8 Facts About Hormones You May Not Know
Hormones rule our lives, but how much do we know about how they can really affect us?
1. Hormones can make you hungry
Women with PMS can certainly elate to this and at menopause there is a real tendency to eat more and put on weight. Two different hormones play big roles in your appetite. One is called ghrelin, and it sends your body the message that it’s time to eat. Another called leptin tells you you’re full.
Scientists are studying them to learn more about their role in weight loss and obesity but one way to trick them is to use smaller plates, and so smaller portions.
2. Problems with your thyroid can cause you to gain weight
Your thyroid makes hormones that help control your metabolism — how fast your body turns food into nutrients and energy. When the gland doesn’t make enough of these hormones, that’s called hypothyroidism. A symptom of it is unexplained weight gain and it is very common at m menopause but can often be helped by bioidentical progesterone.
3. Headaches can be hormone linked
Many women get headaches when their levels of both oestrogen and progesterone fall right before a period. In susceptible women this can trigger migraine headaches.
4. Women don’t make testosterone.
Testosterone is sometimes called the “male hormone,” but women’s bodies make it too, just less than men. Progesterone is the precursor for testosterone production in women but supplementing with progesterone to improve sex drive should only be done in consultation with a doctor for regular monitoring due to its side effects.
5. Hormone changes can cause acne
We associate acne with puberty and our teenage years but it also affects women at menopause too. As hormone levels change the skin makes more oil and if oil gets trapped in your pores, it can cause acne. The hormones also cause more bacteria on the skin that can lead to acne.
6. Hormones can help you sleep.
The hormone melatonin lets your body know it’s the right time to fall asleep. You can sleep without it, but people rest better when their bodies are making more of it. Some people who have trouble sleeping or work odd hours take melatonin supplements to help, but again progesterone is a natural relaxant and is beneficial in helping you sleep better.
7. What is the ‘love hormone’?
When love is in the air, oxytocin is working in the body. It’s released when we hug or cuddle, and it’s linked to the bonding between mates, and mother and child. It also helps mothers with labour and breastfeeding.
8. The ‘male menopause’ isn’t real
When women start menopause and stop having periods, it’s a dramatic change in hormone levels. And it marks the end of their ability to have children. Men don’t have such an abrupt shift in hormone levels, and they can still make sperm. Testosterone levels drop slowly and as that happens, men may have weight gain, a lack of energy, and less interest in sex.
So it may be a ‘mid-life’ crisis but its not accurate to call it a male menopause.