This episode is all about estrogen. Estrogen dominance accelerates weight gain and makes weight loss an uphill battle. We unknowingly feed our estrogen dominance with our diet and lifestyle choices. In this episode we talk about how estrogen becomes a weight loss nightmare for both men and women and we establish concrete steps for reducing your overall estrogen levels, eliminating estrogen dominance, and improving your overall health and weight loss potential naturally.
When I weighed over 300 pounds my estrogen levels were nuts. I didn’t have a regular menstrual cycle for YEARS. I had polycystic ovarian syndrome or PCOS. Doctors told me my fertility was basically a joke. I had more than 20 cysts in each ovary. I think it might have been more than 30. My elevated estrogen levels were making it incredibly hard to lose weight. But then I did my research. Like other hormones, estrogen levels can be VASTLY improved through diet and lifestyle. So I did that. I shocked my doctors. I now have ZERO cysts in either ovary. My menstrual cycles are like clockwork. It’s unreal. And THAT is why I get so fired up about this.
The Challenge: Estrogen is a serious problem for many overweight and obese people – men and women! While it is considered a female sex hormone, it influences many other areas of health including heart health, bone density, mood and body fat distribution. We’re talking about a LOT more than fertility when we talk about estrogen. Imbalances in estrogen can lead to obesity, reproductive cancers, heart disease, infertility, PCOS, endometriosis and more. Fortunately, like I said, there is much we can do to balance estrogen naturally. Much of it is within our control based on our diet and lifestyle choices.
Estrogen dominance is a vicious cycle for those looking to lose weight. Excess estrogen encourages fat storage and insulin resistance, leading to weight gain. The more weight you gain, the more estrogen you produce, the more fat you store. Proper estrogen balance is an absolutely critical component of sustainable fat loss for women (and often for men, too!)
While the ovaries are primarily responsible for producing and releasing estrogen, your fat cells also produce estrogen. The more body fat you have, the most estrogen you produce. This is why we tend to see a LOT of problems with estrogen balance in overweight people. The more weight they put on, the more estrogen they are pumping into their bodies – male or female!!
The Solution: In order to maintain balanced estrogen levels, you not only have to produce the right amounts of estrogen in the correct ratios, but you have to be able to metabolize and excrete it. Your liver is responsible for estrogen metabolism – breaking it down and excreting it from the body. If that process is broken or impaired, excess estrogen will build up in your system. So, what does this mean? Our liver health is a really important part of our hormone balance! Once again, the foods we eat have a major impact on our liver health.
Our estrogen levels are a function not only of the estrogen we produce in our bodies but by the estrogen we consume! We are constantly increasing our estrogen load through toxins, herbicides and pesticides. We can work to control our estrogen production by eating cruciferous vegetables (natural estrogen detoxifiers) and balancing our blood sugar (avoiding processed foods, wheat, and grains). We can avoid consuming toxins in many, many ways.
- Limit your consumption of estrogens by avoiding environmental estrogens.
- Choose organic foods
- Opt for hormone-free dairy/meat/proteins
- Wear gloves when handling cleaning products
- Get a water filter, especially for your shower! (Link below in resources section)
- Do not eat or drink out of plastic containers. At a minimum, DO NOT HEAT food or drinks in plastic containers!
- Eat more cruciferous veggies! They are natural estrogen detoxifiers! More on cruciferous veggies in resources below.
- Avoid soy products
- Limit stress! Excessive stress will instruct your body to use precious progesterone to produce more of the stress hormone cortisol. When we lower our progesterone levels that way, we can create estrogen dominance without directly impacting our estrogen levels.
Hormones & Fat Loss Part 1
Hormones & Fat Loss Part 2
Hormones & Fat Loss Part 3
Hormones & Fat Loss ebook! 50 pages of diet & lifestyle strategies to help you naturally optimize your hormones and get into fat-burning mode!!
Feel like you need someone to take a look at your diet & lifestyle habits and make some recommendations to fine tune your process & accelerate your fat loss results? Check out the Fat Loss Lifestyle Analysis!
Metabolic Effect & lower body fat
Cruciferous veggies for estrogen balance
Water filter for your shower