Best Female Hormone Balance Supplements (Dietitian-Approved)

The best female hormone balance supplements is one topic I LOVE to talk about as a dietitian. Of course, everybody is different and your symptoms will also be different. But in today’s blog post, we are going to talk about supplements and vitamins that can help keep hormone levels as optimal as possible. 

Best Female Hormone Balance Supplements (Dietitian-Approved)

Ahh to be a woman! So many things always fluctuating, moving around, sagging LOL. But no seriously, one of the biggest things that happen to us in regards to women’s health are hormonal fluctuations. It seems like every stage of life, we need to readjust and reevaluate. 

Hormone imbalance is a very generalized and overused term that encompasses many different issues. Our bodies are amazing and do a great job adjusting to the natural shifts women of all ages experience. This includes puberty, menstrual cycles and pregnancy.

But when these imbalances exist long term, this is when certain conditions are experienced which can affect many body functions. 

It’s also important to point out that your hormones are affected by more than diet and lifestyle. Our bodies are complicated and intertwined with many systems working together. 

Trying to find the right supplements to help balance hormones can feel overwhelming, especially with the many opinions and options available. From herbal supplements to vitamins and minerals, or researching the best foods for hormone balance, each supplement claims to offer unique benefits. However, not all supplements are created equal, and finding the ones that genuinely support female hormone balance requires careful consideration and expertise. 

Best Female Hormone Balance Supplements (Dietitian-Approved)

In today’s post, I’ll sift through the noise and help you choose the right supplements backed by science to help you achieve hormonal balance. I will also go over lifestyle modifications you can adopt to help you live an overall healthier life.

What is Hormone Imbalance?

Hormone imbalance refers to a disruption in the normal levels of hormones in the body, which can lead to various medical conditions. Hormones play a crucial role in regulating many bodily functions, including metabolism, mood, reproductive health, and sleep patterns. When hormones are out of balance, it can manifest in symptoms such as irregular periods, low energy levels, mood swings, weight fluctuations, fatigue, and more. 

Factors such as stress, diet and genetics can all contribute to hormone imbalance. Addressing hormone imbalance often requires a multifaceted approach, including lifestyle changes, dietary adjustments, and sometimes supplementation, to restore hormonal balance and support overall well-being.

Some vitamin deficiencies are linked to hormone-related health concerns affecting women, and research has shown that certain supplements might help alleviate symptoms related to hormone imbalances. However, more studies are needed to confirm the efficacy of these supplements.

What causes female hormonal imbalance?

Female hormones can become imbalanced due to a variety of factors, both internal and external. As previously mentioned, fluctuations in hormone levels are a natural part of a woman’s life cycle, mainly happening during puberty, menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause. 

However, certain lifestyle factors can exacerbate these fluctuations and lead to imbalance. Chronic stress is a significant contributor, as it can disrupt the delicate interplay between hormones like cortisol, primarily produced by the adrenal glands, and estrogen. Poor diet, high in ultra-processed foods and lacking in essential nutrients, can also impact hormone levels negatively.

Hormone imbalance may also stem from underlying health conditions such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), thyroid disorders, or adrenal dysfunction. The cause of some of these health conditions isn’t well known, but it might be related to a number of factors working together, including insulin resistance and increased levels of hormones called androgens. Additionally, fluctuations in hormone levels can occur as a result of certain medications or medical treatments.

Symptoms of a Hormonal Imbalance

Common symptoms of hormonal imbalances in females can vary widely depending on which hormones are affected and the severity of the imbalance. Common symptoms include irregular menstrual cycles, heavy or painful periods, missed periods, or spotting between periods. Hormonal imbalance can also manifest as changes in mood and mental health, such as mood swings, irritability, anxiety, or depression.

Physical symptoms may include unexplained weight gain or weight loss, changes in appetite, fatigue, insomnia, or difficulty sleeping, as well as changes in libido or sexual function. Skin issues like acne, oily skin, or dry skin, as well as hair thinning or excessive hair growth in unwanted areas, can also be signs of hormonal imbalance.

It’s important to note that experiencing one or more of these symptoms doesn’t necessarily mean you have a hormonal imbalance, as many factors can contribute to these issues. 

How Hormones Affect Your Health

Hormones play a vital role in virtually every aspect of our health, serving as chemical messengers that regulate and coordinate various bodily functions. These powerful substances are produced by endocrine glands and travel through the bloodstream to target tissues and organs, where they exert their effects.

Here are some key ways hormones impact our health, apart from hormones and weight loss:

Reproductive Health

Hormones such as estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone levels play important roles in reproductive health. They regulate menstrual cycles, ovulation, fertility, and pregnancy. Imbalances in these hormones can lead to menstrual irregularities, infertility, and pregnancy complications.

Metabolism and Energy

Hormones like insulin, thyroid hormones, and cortisol influence metabolism and energy balance. Insulin helps regulate blood sugar levels, while thyroid hormones control metabolism and energy expenditure. Cortisol, known as the stress hormone, helps regulate energy production and responds to stress.

Mood and Emotions

Hormones influence mood, emotions, and stress responses. Serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine are neurotransmitters that affect mood regulation, while cortisol and adrenaline play roles in the body’s stress response. Imbalances in these hormones can contribute to mood disorders like depression and anxiety.

Bone Health

Hormones like estrogen and testosterone are crucial for maintaining bone health and density. Estrogen helps protect bones by inhibiting bone breakdown, while testosterone supports bone density in both men and women. Hormonal imbalances, such as those occurring during menopause, can increase the risk of osteoporosis and fractures.

Growth and Development

Growth hormone, insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), and thyroid hormones are essential for growth and development, especially during childhood and adolescence. These hormones stimulate cell growth, regulate tissue repair, and influence overall growth patterns.

Immune Function

Hormones play a role in regulating immune function and inflammatory responses. For example, cortisol helps modulate the immune system’s response to infection and inflammation. Imbalances in hormone levels can impact immune function, increasing susceptibility to infections or autoimmune diseases.

Heart Health

Hormones influence cardiovascular health by affecting blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and blood vessel function. For instance, estrogen has cardioprotective effects, helping to maintain healthy blood vessel function and reduce the risk of heart disease in premenopausal women.

hormone regulating supplements

Who Should Consider Using Supplements to Balance Hormones?

The following health issues can arise from hormonal imbalances in women:

Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS)

PMS encompasses both physical and emotional symptoms, such as bloating, headaches, and mood swings, occurring after ovulation and before menstruation. In women who aren’t pregnant, estrogen and progesterone levels begin falling dramatically after ovulation, which may trigger PMS.

This condition affects up to three in four women, with fewer than 5% experiencing the more severe premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD). Symptoms range from mild to moderate and include tender breasts, constipation, cramping, depression, and sleep disturbances. 

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)

PCOS, a hormonal disorder affecting ovulation in women of reproductive age, affects at least one in 15 women. It disrupts normal egg development and release, leading to irregular periods, acne, excess facial hair, weight gain, and infertility.

While its exact cause is unknown, factors like insulin resistance and elevated androgen levels may contribute to its development.

Endometriosis

Endometriosis involves the growth of tissue similar to the uterine lining outside the uterus, affecting over 11% of U.S. women aged 15-44. Common symptoms include painful cramps, low back pain, pain during intercourse, abnormal bleeding, and digestive issues.

Menopause

Menopause marks the cessation of estrogen production by the ovaries, typically occurring around age 51. Perimenopause, preceding menopause, can begin in a woman’s 30s or 40s, characterized by fluctuating estrogen levels and changes in menstrual patterns.

Symptoms may include irregular periods, increased or decreased menstrual flow, hot flashes, and sleep disturbances.

Fertility Problems

Infertility, affecting approximately 10% of U.S. women, refers to the inability to conceive after one year of trying (or six months for women over 35) or the inability to maintain a pregnancy.

Ovulation disorders are often implicated, with conditions like PCOS contributing to fertility issues. Lifestyle factors such as stress, poor diet, and smoking can also impact fertility.

Best Female Hormone Balance Supplements

Vitamin D

Number one on the list of the best female hormone balance supplements is vitamin D! Vitamin D plays a crucial role in overall health, particularly in immunity and gut health. It can be obtained from exposure to the sun, certain fortified foods, and supplementation, a vitamin D deficiency can lead to health issues.

Inadequate vitamin D levels are especially prevalent among women with PCOS, with between 67% and 85% reported to have insufficient levels. Research suggests that vitamin D supplementation can help regulate blood sugar and insulin sensitivity in women with PCOS, potentially aiding in fertility.

To achieve optimal vitamin D levels, supplementation with 2,000 to 4,000 IUs daily may be necessary. This is especially true as people spend less time in the sun and often wear sunblock.

Taking vitamin K alongside vitamin D can be beneficial because these two vitamins work synergistically to support various aspects of health. This includes bone health and cardiovascular health.

Some foods rich in vitamin D includes egg yolks, fatty fish like salmon, trout, mackerel, and tuna, cod liver oil and milk.

B Vitamins

B vitamins play a crucial role in hormone regulation as the body requires them to produce hormones. However, many people, especially women on birth control, may not get enough B vitamins in their diet.

Vitamin B 6, present in various foods such as fish, poultry, potatoes, and non-citrus fruits, potentially alleviates PMS symptoms, including moodiness, irritability, and bloating. Caution is necessary not to exceed 50 mg daily in supplementation, as excessive intake can lead to nervous system damage. While some research indicates that vitamin B6 may ease PMS symptoms, further studies are necessary to confirm its efficacy.

Moreover, B vitamins, particularly inositols (vitamin B8), may help address hormonal imbalances associated with conditions like PCOS. However, additional research is necessary to fully establish the effectiveness of B vitamin supplementation in treating hormonal imbalances.

Folic acid, a synthetic form of vitamin B9, contributes to hormone balancing indirectly through its involvement in various physiological processes. It aids in DNA synthesis and methylation, essential for regulating gene expression and influencing hormonal signaling and metabolism.

Magnesium

One of the best female hormone balance supplements is magnesium. Magnesium is a vital mineral that regulates muscle function, cellular energy production, and the nervous system.

Low magnesium levels can lead to cramping and weakness. Women should aim for 310 to 320 milligrams of magnesium daily, which can be obtained from leafy greens, nuts, whole grains, and fortified cereals.

Different formulations of magnesium supplements offer various benefits; magnesium oxide is effective for migraines, while magnesium citrate helps with muscle spasms and acts as a gentle laxative.

Magnesium supplementation may also alleviate some PMS symptoms, including migraines, but further research is needed. Women experiencing menstrual migraines or menopausal symptoms should consult their healthcare providers for personalized recommendations regarding magnesium supplementation.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is a crucial nutrient that plays a significant role in hormonal health and balance for women. As an antioxidant, vitamin C helps combat oxidative stress in the body, which can disrupt hormone production and regulation. By neutralizing free radicals, vitamin C supports the health of the endocrine system. This is responsible for producing and regulating hormones.

Furthermore, vitamin C is involved in the synthesis of steroid hormones, including estrogen and progesterone. These hormones play key roles in regulating the menstrual cycle, fertility, and overall reproductive health in women. Adequate levels of vitamin C are essential for maintaining optimal hormone levels and supporting a healthy reproductive system.

Omega Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids play a crucial role in promoting anti-inflammatory immune function and cellular communication in the body. Sources such as flaxseeds, chia seeds, and flax oil offer affordable and effective ways to incorporate omega-3s into the diet. Since the body doesn’t produce omega fatty acids independently, obtaining them from food or supplements is essential.

Research suggests that supplementation with 1 to 2 grams of polyunsaturated fatty acids, including omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, may help alleviate symptoms of PMS, such as cramps. Studies have also indicated that fish oil supplements can relieve both physical and mental menstrual symptoms, improving overall quality of life for women.

Omega-3 fatty acids may also offer relief from endometriosis pain and potentially alleviate symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes, depression, and cognitive issues. However, further research is needed to fully understand their effectiveness in this regard. While omega-3 supplements may help reduce the severity and frequency of night sweats associated with menopause, their impact on hot flashes, sleep, and overall quality of life remains uncertain.

Additionally, evening primrose oil, rich in omega-6 fatty acids, is commonly used to alleviate breast pain in women with PMS and may offer some relief from menopause symptoms. Although research on its efficacy for PMS is mixed, evening primrose oil is generally well tolerated.

Probiotics

Taking a probiotic supplement can be beneficial for promoting healthy gut bacteria which indirectly helps balance hormones through a few different ways. Probiotics influence neurotransmitter production, such as serotonin, which plays a role in mood and hormone regulation. 

Certain strains of probiotics have been shown to help in the metabolism of estrogen, aiding in its elimination from the body and preventing estrogen dominance. Moreover, probiotics support optimal nutrient absorption, ensuring the availability of essential vitamins and minerals required for hormone synthesis and regulation. Lastly, by maintaining a healthy gut microbiome, probiotics indirectly support thyroid function, which is critical for overall hormone balance.

While probiotics offer promise in hormone balance, they should be integrated into a comprehensive approach to health, including eating a healthy diet, regular exercise, stress management, and medical guidance.

Traditional medicine

Traditional medicine like Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) is typically chosen when women face significant hormonal imbalances that greatly affect their well-being. Primarily, HRT is considered for women experiencing severe symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, and mood changes, all stemming from declining estrogen levels. Moreover, for postmenopausal women, HRT may be recommended to mitigate the risk of osteoporosis and fractures associated with estrogen deficiency, thereby maintaining bone density. Decisions regarding HRT are individualized and discussed with your health care provider.

How to choose the right supplement

Choosing the best supplements to balance hormones requires careful consideration and research. Starting with a multivitamin can ensure adequate nutrient intake, as many people may not get enough from food alone. When selecting specific supplements, consult reputable sources like the National Institutes of Health for evidence-based information and safety considerations. It’s crucial to seek guidance from a knowledgeable healthcare provider who can offer personalized recommendations based on individual health needs and potential interactions with medications. Additionally, prioritize supplements that are sourced responsibly and third-party tested for quality assurance. By taking these steps, individuals can make informed choices to support hormone balance and overall health effectively.

Bottom Line: best female hormone balance supplements

Taking the best female hormone balance supplements will only take you so far if you are not taking care of the other important areas of your health. Living a balanced, healthy lifestyle is very important when it comes to hormonal balance even more so than taking dietary supplements. 

You can do this by eating a diet rich in whole foods such as fruit, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats. Also incorporating regular physical activity into your daily routine such as aerobic exercises, strength training, or yoga, not only helps with weight management, but it also helps reduce stress.

Prioritizing quality sleep is essential as it helps prevent disruptions in hormone levels and supports overall well-being. Additionally, implementing stress-reducing techniques like mindfulness meditation or relaxation exercises can lower cortisol levels. 

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