Part 3 : From Hormone Hell to Feeling Well - Foods that Wreck your Hormones
April 6, 2021 - Episode #60 - Part 3 : From Hormone Hell to Feeling Well - Foods that Wreck your Hormones
You know the feeling….your emotions are all over the place, you can’t get the weight to budge, sleep seems elusive and stress, well the stress dominates. Your hormones are crazy!! Could what you are eating be throwing you out of whack? That’s our topic today as we continue our series on Hormone Hell to Feeling Well - How to Balance your Hormones. We are identifying foods that wreck your hormones.
Let me remind you that there are 2 podcasts prior to this in our hormone series. Part 1 and Part 2 we were joined by Functional Medicine Doctor, Dr. Carol Villaneuva. If you missed those, I want to encourage you to go back and listen. Here are the links:
Here is my warning!! Anytime we start talking foods that cause toxicity, it can feel like the clean eating change that is necessary is completely overwhelming! But you must start somewhere! In this episode, I give you the Top 8 foods that are creating hormone chaos. I simply want you to consider. How much am I consuming these foods?? You need to know better so you can do better! This week, we identify the foods that wreck your hormones. Next week, we dive into the delicious foods for healthy hormone harmony!
If you have been listening to these podcasts for a while and you are sooo ready to go next level and take control of your health and your hormones, I’ve got you! Book a Wellness Warrior Power Hour and walk away from our virtual session with a personalized plan of action just for you!! https://healthyharmony.thrivecart.com/wellness-warrior-power-hour/
I promised you several links in this episode! So here you go!!
What the Heck do I Eat Part 1 and Part 2. Part 2 goes into the deceptive lies of the food industry and an eye opening concept called Health Washing
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April 6, 2021 - Episode #60 - Part 3 : From Hormone Hell to Feeling Well - Foods that Wreck your Hormones
You know, the feeling your emotions are all over the place. You can't get the weight to budge. Sleep seems elusive and stress. Well, the stress dominates. Your hormones are crazy. Could what you're eating be throwing you out of whack? That's our topic today. As we continue our series on hormone hell to feeling well, how to balance your hormones? We're identifying harmful foods for hormone balance.
Hey there. Welcome to the Healthy Harmony podcast. I'm Jennifer Pickett, your host, your health coach, your friend. If you're ready to tap into the healthiest version of you so you can live life with confidence and intentional harmony. Then my friend you're in the right place as a dietitian turned Functional Medicine Health Coach. I'm here to walk beside you and show you how to take control of your complete health body, mind, and soul. Let me remind you, there are two podcasts prior to this in our hormone series part one, and part two, we were joined by Functional Medicine physician, Dr. Carol Villanueva. If you miss those, I want to encourage you. Go back and listen. I will link those right here in the show notes. And if you've been listening to these podcasts for a while, and you're so ready to go next level and take control of your health and your hormones, I've got you. Book a Wellness Warrior Power Hour and walk away from our virtual session with a personalized plan of action.
All right. All right. All right. Let's get right into it. You know, sometimes there are foods that have a really big impact on us. We don't even realize it, but I'm struggling with this episode and I'm going to tell you why first I'm just a people pleaser. I confess I'm a people pleaser, and now I want you to like me. So when I start laying everything out that can wreck havoc on your hormones, you're probably not going to like me. However, the other part of the struggle is that when we start reviewing these harmful foods that are wrecking havoc on our hormones, I know that you may have a tendency to feel guilty and beat yourself up. The final reason I'm struggling with this episode is that when we look at all the foods that have the potential of creating hormone chaos, there's a tendency to get overwhelmed and think I can't do this.
It's too much. It's too difficult. So here's, it all comes together. I've got you, okay, we're in this together. I'm going to guide you, educate you and empower you to take it one small step at a time. So as much as I want to be the popular health coach, I'm also going to give you a little bit of tough love. And today I'm going to open up your eyes to these foods that we're over consuming that are creating complete chaos in our body. And this is where it starts. I want you to know, I want you to be aware of what foods are causing disruption and toxicity in your body. And so as I go through the following list, I want you to just listen and consider how much am I eating of these foods? Are they a name? Stay in my diet, meaning I'm eating these all the time, or is it an occasional treat?
I'm going to tell you, drop the guilt. Stop this shame spiral. We're all guilty. But frankly, if we want to feel better, we have to do better. So are you ready? Let's do this together. Here are the top eight foods that calls hormone chaos.
Number one, processed foods. You've heard me say it on this podcast over and over and over again. We have to stick to real whole foods. Those foods that do not need an ingredient list. They don't have a nutrition label. There's no room to put that on there. Thank broccoli and avocados, et cetera. When it comes to the middle of the grocery store, those processed foods. That's when we get all of those foods that have all of these disastrous chemicals and toxic preservatives and flavor enhancers that are wrecking our health. Now remember several weeks ago, I did a podcast on a term called health washing.
It's a secret that the food companies do not want you to know about. So have you ever felt confused when you're in the grocery store and you're shopping and you pick up a food product and it looks really healthy. It might have some keywords on there, like gluten-free and or natural. And so you grab it and you're like, okay, this is a better choice. And then something dawns on you and you think, Hmm, maybe I should look at the ingredient list. As you turn the product over. You realize, wait, this, this list, these ingredients, this doesn't sound natural. And okay, maybe it's gluten free, but this sounds like a lot of junk. I can't pronounce half of this step on this ingredient list that my friends is called health washing. I want you to go back and listen to that episode. Okay. I will of course link that here.
Here's what I want you to do because the more we get into this, the more we realize that we're being deceived by these big food companies. I'm going to tell you again and forgive me if I sound like I'm on a soap box, but I am, they do not care about your health. They only care about the bottom line for that, for that product to remain stable on the shelf and for it to have addictive properties so that you will keep coming back and buying it. It needs to have certain chemicals and preservatives and flavor enhancers in there. It's full of toxins. They don't care. They just care about the money, but we've got to start caring because what happens is, as we start to eliminate these processed foods, we're amazed at how, how much better we feel. So right now, I want you to get mad about it.
I want you to feel like, Hey, I've been kind of taken advantage of because you know what you have. And so have I, they’re trying to deceive us. So the best way, the best thing that we can do is stick to those real whole foods. And we'll talk about that so much more next week. But remember these processed foods, all of those chemicals in those processed foods, they're endocrine disruptors, your hormones are part of your endocrine system. And those chemicals are throwing everything off balance. Tired of failing, feeling off balance, eliminate the processed foods.
Number two sugar. Oh, heavens you knew, you knew this would be at the top of the list, right? So here's the deal. Sugar intake is at an all-time high. They're adding loads and loads of sugar to your foods. And as we take these in very specific things happen in the body.
So what happens is that sugar influences insulin and insulin is secreted from the pancreas insulin. By the way, this is a major player that you need to know about insulin is a master hormone. Meaning he's like a commander in chief. He shouts at the other hormones and tells them what to do. So if you are over producing insulin, because you're over consuming sugar, then Houston, we have a problem. So that's one of the problems, okay? It's, it's throwing your insulin production off. By the way, then your cells become very insulin resistance and insulin resistance, excuse me. And then you're not burning the glucose all energy the way God intended. So when I say this is a mess, when it comes to metabolism and hormones at girl, I mean, it's a mess, but also I want you to look at the fact that refined carbs, all those processed carbohydrates, those raise cortisol, cortisol is your main stress hormone.
What does that mean? That means slower metabolism and a messed up sleep cycle. No, thank you. Here's where it gets interesting too. Cause you know, you're like, well, okay, I'll just avoid sugar. Do you know? There are over like 40 different names for sugar for added sugar in these processed foods. So it's kind of hard to know like, okay, so we can't just look at for sugar. You've got to know all these other names. They keep coming up with more and more names. And one of them, you know, you know what high fructose corn syrup is. You've seen that by the way, high fructose corn syrup can contain mercury. This hijacks, your thyroid and your adrenal glands. If we want to talk hormone balance, we've got to talk hormones, adrenals, and thyroid, all of those work in conjunction with each other. So if you want to balance your hormones, you've got to look at lowering that sugar intake.
Number three, sugar substitutes. I know what you're thinking. I just said sugar. So you're thinking no big deal. I can just go for the diet products, the diet drinks with the sugar substitute because there's no calories. Right? Okay. You're right. There's no calories. However, it's a disaster, an absolute disaster. Now I have not always thought this way. In fact, the way I was trained many years ago is that it's just empty calories. It's a good substitute. We know better. Now it's an absolute disaster in the body. And when you look at it from a metabolism standpoint, the body actually responds the same to sugar and sugar substitute substitutes. Meaning the pancreas responds the same. So we know that sugar substitute or again, an endocrine disruptor. And this messes with the body's ability to communicate with itself. We do not want those communication channels clogged up, right?
So if we look at diet drinks, this is where this is one of the biggest culprits we see diet drinks. And so many of us women, we have a problem with diet drinks. Is that you okay? I've had many clients kick that habit. And let me tell you, they felt so much better after they did. So here's why diet drinks. Aren't so good because want to feel good? Right? Well, that diet drink that you're drinking it lowers serotonin. Serotonin is the feel-good hormone. It's also when it's a neurotransmitter and that neurotransmitter is responsible for mood, sleep and appetite. Have you ever wondered, why do I feel hungry after drinking a diet drink? So now you have to ask yourself, is that diet drink? Is it really worth it? Those sugar substitutes look at what you're putting in your coffee in the morning. If you're not putting sugar, are you putting a nasty, foul sugar substitute and ask yourself, is it worth it because it's an endocrine disruptor.
And let me tell you, it's disturbing your hormones.
Speaking of number four, dairy, you knew it was up on the list. You heard it from Dr. Villanova dairy is a huge culprit. When it, when it causes chaos with your hormones. Now dairy is very, very inflammatory and it works on a variety of levels to disrupt your hormone balance. So it can be very irritating to the gut it's inflammatory. And by the way, if it's conventional dairy, meaning it's not organic, it can be packed with antibiotic residue and something called recumbent bovine growth hormone. Yes. So it is not the best idea. Now I'm using that word inflammatory. I'm using the word inflammation. So I wanted to give you like a little sweet reminder here, because for so many of you, your goal is weight loss. So remember that weight gain and inflammation go hand in hand.
Those two are best friends. So when you're consuming foods that increase your levels of inflammation, guess what happens? You gain weight and vice versa when you're when you gain weight, your levels of inflammation increase. When your levels that inflammation increase, you are susceptible to every sort of disease. If we look at what's at the root of most of our diseases, it's inflammation. So when I use that word, I want you to kind of stop and go, Oh, wait a minute. Because honestly, dairy seems kind of innocent to me. I mean, how could it be that bad? But if you get bloated easily, if you have acne, think about ditching the dairy and then see what happens, see what happens when you go off of it. Now I'm going to tell you a quick story here because I made this mistake recently and I just didn't realize it until I started applying some mindfulness and putting two and two together.
So we went on our spring break trip and I mean, I, wasn't going to be real strict on, on our spring break trip, but I wasn't just going to let it all go either my healthy habits go. But I did my coffee differently. I was using organic half and half at least two cups in the morning. And we did pizza a few times and I had other forms of dairy. And then I had some ice cream a few times. And it's interesting because I never put two and two together. So like all week my system was messed up. My stomach was messed up and I was bloated and there just some issues. Okay, well, I'm going to go into great detail, just some issues there. And my skin felt real itchy. I had some patches that I was just kind of itchy.
I never put two and two together until well, you're packing up to go home. And I am listening. I'm re-listening to the podcast with myself and Dr. Villaneuva. And she brings that dairy and how inflammatory it is and just how disruptive it is to hormones. It was like, you know aha moment. I realized, wait a minute, Jennifer, you've had a lot of dairy this week and your system is messed up. So guess what I did the following week, I eliminated the dairy and I was amazed at how much better, how so if it can take this health coach a little while to put two and two together, I thought that that might help you. Sometimes we need to practice that mindfulness and connect the dots. Then after we practice mindfulness, be intentional, Hey, let me see if I can avoid it this week.
Let me see if I feel better. So here's a good clue. One sign that dairy is messing with you and messing with your hormones if is if it gives you acne. Okay. So if you've got a lot of problems with acne, think about avoiding the dairy and see what happens. Let's move on.
Number five, gluten. I know, I know it seems like gluten-free is such a fad. Don't you get tired of hearing about it. Okay. So what's the deal? Well, there is a lot of scientific truth about gluten and the reality is that for anybody, whether you have a sensitivity or not, gluten is inflammatory side note. Remember what I just said about inflammation and weight gain? Oh yeah. So if you're concerned about weight gain, if you're concerned about balancing your hormones, you might want to think about cutting down on the gluten. Let me give you an example here.
If we just look at white bread, I talked to you about sugar. Now I'm talking to you about gluten white bread. You got both sugar and gluten. Okay. White bread wrecks, havoc on all the hormones in the body. So gluten plus sugar, it increases the inflammation in the body that causes on the adrenal glands and subsequently the thyroid as well, and can create an auto-immune disorder. We also know that eliminating gluten can help thyroid function. In addition, when we're looking at something like gluten, we have to look at another aspect. What are they spraying on the crops? Yeah, you guessed it. They're spraying pesticides and herbicides. These are causing major disruption to our Intercon system. Now I'm a little sad note here. Remember that little term? Gluten-Free it's real trendy. Okay. So when you're shopping and you're in the middle of the grocery store, just because something said gluten-free does not mean it's healthy for you because there's a good chance that if it's a pre-packaged food, it might be gluten free, but it could be full of sugar and other chemicals that will disrupt your hormones.
So always remember, go for real foods.
Number six, take a deep breath. Before I go into this one, take a deep breath. Y'all here we go. It's alcohol. Alcohol is a major disruptor when it comes to our hormones, alcohol interferes with your brain and this leads to an interference with your hypothalamus and your pituitary gland. By the way, these are parts of your brain that tell your body when to make the hormones that it needs. It also messes with your insulin, that insulin, the master hormone that's secreted from the pancreas. Yes. When your insulin is messed up, guess what your blood sugar is messed up and vice versa. In addition, we know that drinking alcohol on a regular basis really increases your cortisol levels and that triggers more belly fat and an inability to deal with everyday stressors. I know, but I think the reality here is we have to look at how we're managing our stress.
And I know I've been guilty of turning to wine, even clean organic wine to deal with stress, and it was wrecking my hormones. So we've got to keep this in mind and limit our consumption and not turn to alcohol to numb the pain, to manage the stress because we're shooting ourselves in the foot. Just something to think about.
Number seven, soy, soy and soy products can wreck havoc on estrogen. Estrogen is a major hormone. You've heard it about it before, because it acts to mimic estrogen. It is a plant. It is called phyto estrogen. And so it blocks normal estrogen from binding to the receptors. Man. I'm going to tell you this topic is widely debated by experts is soy good for you? Is soy bad for you, but it seems like most of those experts are now saying buyer beware because it is, it's just not giving us much benefit.
Now when we have too much circulating estrogen in the body, that is not good. Okay. That's very dangerous. And most of you have heard this because it gives you an increased risk for cancer, for hormone sensitive cancers. And also if we look at the fact that soy is one of the most heavily sprayed crops, that's another indication. This is not something we need to be consuming in large amounts. Okay? So with it being one of those heavily sprayed crops, we've got to remember all of those pesticides are so very toxic to your body. I want to give you one last warning before we leave this little soy category. If you or someone, you know, in love has chosen to go vegan or vegetarian, I want to give you a heads up. When you look at some processed food products that are labeled very beautifully, I might add that are labeled vegan or vegetarian.
Very often, those have soy and a lot of other chemicals in there, doesn't contain meat, but it has a lot of soy. Okay. So they're trying to recreate meat and in doing so, a lot of times they use soy that they heavily sprayed crop. So I just want you to think about that and if you're going vegan or vegetarian again, that focus has got to be on real foods and not turning to, okay. I'm not going to eat meat, but I'm going to eat all of these processed, nasty foul foods that contain a lot of soy. That's not good for me. Okay. Just my little my little beware right there.
Number eight, conventionally grown fruits and vegetables, meaning not organic fruits and vegetables and factory farmed animals. So when it comes to the animals, there are seven hormones that are used in industrial food production of meat and eggs and dairy.
We know that these hormones can wreck havoc on our human estrogen levels. And there is potential to cause endocrine developmental, immunological neuro-biological immunotoxic genotoxic and carcinogenic effects. Is it worth it? So we really need to stick to small local farms with grass fed grass, finished animals. When it comes to fruits and vegetables, we really wanted to stick to those organic fruits and vegetables. We've got to avoid these endocrine disrupting chemicals that they're spraying on the crops because it's so well-documented that glyphosphate, for example, is an endocrine disruptor. So by eating organic, we can greatly reduce our exposure to like phosphate. Now that's a whole other topic, but it we've gotta be aware that what they're spraying on the crops makes a big difference. Now, if you're listening to this and you're like, dang it, I can't afford organic fruits and vegetables. Jennifer you're stress me out.
Just talking about it. Here's what I want to emphasize to you that the benefits of eating fruits and vegetables, any fruits and vegetables, organic or non organic far outweigh the benefit of not eating them. If you cannot afford to eat organic, I'm going to repeat that the benefits of eating fruits and vegetables far outweigh not eating. Then if you can't afford to eat organic minimize exposure, if you possibly can, but no, all fruits and vegetables are so rich in vitamins and minerals and antioxidants and phytonutrients. They're so very good for you. Now, I'm going to post a list here because I think you'll find this very helpful. There is a dirty dozen list, and this is a list. It is the dirtiest, fruits and vegetables. Meaning these, this list is what you definitely always want to buy organic. If you can, it's called the dirty dozen list.
And it is a ranking of the most contaminated produce from the E w G, which is the environmental working group. So I'm going to link that here so you can have access to that list. And we will talk more in detail about this next week. So are you mad at me? This is a tough one, right? It's tough to hear all of these things that are causing such hormone chaos in our body. And yes, I feel like the bearer of bad news, but honestly, are you surprised, are you that surprised by this? I will tell you, this is the tip of the iceberg. These are the top eight. There are other foods and products that cause hormone disruption. But these guys, these are the major players. Now, after listening to that list, are you a little bit overwhelmed? Sure. Of course. It's completely understandable. I'm going to remind you.
You cannot change everything at once. So take a look at what you're eating most of the time, in all likelihood, you have just gotten busy and fallen into some bad nutritional habits. So just being mindful first is so very helpful. Where am I? What am I over consuming? And that gives you an indication of to start layering some small changes. Can I look at this list above and tell you that I've never had these things that I'd never eat them? No, of course not. But I'll be the first to tell you, I notice how much better I feel when I'm eating clean. I feel so much better. And I'm a big believer that it is about what you eat most of the time, 80 to 90% of the time. So start where you are, become more mindful, realize that what you put in your body matters and can make a huge difference in how you feel.
And finally determined to do something different. It's time. Don't you want to feel better as Maya Angelou says, when you know better, you do better. And Oh, we can apply that to so many areas of our life now. Sure. And join me next week. We are not done. Next week. We are talking foods that promote healthy hormone harmony. Yay. Okay. That will be much more fun than this one. I promise. But we had to start here. You had to be aware of these foods that are causing such chaos. Join us on the Facebook group, functional medicine for weight loss, body. So wellness for women. It is the support and accountability that you're looking for. Great discussions, tips, and tricks recipes. And yes, some humor thrown in because life gets tough. By the way, it's just for us girls, you can join the group by going to Bit.ly/FMwomenswellness again, nets Bitly forward slash fm women's wellness. And please remember girls ,we're in this together. You are not alone my friend. Bye ya’ll!