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Is Sugar Causing Your Hormone Imbalances?

Why reducing refined sugar is essential to managing PMS, fertility, menopause, and more. 

Woman holding an apple and a donut into the focus of the foreground

You probably know that a diet too high in sugar isn’t great for your health. Eating too much refined sugar can cause weight gain, breakouts, cavities, headaches, and even chronic conditions like diabetes. 


But did you know that sugar can throw your hormones out of whack, too? If you’re struggling with PMS, menstrual irregularities, infertility, or menopause symptoms, sugar and refined carbohydrates could be contributing to your hormone imbalances. 


Thankfully, you don’t have to give up the sweet life to put your hormones back in balance. Read on to learn how refined sugar impacts your hormones and what you can enjoy instead to support your endocrine system.

How Sugar Affects Your Hormones

If you’ve ever felt a sugar high, followed by a sugar crash, you know how drastically sugar can affect your mood and energy. 

Sugar cubes

Sugar has the same rollercoaster effect on your hormones – especially the hormone insulin. And because insulin is closely connected to your body’s other hormones (like estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone), your entire endocrine system can easily fall out of balance when you eat too much sugar. 

After eating something high in sugar, your insulin will spike. Insulin tells the body to store the excess sugar (as fat) to maintain healthy blood sugar levels. Over time, your cells become less and less responsive to the signals from the insulin, and more insulin is needed to keep your blood sugar levels normalized. This is called insulin resistance

In a state of insulin resistance, the blood sugar levels stay high and eventually lead to diabetes. But what about the effect on your hormones?

At Moringa Natural Health, we have treatment plans for menopause and hormone imbalance. We personalize each plan according to each person’s unique biological makeup. Want to learn more about our treatment plans? Schedule your free appointment with Dr. Fernandez today!

High insulin causes a protein called SHBG (sex hormone binding globulin) to decrease. This protein is necessary for maintaining the proper level of sex hormones (i.e. estrogen and testosterone) in the blood. With less SHBG in the blood, your body cannot maintain the proper balance of your sex hormones throughout your cycle.

Increased insulin also triggers the production of testosterone. When there is too much testosterone in your system, your fat cells turn this testosterone into estrogen. Now, you have too much estrogen in the body and your estrogen-progesterone ratio falls out of balance. The result? Irritability, anxiety, insomnia, PMS, hot flashes, night sweats, and other classic hormonal symptoms. 


Is Sugar at the Root of Your Hormone Imbalances?

Hormone imbalances can stem from a wide range of potential causes. How do you know if your sugar intake is to blame?

It’s not always easy to tell if you’re eating too much sugar. Even those who stay away from candies and sodas could still be eating high amounts of sugar in other less obvious foods. For instance, salad dressings, condiments, and fat-free yogurts hide high amounts of sugar. White, refined carbohydrates like white bread, white potatoes, and white rice may not seem “sugary,” but they are simple carbs that break down into sugar in the body.

You might be eating too much refined sugar if…

  • You are often irritable
  • You toggle between anxious and exhausted. 
  • You have brain fog regularly. 
  • You have intense cramps or mood swings around your period. 
  • You have intense hot flashes or night sweats if you are in menopause
  • You’ve noticed more acne breakouts, redness, or wrinkles. 
  • Issues like joint pain or chronic pain have been flaring up.
  • You are gaining weight and feel hungry all the time. 
  • Nothing seems to taste sweet enough and you crave something sweet after every meal. 


How to Reduce Your Sugar Intake and Balance Your Hormones

Ready to take control of your sugar intake and improve your hormone balance? Here are a few easy ways to get started:

Raw salmon resting on wood embellished with lemon and parsley

1. Increase omega-3s.

At Moringa Natural Health, we have treatment plans for menopause and hormone imbalance. We personalize each plan according to each person’s unique biological makeup. Want to learn more about our treatment plans? Schedule your free appointment with Dr. Fernandez today!

Healthy fats are one of the best ways to fight the negative effects of refined sugar and bust your cravings for sugar. Omega-3 fatty acids are highly anti-inflammatory and reverse the inflammation that sugar causes. They also help support proper hormone production and balance and improve insulin sensitivity. An added bonus of omega-3s is that they keep you feeling satisfied longer and reduce sugar cravings over time. Find omega-3s in fatty fish like salmon, nuts and seeds, and avocados.


Honey or agave being drizzled over a spoon

2. Make healthy sugar swaps.

Sugar does make our foods tasty – but it’s an addictive ingredient that wreaks our hormone balance and our health. Avoiding refined sugar is an essential step if you want to ease your hormones back into their healthy balance. But skipping refined sugar doesn’t mean you won’t be able to have a sweet treat or eat carbs again. There are tons of naturally sweet foods that support your hormone balance while satisfying your sweet tooth.


3. Practice stress-relief techniques.
Chronic stress is one of the biggest culprits when it comes to hormone balance. Excess cortisol flowing through your system disrupts the normal production of your sex hormones and encourages insulin resistance. To make matters worse, stress makes us crave sugar! Stop the vicious cycle by using relaxation techniques to stop the stress before you turn to the cookie cabinet. Breathing exercisesaromatherapy, and exercise are all great habits that also encourage healthy hormone balance.


4. Get natural hormone support.

Managing your blood sugar is a key part of taking control of your hormones. But it’s usually just one piece of the bigger hormone puzzle.

At Moringa Natural Health Center, we are experts in helping you find your healthy hormone balance – naturally. Our bio-identical hormone therapy program helps you restore your balance through plant-based hormone supplements. Then, we use nutritional consultations to acupuncture to help your body fall back into balance on its own.

You don’t have to live with PMS, infertility, or menopause symptoms. Your body can find balance with the right support. Request an appointment to get started today!

Much love, 

Dr. Lena Fernandez

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