If you can’t lose weight even when you’re trying hard and doing all the right things — what’s really going on inside your body? Hormone issues are a strong possibility. And it isn’t just reproductive hormones that can alter the weight loss process.
Women often suffer from real metabolic, hormonal and physiological imbalances that can create a kind of resistance to active weight loss. If you’ve tried different diets and exercise routines without success, your weight loss issues may be caused by any of the following types of hormonal imbalance:
1. Thyroid imbalance: your thyroid may be low or “sluggish” (sometimes referred to as subclinical hypothyroidism), making it much easier to gain weight, and harder to lose it.
2. Adrenal imbalance: excessive or ongoing stress, even mild stress, triggers more cortisol production, causing your body to deposit excessive fat around your middle.
3. Reproductive hormone imbalance: higher levels of testosterone or lowered estrogen can add weight around the waist area that creates even more fat-producing hormones.
4. A combination of imbalances: when normal hormonal balance is upset, it can alter balance throughout your endocrine network and you may experience a potent blend of all three of these issues.
While the idea of your body being resistant to weight loss may be new to you, there are good solutions ready and waiting. Restoring individual hormonal balance helps your body respond normally to weight loss efforts so you can achieve and maintain your best weight.
Which best describes your weight loss issues?
- weight gain and body changes
- loss of energy
- hair and skin issues
- intolerance to cold temperatures
- depressed mood
1. Thyroid imbalance
The thyroid gland is responsible for regulating metabolism, so when thyroid hormone is low — even if it’s only slightly off — stubborn weight gain can result, along with intense cravings and low energy. Ironically, one cause of lower thyroid activity is dieting itself. Cutting back on calories slows down your metabolism and blunts your ability to lose weight.
Low thyroid can be associated with a decrease in the levels or responsiveness of important chemical messengers in the brain that affect your appetite, mood, energy levels and the sensation of feeling full when eating (satiety).
- Serotonin — regulates mood, sleep and body temperature
- Beta endorphins — affects mood, well-being and pain sensation
- GABA — calms nervousness
- Leptin — inhibits hunger and suppresses food intake
- Ghrelin — stimulates desire for weight-promoting foods
Women with thyroid imbalance may resort to sugary foods for quick energy. Unfortunately, these foods can also contribute to insatiable appetites and accumulated weight that won’t budge.
- weight gain around the waist
- stress symptoms
- low energy
- sleep issues
- cravings for sugar, caffeine and salt
2. Adrenal imbalance
The adrenal glands jump into action to protect you from life-threatening emergencies and other kinds of stress. Cortisol is released until the stress has passed, and that’s supposed to happen pretty quickly.
But when you’re constantly under stress — even if you’ve gotten used to it mentally — your body continues to release stress hormones like cortisol. Cortisol adds fat to your belly area, but the message never gets sent that it’s okay for your body to let go of it.
The ongoing release of stress hormones can directly influence you to eat foods that are high in sugar and fat and also increases the drug-like satisfaction you get from eating certain foods like sugar. This causes stronger cravings that fuel further weight gain — often around the waist area. Many women with adrenal imbalance keep themselves going every day with multiple hits of sugar, fat and caffeine.
- stubborn weight gain
- hot flashes
- night sweats
- vaginal dryness
- low libido
- depressed mood
- memory issues
3. Reproductive hormone imbalance
Reproductive hormones are connected along the same brain-body axis to other hormones that influence how you use and store calories. When estrogen, progesterone and testosterone are already fluctuating outside of normal ranges, as they tend to be during perimenopause or menopause and in PMS, weight gain often follows.
Women who’ve never had weight issues before say it’s a different story when they start perimenopause or menopause, even if they haven’t changed their diet or exercise patterns.
And it can get worse from there. Weight gain related to reproductive hormonal imbalance often results in increased levels of sex hormones that can lead to gaining even more weight along with stronger weight loss resistance.
There is a weight loss solution that makes sense for you
We know for sure that lasting weight loss is not about restricting calories or exercising all the time. From our work with thousands of women, it’s clear that successful, long-term weight loss is activated most effectively when you:
1. Focus on your health — not just weight loss.
2. Address the root source of the issue and restore balance to your body.
By promoting a healthy metabolism, adding targeted phytotherapy, and eating whole, unprocessed foods, you can lose the excess weight that’s making you miserable. Our weight loss programs have everything you need — if you’re ready so are we!
Bauer M, Heinz A, Whybrow PC. Thyroid hormones, serotonin and mood: of synergy and significance in the adult brain. Mol Psychiatry. 2002;7(2):140-56. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11840307 Accessed 12.01.16
Klok MD, Jakobsdottir S, Drent ML. The role of leptin and ghrelin in the regulation of food intake and body. Obes Rev. 2007 Jan;8(1):21-34..weight in humans: a review. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17212793 Accessed 11.04.16.
Kristenssson E, et al. Acute psychological stress raises plasma ghrelin in the rat. Regul Pept. 2006 May 15;134(2-3):114-7. Epub 2006 Mar 6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16540188 Accessed 12.01.16
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