06/07/2021 / Gynecology and Motherhood
Hormones are the chemical messenger that moves into the blood vessels to transfer information to all the other parts of the body. Hormones work with the time and show their impacts on different processes of the body. It helps in the growth and development of the body, works on the body's metabolism, helps in the sexual function of the person, and regulates the mood. Hormones have a potent effect on our bodies. There has to be the slightest change in it to see a big difference in an individual's body. It controls and coordinates the activities throughout the whole body. There are several hormones in the body. The five essential hormones are insulin, melatonin, estrogen, testosterone, and cortisol. The endocrine gland in our body has the primary function of secreting the hormones in the bloodstream and carrying out its required actions in different organs.
Infertility in females is primarily due to the problem caused by ovulation. Ovulation problems can be because of several other issues: polycystic ovarian syndrome, thyroid problems that can be both overactive thyroid gland and underactive thyroid gland, menopause, which might happen before 40, thus known as premature ovarian failure. Non-cancerous growth in the womb, known as fibroids, affects fertility since it prevents a fertilized egg from getting implanted in the womb.
Infertility in men is caused due to several reasons. Varicocele is a state when the testicles of a man are large in shape, which results in overheating, thus affecting the sperm count. Habits like too much alcohol consumption, smoking, and usage of anabolic steroids can also cause infertility. The poor functioning of the pituitary gland results in improper production of prolactin which also results in low production of the sperm. Overweight or obesity also increases the risk of infertility in both males and females. Aging is one of the most critical factors in increasing the risk of infertility in males and females. In females, aging results in fewer eggs left for ovulation, thus reducing the chances of getting pregnant. Also, the eggs are not as healthy as they would have been at their younger age. This age, especially after 40, will increase health conditions which will cause infertility and also be more prone to miscarriages. Emotional stress can also result in amenorrhea, which is missing periods or a disrupted menstrual cycle.
Hormones have a lot of impact on one's mental health as well as physical health. It also affects one emotionally. Nowadays, hormonal imbalances in ones' body have increased due to the busy and modern lifestyle that we are living. Also, few hormones reduce with one's age. But these hormones and the hormonal changes thus caused can be controlled through a healthy lifestyle and a good diet. There are several ways to do so. They are:
1. Eat adequate protein: Eating protein with every meal in an adequate amount is very important. Protein provides amino acids that our body is incapable of producing independently and, therefore, when consumed daily, help keep our bones, muscles, and skin healthy. It also synthesizes and releases certain hormones that control the appetite and the food intake of a person. When protein is consumed in a proper quantity, it helps in the decline of the levels of the hunger hormone known as ghrelin. It stimulates and controls the appetite, making one feel fuller for a longer time, including PYY and GLP
2. Exercise regularly: Hormonal imbalances can be influenced strongly by physical activity or exercise. Exercising helps in reducing the insulin levels in one's body. The hormone insulin allows cells to carry sugar and amino acids from the blood, which is used for maintaining the muscle and energy level. Thus, high insulin levels can cause several diseases such as diabetes, heart diseases, etc. Physical activities such as aerobic exercises, weight training, and resistance training increase insulin sensitivity and help reduce insulin levels. Physical activity helps to increase the level of hormones that maintain the muscle, which has a high tendency to decrease with age, like testosterone, IGF-1, DHEA, and growth hormone. People who cannot do strenuous exercises should regularly walk, which can also help in increasing their hormone levels, thus helping in improving strength and to live a better quality of life.
3. Avoid excessive sugar: Sugar is one of the key sources which cause various health problems. Refined carbohydrates also add to it. So, avoiding or lessening the entail of these food sources can optimize the hormonal function and help avoid diseases like obesity, diabetes, etc. Therefore, one should follow a low-carb diet and consume healthy foods to reduce insulin levels in obese people and people suffering from certain conditions such as PCOS. PCOS reduces fertility when not controlled for a more extended period. Since it causes hormonal imbalances, which increases the risk, a good diet and daily workout can reduce the risks caused due to PCOS naturally, thus reducing infertility chances.
4. Manage mental stress: It is essential to manage stress since it majorly affects the two hormones known as cortisol and adrenaline, also known as epinephrine. Nowadays, these hormones are triggered by the busy schedule of one's lifestyle. Conditions like chronic stress result in elevated cortisol levels in the body, which causes an intake of high-calorie foods, thereby resulting in obesity.
5. Healthy eating habits: Overeating and under-eating cause weight problems. Hormonal imbalances are caused due to unhealthy ways of consuming food which increase the insulin level, and under-eating causes an increase in cortisol levels. Excess body fat causes the overproduction of certain hormones that interfere in the process of ovulation. Less body fat might not help the body generate adequate hormones that help in ovulation. Thus, eating in a caloric range will maintain the hormonal balance and also increase fertility.
6. Avoid Consumption of alcohol: Alcohol consumption reduces the chances of one getting pregnant. It changes estrogen levels. Thus causing problems in the implantation of the egg in the uterus. Caffeine intake and alcohol should also be cut down not to hamper the female hormone levels, which will boost one's fertility.
7. Insecticides and pesticides: Pesticides used to kill pests in crops reduce male fertility and cause female fertility problems by interfering in the menstrual cycle. Men who eat mostly food treated with pesticides have low sperm count and also bad quality sperm. One should eat fruits and vegetables which are organic and adequately washed to avoid hormonal imbalances which might disrupt fertility.
8. Factory workers: People working in factories or dealing with harmful chemicals such as nitrous oxide, jet fuel, and a few common chemicals in industries cause menstrual cycles, thus decreasing fertility. Inconsistent work timings can affect fertility and have an 80% rate of significant infertility problems. Therefore, steady shifts should be opted to reduce the timing problems and maximize fertility in females.
9. Avoid smoking: Toxicated substances like cigarettes damage the eggs of a woman causing severe problems in fertilization and implantation. It also causes the aging of the ovaries. One should cut down on smoking and stop to prevent them from causing a permanent hazard to their fertility.
10. Include tomatoes: Tomatoes have a high amount of lycopene present, which is a powerful antioxidant. Including tomatoes in your daily diet results in increased fertility. Studies have shown that lycopene plays a vital role in improving male fertility. Lycopene is also researched to be one of the treatments available to treat male infertility.
11. Include beans and lentils: Foods like beans and lentils are good sources of fiber and folate, which is very helpful in maintaining a normal and healthy hormonal balance. Lentils have high polyamine spermidine which helps the sperm in fertilization. Thus, making it more fertile.
12. Include oysters: Oysters have several fertility-boosting nutritional contents. It has reproductive vitamins and minerals, which increase the fertility of a person. It covers 408% of one's recommended daily intake of vitamin B12, 188% of one zinc intake, 187% selenium, and 43% of iron recommended in one daily intake.
The human body may sometimes cause hormonal imbalances to increase the risk of infertility in both males and females. Infertility can be treated both naturally and artificially with the help of a doctor or medical attention. Several measures can be taken naturally in our everyday habits to decrease the risk of infertility, such as quitting unhealthy habits and an unhealthy diet. Infertility can also be treated methodically with the help of a doctor when a couple is unable to conceive. Natural food sources also help boost fertility by regulating the good hormones that support the reproductive system's excellent and healthy process. It is essential to maintain a healthy lifestyle to keep the hormonal balances in check to boost the fertility rate.
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