Sex, zits, periods, babies.
Blame them all on hormones.
Aside from sex, most over 50 women are done with periods and baby-making, but hormones continue to run the show in our daily lives.
Forever and ever, amen.
“But Greg, I’m in menopause, I’m in negative territory when it comes to hormones.”
Your sex hormones, estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, took a dip of epic proportions – it’s true – but the other 47 are doing their thing, keeping us alive.
They control everything: heart rate, metabolism, reproduction, growth, mood, thermostat, and sexual health. Collectively they and their glands and organs are referred to as the endocrine system.
Just for shitz and giggles, here’s an A – Z list of them and what they do.
Lucky for most of us, most of those go about their business without incident.
We enjoy homeostasis, or balance, among all the systems of the body.
Especially when we are young. As we age, the signals from some hormones dim and receptor sites become less sensitive.
And an imbalance in hormones can be debilitating.
Are we mere pawns to these powerful chemicals?
Nay lass, nay. We tango with these chemicals minute by minute. It’s intimate, girls. They respond to our most secret thoughts. They dip or rise when we eat. They make choosing the right human tango partner possible by turning attraction into electricity, which prompts action.
Why this ode to the endocrine?
To remind you that Everything is Food.
Every thought we think and bite we take feeds us well or ill.
That you are never too old to consider that what ails you might have its roots in imbalanced hormones. And that some of what ails us is within our power to restore to homeostasis.
Examine these 4 categories for answers to the question, “What is wrong with me?”
- Sleep –poor sleep or less sleep than you need leads to more circulating fat storage hormones and they direct fat right to the belly. Oh, and, sleep deprivation has been associated with an increase in ghrelin levels, the hormone responsible for appetite and hunger.
- Food – too many carbs lead to excess blood sugar, leads to insulin (a storage hormone) resistance, leads to fatigue, cravings, lack of motivation, and can lead to diabetes and heart disease.
- Movement strength training, cardio, swimming, walking, dancing, can all boost our feel-good hormone levels serotonin and dopamine.
- Stress “Yeah, I know, it’s bad, I should meditate but…”
Cortisol, known as “the stress hormone” isn’t just for fight-or-flight. It helps control blood sugar levels, regulate metabolism, reduce inflammation, and assists with memory formulation. It has a controlling effect on salt and water balance and helps control blood pressure. That from Hormone.org, a great resource for every known hormone, diseases and conditions, and finding an endocrinologist.
Too much can result in Cushing’s Syndrome, too little, Addison’s disease. These conditions are not common but, according to Healthline, everyday chronic stress, that leads to higher than normal levels of cortisol, “may cause weight gain and high blood pressure, disrupt sleep, negatively impact mood, reduce your energy levels and contribute to diabetes.”
Pay attention to how you do your days. To age in good or even decent health, we gotta do stuff, maybe even stuff we don’t like. #biggirlpanties
Listen in on a convo with hormone expert Claire Snowdon-Darling for last week’s podcast. She went through hell before finding out what her hormones had been trying to tell her and what no western medicine doc could.
Taking time to find out what’s causing or contributing to our bloated bellies, sleepless nights, high blood pressure, or anything else the world wants us to believe is what happens as we age and nothing more, is Rebellious healthy aging 101.
Let hormones run the show and take their direction. This is a never-ending tango and the endocrine system is a strong and powerful partner.