Over the next couple weeks, I’ll be highlighting some high points of the past year (2020 wasn’t all a wash!) from my podcast and show, where I regularly interview guests who are so incredibly smart, I can’t not share their wisdom.
Below, the need-to-knows. And to listen for yourself, just click the links below!
Whether it’s trying to get pregnant, having a healthy pregnancy, or deciding that starting a family isn’t right for you, so much of our health in our 30s is impacted by our hormone levels and what our bodies do, and don’t, go through.
“We become less resilient and more sensitive to hormone changes” in our 30s, Dr. Jones says. What does that translate to? Second helpings of dessert showing up on our waists muuuuch quicker. PMS symptoms feeling stronger (Hello, Mr. Hyde). And overall, feeling not quite yourself.
Realizing the reason behind these issues could be your hormones is half the battle.
I don’t know about you, but it wasn’t until after having kids that I started to ask questions about my hormones, and pay attention to small physical and mental changes that were happening around the start of my period. That prompted me to dig deeper: Besides PMS symptoms, what else could my hormones be impacting?
The short answer to that: So much. Dr. Jones says hormones are interconnected with other systems in our body that impact overall health, like our adrenal health and our thyroid health. And because it’s essential to keep those systems in balance, we have to start somewhere.
That’s why it’s more important than ever, after you’ve hit this decade, to know what’s happening in your body through testing your doctor can provide and prescribe. More on this below!
Dr. Jones is a huge believer that what we put into our bodies impacts our hormonal—and overall—health.
“When you make estrogen as a woman in your body, in order for it to do anything, it has to bind onto an estrogen receptor. … Unfortunately other things combine to that receptor, too.
The plastics that come our of your to-go container; the hot water bottle … you bought out of the convenience store; the chemicals you use for cleaning your house … all those things they spray on our foods—pesticides and fung[icides] and things like that?
All of those look close enough to estrogen that the key fits in the lock [acting like an estrogen receptor]. And now they set off a cascade of events you don’t want, like weight gain, hair loss, PMS, heavy periods, period and infertility issues, mood issues, energy issues. It just goes on and on.”
The lesson? Consider glass for containers, swap out regular harsh household cleaners for safer ones, and talk to your doctor to get your hormone levels checked if you’re experiencing intense PMS symptoms.
Dr. Jones works with DUTCH Test (which I have in my hands but need to actually do; I’ll update you when I do!), which is an advanced, at-home hormone level testing kit. It gives your healthcare provider specific information about your current levels, so s/he can tell you what to do next to fix any imbalances.
Here are some other supplements my own doctor recommended (after doing another hormone panel) that have helped to regulate my levels*:
Adrenal Forte (a blend of adaptogenics to balance your hormones)
Omega 3 (Get 30% off your first shipment of these Omega 3 supplements from Vitamin & Me I use and love, with code WEGOTTATALK30!)
Dr. Jones and Dr. Romie Mushtaq, a neurologist I also interviewed about thyroid health, also suggests asking for a full thyroid panel, paying close attention to multiple markers. This includes, but may not be limited to, free T4, free T3 and reverse T3.
*Please follow your own doctor’s advice before changing anything in your routine. I am not a health professional. Just a gal telling you what works for me. (Duh.)
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