Hormones such as oestrogen, testosterone, adrenaline and insulin are extremely important chemical messengers. The entire endocrine system works together to control the level of hormones circulating throughout the body is slightly imbalanced it can cause widespread, major health problems.

 Some specific problems associated with some of the most common hormonal imbalances include: 

  • Estrogen dominance: changes in sleep patterns, changes in weight and appetite, higher perceived stress, slowed metabolism Polycystic     
  • Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS): infertility, weight gain, higher risk for diabetes, acne, abnormal hair growth 
  • Low estrogen: low sex drive, reproductive problems, menstrual irregularity, changes in mood Hypothyroidism: slowed metabolism, weight gain, fatigue, anxiety, irritability, digestive issues, irregular periods
  • Low testosterone: erectile dysfunction, muscle loss, weight gain, fatigue, mood-related problems
  • Hyperthyroidism and Grave’s disease: Anxiety, thinning hair, weight loss, IBS, trouble sleeping, irregular heartbeats 
  • Diabetes: weight gain, nerve  damage (neuropathy), higher risk for vision loss, fatigue, trouble     breathing, dry mouth, skin problems 
  • Adrenal fatigue: fatigue, muscle aches and pains, anxiety and depression, trouble sleeping, brain fog, reproductive problems Here are three main tools to help achieve this enjoyable state of being:  breathing exercises, quiet self-reflection, and exercise. 

First, it should be understood that exercise is like medicine and is very specific for each person &most accessible tool for most people.

Effects of Exercise on Endocrine System:

During exercise, the pituitary gland releases human growth hormone, which tells the body to increase bone, muscle and tissue production & thyroid gland sends out hormones that regulate the body's temperature, heart rate and blood pressure. 

Exercises --> Growth hormone --> Bone and Muscle Tissue Production --> Metabolic Rate

Heavy weightlifting, stimulates the release of luteinizing hormone in the brain which triggers testosterone production, also stimulates the release of thyroxine from the thyroid gland. Testosterone and thyroxine speed up your metabolism so one can lose weight. 

Exercise --> Luteinizing Hormone --> Testosterone --> Thyroxine --> Weight Reduction 

Blood Sugar Insulin, a hormone transports blood sugar to muscles for energy. Excessive insulin reduces sensitivity to insulin and leads to diabetes. Exercise increases insulin sensitivity by its uptake by muscles. Blood insulin decreases after 10 minutes of aerobic exercise, and weight training increases sensitivity to insulin at rest. 

  • Blood Flow: Adrenal medulla releases epinephrine during exercise and level increase at higher exercise intensities. This hormone controls the amount of blood that heart pumps, also enhances the ability to use muscles during exercise by widening blood vessels and muscles get more oxygen-rich blood. 
  • Thyroxine hormone: increases during exercise which increases the amount of blood in the body by about 30% and secretions might remain elevated for around five hours  
  • Psychological Effects: Works as an anti-depressant, Exercise-induced testosterone might increase confidence and libido. Low testosterone levels might inhibit your motivation, self-confidence, concentration, memory. 

Your pituitary gland produces endorphin(happy hormone) levels shortly after exercise begins.  

Activities for Hormone health:

  • Reduce sitting time - Most of us sit for far too long, but it just takes a few habit changes to make it less damaging to our health (and hormones); 
  • Walk and talk – instead of coffee shop meet up, arrange a walking meeting Mobile walk with it Set an alarm phone or computer to get up and take a quick break.

Find what kind of exercise and how much of it is best for maintaining a healthy hormone balance. 

  • Free gym? –  stairs, park, squats while you are watching TV  Walking out improves mood and feeling calmer.
  • HIIT High-intensity interval training (or ‘burst’ training) has been shown to burn fat more effectively than aerobic exercise.  Good for strengthening lungs and heart, raises human growth hormone (HGH), the hormone, abundant when we are young, declines rapidly as we age. Improves insulin sensitivity, a great result for waistline and risk of serious disease.

Ask for metabolic aftershock programme to your physio  

  • Resistance and weights -Muscle mass declines with ageing (at a rapid rate if no strength training done ever). The more muscle we have the more calories are burnt, day and night, reducing fat stores.  High cortisol has a negative effect on muscle mass, so building muscle is really important if you’re overstressed. Not necessary to go to the gym! Weight training at home will help.  fat/muscle ratio is what we are aiming to improve (note- you may not see weight loss if you are increasing muscle to fat).
  • Strength training also lowers risk of osteoporosis, especially at menopause. 
  • Yoga and Pilates-They improve flexibility, strength, posture, stress & mood. It’s the ultimate anti-ageing exercise! When one does yoga, focusing on the pose it is impossible to think about anything else, plus strengthening body at the same time is a great thing to do.

Relaxation technique:  Stress, be it physical, emotional or environmental, can threaten a body's homeostasis. Certain endocrine glands secrete hormones that help the body respond to stress, but the function is meant to be short term. Extended secretion may weaken the body's defences, leaving room for infection, or even result in high blood pressure or a lack of cortisol and other steroid hormones. Long-term, this lack can lead to organ damage and even failure

  • Relaxation methods can include meditation activities such as walking, painting or knitting
  • Anything calm and repetitive or focusing for a few minutes on breathing deeply or finding a quiet place to lie down and calm your heart beat.      

Sleep and hormone: Sleep is a good way to relax and calm down the brain. 

The amount of sleep you need to function best varies among individuals,

  • Adults -7 to 9 hr
  • Teens- 8.5 to 9.25 hr 
  • Children- 5 to 10 - 10 to 11 hr
  • Preschool children - 11 to 13 hr
  • Toddlers ages 1 to 3 -12 to 14 hr
  • Infants- 14to 15 hr
  • Newborn -12 to 18 hr