4 Lifestyle Tweaks for Beating Estrogen Dominance
Estrogen dominance is becoming one of the more common hormone imbalances due to the prevanence of environmental hormone disrupters.
Due to the ubiquity of environmental estrogens, most people over the age of 35 have some form of estrogen dominance. The typical 4-step protocol for reversing estrogen dominance includes: dietary tweaks, estrogen-clearing supplements (or bioidentical hormones), weight loss, and reducing xenoestrogen exposure. If your goal is full recovery however, you’ll need to also address the following 4 contributors.
Contributor #1: Stress
Stress causes the release of cortisol, which can lead to a progesterone deficiency because progesterone gets used-up in the manufacturing of cortisol. Stress also compromises adrenal gland health, reducing the adrenals’ ability to produce progesterone. Low progesterone in relation to estrogen = estrogen dominance.
The Stress Fix
Eliminate all stimulants and meditate at least 15 minutes a day. Also, incorporate a range of stress reducing activities into your daily life, such as: yoga, deep breathing, tai chi, sex, cuddling, Epsom salt baths, or simply getting lost in an activity you enjoy.
Contributor #2: Sleep
Sleep is the time when your body rebalances hormones and a good night’s sleep helps to dramatically reduce cortisol levels. Sleep also increases leptin, which is a hormone that helps you feel full. Extra fat cells can result without enough leptin, which is a problem because fat cells produce estrogen, and the more fat cells you have the more estrogen you will produce.
The Sleep Fix
Sleep for 7-9 hours a night, and go to bed as early as possible because peak hormonal restoration occurs between 8 pm and 4 am. Practice proper sleep hygiene, limit daytime naps to 20 minutes, avoid stimulants, heavy, fatty and spicy foods; and expose yourself to natural sunlight for at least 15 minutes a day.
Contributor #3: Exercise Regular exercise helps to reduce stress and enhance sleep. It also helps to detoxify excess estrogens and eliminate them through your sweat. In addition, it increases sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG) levels, and SHBG deactivates harmful estrogens. Finally, exercise lowers body fat reserves, which (as referred to above) reduces estrogen levels.
The Exercise Fix
A balanced blend of cardiovascular, strength training and flexibility-enhancing exercises should be employed. High intensity interval training (HIIT) programs should be done in moderation because they place stress on your body which can upset hormonal balance. Balance out HIIT with gentler forms of exercise such as yoga and tai chi.
Contributor #4: Your Mindset The 4 steps for overcoming estrogen dominance (mentioned in the intro) in combination with reducing stress, prioritizing sleep, and increasing exercise, is understandably overwhelming. Thoughts of resistance, such as "This protocol is way too hard," will prevent you from achieving full recovery.
The Mindset Fix
Meditation will make you feel centered and in-turn, help you to realize that everything is possible. Hypnosis and NeuroLingustic Programming are two additional powerful tools for reprogramming your subconscious mind. They help to replace negative thought patterns and belief systems with positive ones, which virtually guarantees long-term success.
~Written by Nick Delgado, PhD, CHT
Dr. Nick Delgado, PhD (www.delgadoprotocol.com) is a graduate of the University of Southern California (USC). He studied Physical Therapy at Rancho Los Amigo Hospital, Health Sciences at Loma Linda University, and Nutrition at CSLB. Dr. Delgado directed the Nathan Pritikin Plan, and is certified in NLP, Time Line, and Hypnotherapy. With an emphasis on optimal sports performance. Dr. Delgado broke the World Strength Endurance record, lifting 50,640 lbs in one hour, and led Team USA to a World Championship. He is a medical commentator in theWHN Forum