Hormones are something that we’re all aware of, yet most of us don’t properly understand. There are lots of misconceptions about hormones, such as one common thought that women are the only ones with them. Both men and women have hormones throughout their body, it’s just that they’re only really spoken about when relating to women during pregnancy or periods, etc.
However, hormones are actually in our bodies all the time and they play so many important roles to influence our health and wellbeing. It’s important to understand your hormones and what they do as they can help you improve your life. Today, we’ll go over some of the key talking points and questions to ensure you know all the main things to know about hormones.
What Are Hormones?
Hormones are tiny little molecules that carry messages throughout your body. They are often referred to as your body’s chemical messengers because of the way they work. We create hormones in our endocrine glands – which include the pineal, thymus, thyroid, adrenal, pancreas, and pituitary glands. These glands are situated throughout the body, but men and women also make hormones from either the testes or ovaries. Hormones are constantly traveling around the body via the bloodstream, which is why you can get blood tests to measure your hormone levels.
How Many Hormones Do We Have?
This might surprise you as hormones are typically only associated with sex. If you were asked to name some hormones, you’d all likely say testosterone and estrogen. These are the two that make all the headlines, but there are currently over fifty different hormones throughout the body with a range of different roles. Some others include cortisol, growth hormone, serotonin, and much more.
How Do Hormones Work?
Hormones work by carrying signals to parts of the body and making them perform specific functions. The hormone will attach to a cell and tell it to do something. The exact function will depend on the hormone itself. For instance, the hormones insulin and glucagon work to control blood sugar levels in your body. When insulin is produced, the hormone removes glucose from your blood. Then, when glucagon is released, it increases glucose in your blood. The two work in harmony to ensure you have the right blood sugar levels at all times.
What Does It Mean To Have A Hormonal Imbalance?
You might have heard this phrase thrown around, and it basically means that you do not have the correct balance of hormones throughout your body. You might produce too much of one hormone or not enough of another. Going back to the previous example, people with type 2 diabetes tend to produce less insulin than a regular person, causing blood sugar levels to rise rapidly.
There are so many different hormonal imbalances you can have throughout your body that might lead to various physical or mental health concerns. Sometimes, the concerns can be purely aesthetic as well. Women that produce excessive amounts of testosterone (the male sex hormone) are likely to experience more hair growth than is considered normal. Likewise, men that produce too much estrogen and not enough testosterone could experience low sperm counts that make it hard to conceive a child.
How Do Hormonal Imbalances Happen?
Naturally, you want to keep your hormones as balanced as possible. The average healthy person should have no problems with this, but there are various factors that can raise or lower specific hormones. Some of these factors are internal and are caused by underlying health conditions – like diabetes. Other factors are external and can be caused by lifestyle habits.
For example, if you expose yourself to bright lights late at night, you suppress one of the key hormones needed to help you sleep. As a result, you will then end up producing more other hormones that can make you feel stressed and hungry.
How Can You Correct A Hormone Imbalance?
Thankfully, a specialist in hormone therapy in Phoenix can guide you to help your body return to a sense of balance. One idea is to take herbal supplements that can encourage your body to produce the right amounts of certain hormones. There’s a good guide to this called Herbs to Support Healthy Female Hormone Balance Through All Life Stages that’s particularly useful for women of all ages, allowing you to achieve the right balance of hormones, making life a lot easier.
Other ways you can correct an imbalance are by following healthy lifestyle practices. Get yourself a proper sleep schedule, deal with chronic stress, exercise regularly, and eat a balanced and nutritious diet. All of these things will ensure that your body produces hormones as it should and that you don’t have any health problems associated with hormonal imbalances.