7 Common Hormone Mistakes - See How Many You’re Making

This hormone stuff can be a complicated topic, and there’s certainly some conflicting or misleading information out there.

Heck, in the past some of our team have even made mistakes and misunderstood our hormones so we get it. But we want you, dear reader, to avoid the mistakes we made when we were younger and more foolish.

So we compiled this list for you, of the most common hormone mistakes we hear and see, so you can move forward armed with the most accurate knowledge, and can set your friends right if you see them falling for a hormone faux pas.

 

Mistake 1: Hating on oestrogen

Myth: “Oestrogen is bad because it makes you gain weight and store fat on your hips and thighs.”

Truth: unless your higher oestrogen levels are much higher than they should be (and are not balanced by progesterone), or your oestrogen is not being metabolised well, this simply isn’t true. Oestrogen is actually an essential hormone, and one you’re really going to want to have around.

One of the many reasons why oestrogen is really your BFF, is that it actually increases insulin sensitivity. This means that while oestrogen is rising and dominant in the first half of your cycle (the follicular phase), your body is actually really good at using carbs for energy. I.e. you’re less likely to store that muffin on your top ;)

Oestrogen is also worth making friends with if you want:

  • Healthy bones;
  • Clear skin;
  • A strong libido;
  • Great sleep;
  • Energy levels;
  • Good moods and confidence.

Low oestrogen can show up with fatigue, weight gain, low mood, vaginal dryness, night sweats and insomnia. But more isn’t always the answer. Check out our blogs on Oestrogen Dominance and Low Oestrogen to find out more about balancing this lovely feminine hormone.

 

Mistake 2: Thinking that your monthly cycle is just what you’ve been given

Myth: “I’ve always had awful periods, it’s just my bad luck of the draw.”

Truth: we’re here to tell you that how your period is now, isn’t the way it always needs to be.

If your experience of health education at school was anything like ours, you might have been told that everyone’s period is different, and that’s just how it is. Like it or lump it.

But this simply isn’t true. There’s always a root cause of heavy, painful or abnormal periods. Your hormones will be playing a huge role here, and always worth investigating further.

Sometimes the simplest diet and lifestyle changes can make the biggest difference to your period.

If you’re not sure where to start, get in touch with our support team for a chat. They’ll be more than happy to help you.

 

Mistake 3: Taking the pill to ‘fix’ hormone imbalances

Myth: “I’m taking the pill because it will regulate my cycle.”

Truth: Hormonal birth control replaces natural sex hormones with synthetic versions that stay at constant levels (minus the week of sugar pills), thereby eliminating the natural cycling that female sex hormones do each month. Meaning that the pill isn’t regulating your cycle. It’s replacing it with a daily dose of synthetic hormones that covers up the problem.

If you’re struggling with really strong or painful hormonal signs such as heavy periods or acne, the pill can be really helpful in providing some respite. However, just be aware that it doesn’t address the root cause of these signs from your body that are asking you to investigate further.

As unfortunate as it is, many women lean on the pill at a young age to ‘manage’ their hormone imbalances, and come off it years later when they’re ready to have a baby. However, in many cases, once the hormones from the pill wear off, the same hormone issues creep back in as strong as ever. In these cases, the root cause of the issue needs to be addressed before this woman will be able to achieve her dreams of becoming a mother.

To make one thing clear, we are not advising anyone to stop taking medication prescribed by their doctor, and we are not taking a hard stance against the pill - as we’ve mentioned before, it can be a great tool for women to have at their disposal. However, hormonal birth control is a personal choice and we believe it should always be a fully informed one.

 

Mistake 4: Thinking that testosterone is bad for women

Myth: “Testosterone makes you bulky, women don’t need it.”

Truth: Yes, women have testosterone too, just in much smaller amounts than men and it happens to be our best friend when it comes to building and maintaining muscle mass.

With lower than optimal testosterone levels, we can feel as though we aren’t making any progress to tone up despite our best weight training efforts. Low testosterone can also show up as low energy, weight gain and irregular menstrual cycles.

Too much testosterone, however, is linked to insulin resistance, PCOS and increased body fat. Like oestrogen, we need testosterone. But we need it in the right amounts.

 

Mistake 5: Not thinking about your ‘5th vital sign’

Myth: “I don’t get my period at the moment, but that’s normal for people who are stressed and exercise a lot.”

Truth: It is a common misconception that losing your period to an intense fitness regime is ‘normal’, ‘to be expected’, or our favourite myth: ‘totally fine if you don’t want to have a baby right now’.

As endocrinology professor Jerilynn Prior puts it, ovulatory cycles are both an indicator and a creator of health.”

Please let this land: if you are female, your period is an essential monthly messenger that gives you valuable insights into your overall health and your hormones. Being of reproductive age and going months or even years without a period is a sign from your body that something is up.

Not to mention that the hormones produced by the process of ovulation are essential for health. Without these hormones, we’re going to start seeing degradation of wellness from gut health, to mental health and bone density.

To read learn more, check out our blog on Why You Really Should Care About Ovulation.

 

Mistake 6: Playing with powerful herbs & supplements

Myth: “DIM is good for hormones so I’m going to give it a try.”

Truth: When used correctly under the guidance of a health consultant, naturopath, or Eve Hormone Balance Test recommendations, these powerful herbs and supplements can be a powerful piece of hormone balance puzzle.

However, using them on a whim can and often does, make things worse, not better.

Some of the herbs we’re talking about are DIM, Vitex, Milk Thistle, Saw Palmetto, Calcium-D-Glucarate and so on.

A great example of this is EstroClear. This is an incredible product if you have poor oestrogen metabolism or high oestrogen levels. If you don’t, it probably won’t be all that great for you.

We’ve heard from women who have used similar products after thinking that they might have oestrogen dominance, only to find from an Eve test that their oestrogen levels and metabolism are fine. It’s another aspect of their hormones that needs support instead.

 

Mistake 7: Not talking about them

Myth: “Eww I don’t want to talk about my periods, that’s TMI.”

Truth: Sure, for a while, reproductive health and more specifically women’s health have been considered more taboo topics, reserved for your closest friends and only after a wine or two. But in fact, communicating about your hormone health with others is really important.

We’ve spoken to many women who assumed that their hormonal signs and period problems were ‘normal’ until they had the courage to speak to a friend who confirmed that what they’d been suffering with for years was not so normal after all.

We know that people haven’t been comfortable to talk about the way our bodies work ‘cos, ya know, *hushed voice* blood and sex and stuff.

The good news is, it’s 2019; times are changing and women’s health is on the rise.

The more we talk about these things, the more comfortable we, and those around us, get discussing them. And the more educated, informed and empowered we, and those around us, become to take their health into their own hands too.

 

Looking for more information? Head over to our FAQs page where you can find out about Eve, what the Eve Hormone Balance Test and Eve Stress & Adrenal Test measure, how they can help you and more.

Disclaimer: This blog post is for educational purposes only. It is not designed to diagnose, treat or cure. We are all unique. For your individual health concerns it is important to discuss these with a relevant health professional.