Functional Medicine – Hormone Disorder
The Dangers of Hormonal Imbalance and the Importance of Functional Medicine
What causes a hormonal imbalance?
While there are internal factors, such as genetics that can cause a hormonal imbalance, there are many external forces that can contribute as well. Some of the more common external factors include:
- Not enough sleep
- High stress (distress) levels
- Poor diet
- Not enough exercise
- Taking synthetic hormones
- Coexisting medical conditions, such as IBS, Hypothyroidism, Diabetes, and Auto-Immune Diseases
- Environmental toxins, including Xenoestrogens and Toxic Metals
- Genetic Polymorphisms (or SNPs), which cause defective clearing of toxins and hormones
- Low testosterone
- Puberty, perimenopause, and menopause can lead to a hormonal imbalance.
Common hormonal imbalance symptoms
Here are some of the more common hormone imbalance symptoms:
- Skin issues
- Weight gain
- Trouble sleeping
- Always sleeping
- Chronic joint pain
- Decreased exercise tolerance
- Mood swings
- Hot flashes and night sweats
- Foggy memory
- Low sex drive
- Muscle pain
What happens if your hormonal imbalance is left untreated?
When it comes to your health, hormones and gut bacteria have a much bigger impact than you may realize. In fact, these two factors can destroy your health even if you are optimized in other areas. Hormones even affect the healing of brain trauma, along with your bowel movements and the function of your gastrointestinal system. If your hormonal imbalance is left untreated, and it becomes too extreme, then this can lead to long-term issues, ranging from mild to severe. Osteoporosis, endometriosis, atherosclerosis, cardiovascular disease, an increased risk of certain cancers, and urinary tract infections are some of the more long-term issues.
Functional Medicine Approach
The best treatment is to take a systematic and comprehensive approach to get to the cause(s) of your hormonal imbalance and prescribe appropriate corrective care. You would want to get examined to understand better why hormone levels are imbalanced. Specific functional diagnostic testing and treatment, such as sensitivity testing to find out if certain foods are causing gut inflammation, blood and hormone panels, and adrenal stress index is used to help identify the root cause of your hormonal imbalance. Specific lab tests to determine what you are either high or low in may also be used to help you regain balance in your life.
Millions of women and men are unaware that they have a hormonal imbalance. If left untreated, your hormonal imbalance will lead to a host of long-term medical issues. And the best treatment is to get the full analysis and treatment your body requires, through functional medicine.
Frequently Asked Questions
What makes your approach to hormones different than my medical doctor?
Medical doctors are wonderful in so many ways; we wouldn’t want to live in this dangerous world without modern medicine. Unfortunately, many of them are locked in a ‘model’ that is outdated. Their answer far too often is dependent on taking synthetic hormones and drugs with laundry lists of side effects. Our approach uses the best of modern science to assess and monitor you but our treatment approaches are safe, natural and are geared to addressing the deeper causes of the imbalance.
What are the symptoms of hormone imbalance?
The most common symptoms are fatigue, weight problems, irritability, depressed mood, lack of motivation, sleep problems, PMS, hot flashes, low libido.
Are you going to just start me on some nutritional supplements like I hear on TV?
While nutritional supplements can be a part of an overall approach to hormonal balance, it makes a big difference what supplements you take. Our individualized approach draws from homeopathic hormone formulas, bio-identical hormone drops, herbs, supplements and careful lifestyle modification to holistically rebuild the systems that have been damaged.