Oestrogen has a big impact on your body shape, from bloating to weight gain. You’ve probably noticed the effects of oestrogen on your body; weight gain when you started on the…
Oestrogen has a big impact on your body shape, from bloating to weight gain. You’ve probably noticed the effects of oestrogen on your body; weight gain when you started on the pill or HRT, or craving chocolate just before your period. But do you know how to keep your oestrogen levels stable?
“Higher oestrogen levels can interfere with your metabolism, leading to weight gain and difficulty in losing those pounds,” says hormone health expert Alyssa Burns-Hill. “It can also lower your blood sugar levels which will cause you to reach for unhealthy foods as a biological urge rather than a lack of willpower.” Alyssa’s advice to help stabilise oestrogen levels includes:
■ Brussel sprouts, cabbage, kale and broccoli all contain the photonutrient DIM which helps your liver metabolise oestrogen effectively and can balance the hormone better, so include plenty of these in your diet.
■ Stay away from carbs when you’re drinking – especially crackers and crisps – as these will promote an insulin surge (your blood sugar hormone), followed by a drop, which will leave you craving more carbs.
■ Stay away from sweet mixed drinks, sweet wines and beers and make sure you moderate your alcohol consumption.
■ Milk thistle can be used to support liver function, especially after imbibing too heavily, and has been used for liver treatment for more than two thousand years.
■ Drink plenty of water when you drink alcohol.
■ If you find you have consistent problems with weight management, water retention and bloating, see an expert to rule out an underlying hormone imbalance involving consistent oestrogen dominance. Tell yourself Try this shape-shrinking technique to keep you on track from top therapist Marisa Peer, author of You Can be Thin (£12.99, Sphere):
■ “The best self-help mantra to motivate you to tone up and eat in a way that will cause weight loss is to keep saying to yourself ‘I have chosen to eat healthy food and I have chosen to go to the gym,’ because every time you say to your mind ‘I have chosen to do this and I want to do it,’ your mind encourages you to keep going
■ “Every time you say ‘I can’t have chocolate, I mustn’t eat chips, I am not allowed dessert,’ you actually increase the craving and desire for those very foods because your mind thinks you want it but can’t have it, so you end up wanting them more.
■ “If you are in the gym or making salads to take to work or ordering different food from your friends keep saying ‘I really want to do this, this is working for me and I love doing this,’ as it’s easy to fool the mind.
■ “Your mind does what it thinks you want it to do, the more clear and precise you are about wanting to eat less, eat healthy food and exercise the more it will motivate you to enjoy the process.
■ “When you are around junk food remind yourself that you will ALWAYS have another day to eat cakes and chocolate but you won’t always have another day to look great on your holiday. That helps you decide to pause any bad eating and drop some weight for your holiday knowing that the biscuits will still be there on your return.”
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