Michele will soon be speaking at Business Chicks event 9 to Thrive so it seemed appropriate Michele sat down with their Latte Magazine and gave a little insight into the Healthy Hormone Way……..
Do your moods fluctuate over the course of a day, week or month? Do you have a low- level nagging feeling that something just isn’t right? Yes, you’re able to get on with your busy life, but you feel as though every day is about reaching a finishing line or pushing a rock up a hill.
When did life get this exhausting? You leave the office, but work continues, courtesy of your phone. You’re tricked into spending too much time with it. You grab it. Time stops. Tap the screen. Punch out an email. Send a text. Check the internet, news, social media. Oh, wait, what’s this? What did you want again? Hello, multi-tasking. Frantic families ferry children through congested cities for netball, piano lessons or taekwondo. You spend time with ageing parents. You try to stay connected with busy friends. But what about you? When do you have time for your own health?
Finding time to eat healthy food, exercise, sleep well and release stress is a challenge. When time is one of your most valuable commodities, it’s common to take shortcuts or use pick-me-ups to keep you moving. A morning boost with a takeaway coffee. A carb or sugar hit during a mid-afternoon slump. A seductive glass of wine or three to wind down in the evening. You often eat lunch at your desk (‘al desko’– a term so frequently used it was added to the Oxford Dictionary in 2014). It’s easy to fall into a grab-and-go routine – for you and your family. On the surface, you look like you’re coping quite well. But it’s more difficult to see what’s going on inside your body – and in particular with your hormones.
THE ROLE OF HORMONES
I’m a qualified nutritionist with my own private practice, A Healthy View. I began running cleanse retreats in 2005, and shortly after that opened my first clinic. Since then, people have seen me for a range of reasons: they want to lose weight; improve their sleep; gain more energy; feel better; or fix their addictions to food.
After consulting with thousands of patients over the past 10 years, it is obvious to me that there’s more than eating that affects the waistline, brainpower and mood. These powerful hormones – now coming under the research spotlight – play a significant role. For example, insulin brings glucose into our cells for energy. But if there’s too much insulin because of a lack of sleep, high stress and sugary food, insulin becomes dysfunctional. When insulin stops doing the job of bringing glucose into the cell, it could indicate pre-diabetes or insulin resistance and this causes weight gain and exhaustion. If you’re exhausted and bloated, guess what this does to your libido.
As people eat more processed, packaged foods that lack essential vitamins and nutrients, there’s been an increase in issues related to hormone imbalance. Lifestyles are busier and more stressed than ever. The combination of our poor food choices and stress is creating hormone dysfunction. And while you may have heard of insulin or oestrogen, it’s not common to know how these hormones interact. Some people will need the advice of an endocrinologist or GP, but many people can improve their hormone balance along with their weight, energy and mood simply with their fork.
ARE YOUR HORMONES OUT OF WHACK?
If you wake up feeling tired every day even though you’ve had enough sleep, or have trouble losing or maintaining weight even though you watch what you eat, or go to bed feeling tired but wired and unable to sleep, these are signs your hormones are out of whack.
Another indication is if weight accumulates in your tummy area. If you feel hungry all the time, moody and anxious for no particular reason, this suggests imbalanced hormones. You may have cortisol overload from poor food choices and stress. A sluggish thyroid could hijack your weight. Elevated insulin
levels could lead to increased testosterone that contributes to polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), which affects fertility. Excess oestrogen could cause heavy periods or cystic breasts. Hormones play a significant role.
Good nutrition affects every cell and hormone in our body. The stress hormone, cortisol, plays a role in weight, sleep and libido. It can become out of whack from sugar consumption and too much caffeine and alcohol.
The thyroid, our metabolic hormone, is linked to energy, weight and brain function. It’s affected by sugar and diets that are low in essential nutrients such as iodine, selenium, iron and B vitamins. If you have a compromised thyroid, you need to avoid inflammatory foods such as gluten and sometimes dairy.
Oestrogen is a protective hormone found in women and men. For women, oestrogen protects the brain, helps anti- ageing and fertility. Its function is influenced by the state of our liver and digestion and how well these organs clear out toxins from sugar and processed foods.
The hunger hormone, leptin, signals to our brain when we’ve had enough to eat. It’s affected by too much sugar, especially fructose, and poor sleep. People who consume excess sugar feel tired but wired.
Testosterone is the hormone of vitality in both men and women. It’s influenced by sugar, alcohol, sleep, vitamin D and zinc.
Serotonin is the happy hormone with 85 per cent created in our gut. Hidden sugars, poor carbohydrate choices and artificial sweeteners contribute to poor gut health. It makes sense that when we eat clean, real food and the gut is healthy, you feel better thanks to serotonin.
THE FOOD PRINCIPLES TO FOLLOW
It’s about nourishment, not punishment. It’s about crowding in an abundance of fresh, clean, healthy food. You’ll have an opportunity to observe how your body reacts to particular foods. There are a couple of cleansing principles related to food combining that see excellent results in clients. This includes not eating protein and grains in the same meal and eating fruit on its own. The aim is to create sustainable habits.
MICHELE WILL BE SPEAKING AT THE NEXT BUSINESS CHICKS EVENT – 9 TO THRIVE
SYDNEY 10 + 11 August 2018
MELBOURNE 24 + 25 August 2018
USE CODE ‘9TTFRIENDS’ TO GET 20% OFF