know your dna logo
search iconmenu Icon

5 Ways To Balance Hormones Naturally

Updated on November 23, 2021
Written by
Kelly Jamrozy
2 sources cited
KnowYourDNA is reader-supported. This means we may receive a commission when you buy something from one of the links on this page.

Hormones are messenger molecules. They are chemical substances that stimulate specific tissues or cells into action. 

There are many different types of hormones in male and female bodies. 

All hormones originate within the endocrine system. Each has a purpose and greatly influences body functions.

Hormones play a part in:

  • Growth and development
  • Sexual function
  • Metabolism
  • Mood

Hormone balance affects your emotional and physical well-being.

What do you need to know about hormone health and hormone balancing?

The Hormones and the Functions They Influence

Hormones affect a variety of functions in the body. Here are some examples of hormones and their corresponding functions:

Aldosterone

This is produced in the pituitary gland. It is responsible for water retention in the kidneys. It also controls blood pressure.

Corticosteroid

This is produced in the adrenal glands. It is responsible for: 

  • Controlling different bodily functions
  • Controlling inflammation
  • Maintaining blood sugar levels and blood pressure
  • Regulating salt and water balance

Antidiuretic hormone (vasopressin)

This is produced in the pituitary gland. It is responsible for water retention in the kidneys and controlling blood pressure.

Adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH)

This is produced in the pituitary gland. It stimulates cortisol production. Thus, it plays a huge role in the body's response to stress.

Growth hormone (GH)

This is produced in the pituitary gland. It is responsible for: 

  • Growth and development
  • Stimulating protein production
  • Fat distribution

Luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH)

These are produced in the anterior pituitary gland. It is responsible for controlling sex hormones. It also plays a role in eggs and sperm production.

Oxytocin

This is produced in the pituitary gland. It stimulates uterine contraction and milk ducts.

Prolactin

This is produced in the pituitary gland. It is responsible for initiating and maintaining milk production and sex hormone levels.

Thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH)

This is produced in the pituitary gland. It stimulates the production and secretion of thyroid hormones.

Renin and angiotensin

This is produced in the kidneys. It, directly and indirectly, controls blood pressure.

Erythropoietin

Produced in the kidneys, it is responsible for red blood cell production.

Glucagon

This is produced in the pancreas. It is responsible for raising blood sugar levels.

Insulin

This is produced in the pancreas. It is responsible for lowering blood sugar levels. It also stimulates metabolisms of glucose, fat, and protein.

Estrogen

This is produced in the ovaries. It is responsible for: 

  • the development of female sexual characteristics
  • reproductive development 
  • protecting bone health
  • controlling the function of the uterus and breasts

Progesterone

This is produced in the ovaries. It stimulates uterine lining and prepares the breasts for milk production.

Parathyroid hormone (PTH)

This is produced in the parathyroid glands. It is responsible for regulating blood calcium levels.

Thyroid hormone

This is produced in the thyroid gland. It is responsible for: 

  • controlling metabolism 
  • growth
  • maturation
  • nervous system activity
  • metabolism

Epinephrine

This is produced in the adrenal glands. It is responsible for increasing heart rate, oxygen intake, and blood flow.

Norepinephrine

This is produced in the adrenal glands. It is responsible for maintaining blood pressure.

Testosterone

This is produced in the testes. It develops and maintains male sexual characteristics.

Melatonin

This is produced in the pineal gland. It is responsible for releasing melatonin to promote sleep.

Growth hormone-releasing hormone (GHRH)

This is produced in the hypothalamus. It regulates thyroid-stimulating hormone in the pituitary gland.

Thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH)

This is produced in the hypothalamus. It regulates thyroid-stimulating hormone in the pituitary gland.

Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH)

This is produced in the hypothalamus. It regulates LH/FSH production in the pituitary gland.

Corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH)

This is produced in the hypothalamus. It regulates adrenocorticotropin release in the pituitary gland.

Humoral factors

This is produced in the thymus. It is responsible for the development of the lymphoid system.

5 Ways To Balance Hormones Naturally 4

EverlyWell - Women's Health Test

EverlyWell’s Test for Women's Health tests for hormone balance. It will then give you some steps you can take to get them back into balance.

What Can Cause a Hormonal Imbalance?

A variety of issues can lead to hormonal imbalance. For example:

  • Under (hypo)- or over (hyper)-thyroidism
  • Chronic stress
  • Certain types of birth control
  • Hormonal replacement treatment
  • Diabetes
  • Poor diet
  • Cushing syndrome
  • Exposure to endocrine disruptors
5 Ways To Balance Hormones Naturally 5

Poor diet

Diet plays a vital role in the balance of hormones. Certain foods improve or interfere with the body’s hormonal balance.

If you have hormonal imbalance, it's best to improve your diet.

A well-balanced diet is essential to overall health. This includes hormone levels.

Overeating leads to weight gain. It also raises insulin resistance and the risk of diabetes. This, in turn, makes it more difficult to lose weight. It becomes a vicious cycle.

Caffeine and alcohol also interfere with hormonal balance. Studies have shown that both increase cortisol secretion.

Lack of sleep

Not getting enough quality sleep affects the functions of the body. It also affects hormone production. Lack of sleep also increases your hunger and your stress and insulin levels.

Again, this is a vicious cycle. Lack of sleep causes hormonal imbalance, which makes it difficult to sleep. It also affects the body’s ability to process glucose. This puts you at a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Improper sleep affects: 

  • Thyroid function
  • Leptin levels
  • Ghrelin production
  • Sex hormones
  • The function of the adrenal glands

It lowers testosterone levels, libido, and energy levels. It also makes it difficult to concentrate.

Ways to Balance Your Hormones

There are several things you can do to balance your hormones better. You can also eliminate hormonal imbalances.

Supplemental hormone therapy is an option in some cases. You can balance your hormones naturally by:

1. Reducing your intake of carbohydrates and replacing them with healthy fats. 

Your body needs fat to create hormones. Fats reduce inflammation and boost your metabolism. 

Healthy fats offer several benefits. They are:

  • Antibacterial
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Fat-burning

Recommended sources are as follows:

  • Avocados
  • Coconut oil
  • Olive oil
  • Wild-caught salmon

Conversely, the following trigger hormonal imbalances:

  • Processed carbs
  • Sugar
  • Refined vegetable and seed oils

Here are some ways to achieve hormone balance naturally:

  • Avoiding processed foods
  • Eating a healthy diet
  • Focusing on weight loss if you’re overweight
  • Ensuring the foods you eat don’t cause your body to produce too much or too little insulin

A woman's menstrual cycle causes normal hormone fluctuation. Food helps resolve this. The food you eat affects your mood, your energy, and your overall well-being.

Exercise is helpful in avoiding drastic hormonal changes linked to reproductive activity. In many cases, simple life changes work great. It helps balance hormones and improves health and well-being.

2. Carefully supplement your diet. 

Ideally, you’ll get everything your body needs from the foods you eat. However, this is rarely the case. Supplementing your diet with vitamins and minerals is beneficial. It ensures you’re getting what you need to keep your hormones in balance.

Improving your supplement regime can alleviate hormonal imbalances. Supplements that promote healthy hormone levels include: 

  • Evening primrose oil
  • Vitamin D
  • Probiotics
  • Bone broth
  • Adaptogen herbs

To deal with hormones naturally, taking adaptogen supplements help. Examples are:

  • Ashwagandha
  • Medicinal mushrooms
  • Holy basil
  • Rhodiola

Adaptogen herbs promote:

  • Healthy thyroid function
  • Reduced cholesterol
  • Brain cell degeneration
  • Stable insulin and blood sugar levels
  • Healthy adrenal function

3. Deal with any emotional imbalances. 

Our emotions are linked to the function of our bodies, especially when it comes to hormones. Reduce stress levels by: 

  • meditating
  • spending time outdoors
  • exercising
  • deep breathing exercises

4. If possible, avoid medications, including birth control. 

Certain medications affect hormone balance.

5. Make quality sleep a priority. 

Hormones work on a schedule. When you interfere with that schedule by not getting enough sleep, you affect the production of hormones. The resulting imbalance of hormones then interferes with sleep quality creating a problematic cycle.

The Endocrine System

The endocrine system coordinates the relationship between hormones and the body.

It’s made up of organs including:

  • Thyroid
  • Ovaries
  • Testicles
  • Pancreas
  • Pituitary glands
  • Adrenal glands

Once released, hormones target cells and tissues. They send chemical messages to help the body perform its daily functions.

When the endocrine system isn’t functioning properly, hormonal imbalances are likely to occur.

Hormones in Balance

Often when your hormones are in balance, you’ll notice nothing. You’ll feel your best, and your body performs optimally. 

Most of the time, you only notice an issue with your hormones when there is a problem or when you fix a problem, and your health improves.

5 Ways To Balance Hormones Naturally 6

Ombre (formerly Thryve) - Best Gut Health Test

Ombre gets our recommendation for the best microbiome test because they've been around the longest, they specialize in only testing the microbiome, and they also have a good follow-up service (personalized probiotics and other items).

People whose hormones are in balance experience:

  • Easy weight gain when needed
  • Feeling of restfulness
  • Strong muscles
  • Lack of aches and pains
  • Moderated heart rate and blood pressure
  • A normal reaction to heat and cold
  • Regular bowel movements and urination
  • Healthy sex drive
  • Healthy appetite
  • Emotional well-being

In general and when otherwise healthy, someone with balanced hormones feels:

  • Healthy
  • Energetic
  • Alert
  • Content

Balancing hormones helps you achieve this overall feeling of good health. If you are experiencing poor health and no other diseases are present, a hormone imbalance could be the cause.

Resources

SHOW
HIDE
  1. Marks, Vincent. “How Our Food Affects Our Hormones.” Clinical Biochemistry, vol. 18, no. 3, June 1985, pp. 149–153, 10.1016/s0009-912080099-0.
  2. “Hormones and the Endocrine System.” Www.hopkinsmedicine.org, www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/hormones-and-the-endocrine-system#. Accessed 19 May 2021.
Kelly Jamrozy
Content Contributor
Kelly has experience working with clients in a variety of industries, including legal, medical, marketing, and travel. Her goal is to share important information that people can use to make decisions about their health and the health of their loved ones. From choosing the best treatment programs to improving dental and vision health to finding the best method for helping anyone who is struggling with health issues, she hopes to share what she learns through informative content.
back to top