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by Carly Neubert, BA, NC April 20, 2015
We live in an increasingly toxic world, and many of those toxins are xenoestrogens. These compounds act like estrogen in our bodies. Both women and men are affected by a hormone called estrogen. This can cause problems because both men and women can end up with too much estrogen floating around. Too much of any one thing takes our body systems out of homeostasis, or a healthy balance.
Yes, you read that correctly---men have estrogen in their bodies too.
One of estrogen's jobs is to signal cells to divide and multiply. So if your body has too much estrogen it can cause growth of fibroids or tumors. This is why some cancers are called "estrogen dependent cancer" or "estrogen sensitive cancer."
Belly fat is the number one clue I see in my integrative nutrition practice. When men or women come in and tell me that they have belly fat that came on quickly and they can't seem to get rid of it, I think excess estrogen.
Other signs of too much estrogen can include: fatigue, low libido, depression, insomnia, hair loss, and inability to concentrate.
Here are my top 3 tips:
Stay away from plastics! Most plastics contain phthalates which are a type of xenoestrogen. Phthalate molecules will actually bind to estrogen receptor sites. When those receptor sites are full of xenoestrogens (phthalates), your real estrogen molecules have nothing to do, but to wreak havoc on estrogen sensitive tissues.
BPA (bisphenol) is another ingredient found in plastic that is extremely toxic. BPA is often used for lining the inside of canned foods. What a ridiculous idea!
Here are some studies showing that BPA found in canned foods has terrible effects on fertility and female health. Avoid canned foods unless they are labeled "BPA-free." Or better yet, eat fresh food that hasn't been canned and stored for a long period of time.
Make informed decisions about your hair and body care products. Many products have parabens and phthalates which are both xenoestrogens. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has a great website and mobile app that rates personal care products according to the ingredients. I try to follow the rule "if you can't eat, don't put it on your body."
Eat organic beef. As I discussed earlier, when you have too much estrogen in your body, you will store excess belly fat. This is true for cows too. US factory farmed cattle are actually injected with estrogen so that they will store more fat. More fat equals more money for the factory farm. So every time you eat non-organic beef, you are eating meat loaded with extra estrogen.
On the other hand, organic beef is not injected with additional estrogen or fed genetically modified (GMO) grains. Organic beef is a better choice for your optimal estrogen balance. The best choice is to eat pastured-raised beef. Pastured beef isn't fed any grains at all; instead the cows eat their natural diet of grass or dried grass known as hay.
I am definitely an advocate for everyone to be in charge of their own health. In the case of hormones, especially estrogen, my advice is to start with testing. I know from my own experience that many estrogen symptoms can be mistaken for other problems and vice versa.
You can order your own testing from ZRT Labs.
Want my advice on your ZRT tests? Schedule an appointment with me to discuss diet and lifestyle choices to lower or maintain healthy estrogen levels.
One of the best products for decreasing estrogen levels is Myomin.
It is a combination of Aralia, Smilax glabra, Curcurma zedoria, and Cyperus rotundus. Although these herbs may seem unknown to you, they have been used for Tradition Chinese Medicine (TCM) for thousands of years.
These herbs block the aromatase enzyme which is key in manufacturing estrogen in the body. By slowing down and blocking the production of estrogen, the liver and digestive tract have time to eliminate extra estrogens that are causing problems and symptoms.
Now, I'll say it again, you are in charge of your own health. So if your estrogen levels are off, let's do something about it. Make some of these changes and see if you don't feel a little better and if you want even more improvement order the test kit and give me a call so we can discuss your results and get you healthy.
Get Healthy, Stay Healthy, BE HEALTHY
For additional recipes, biohacking tips and lifestyle hacks -- check out my other blog on my coaching site www.cleancoachcarly.com! I post weekly about nutrition and lifestyle topics, all backed by science. Happy Reading!
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