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Signs You May Have a Hormone Imbalance

Thursday, August 4th 2022 10:00am 4 min read
Dr. Jessica Peatross dr.jess.md @drjessmd

Hospitalist & top functional MD who gets to the root cause. Stealth infection & environmental toxicity keynote speaker.

Our hormones are very efficient messengers. They constantly communicate information to every area of our body while responding and adapting to changing needs. Hormones are produced in the endocrine glands: thyroid, adrenals, pancreas, and ovaries or testes. They perform essential functions, relay warnings, and continually communicate. Hormones ensure that everything else is functioning smoothly. But what happens when your hormones are out of balance? What if their functioning is out of whack?

Many factors can throw hormone levels and function out of balance, such as:

  • Environmental factors
  • Disease
  • Prescription drugs
  • Diet
  • Stress
  • Changes in health
  • Age

Frequently, a person with symptoms will attribute those signs to stress or an overly busy life. Chronic stress can actually cause your hormones to become imbalanced, so those symptoms may be a result of the imbalance rather than the stress. This hormone imbalance is the underlying cause of many symptoms and often will need proper testing, evaluation, and treatment to restore normal levels.

Identifying and correcting hormone levels early helps maintain health, energy, and longevity, and prevents the onset of chronic disease.

Top 5 most common symptoms of hormonal imbalances

Skin and hair changes

The quality and vitality of your skin and hair are directly related to your hormones. Your hormones must work synergistically in order to have a glowing complexion. When even one is off-balance, you can begin developing skin problems such as dryness, acne, fine lines, wrinkles, and rosacea. Thyroid abnormalities, for example, may cause dry hair or skin, thinning hair, hair loss, and brittle nails.


Chronic stress has become an epidemic in today’s society. We are exposed to more information than ever before. Excess adrenal stimulation is what we are gaining from this constant overload of stress. Neuroendocrinology is the study of the close relationship between neurotransmitters and hormones, including those produced by the adrenal glands. You may not know that cortisol and norepinephrine, produced and released by the adrenal glands, often underlie the feelings you may perceive as anxiety. So, what many perceive as anxiety may be an endocrine imbalance.

Many people seek a quick fix with an anti-anxiety prescription. In fact, many people seem content to mask their symptoms with an anxiolytic rather than address the factors in their life that cause the stress. Anxiety is not always a result of a hormone imbalance, but it is a common symptom of an imbalance and should be evaluated, especially if other hormonal imbalance symptoms are present.

Weight gain and weight fluctuations

Research shows that hypothyroidism, or low thyroid function, affects one in five women and one in ten men. Unfortunately, this condition isn’t diagnosed in over half of these cases. The thyroid hormone affects practically every cell in the body and regulates our entire metabolic rate. Therefore, excess weight can often point to a slow and underactive thyroid gland.

In addition, if cortisol is constantly elevated due to stress, it will impact your blood sugar levels by signaling your body to consume more calories and store more fat. Insulin regulates your blood sugar levels by being secreted in response to glucose. Having too much estrogen or not enough progesterone can also be the driving force behind weight gain. These are just a few examples of how hormones change the body which as you can see becomes pretty complex.

Many women struggle with weight issues despite cutting back on certain foods. If you find yourself in that category, it may be time to seek out answers and see one of our providers to order labs and follow up with a thorough evaluation and treatment options.

Insomnia, persisting fatigue, or both

There are many reasons why someone may be having difficulty sleeping. If it’s persistent, it’s likely related to your hormones. People with hormonal imbalances often experience extreme fatigue. Everyone is tired sometimes, but with adequate rest, hydration, and a balanced diet, the fatigue should subside.

If you feel like you are sleeping adequate amounts or maybe even sleeping too much and can’t seem to shake the constant feeling of exhaustion, you may consider having a comprehensive evaluation of your hormone levels. Adrenal fatigue and hypothyroidism are more prevalent in our fast-paced society than you may think.

Low sex drive

It’s no secret that your levels of estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone naturally decline with age, especially during and after menopause. But did you know that they affect people of all ages? Low levels of estrogen can have a big impact on your sex drive. Testosterone also is a big factor in libido. Primarily thought of as a male hormone, it is also made by and just as important to women. Testosterone levels naturally decline in women after menopause, low levels can contribute to reducing arousal and sexual response. Progesterone can also have a big impact on your drive and should be evaluated when detecting hormonal imbalances.

Hormone optimization

Want help getting your hormones back into balance? We have launched our NEW and improved self guided protocols-with a specialized one for thyroid and hormones. I personally picked out each supplement/resource/activity in every single one- so theres no guesswork for you. Click HERE– to view our hormone protocol overview. Use code DRJESSBLOG at checkout for a FREE protocol of your choice with any new package.

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