Do you have lifeless hair, dull skin, and weak nails? If so, you should consider a change in diet so that you can turn back the clock, and give a new rejuvenated look to your body while maintaining the optimal hormonal balance .

Hormonal balance and our appearance

Hormones affect our immune response, impairing cell growth and tissue repair. Let’s look at each of the main hormones that affect our appearance and learn about some methods that can be used to achieve the hormonal balance necessary to achieve youthful and radiant skin.

Insulin

High levels of insulin can accelerate the formation of skin wrinkles . Excess insulin occurs with a mime of high-sugar foods such as cakes, muffins, white pasta, white rice, and beverages that cause spikes in blood sugar and increased insulin.

Avoiding these foods while also consuming a balanced diet of protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats every three to four hours will help keep your insulin levels balanced. Sleep deprivation is also associated with elevated insulin levels, therefore resting the necessary hours is ideal to avoid insulin spikes and rejuvenate the skin and our hair.

Cortisol

Stress is not only bad for your health, aging effects on our skin cells have also been documented. Studies carried out in laboratory rats reveal that the loss of collagen in the skin caused by cortisol is ten times greater than any other tissue; Cortisol is one of the biggest culprits for premature wrinkles and sagging skin.

Estrogen

Estrogen is produced by the ovaries before menopause and by the adrenal glands after menopause. The adrenal glands produce less estrogen if they are tired, something that is common with a stressful lifestyle, sleep disorders, irregular eating habits, or chronic diseases.

Estrogen levels begin to decline in most women in their mid to late 40s, although some women, especially those who are very thin, may experience a drop much earlier. By decreasing the production of estrogen that occurs naturally with age, the skin becomes thinner and less elastic, which leads to wrinkles and sagging due to less collagen and elastin being produced.

Raise estrogen levels

Some simple dietary changes can help improve estrogen levels through the intake of phytoestrogens, such as flaxseed and fermented (organic) soy products. You can combine flaxseed and organic soybeans and make salads or add to your smoothies.

Increase your intake of vegetables such as broccoli and Brussels sprouts : they contain indoles, compounds that are essential for estrogen balance. Herbal products such as licorice, angelica, red clover, or black cohosh are also used to regulate estrogen levels.

Testosterone

Excess testosterone, in both women and men, can cause acne on the face, chest, or back . With age, women tend to experience an increase in androgen (a male sex hormone) levels and a decrease in estrogen , while men tend to experience the opposite – an increase in estrogen and a decrease in testosterone, which makes the skin dry . If a testosterone deficiency is suspected , adding herbs such as thistle (tribulus terrestris), stress management, and weight training can help restore optimal levels for both men and women.

DHEA (Dehidroepiandrosterona)

The dry skin is a problem that increases with age. Interestingly, DHEA is converted into oil production and appears to help combat this problem and improve hydration. DHEA is a hormone that is a precursor to other hormones, such as estrogen and testosterone. DHEA levels tend to decline with stress, as well as with age.

This hormone also increases collagen production , making the skin appear smoother and younger to the eye. The skin’s immune response also appears to be enhanced by DHEA, which can help it heal more quickly. Good sleep habits can also help establish optimal DHEA levels, as can some supplements that must be prescribed by a professional.

Melatonin

An appropriate rest to improve both the health of the skin and that of the hair is achieved by sleeping the necessary 8 hours a day and in a dark room. Melatonin and serotonin, the happiness hormone, are produced in our skin from the amino acid tryptophan. Keep in mind that if we do not get enough protein in our diet, melatonin levels can also decrease . According to a July 2005 article in the Endocrine Journal, melatonin is involved in hair growth and protection against melanoma.

As an antioxidant hormone, melatonin protects us from UV rays and appears to play a role in repairing burned or damaged skin. You can support the production of melatonin topically, but this should be in the hands of a specialist, although the most practical solution will be achieved with a good appropriate rest.

Progesterone

Contrary to estrogens, progesterone levels often begin to decline in women in their late 30s, leaving our skin looking dull and dull. Pregnant women can often get a special glow on the skin, the secret is the high level of progesterone. This revitalizing hormone is beneficial for skin elasticity and proper blood circulation.

The progesterone levels decrease with menopause and stress. Low progesterone levels are also associated with conditions such as PMS , fibrocystic breast disease, infertility, increased risk and incidence of miscarriage, as well as polycystic ovary syndrome .

Men with prostate problems also tend to have low progesterone levels. Progesterone levels can be supported with the use of evening primrose oil , herbs such as vitex (chasteberry), or natural progesterone creams. As we previously recommended, stress management and good sleep are also crucial to keeping progesterone levels in better condition.

Growth hormone

If your skin has marked wrinkles, both on the cheeks, chin or above the knees, the decrease in growth hormone is probably the culprit. Since growth hormone tends to decline as we age, in this case supplements are promoted as a way to “neutralize” the effects of aging.

Growth hormone is essential for skin cell repair and prevention of sagging. Growth hormone production is closely linked to our exercise, sleep, and eating habits. If we are able to exercise, sleep well and improve our protein intake, we can improve, always within our reach, the production of this hormone to improve both the appearance and the health of our tissues and hair.

By Dr. Eric Jackson

Dr. Eric Jackson provides primary Internal Medicine care for men and women and treats patients with bone and mineral diseases, diabetes, heart conditions, and other chronic illnesses.He is a Washington University Bone Health Program physician and is a certified Bone Densitometrist. Dr. Avery is consistently recognized in "The Best Doctors in America" list.

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