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HEALTH & WELLNESS / Women's Health

Could a hormone imbalance be making you fat?

Sarah Megginson is a freelance writer, journalist and editor. She currently edits Ultimate, Australia's highest-circulating entertainment magazine available nationally through Sanity stores and writes for magazines including Cosmopolitan...

are you Overweight, tired and cranky?

From SheKnows Australia
Are you having trouble shifting weight, despite sticking to a healthy eating plan? Do you find that you're constantly tired, or perhaps you're even having a hard time getting pregnant?

If so, the culprit could be something you've never considered: You may have a hormone imbalance.

If you are struggling to lose fat or maintain your shape, or in fact you are gaining kilos, you may be suffering from a hormone imbalance.

According to The Health Queen Sam Beau Patrick, there are several hormones that can lead to fat-making (lipogenesis), as well as affecting your metabolism. The top five main offenders include:

Oestrogen

"It’s a lovely hormone when in balance, but with lifestyle, extensive use of the oral contraceptive pill and more herbacides and pesticides being used in food preparation, this hormones is accumulating in many women — and men!" Sam explains. "Oestrogen makes us retain fluid, feel bloated, suffer with PMS and it causes cellulite. Oestrogen fat tends to accumulate on upper thighs and hips."

Testosterone

In guys, testosterone is great, but in ladies, it’s not such a wonderful thing. "Too much can lead to tummy fat," Sam confirms. "Testosterone levels can be affected by high-carbohydrate diets, stressing too much and adaption."

Cortisol

This very important stress and body clock hormone goes up during times of stress. "It signals for insulin to go up, which ultimately will lead to weight gain," Sam says. "My hottest tip here is to focus on your food when you eat, not your computer or other activities. For some this means leaving the workplace for 10 minutes before eating."

Thyroid imbalances

"Commonly with stress, comes a degree of burn out. This, combined with nutrient deficiencies, can impact on your thyroid, which governs your metabolism," Sam explains. "If you have had rapid weight gain, feel flat and sleepy, and suffer with hair loss, you may have an underactive thyroid."

Insulin

This hormone is secreted when our blood sugar level rises after eating carbohydrate-rich foods. "Controlling insulin swings is critical to balancing blood sugars and ultimately weight. Adding protein into each meal can offer some insulin balancing," Sam suggests.

If you suspect that a hormone imbalance may be wreaking havoc with your health, book an appointment with your GP or visit a naturopath as soon as possible. There are several treatment options and some are as simple as changing your diet, so you don’t need to suffer in silence. For more information on hormones check out the FAQ page on Sam’s website, www.healthqueen.com.au.

This article should in no way be viewed as a diagnosis or treatment recommendation. If you are concerned about your health, consult a medical practitioner.

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