Transcript: EP 349 – How To Balance Hormones for Weight Loss
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Dr. Taz: Those hormones shift and move in different directions. But the problem is there’s no acknowledgement of the role of hormones and weight. The traditional languages eat less, exercise more. You’re doing something wrong, you’re guilty, you’re bad. So much noise and it leaves none of us feeling very good about ourselves.
Hi everyone, and welcome to Super Woman Wellness. I’m Dr. Taz. I’ve made it my mission throughout my career in integrative medicine to support women in restoring their health, using a blend of Eastern medical wisdom with modern science. In this show, I will guide you through different practices to find your power type and fully embody the healthiest and most passionate version of you. I’m here for you, and I can’t wait to get started. This is a Soulfire Production.
I don’t think a day goes by when we don’t have a patient at CentreSpring MD, concerned or worried about their weight. And a lot of times it’s not just like, “Oh my gosh, I want to lose weight,” but I’m doing everything right. I’m eating healthy, I’m organic. Why can I not lose weight? Or why do I suddenly have 10 pounds on me that wasn’t here three months ago? And I can really empathize with how many of those women feel. I’ve been in the same boat where all of a sudden a belly shows up and I’m like, “Okay, what just happened here?” Here’s what’s going on. These shifts in weight are very much a part of our story as women. And the reason they are is because we have hormones, and those hormones shift and move in different directions. But the problem is, there’s no acknowledgement of the role of hormones and weight.
The traditional languages eat less, exercise more. You’re doing something wrong. You’re guilty, you’re bad. So much noise, and it leaves none of us feeling very good about ourselves. Well, it’s simply not true, and we’re going to set the record straight. So what I’d like to do in the time that I have with you is make sure you at least understand the hormones that are at play when it comes to weight and weight gain. And these can happen at any age. They can happen at 13, and they can happen all the way post menopause. So let’s break it down. Number one, you’ve heard us talk about this before, insulin resistance and what the body is doing in response to blood sugar is the primary reason we see visceral fat or fat around our abdomen. That particular pattern is one that we should be watching for because it changes over time.
You could have had no history of blood sugar issues or gaining weight around your belly, but insulin resistance often shows up when the hormones are stressed. For example, it shows up postpartum, it’ll show up in perimenopause and menopause and shows up with PCOS. So that’s one pattern in particular that we want to jump on top of. The next one is your thyroid, and the two are kind of connected, but your thyroid does play a role in your metabolic rate, and when we don’t manage our thyroids, it becomes difficult to lose weight and it becomes really difficult to have energy. Thyroid instability leads to a couple of things. For example, not being able to get through a workout, having trouble sleeping at night, losing hair, not being able to think, and so much more. So we want to get our thyroid balanced. Definitely, when we’re having a conversation around weight.
We also need to understand the androgens. So these are DHT, testosterone, free testosterone. When those androgens go up in response to stress, our environment, our genetics, and so much more, well, it drives up insulin, and we end up insulin resistant. So the two work together, and that in turn is a huge roadblock when it comes to losing weight. And then estrogen dominance, one of the most universal patterns I see and sometimes the trigger for everything I just talked about, the high insulin, the androgens, all of it. But estrogen dominance is this idea that we’re storing or holding onto estrogen. We can have low estrogen levels but still have estrogen dominance because the body is holding onto estrogen, unwilling to let it go, driving up blood sugar, driving up insulin, more belly fat, more weight belly. We are working out harder and getting nowhere. Don’t want that for you.
And last but certainly not least is cortisol and stress. I talked a lot about super woman syndrome. I’ve talked about how women are one of the most stressed generations of women that we have seen with the juggling that they all do almost at every stage, but there is a real fallout from high cortisol levels. Some of that is the spike in insulin, the holding on of estrogen, a crash of that thyroid, and a spike in androgens. So hopefully you’re starting to see how all these hormone patterns work together to create a massive roadblock for you when you’re trying to lose weight. So those are the hormone patterns, and I break down a lot of these hormone patterns in helping you to identify which hormone pattern may be the most dominant for you. In my latest book, now available for pre-order, The Hormone Shift, so you can really dive into and be armed with the information you need to get your hormones tested and to understand what you need to do about it. But this is a message of hope because there’s so much that you can do when it comes to your hormones.
Knowledge is one thing that really shifting, and changing them is another. And what I really want for all of you is to understand how you shift and change it and what you can do.
All right, Super Women, I know the drill, right? We all live the same lifestyle. We’re running around, we’re juggling. We don’t have time for 20 different products, 20 different bottles trying to find information and put it all together. We want solutions, and we want answers. That’s why I developed The EastWest Way. It’s my product and lifestyle line full of formulas that I personally curated to really get us the answers we need. I couldn’t find anything on the market that adequately merged Eastern and Western medicine together and formulas that worked and gave us the answers that we were also desperate for. I’m right there with you guys, losing hair, having acne hormones all over the place. I needed something that worked but also worked efficiently. I didn’t have time to take an herb over here and a supplement over there, and a medication maybe somewhere else.
The EastWest Way is the answer for all of us, and I couldn’t be prouder of the formulas that I’ve developed. If you aren’t familiar with some of the products, I want to share some of them with you. I’ve been super excited about them and have taken a lot of time and energy to put them all together.
Collaglow is one of the newer products as CollaglowC. It has collagen, amla, and goji berry. So now we’re merging together Ayurvedic and Eastern medicine concepts there for beautiful skin and hair, getting that glow and that circulation we need, and also a massive antioxidant burst and maybe repairing the gut a little bit along the way with the collagen. The Defender was born out of my anger around the pandemic. It’s a combination of astragalus, vitamin C, and zinc, and I use that every single day, especially when I’m traveling or worried that I might be exposed to more germs. Boost is the hero, the hero product that started it all. The line started because I couldn’t find a methylated formula that really answered all our needs around hormones, mood, memory, and so much more. Today, Boost continues to be the product that so many people say they can’t live without.
Belly Fix, again, so much around gut health. I know my patients and even I, we were tired of having a bottle here, a bottle there, mixing things together, remembering to take four or five different things. Belly Fix is the gut kitchen sink, has collagen, spirulina, prebiotics, probiotics, and so much more. I love this formula. It has been a game-changer for so many people. Hormone Helper, again, hits close to home. I’m someone who has PCOS, as many of you know, a combination of Maca, inositol, saw palmetto, and choline supporting the liver, lowering androgens. It’s our answer for really balancing hormones. Sleep Savior, another favorite, has magnesium, melatonin, and magnolia bark because oftentimes falling asleep or staying asleep, or both. So we needed something to answer all of that. That combination is a triple punch, works beautifully. Lush Locks, I take every day. Lush Locks has Ayurvedic and Chinese herbs that are known for regrowth and regeneration of hair and improving blood flow to the scalp, along with micronutrients that research tells us we should be focused on.
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I recently shared some of the common hormone patterns really associated with weight gain in women, and many of them causing a lot of grief, a lot of unnecessary grief, and making us feel bad or guilty or not good, or so many of the other things that we drive ourselves insane with. But what I want to do now is take those same hormone patterns, but talk about what you can do and really help understand that there are ways to control your hormones, to balance hormones naturally, and it often begins with food. But let’s connect the dots a little bit. This is one of my favorite things to do, by the way. So some of the patterns we talked about, for example, we talked about insulin resistance, right? What can you do about insulin resistance, which is all about having that high blood sugar, having a lot of belly fat, and response to it?
Well, my first answer is as your hormones are shifting and your blood sugar is getting out of control, balance insulin resistance with protein. We know that protein really makes a difference for hormones. In fact, in studies when they look at perimenopausal and menopausal women, they find that an increase in protein does a couple of things. It helps to build muscle mass, it lowers blood sugar, it prevents useless snacking, and more importantly, it keeps your insulin levels nice and stable. What does that mean for you? Less belly fat? Some of my favorite sources of protein are right here. We have salmon high in omega-3 fats, high in protein. This particular serving of salmon that you see right here, probably about five to six ounces, 30 grams of protein right off the bat. Two eggs give you about 14 grams. You can also use lentils that have not only the protein but the fiber needed for hormone balancing.
You get about 15 grams and about a half a cup to a cup of cooked lentils. So these are ways to get your protein in. Remember, my usual protein recommendation is about 30 grams of protein every four hours to really help you get close to 70, 80, sometimes even up to 90 grams of protein a day for optimal blood sugar maintenance and for getting rid of belly fat. Let’s do another one. Estrogen dominance, right? So symptoms, remember, of estrogen dominance are going to be those painful breasts, getting migraines, gaining weight, feeling off, getting depressed. There’s so many different symptoms, but you can manage estrogen dominance with some of the same foods. Here I’ve got broccoli, dandelion greens, and romaine lettuce. All of these high in fiber, more importantly, high in antioxidants. And then remember, with broccoli as the cruciferous vegetables, it has a lot of meta-I3C or indole-3-carbinol, and that actually helps us to break estrogen down.
Dandelion greens, again, the fiber, but also a liver purifier, helping with insulin resistance, helping with estrogen dominance, helping to bring those blood sugar numbers where they need to be, and helping to clean out the excess androgens and estrogen from your system so you can mix it up. It doesn’t have to be broccoli. There’s also kale and cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts. There are many different types of greens, including Swiss chard, many types of liver purifiers. But this combo of protein, healthy fats, fiber, and your greens is sort of a magic bullet when it comes to managing many of the hormone patterns that we just talked about.
Hi there, superstars. I have an exciting announcement. My new book, The Hormone Shift: Balance Your Body Through Midlife and Menopause, is out this October and is available for pre-order right now, wherever books are sold. Most women, let’s be honest, have been led to believe that entering midlife means existing at the complete mercy of her mysterious hormones for the next decade. When we take our concerns to our doctors, we’re told that our debilitating symptoms are normal or we’re fine, or it’s in our head. I’m here to tell you that fine is not good enough. I want women to thrive through every life stage. So I’ve devised a hormone reset plan that blends the best of Eastern and Western medicine together to bring your body back into balance, minimize unwanted symptoms, and have you feeling like yourself again. It’s not you, it’s your hormones. Are you ready to thrive? Go to prh.com/thehormoneshift to pre-order your copy right now.
All right, another great source of protein that I didn’t mention, by the way, Greek yogurt. We’ve got about 15 to 20 grams of protein in Greek yogurt. So another way for you to get that 30 grams of protein every four hours. Also, a great source of calcium. So I love Greek yogurt. It’s easy on the gut, rich in probiotics as well. Again, one of the things we’ve seen with these hormone patterns is you need good gut health. And getting in the probiotics to help balance out all those gut bacteria becomes very important too.
All right, so this is the food part of the conversation when it comes to natural hormone balancing. Yes, of course, there’s more. We need to talk about your toxic load, because remember, the EastWest approach to hormone balancing is very much about getting a healthy gut, getting the nutrients, getting the liver where it needs to be, but what in the world is bogging down our liver? Here’s what we know. The load of environmental toxins, whether it’s from cleaning products, whether it’s from the skincare you’re using, the air we’re breathing, the water we’re drinking, is impacting your hormones. Many of these things are high. For example, in endocrine disruptors, things like parabens, phthalates, organophosphates, and now the science is there to show how it directly impacts hormone balance. This is the why behind why androgens are going up, why PCOS is going up, why estrogen dominance is going up, why so many women, especially black women, get fibroids. It’s all connected here.
So there are things, again, that you can do. Switch out your traditional cleaners for one that has really attempted to have a lower toxic load, as paraben-free, phthalate-free. For example, switch out your skincare and your makeup for one that is scent-free and maybe lower in chemicals, especially, again, your parabens and phthalates, and many of these EDCs are endocrine disrupting chemicals. But at the end of the day, remember, micro-habits matter. The little things you do, adding in the greens, adding in the protein, eating consistently, getting that fiber in, and switching out things in your home, things that you’re putting on your skin, all of it makes the difference for natural hormone balancing. Once you put it all together, you’ll see these hormone patterns start to stabilize, and you can get better. And we haven’t even talked about hormone replacement yet.
For more great tips on how to balance your hormones using the EastWest approach and trying to stay holistic and natural, pre-order my book, The Hormone Shift, that is now available everywhere. It is a handbook for all of us. Give it to your daughter, your friends. We want all women to know that they can take control of their hormones even before we talk about hormone replacement therapy.