So you might be exercising regularly, drinking your green juice, and reading all the best health news outlets. You should be absolutely healthy, right? Well, not exactly. If you still feel something is off, you might be missing one essential piece that is most often overlooked: Your hormones! They affect everything from your moods to your weight to your energy levels and more. So even if you’re proactive about your health and trying to do your best, there might be a few key things you are missing. Here are my best tips for you:

1. The pill doesn’t fix your problems

Contrary to common belief, the pill is not really healing your PMS (premenstrual syndrome), heavy flow, acne, or mood swings. All it is doing is just covering up your symptoms in the short term through a cascade of artificial hormones that block your body’s natural rhythms. The only thing that will fix these symptoms is addressing their root causes through diet and lifestyle. (More on that in the following points!)

2. Your hormones are not your enemy, but your best friend, so lean into them!

Healthy hormonal balance not only keeps your skin glowing, weight stable, mood upbeat, and energy high, but they also help you to connect with your creativity and ambition. Knowing how your monthly hormone patterns affect your brain chemistry and your energy gives you a critical advantage when trying to solve it all. Working with them rather than against them will help you plan your life in a way that completely supports you.

3. PMS (premenstrual syndrome) is not normal

Although PMS has become a catchphrase for “that time of the month,” if you’re dealing with common PMS symptoms like mood swings, acne, bloating, cramps and more, this need not be your actual reality! Our bodies are made to cycle naturally without having to feel so crappy. If you’re having PMS symptoms, it means that your estrogen and progesterone levels aren’t balanced and you need to address them with simple diet and lifestyle hacks that are the root causes of why you are experiencing this.

4. Hormones require fat to survive

Before you choose the low fat or no-fat options, take note: your reproductive hormones can’t get around in your body without fat. Without the proper dietary fat coming in, your body won’t have the building blocks necessary to keep your hormones stable, which can make you vulnerable to many hormonal symptoms. Say yes to the yolks.

5. You can extend and improve your fertility with food

Years of dieting or extreme food choices can starve your body of the proper micronutrients that are necessary for a healthy cycle. More and more women are struggling to conceive at younger ages, and this has everything to do with how food affects your hormone levels. Even if you’re not sure about having babies in the future, do your body a favor and take better care of your menstrual cycle now.

6. Accurate Detoxing requires the specific daily nutrient intake

While the latest fads in cleansing can be tempting, remember that a once-in-a-while cleanse is not going to be effective if your daily habits are not supporting your hormones. Extreme detoxes and juice cleansing can actually do more damage to your body than good by setting off an internal stress response and signaling your body to store more fat. Your liver has two key phases of detoxification, and in order for hormones and other toxins to be released properly, it must have key vitamins, amino acids, and antioxidants present — all best acquired by food.

7. Most hormonal imbalances are caused by micronutrient deficiencies

When we want to improve estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, cortisol and thyroid performance, it all boils down to improving micronutrient (vitamins, minerals, amino acids, EFAs) stores. What this means for you, of course, is that you have to eat yourself to hormonal balance!

8. Exercise with hormonal patterns, not against them. Do it like a girl!

Testosterone patterns, metabolism, cortisol, and mood– all fluctuate in a predictable accord with your 28-day cycle. The same workout every day and every week is not going to be sustainable. (You might already be beating yourself up for not sticking to it all the time!) The reason is that your monthly hormonal patterns require a different kind of exercise. One week of Zumba class might feel great, but then next you’ll be better suited for yoga. 

9. Digestive and bowel symptoms are connected to hormonal issues

Don’t keep pushing aside the fact that you only poop once a week, feel bloated after you eat, or that you need antacids more often than not. When your digestion is off, your body is neither absorbing nutrients optimally nor eliminating toxins and hormones efficiently, which can create an internal environment ripe for hormonal imbalance.

Remember that your health is your birthright and my job is to help you achieve that. Wherever you are right now, you are a wonderful woman, and once you get the right information, you can make better choices. Stop masking the symptoms and heal the root cause! It’s time to listen to your body and reconnect with yourself. So, what are you waiting for? Change your life today and become the person you most want to be because this world needs you!