Hormones play a very important role in the body, acting as a messenger. When their functioning is disrupted, it is called hormonal disorders, which can cause several health problems. How to recognize a hormonal disorder? Here are 8 signs that do not deceive.
Hormones are chemical compounds secreted by the endocrine glands. Present in varying amounts in our body, they are essential to its proper functioning, involved in several mechanisms and functions of the body such as maintaining body temperature, reproduction, digestion, growth…
The best known are the sex hormones, but there are many others. We distinguish hypothalamic, thyroid, adrenal, pituitary, digestive, pancreatic hormones among others.
When the levels of different hormones in the body are unbalanced, this has several health consequences. The signs of these disorders are generally quite distinct:
Persistent fatigue may be due to several health problems, including hormonal disorders. In case of hyperthyroidism, in particular, the subject feels constant fatigue and lack of energy, due to the overproduction of thyroid hormones.
Insomnia related to decreased estrogen during menopause can also be the cause of the fatigue, since the body does not rest enough.
Anxiety, depression and irritability
Hormones can be responsible for mood swings in women. They usually become irritable and may even be depressive during the days before their period. These symptoms are therefore related to premenstrual syndrome.
On the other hand, when these mood swings are persistent, it is possible that the woman suffers from a hormonal disorder, which affects her mood. Female hormones are the ones to blame! Indeed, estrogens, which play a large role in reproduction, also contribute to the development of the central nervous system. Thus, hormonal fluctuations affect this system and thus the mood.
Hyperthyroidism, excessive production of thyroid hormones, can also be the cause of mood swings because they are involved in the cellular functioning of the central nervous system. A thyroid dysfunction can therefore affect the mood and cause anxiety and irritability.
Weight gain and abdominal overweight are not only signs of an unhealthy lifestyle, but also a hormonal disorder. Indeed, some hormones may be insufficiently secreted, and others overproduced. These include cortisol, which when secreted in large amounts, can cause weight gain due to its hyperglycemic effect.
Cortisol promotes the metabolism of carbohydrates and fats, causing hyperglycemia. The body responds to this action by producing more insulin, which will lead to increased appetite, and promote accumulation of abdominal fat.
Hormonal disorder can lead to many digestive problems. Indeed, disrupting the production of some hormones involved in the digestive process such as secretin and gastrin can cause digestive disorders like constipation.
Food cravings are not reserved only for pregnant women, they can also occur in people who have hormonal disorders. The link between cravings and hormones is very clear.
In case of excessive adrenaline secretion, women may like to consume sugary foods. This is because the body draws from its reserves to produce energy because of adrenaline.
Nocturnal sweating, especially in women, may be of hormonal origin. They are usually more prone to hot flushes that cause excessive sweating during the night, during their menstruation or during the premenstrual period.
Night sweats are caused by decreased levels of estrogen in the body.
These nocturnal sweats are not to be confused with those associated with menopause. In this case, sweating is abundant, even during the day.
Insomnia is a sleep disorder that can have different causes, such as poor lifestyle or hormonal disruption, especially when approaching menopause.
During the pre-menopause period, sex hormone secretion drops, resulting in several disorders. US scientists at the University of Pennsylvania wanted to analyze the link between declining estrogen levels and insomnia. For this, they studied the irregular menstrual cycles of nearly 436 women for two years. Between the ages of 35 and 47, the participants were questioned about the quality of their sleep and made several blood tests to assess their hormonal fluctuations. At the end of the study, 17% reported sleeping problems during the ovulation period.
Libido or sexual desire tends to decline with age. Only, if you notice a sudden decrease, this may be due to a hormonal disorder. Androgens, made by the ovaries, are necessary for female sexuality. A deficiency of this hormone can be at the origin of a decreased libido.