The Hormone Connection to Weight Loss

September 7, 2019

The Hormone Connection to Weight Loss

There are many reasons people gain weight when they have hormonal shifts. Long-term stress causes hormonal shifts (and can lead to weight gain), many women gain weight during PMS and perimenopause. Today, we are going to focus on three major categories of hormones: blood sugar hormones, stress hormones and sex hormones and how they are connected to weight.

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JOANN: Welcome to Dishing Up Nutrition brought to you by Nutritional Weight & Wellness. We sponsor, prepare and deliver this radio show and podcast to all of our listeners to help them realize the importance of real food and nutrition to maintain good health. As a long-time dietitian with over 30 years of experience, I help clients both young and old. I understand that when most people get sick, they don't even think to consider their nutrition as a first solution. They usually think about getting a blood test, a prescription medication, or maybe a chiropractor adjustment. But typically they do not think about what they're eating.

BRITNI: So true.

JOANN: Very true, isn't it? So perhaps it is time to think nutrition first because 90% of our health or lack of health is the result of our nutrition or lifestyle habits.

BRITNI: Wow.

JOANN: It's amazing, isn't it?

BRITNI: It is amazing. Joann, I think it's such a good point. We always need to think nutrition no matter what it is. And we know from recent research that people who eat more than six to nine teaspoons of sugar daily have a 50% higher risk of developing Alzheimer's disease.

JOANN: Wow.

BRITNI: And we know that only a small part of Alzheimer's disease is genetic. So, the lifestyle part is huge.

JOANN: Right. And speaking of lifestyle, as many of you know, smoking is the leading cause of heart disease and cancer. And if you've been watching the news, you know that vaping seems to be causing a lot of serious lung problems. And I saw on the news yesterday a couple deaths recently from vaping, especially for younger people.

BRITNI: And like you said earlier, I think it's so interesting that 90% of our health or lack of health comes from what we're eating, other lifestyle habits; other environmental factors. And again, only 10% can be related back to our genetics. So is arthritis a genetic problem or is it a food and lifestyle problem? So we know that for many people eating bread, too much sugar: that causes inflammation in their joints. After years of that inflammation, the tissue in the cartilage will actually break down and that can cause really excruciating pain. And for many individuals that leads to a knee replacement or maybe both knees have to be replaced. And that's happening earlier and earlier.

JOANN: It is. Yesterday I had a client who had had three knee replacements on the same knee.

BRITNI: Oh my goodness.

JOANN: It apparently didn't work and they had to redo it; very sad. So now that we have your attention, you may be wondering, “Who are those two ladies I'm listening to?” My name is Joann Ridout. I'm a Registered and Licensed Dietician. I've been helping people eat better to have better health for over 30 years. I also teach several classes and seminars throughout the year. Coming up, I'll be teaching The Food Connection to ADHD. That's a seminar that we have on Saturday morning, September 28. And I'll also be teaching The Menopause Survival Seminar on Saturday, February 9. I love teaching these two classes because we present such eye-opening information about food, how food can affect both behavior and hormones, right? So today my co-host is Britni Vincent, who's also a Registered and Licensed Dietitian. Britni and I just completed the training packet of information for other dietitians and nutritionists at Nutritional Weight and Wellness about how hormones affect your health and what can cause hormonal imbalances. So Britni’s the perfect person to be on here today with me talking about the hormone connection to weight loss. And actually, I think it would be more fitting for the title to be the hormone connection to weight gain, right?

BRITNI: Yes.

JOANN: That's what most people are concerned about. Both men and women are mostly concerned with weight gain, right?

BRITNI: Absolutely. And there are many reasons that people gain weight when they have hormonal shifts. Oftentimes, both men and women, they gain weight when they're under long-term stress. That hormone cortisol increases with stress and higher cortisol levels result in weight gain and often inflammation. Our bodies can also experience more achiness in our muscles and our joints from long-term stress. Women also gain weight because their estrogen and progesterone levels fluctuate around their period. Then bloating might occur, headaches, irritability, carb cravings. And then once the period is over, everything goes back to normal. Usually the number on the scale goes back to normal, but it's important to note when your hormones are in balance, you're not going to get any of those symptoms. And obviously that's the goal.

JOANN: That’s true. Yes, definitely. I think we've seen clients that have that same feedback to us. Once I got a hold of my nutrition, I stopped eating sugar. I stopped having PMS.

BRITNI: Yeah, it's amazing. And it really can only happen in a couple of menstrual cycles.

JOANN: Exactly. So I think the time that most women struggle with weight gain is during the period of time that is perimenopause, which is several years before menopause starts. And this is because women have less progesterone and they have excess estrogen during perimenopause. So they may notice other changes that can add to the weight gain. So during perimenopause, did any of the following changes happen to you? So maybe you had trouble sleeping, waking up often, or maybe you even had insomnia like I did. So I hear about that a lot from clients. Most people gain weight when they sleep less than seven and a half to eight hours most nights. And sometimes women start to have night sweats. Those also can interfere with sleep. As I'm looking at the clock here, I think we need to take a little break here. And then we will return on that topic.

BRITNI: Sounds good. You are listening to Dishing Up Nutrition brought to you by Nutritional Weight & Wellness. I want to announce that we have a new and improved whey protein powder at Nutritional Weight and Wellness. And the good news is that we were able to upgrade to a whey protein that comes from grass-fed, hormone-free cows and it tastes better too. And it mixes really easily. And it comes in two delicious flavors: vanilla and chocolate. And more good news: during the month of September, we're giving you a 15% discount when you purchase our Wellness Whey Protein Powder, either online or you can go to any of our seven locations throughout the twin cities. And our website is weightandwellness.com. And then make sure to read our latest blog called 17 Protein-Filled Recipes Featuring Our Updated Best-Selling Protein Powder. We will be right back.

BREAK

JOANN: Welcome back to Dishing Up Nutrition. It's back to school time again. That can mean stressful times for many families, especially if one or more of your children struggle with ADHD or attention deficit. I remember those days; unfortunately, some homework wars, and that's why I love to share all the things I wish I would have known when my son and my daughter were going through those struggles. Food really makes a difference. So if you can relate and you want to help your child, your spouse, or even yourself, join Angela and me for The Food Connection to ADHD on Saturday, September 28 at our Maple Grove location. Call our office: 651-699-3438 and sign up today.

BRITNI: So today we're talking all about hormones and weight gain. And as you're listening to Joann and me today, and if you've had some weight gain, just think about what period of your life that weight gain happened. And maybe you can tie that to one of these hormones that we're talking about.

JOANN: That's right.

BRITNI: And that could give you some answers. And before we went to break, we were, Joann, you were talking about typical perimenopause symptoms.

JOANN: Right. And so during perimenopause, often people start noticing some insomnia or difficulty sleeping. I hear that so often. And most people gain weight when they sleep less than seven and a half to eight hours at night. And sometimes we even have night sweats during that period of time. So that also helps to interfere with our sleep. So those night sweats can be from too much estrogen and a lack of the hormone progesterone. So the balance is off. Or it can be from eating sugar, especially in the evening before bedtime, which for a lot of people, that's when they have those sugar cravings.

BRITNI: Absolutely.

JOANN: So balance is needed there. And then sadly, that glass of wine or that dish of ice cream at bedtime can lead to night sweats, so that can wake you up in the night causing your metabolism to slow down and gain weight. And I remember that when I was going through those years, especially, it was very noticeable to me when I had had a glass of wine; maybe out to eat; so a little bigger meal.

BRITNI: Yeah.

JOANN: And man, even before I was doing this type of nutrition, it was very obvious to me that that glass of wine made a difference, and woke me up because if I didn't have one, I was a lot better.

BRITNI: And that is so common.

JOANN: It is so common. I hear that from a lot of people and struggling with, struggling with sleep and yet, still having that glass of wine, which makes you feel drowsy and sleepy at the moment, but a few hours later it can cause a little imbalance in your blood sugar and cause you to wake up.

BRITNI: Yep, absolutely. And even, even if you're not going through that time of your life, we do know that alcohol inhibits REM sleep, our most restorative sleep cycle.

JOANN: Yes.

BRITNI: So alcoholic at any stage, male or female, leads to poor sleep.

JOANN: Yep, definitely.

BRITNI: So when you know, at Nutritional Weight & Wellness, we look at the hormone connection to weight gain and we look at three major categories of hormones. And some of these hormones can negatively affect your weight, where others are more of weight loss friendly, so to speak. The first category of hormones we look at is blood sugar hormones. So you know, really always starting there is smart. And those blood sugar hormones are insulin and glucagon. So if you eat too much sugar, processed carbohydrates for your body, the pancreas secretes excess insulin. Insulin we know is a fat storage hormone and that causes weight gain, especially on mid section on the sides; many people call them love handles.

JOANN: Yup.

BRITNI: And furthermore, we do know that insulin is a master hormone. So when we're making excess insulin, that throws off other hormones in our body, including our sex hormones.

JOANN: That's right. So, and then the other hormone bridge Britni mentioned is glucagon. So glucagon is secreted when we have a blood sugar that is very balanced; not too many carbs or sugar, and then balance with the protein and healthy fat. Both of these hormones stimulate, both of these carbs and sugar; all these foods that or foods that turn to sugar stimulate insulin production. So glucagon is our friend because it helps us lose weight. Once our blood sugar is balanced on a regular basis, then we start secreting glucagon. Having excess insulin because you eat too many processed carbs or grains is a very common problem and then you're not going to secrete the glucagon. So it's really important to have that balance. In fact, about 84 million people are prediabetic. That means about one out of three people are pre-diabetic. That's a lot.

BRITNI: It is a lot.

JOANN: …from eating too many carbs and producing too much insulin. And, and a lot of people don't realize they're prediabetic. Maybe they haven't had their numbers run. Or their numbers are hanging in there still close to normal but they still could be bordering on that prediabetes. Perhaps if you're struggling with your weight, you may need to reduce your carb intake. I've heard from so many clients that they lose weight when they stop eating bread, they stop eating pasta, some of those extra sugary coffee drinks, chips, crackers, candy. Just stopping those sugar foods helps so much in weight gain. It's amazing.

BRITNI: It makes a huge difference. And a lot of people, you know, they say, “I don't eat a lot of carbs or I don't eat a lot of sugar.”

JOANN: Right. 

BRITNI: If you're struggling with and you've had some weight gain, maybe you write down your food for a few days. And that increased awareness, a lot of people realize, “Wow, okay, I'm eating a lot more of those foods than I thought.” And then again, that'll give you your answer of what's contributing to that weight gain.

JOANN: It will. And then one thing I hear a lot from people about: they're thinking about maybe gluten is a problem for them and they want to try that experiment. Well then they start throwing in rice; lots and lots and lots of rice. Well rice is going to turn to sugar too.

BRITNI: Very good point.

JOANN: That's also a problem.

BRITNI: Yep. So the second type of hormones that affects your weight is our stress hormones; mentioned those earlier in the show today. So cortisol, adrenaline, and we make cortisol on a daily basis. We have an optimal bio rhythm that our body wants to follow, but we make more cortisol when we're stressed and that's when it becomes an issue. And ongoing stress makes those cortisol levels go up. That affects our digestion and can create that dreaded belly fat, especially like right around the belly button area. You can think of that as stress weight gain. So how do you know if your cortisol levels are going up from your stress? So one sign is you might feel wired but tired. I definitely remember feeling that way at a time in my life. So you're kind of, you know, awake, but you feel exhausted at the same time. You might become more emotional. Again, you might start to notice that weight gain happening.

JOANN: That's right. So, some people with higher stress levels find themselves disrupted sleep and cortisol also affects that. So can you relate to that? Are you in bed feeling exhausted? But your eyes are wide open? Just like Britni said, “wired but tired”. So eyes are wide open staring at the ceiling. Those higher cortisol levels due to ongoing stress affect your melatonin. So as cortisol levels go up, your natural melatonin levels go down and you can't sleep. So in order to sleep, many of our clients need to supplement with two to 10 milligrams of melatonin each night in order to restore an adequate amount of melatonin in their body necessary for sleep. Think of how many people have those high stress jobs, stress in their family, job demands, family demands, and then you know, you kind of live in that stressed place and your cortisol is going to be off.

BRITNI: Yeah. And I think people don't always realize how stressed their body is cause that's their normal.

JOANN: Right.

BRITNI: And so Joann, you mentioned having, taking melatonin. A lot of people need that for sleep, but I'd encourage you, you know, if you need to supplement with that to help with sleep, making those lifestyle changes we're talking about today so that your body starts to also make more of that melatonin.

JOANN: Exactly.

BRITNI: That’s really important.

JOANN: So I think it's time for break now.

BRITNI: You are listening to Dishing Up Nutrition. If sugar, pasta, bread, potatoes, rice, pizza, pancakes, muffins, and beer, make up the majority of your diet, you might want to rethink what you're eating. Here's some food for thought: People who eat good fats such as olive oil, avocados, butter, nuts, full-fat cream, avocado oil, full-fat cream cheese; that all sounds delicious. So people that eat all of those healthy fats have a 42% lower risk of getting Alzheimer’s disease than the general population.

JOANN: That's good news.

BRITNI: That's motivating to eat those. We will be right back.

BREAK 

JOANN: Welcome back to Dishing Up Nutrition. Today we mentioned when women stop ovulating, their production of progesterone declines. So we like to think of progesterone of the brain's natural valium because it soothes and relaxes you. We don't hear much about valium anymore.

BRITNI: No we don't.

JOANN: Progesterone is very protective and is being used to calm down the brain in people who have traumatic brain injuries. That's interesting, isn't it?

BRITNI: It’s very interesting.

JOANN: So progesterone also supports the function of the neurotransmitter GABA, which settles down your brain also. So natural progesterone cream can help with sleep, irritability, and hot flashes and at Nutritional Weight and Wellness we carry two natural progesterone creams. Both are high quality natural progesterone. So you can go to weightandwellness.com and click on vitamins and then just follow the prompts or call our office at (651) 699-3438 and you can ask any questions you may have or you can order some.

BRITNI: So before the break we were talking about cortisol and how that impacts your sleep. But we also know it really does a number on your weight loss efforts. So cortisol will actually increase your blood sugar levels. So then in turn we're making more insulin, which is our fat storage hormone. So more cortisol means weight gain; more insulin means weight gain. It’s a nasty little vicious cycle, and elevated cortisol levels are also associated with obesity, depression, excessive food cravings, and food addiction. And we gain the weight specifically in the belly because abdominal fat has four times more cortisol receptors than other fat cells. It’s interesting.

JOANN: Wow, that's amazing.

BRITNI: So sadly, access belly fat might be accompanied also with a shrinking brain when you're under chronic stress. So are you having some memory issues? Are you forgetting more? Know that the memory center of your brain also has a lot of cortisol receptors so it can get overwhelmed when we're over producing cortisol for an extended amount of time. You know, eventually… our body can only produce so much cortisol. So eventually we're actually going to under produce cortisol and then you really, really feel poorly. So I think it's important that you get some of these lifestyle things under control before that happens.

JOANN: Absolutely. Yeah. I think I talk to quite a few people that are just tired all the time and cannot figure out why. And I think that's a lot of it is just lots of stress for a long period of time.

BRITNI: Absolutely.

JOANN: There's also outside stress that we were talking about, which is can be kind of an environmental stress. Maybe you have a child in the hospital or a parent in the hospital or a bad long-term relationship or maybe a job that you're struggling with. Additionally, there is stress that we put on ourselves. In fact, one of the most stressful things we can do to our body is not eating on schedule. That's kind of interesting. Most people wouldn't think of that as stressful. But it can cause you to experience low blood sugar and that's one of the hardest things we can do to our body.

BRITNI: Yep.

JOANN: Because of our busy schedules, many people are not eating frequently throughout the day. Some people go through the day and forget lunch. Many people have that old belief buried deep in their brains of calories in and calories out. So they might be thinking, “If I skip a meal or snack, I'm going to have less calories and lose weight.” But the truth is not eating and not having a balanced blood sugar, you can actually gain weight. There is so much more information about the stress hormones, but in the interest of time, we need to move on to our next category of hormones that affects our weight and that is the sex hormones: estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone.

BRITNI: So today we're going to focus mainly on estrogen and progesterone. So these two hormones, we need them to be in balance and these levels are going to rise and fall as they do in a normal menstrual cycle. But then you shouldn't have any symptoms associated with that. But when the estrogen/progesterone balance is disrupted, irritability, fatigue, anxiety, weight gain, all of that can set in. And usually during perimenopause, women stop ovulating or their ovulation significantly reduces, and eventually that production of progesterone will stop. But then the problem is the ovaries, adrenal glands and fat cells continue to make estrogen. So basically before menopause, during these months, sometimes years of perimenopause, women frequently have too much estrogen and very little of that balancing hormone, progesterone. So you might be thinking, “What are some of these symptoms of excess estrogen?”

JOANN: That's right. And the number one symptom of excess estrogen is weight gain. So that's why it's so important what we're talking about today. Excess estrogen can cause water retention, can cause breast swelling, breast tenderness, and can cause sleep problems, mood swings, and that dreaded weight gain. So the question that must always be addressed: is it too much estrogen or is it a lack of progesterone? And very often the answer is usually a little of both. Both are in play. So some researchers are saying that because of environmental estrogens, those xenoestrogens, we're swimming in a sea of toxic estrogens. Things like… you might wonder what that is. Things like plastic pesticides, insecticides, even birth control pills, even hormone replacement therapy, even chemicals in our water; our food products; our beauty products.

BRITNI: Yes.

JOANN: Lots and lots of those man-made estrogens. So in addition to that current exposure to those xenoestrogens, you know, many women have been taking birth control for a number of years or been on hormone replacement therapy for a number of years. So these women have had years and years of receiving excess estrogens and their sex hormones are out of balance.

BRITNI: It's so common. It really is. And with the birth control pills, I'm really glad you brought that up because so many women are on those and that's giving you synthetic excess estrogen. But at the same time, it's preventing ovulation. So that means that your production of progesterone goes down making that, that ratio of the two even more imbalanced.

JOANN: Yes.

BRITNI: And some of those symptoms of that excess estrogen or what we call estrogen dominance: Again, the weight gain, and this is especially around the hips, the thighs, and the abdomen; more in perimenopause: arms. It can cause fatigue, fibrocystic breasts, headaches, hormonal migraines, foggy thinking, low sex drive. The list kind of goes on and on. 

JOANN: It does.

BRITNI: So how do you get that estrogen to progesterone levels back in balance? That's the big question.

JOANN: It is.

BRITNI: At Nutritional Weight & Wellness, we of course always say food first. So hormones need sufficient good fats and also cholesterol. You probably surprised to hear that.

JOANN: Yes, also cholesterol. There is a surprise. So your sex hormones are made from cholesterol. Also, interesting, cholesterol levels under 160 have been associated with depression, aggression, even suicide. So perhaps if you've been on a statin medication, your cholesterol levels have gotten too low. If you're under stress, you have low levels of cholesterol, you have nothing to make your estrogen, your progesterone or your testosterone. And this is true for both men and women. I know today's topic is a lot about women, but there is both. Everything we're talking about really applies to both men and women.

BRITNI: So a great question is: how do you eat to support your sex hormones? Well, first of all, you're not going to be surprised to hear this but cutting out the sugar and the processed carbs. And here's a very informative, yet attention grabbing fact, especially for men and women experiencing low libido. If you eat a sugary treat or a drink like ‘tis the season for the pumpkin spice lattes. If you have a medium pumpkin spice latte that contains 13 teaspoons of sugar. Your testosterone levels may drop by 25%.

JOANN: That's amazing.

BRITNI: Wow. Yeah, and we know there's a huge connection with insulin resistance, so making too much insulin and having low testosterone.

JOANN: Right. Yup, there's a big connection there. So if you want to maintain your sex hormones, we suggest including healthy fats at every meal and snack. So things like avocados, nuts, butter, coconut oil, that full-fat cream, olive oil, avocado oil, full-fat cream cheese, salmon, whole milk cottage cheese. This list goes on and on. It sounds really good too. We find that people who've been following a low-fat diet and taking cholesterol lowering medication usually have many more hormonal issues. Those ongoing hot flashes, mood swings, sleep problems, and not just feeling like themselves. So I'm looking at the clock. I think we need to take a break.

BRITNI: Yes. You are listening to Dishing Up Nutrition. And the whole topic of hormones: It is really so complex, and we know that today we've just touched on some of the more critical information, but all of our dietitians and nutritionists work with men who are experiencing prostate problems or women with PMS and fertility issues or those with other hormonal issues such as hot flashes. So typically if there's a hormonal imbalance, there's also a food imbalance for your body. You're just not getting what you need from the food you're eating. Every one of us has a unique food requirement, so we understand because many of us know these problems from our own personal experience. And of course we've read so much research.

JOANN: We have.

BRITNI: Make an appointment with one of our dietitians or nutritionists and get the help that you need. We can meet in person or over the phone; you choose. Call (651) 699-3438 to set up your appointment.

BREAK

JOANN: Welcome back to Dishing Up Nutrition. If you are experiencing perimenopause or menopause or even post-menopause symptoms, join us for our Menopause Survival Seminar Saturday, November 9 at our St. Paul Location. Join Darlene and Diane and myself as we answer your questions and present well-researched information about our hormone balance. So many women say to me, “Oh, I'm way past that. I've dealt with all that”, and they think we're just going to talk about hot flashes, but we talk about so much more. Many female health topics like sleep and osteoporosis, even incontinence. So there's information for everyone. So call 651-699-3438 and sign up today to save yourself a seat. Besides all the great information, we also serve you an organic, balanced lunch. It's always a really fun day. We've had women come from out of town, from places like Texas and New York, just to get the information we present about a natural way to manage hormones.

BRITNI: Yeah, that's always a great day; really is. So we have a caller. Linny, welcome to Dishing Up Nutrition. You have a question about estrogen?

CALLER: Yes, I do. Awhile ago you were talking about the imbalance between estrogen and progesterone, particularly perimenopausal, menopausal times.

BRITNI: Yup.

CALLER: Some women go and ask for hormone replacement from their physicians and get estrogen; not progesterone. I think it's just estrogen, and that seems to stop all the symptoms. And I'm wondering: that in my mind would increase the estrogen even more in relation to the progesterone. So why does that work?

JOANN: I think we generally see that it works kind of as a temporary basis, but then unfortunately it's usually a synthetic type of estrogen. So, it doesn't agree very well with our bodies. I think it temporarily works and kind of masks those symptoms so people think then they get the idea they can't live without it.

BRITNI: Yes.

JOANN: But, but we're better off if we don't go down that road and try to balance with the natural progesterone as a first step because then otherwise you are becoming then used to it; dependent on it; and then needing to continue. And I've worked with so many women with that, with that situation. It's better to kind of just back off or even back off slowly or whatever women need to do, or just go cold turkey and, and deal with the symptoms. But it's generally better to use progesterone to kind of help with that balance and then work back that way. Does that make sense?

CALLER: A little, I'm still not understanding why, even if it's synthetic, more estrogen stops the symptoms. It doesn't seem to make sense.

BRITNI: So what we, what we often see when women go off of the synthetic estrogen, although symptoms come back, sometimes worse because that underlying estrogen dominance hasn't been addressed. And any time we can avoid any sort of something synthetic going in our bodies, that's, that's always the best option.

CALLER: Ok.

JOANN: Does that answer your question?

CALLER: Not really, but I understand the synthetic part. I just am trying to figure out… more estrogen just seems wrong on every level. I don't know why doctors are prescribing it.

JOANN: I don't either. It actually is wrong on every level. And I think, you know, basically the answer is this is kind of a temporary fix, but then our bodies should be… if we're addressing, like Britni said, addressing the estrogen dominance, that's the imbalance in our body, and that we generally start with progesterone to address that.

CALLER: Yeah. And then more estrogen would make it more dominant. Why would that, if estrogen’s was causing the hot flashes, why does it stop the hot flashes to get more?

BRITNI: Like Joann said, it's masking. It's temporarily masking. Just like birth control does. It's kind of masking. It's a band-aid approach.

CALLER: Hmm. Yeah. Okay. Thank you.

BRITNI: Thank you. Okay. So, you know, maybe we mention a couple ways that women can get rid of some of these excess estrogens.

JOANN: Right. So we talked a little earlier about those xenoestrogens. Our foods are wrapped in plastic. We have lots of chemicals in our food products as well as in our beauty products. So one of the things you can reduce your exposure to these xenoestrogens is switching from plastic to glass. You know, just purchasing everything you can in glass containers. Also, look on the EWG (Environmental Working Group). They have a website called Skin Deep. They can help you to learn which beauty products are nontoxic.

BRITNI: Yup.

JOANN: So that's another good resource.

BRITNI: You'll be surprised, so you type in your product and it tells you how toxic they are. You're going to be really scared. It will make you want to change.

JOANN: Exactly. And then the other thing: buying organic chlorine-free cotton pads and tampons. That's another good step. Drinking filtered water is another good step. You know, avoiding that excess pollution.

BRITNI: And you know, eating a lot of cruciferous vegetables: kale, broccoli, cauliflower: that actually helps your body detox that excess estrogen. So including that is really smart. And you know, we could talk about hormones for hours and hours, but we want you to eat the food that is right for your body. So I'd like to suggest some classes that have helped hundreds of people lose weight by balancing their hormones. So one recommendation is our Weight & Wellness series that starts in October. Another one that I highly recommend and teach a lot of myself is our Nutrition 4 Weight Loss program. It starts the week of September 16. I'm going to be teaching a 7:30 am Friday in St. Paul.

JOANN: Wow.

BRITNI: Yes.

JOANN: For the early birds.

BRITNI: Yeah. And what's great about the Nutrition for Weight Loss as well as you get two one-hour appointments with a dietitian or nutritionist to address your individual concerns. So that's helpful. Of course Joann mentioned this Menopause Survival Seminar, and that's November 9. And you can always just make an individual appointment with one of our dietitians or nutritionists at Nutritional Weight & Wellness cause there's so many ways to avoid these unpleasant symptoms that we've been talking about today. Whether you're a menstruating woman, you're perimenopause, menopause, post-menopause, we would love to help you. Call the office at 651-699-3438 to set up your individual appointment. Or you can visit our website: weightandwellness.com.

JOANN: That's right; that's right. And before we close, I just want to mention, I had talked about earlier about those good fat sources that we need. Fats are so necessary for hormone production. So in addition to the cruciferous vegetables that Britni talked about, I want to make sure I highlight those healthy fats: avocados, olive oil, grass-fed butter, unrefined coconut oil, avocado and nuts. So those healthy fats added back into our foods makes a huge difference in giving our bodies the necessary fat that we need to produce estrogen.

BRITNI: Absolutely.

JOANN: Or produce our hormones.

BRITNI: Yeah. Well our goal at Nutritional Weight & Wellness is to help each and every person experience better health through eating real food. It's simple yet such a powerful message. Eating real food really is life changing. So thank you for listening and have a wonderful day.

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