How gut health affects your cycle — A nutritionist explains

Your gut is home to trillions of microorganisms. As in, we have more bacteria than we are human. And everything we interact with can change those microorganisms. Your lifestyle are helping or hurting your fragile but strong gut health! But you might be thinking, where Is it gut-hormone related? After all, those are two completely separate systems in the body, right?

Well, how gut health affects your menstrual cycle involves a bit of duplication – scratch that, a lot. As a health and wellness expert, I’m here to tell you that everything in your body is interconnected. Your hormone health affects every system in your body. And growing more and more research shows, so does your microbiome. Your gut and hormones affect each other on a daily basis. At the end of the day, a happy gut and hormonal balance is the mainstay of overall health. Without further ado, let’s dive into how gut health affects your period.

Featured image of Riley Reed.

Photo of Riley Reed

The power of a diverse microbiome

Throughout the day, your hormones drop and flow. An elevated cortisol wakes you up in the morning (fueled by cup of coffee). At night, melatonin lull you to sleep. Throughout the day, leptin signals that it’s time to eat. And while you’re eating, ghrelin will let you know when you have had enough.

All the things here hormone—Along with estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone — affected by the bacteria in your gut. Hence why it is important to have a healthy microbiome. When gut health isn’t optimal, so are your hormones. Hello, imbalance. In general, an optimal gut is a diverse gut. In other words, one Diverse microbiota is the goal. The more species of bacteria you have, the more health rewards you reap.

Pictures of Michelle Nash

How to improve your gut microbiome?

Since we all want hormone balance, let’s dive into simple ways to improve your gut microbiome.

Eat a variety of whole foods

This includes the rich fiber and Antioxidants. A varied diet (free of non-nutrient ingredients, such as industrial seed oil) can lead to a more diverse microbiome that benefits your health. When in doubt, cook rainbow.

Prioritize the Mediterranean diet

Only one many reasons to eat as the Mediterraneans do. But mainly because it focuses on vegetables, fruits, beans and legumes. These are fiber-rich, gut-friendly foods that promote the growth of beneficial bacteria. Eating a variety of fresh, whole foods, mostly from plant sources, has been shown to improve gut health.

Choose fermented foods

Fermented food, such as plain yogurt, kimchi, and tempeh may be beneficial for the microbiome. They enhance its function and reduce the abundance of pathogenic bacteria in the gut.

Supplementing with prebiotics

Many fruits, vegetables, and whole grains contain prebiotics, but they can also be found on their own. Resistant starch (like an unripe banana) can also be a prebiotic. If eating an unripe banana doesn’t seem palatable, you can also benefit from prebiotics by eating it ripe and letting it cool. Potatoes and rice. Refrigeration turns some easily digestible starches into resistant starch.

Consume probiotics

Peep this list! In addition to food, choose a probiotic supplements. In essence, probiotics are often referred to as “good” — or “helpful” — bacteria. They help keep your gut happy. In addition to supporting digestive system health, probiotics can also help boost overall immune function.

Limit sugar

Last but not least, we want to keep balance blood sugar. After all, chronic elevation blood sugar level can reduce beneficial bacteria, leading to unwanted conditions like leaky gut syndrome. Let’s consider a meal plan to balance blood sugar as well as swap popular source of sugar for their lower glycemic alternatives.

Pictures of Michelle Nash

What is the connection between the gut and hormones?

In terms of how gut health affects your period, there is a growing research institution that your gut microbiome could be most important players in Endocrine system. Aka, the hormonal system in your body.

Think of your gut microbiome like a conductor at the center of an orchestra. Around the clock, it guides your symphony of hormones.

Your gut microbiome not only produces hormones, but it also signals different glands in your body to make – and release – certain hormones. Your gut affects estrogen, melatonin, cortisol, thyroid hormones, etc.

How does gut affect your thyroid?

Talk about our thyroid hormone, gut and thyroid very good connection. In fact, research shows that low microbial diversity is associated with high levels of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH). And too much TSH can lead to hypothyroidism. Furthermore, our gut microbiome influences the absorption of minerals important to the thyroid gland. Think: iodine, selenium, zinc and iron. All of these are essential for thyroid function.

Inevitably, thyroid problems affect your periods. Too much or too little thyroid hormone can make your periods very light, heavy, or irregular. Thyroid problems can also cause your periods to stop for several months or longer – a condition known as amenorrhea. Bottom line: if you have a thyroid problem, gut health should be a top priority. Work with your healthcare provider to support thyroid health.

Pictures of Michelle Nash

Have you heard of the estrobolome?

Let’s talk about oestrogens. Often overlooked, estrogen can make or break your digestion. Research Shows that gut microbiota and estrogen levels act as a two-way street. In essence, the gut microbiome plays a central role in regulating estrogen levels. This is called estrobolome. Estrobolomes are a collection of gut bacteria that regulate estrogen metabolism.

Without a healthy estrobolome, you are at risk of developing estrogen-related diseases — such as endometriosis, Polycystic ovary syndromebreast cancer, and more — on the rise.

What is a healthy estrogen metabolism?

For backup, estrogen is mainly made by the ovaries. It circulates throughout your body, eventually reaching your liver. This is where it inactivated. The inactivated estrogen is then sent to the intestines. Here, it will be in an inactive state so that it can be released from the body. That’s a normal, healthy metabolism of estrogen! However, when unfriendly bacteria produce an enzyme called beta-glucuronidase, restart estrogen in your gut. And this can be problematic.

When estrogen is reactivated back into your body, it causes excess estrogen. In turn, this negatively impacts your menstrual cycle (hello, intense PMS and cramps!). Fortunately, you can improve the health of your estrogen metabolism by eating more vegetables, cutting back on alcohol, and drinking a glass of water. beneficial bacteria.

Photo of Riley Reed

Can your digestive system affect your menstrual cycle?

To get this full bust: yes, your digestive system affects your menstrual cycle. On the contrary, your menstrual cycle affects your digestive system. Understanding how gut health affects your menstrual cycle will help you make more informed choices when it comes to your health. nutrition. Finally, if you’re looking to balance your hormones, start with your gut.

Start by cutting refined sugar. It’s one of the most powerful ways to heal your gut (unhealthy bacteria love sugar!). Furthermore, increase your water intake and focus on high fiber foods. Last but not least, make sure you’re paying attention to your stress levels. This goes without saying, but psychological stress and lack of sleep can be upset the microbiome. Combine often move and any other self-care you have seen the effect.

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