are a sign that the body is in need of detoxification. This is our body’s way of letting us know that it needs a cleanse.
Along with a cleanse it is also important to add some particular elements to our diet.
Melanie suggests adding the vitamin B6 to the diet in combination with other minerals such as magnesium, water, cruciferous vegetables, herbs like St Mary’s thistle and curcumin in a capsule. All of these elements can help detoxify the body and relieve the symptoms of PMS also known as Premenstrual Syndrome.
The vitamin B6 will help specifically with fluid retention and mood regulation while the magnesium works with everything including those nasty cramps that come with the PMS territory.
The symptoms of PMS can vary woman to woman.
“Something that we don’t often talk about is the clumsiness. People can get quite clumsy before their period but people can get a variety of things like not sleeping well, feeling irrational and a lot of fluid retention. I say just don’t make major decisions during that week, give it another week,” said Melanie Jaye.
The chocolate craving is common among women going through PMS.
“The thing to do is to have is really good quality dark chocolate but have a little bit don’t eat the entire block or the entire pack of chocolate biscuits,” Melanie cautioned.
For Melanie it is about ‘moderation and good quality’ when it comes to craving of this nature.
Another tasty tip is to have some cinnamon. This can be added to your smoothie, to your cereal and to your chia tea in the morning which gives your body the food element to assist with the effects of PMS.
Female health can be a bit of a taboo topic among women so Melanie advises that it is important to have a conversation with your mother and grandparents about female health. This allows you to know if there is any family history of hereditary ailments you need to be aware of or PMS symptoms to be weary of.
“A lot of things are hereditary. Like with both of my grandmas, they both had hysterectomies but back in that day who really spoke about periods, who really investigated that. Even in terms of having pelvic ultrasounds, it was all very secretive,” recounted Melanie.
According to Melanie, “Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), endometriosis and fibroids in younger women are becoming more and more common.”
Therefore, it is becoming more and more important to start these conversations among family and discuss your symptoms with a medical professional if you have any concerns.
Melanie Jaye will be back after June appeals week to talk more about the health of our body.
Written by Rebecca Low