Top essential oils for balancing hormones.
“It’s not me, it’s my hormones!” Our hormones cop the blame for SO many of our ups and downs in life. Instinctively, we know that they have a powerful influence over the functioning of our bodies, but often we downplay the impact they have on our capacity to feel calm, cope, be happy - even how “at home” we feel in our bodies.
Make no mistake. Our hormones run the show. The endocrine system (the system of glands that excrete hormones) influences every cell, organ and function of our bodies.
Hormones travel to EVERY organ and tissue to give orders to your cells to do particular things. They regulate everything from mood to metabolism and guide your growth and development, even before birth. Hormones are the reason you age (oestrogen, progesterone, testosterone), sleep and wake up (melatonin) and feel hungry (thyroid), stressed (cortisol) or fearful (adrenalin).
So you can see how hormonal imbalance can have a drastic effect on the body, ranging from serious disorders such as diabetes, hyperthyroidism and polycystic ovary syndrome to haphazard signs and symptoms that something may be out of whack, like:
- Sleep disorders
- Persistent breakouts
- Memory fog
- Constant hunger
- Memory problems
- Constant fatigue
- Mood swings and depression
- Weight gain
- Headaches and migraines
- Hot flushes and night sweats
- Vaginal dryness (yep,that too!)
- Loss of libido
It's quite the list, eh?
Keeping your body's hormones balanced can be tricky given how many physiological functions the endocrine system has a hand in - and then there's these bad boys...
Endocrine disruptors mimic hormones to alter how the endocrine system would naturally do things. They can send false signals, block the actions of natural hormones and even alter the amount of hormone made and how the body responds. Simply put, they wreck havoc on your hormones!
Stress and toxic chemicals are the main culprits. There's no escaping these entirely but making conscious lifestyle choices and reducing your exposure to endocrine-disrupting hormones is a great start. Here's an outline of where you can find these pesky particles:
Finding a happy balance... adaptogens
Adaptogens are anything that helps to stabilise and balance the body’s reactions to stress or challenging situations. Adaptogenic herbs are a kind of 'thinking' herb.
Most herbs have stimulating or relaxing properties but adaptogenic herbs can adapt their function to do whatever is required by the body to bring it back into balance. Smart!
So what does this have to do with endocrine disruptors, I hear you ask? Making conscious lifestyle choices combined with the use of adaptogenic herbs may help normalise hormone imbalance caused by exposure to stress and chemicals. For a little inspiration you need look no further than the wonderful, and potent world of essential oils. This quote explains it perfectly:
"Essential oils are perfect, whether it’s for a situational or chronic issue. So much of what we are taking internally and inhaling are leading to what I refer to as oestrogen pollution in our bodies. If we can embrace more natural, non-toxic, synthetic-free remedies, we lower our toxic threshold and the resulting hormonal imbalances that occur from breaching that threshold." — Marie Delcioppo, health coach and Raw Foods Chef
My top essential oils to balance hormones naturally
Clary Sage has a particular affinity with the female reproductive system.
This may be the best oil to use for oestrogen and hormone balance and good for all things PMS and menopausal. It has an oestrogen-like structure to help return balance to the female reproductive system and antispasmodic properties to relieve pain and menstrual cramping... sort of like a block of (raw organic cacao!) chocolate, hot water bottle and binge-watching Netflix all rolled into one beautiful essential oil.
It may also very handy in supporting the haphazard hormonal symptoms of menopause.
Holy moly does this oil have some star qualities... and not just biblical.
Frankincense has an affinity with the nervous system and is best known for its ability to balance emotions - it is reported to lower the stress hormone, cortisol, so is great for chronic stress and anxiety but may also work well for thyroid and autoimmune issues.
This clever oil is reported to work on all levels - mental, emotional and physical. It has an affinity with the skin but may also be very handy for reducing fatigue, inflammation and balancing your mood.
Thyme is reported to improve progesterone production, low levels of which are linked to infertility, depression and PCOS. It also has the added benefit of having an affinity with the immune system.
Application of these oils for hormone use.
My favourite way to use these oils is either to diffuse them (don't burn them - we want to preserve their qualities!) or apply them topically on my skin (once diluted), where they are readily absorbed into the body. Diluting with fractionated coconut oil is my usual go-to, but any quality carrier oil will work. Just know that one drop goes a long way! Make sure you do your research before applying any oils - particularly on children and pregnant/breastfeeding women.
Where and how to buy therapeutic grade essential oils (at wholesale prices).
My essential oil of choice are the doTERRA certified pure therapeutic grade oils - they have a reputation for being the safest, purest, most beneficial oils on the market. You will of course find many different essential oils on the market - just be very sure they are 100% pure.
If you need any help at all deciding which oils to purchase or further information around setting up an account, feel free to head over to my oils page for information on how to set up your own account to secure wholesale prices.
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