Why Are You So SAD?

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Do you suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)? AKA Winter blues? You are not alone, and there is help!

Every year in November, the clocks in New York get turned back an hour. I dread this time of year because I know what is coming next. The short days and long dark nights that start to wear on my outlook, my energy level, and my emotional state. Each year I discover I have less and less reserve to weather the lack of sunlight, despite my fighting like hell against it. My heart feels so heavy by January that all I want to do is sleep and eat (which makes me gain weight and sets me off on a vicious cycle).

I learned early on that I suffer from a condition called Seasonal Affective Disorder or (SAD), and it is not fun, nor should it be ignored. SAD affects over 500,000 people a year, and (of course) ¾ of these people are women. There are other names for SAD, like Winter Blues or Cabin Fever. Despite the light-hearted connotation of these names, SAD is depression.

The depression I have experienced during the wintertime has gotten so bad that I experienced thoughts of suicide. I cannot express how hopeless SAD can make a person feel, especially coupled with the holidays. The last thing a person with depression wants to do is go to a friggin party.

Here is a list of SAD symptoms:

  • Extreme fatigue
  • Hopelessness
  • Anxiety over small issues
  • Thoughts of death, ending it all, suicide
  • Crying easily
  • Low sex drive
  • Little things set you off
  • Experience little or no joy
  • Cravings for Carbs (I have this all year long)
  • Sleeping unusually long without feeling rested
  • Social withdrawal
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Heavy heart blues
  • Going long periods without self-care (showering, brushing teeth, etc.)
  • Eating for comfort, not for hunger

Admittedly, I suffered from most of these symptoms, and I have to leave for work at 5:45am (which is cold, dark and brutal). If you are suffering from any of these symptoms, please see your doc ASAP. There is treatment, both conventional and alternative. No woman could possibly be healthy and functional if she is suffering from this debilitating disorder.

Your doctor should do a blood test to make sure you are vitamin D, and B 12 levels are within normal limits. A deficiency in D and B12 vitamins are linked to a lot of the symptoms on this list. Your doc should also check your thyroid function and have a chat with you regarding your whole self (physical, social, psychological, emotional). If you feel your doctor is not taking you seriously, please consider a doctor of osteopathic medicine or an integrative practitioner. These docs tend to treat the whole person and are less likely to dismiss your symptoms as a female age-related expectancy (that drives me banana’s). The symptoms on this list are not normal under any circumstance.

As a person who has suffered from SAD for my entire adult life, I am telling you there are changes you can make right now that can ease your symptoms.

Factors you can change right now to improve your symptoms of SAD:

Please remember I am not a doctor. All of the following recommendations are just recommendations. It is always a good idea to chat with your doc before trying something new.

Get your sleep on a schedule.

Sleep hygiene is essential to the creation of a solid foundation for your body to function correctly. Without a decent sleep schedule, you will always feel as if you are in a fog, sensitive, and unable to operate at peak performance. However, this is easier said than done when you suffer from SAD. Unfortunately, many of us who suffer from SAD also suffer from insomnia. I think there is a genetic component to insomnia, but I will save that for another post.

Ways:

Do not take naps over 20 minutes during the day. Taking naps over 20 minutes can interrupt your circadian rhythm (an internal process that tells your body when to sleep and wake). I know by 3pm, you feel like your legs and head are full of lead, but attempt meditating instead of napping. Try downloading the app Headspace. Headspace is a meditation app that not only teaches you how to meditate but also has audio to help you fall asleep. They offer courses on sleep and meditation and have all kinds of advice for a peaceful mind. I use it daily and nightly, and it can be used for free (I did purchase the upgraded version).

Click here to get started

Try going to sleep at the same time and getting up at the same time every night (yes, even the weekends). Full disclosure, I do not always do this, and I feel like crap on the days I fall out of sync. There are sleep hygiene apps you can download that track your sleep for you. Go the American Sleep Association website and check out the list of apps that are free to assist you on your quest for better sleep. https://www.sleepassociation.org/sleep-treatments/sleep-apps/ Do not consume stimulants after 4pm. I have a rule that I cannot have coffee after 4pm. I noticed that when I do have coffee or even caffeinated teas, I cannot for the life of me fall asleep. Some people are susceptible to the effects of stimulants, and they can really disrupt your sleep cycle. If you smoke, please quit, but if you do, try not smoking after 4pm. Nicotine is a stimulant and can also disrupt your sleep. I hate to say this girls, but chocolate is a stimulant as well.  Do not eat anything past 6pm. The act of digesting can actually disrupt your ability to fall into deep sleep cycles (restorative sleep). Eating late can also cause reflux and other gastric issues that can keep you up. Shut off the computer (and phone) an hour before you go to bed. Our computers, phones, and other electronic devices emit EMF’s (Electric and Magnetic Fields) that interrupt brain waves and can cause insomnia. EMF’s are hard to avoid in our culture; however, it is best to limit your exposure before trying to wind down for the night. Keep the temperature down in your bedroom, and make sure it is dark. Heat and light adversely affect your quality of sleep, and this simple tweak can improve your quality of life. I am not suggesting you freeze your partner out, but a comfortable 65-68 degrees would do you a world of good. If you cannot get rid of the light, try a sleep mask. Your brain will be so pleased if it doesn’t think it is day time all the time. Try Valerian Root, an herb that induces a sense of calm and really helps you stay asleep. Valerian root is the original Valium and Xanax. I take 2 Solaray Valerian Capsule 515mg about a ½ hour before bed.

This brand really works!

I tried taking Valerian Root as a tea, but it smells like feet. Please bear with the feet odor because it really works, I sleep like I am in a coma.

Start supplementing with Vitamin D3 and K2

Vitamin D is known as the “sunshine” vitamin. Vitamin D3 is the most absorbed type of D (there are two, D2 and D3). When your body is exposed to the ultraviolet light in sunlight, your body converts the light into Vitamin D3. Vitamin D is essential for bone health, brain health, immunity, absorption of calcium, and low levels have been linked to depression. There have been studies that indicate a large percentage of people with depression have a vitamin D deficiency. Integrated practitioners swear by this vitamin and recommend dosages higher than the FDA suggests. However, vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin and does get stored in the fatty tissue. Those of us who live up north (I live on Long Island, New York) get very little sunshine from November – April. Here is an example, it’s 40 degrees, gray, dreary, and going to rain (again). This is a typical day on Long Island in the winter, and it gets very tiring. I am sitting at my desk with a plant light on my face. When I am done, I am heading to the gym to go to the tanning booth. The sun plays a much more significant role in our bodies and psyche than just a vitamin D conversion. Almost all living things require sunshine to survive.

Ways

It is challenging to get vitamin D from sunlight up north during the fall and winter months. Supplementing does help to improve vitamin D levels, and some people get relief from SAD. I take 5000 IU’s of vitamin D3 daily, and my vitamin D levels are still borderline low. Before you start supplementing, contact your doctor and have your levels checked. Foods that contain vitamin D are fatty fish, like salmon (no more than twice a week), cod liver oil, eggs, liver, cheese, fortified milk, and SUNSHINE.

Vitamin K2 works alongside vitamin D for better absorption of calcium into the bones. Vitamin K2 is not as popular as it should be, it is an incredible nutrient. Did you know taking K2 along with vitamin D3 (add some vitamin A) could increase the health of your teeth? In fact, there is proof that it does improve the health of teeth and has been known to cure cavities! Also, if you are supplementing with D3, you do run the risk of calcium deposits forming in the vessels and joints, vitamin K2 helps prevent this from happening. I take 100 mcg of vitamin K2 with my D3, along with 500 IU of vitamin A every night before bed. Foods that contain vitamin K2 are egg yolks, dark green leafy veggies, grass-fed beef (only grass-fed animals convert K into K2), fermented soy, and dark chicken meat.

If you can afford a quick vacation, take it!

Not everyone could afford to pack up and go someplace sunny in January or February. The fights are expensive, and hotels price gouge. Everyone up north is desperate for some sunshine, and the prices reflect the demand. Every year my husband and I go to Scottsdale, AZ, in the winter. Scottsdale isn’t exactly cheap, but it is affordable. The weather is beautiful, usually in the 60-70s during the day and 40’s at night. The temperature is not hot, but the sun is guaranteed to shine. Arizona has 299 full sun days per year, New York has 99 (seriously, it is no wonder why we have SAD). If you can get away for a few days, here is a list of the warm places that are not too pricey….

Ways

 This list was found on https://www.tripstodiscover.com/18-amazing-and-affordable-winter-vacation-destinations/2/

  • The Florida Keys
  • Puerto Rico (did you know you didn’t need a passport?)
  • Panama
  • Las Vegas (even if you don’t gamble there is so much to do)
  • Bahamas
  • Montego Bay Jamaica
  • Punta Cana, Dominican Republic (I’ve been here many times, and it is fantastic)

Get a lightbox

Click here Lightbox

I just bought my son a lightbox because he is exactly like me when it comes to being sensitive to a lack of sunlight. A lightbox is a full spectrum light that emulates sunshine. You put it on while you are watching TV, working on an article (like me), or working out. Try to place it, so your eyes see the light, and you expose yourself for at least 20 minutes a day. These lights are trendy in Alaska, where there are towns that have 67 days of darkness (I would die).

Ways

You can pick a lightbox up on Amazon pretty cheap!

Since we are talking about light, I would like to mention (again) that light from your computer, smartphone, and some e-readers are not suitable for a brain that suffers from depression. Invest in a pair of blue blocker glasses and use them when you are working on the computer or surfing on your phone. The blue light that is emitted from our electronic devices can actually stop our bodies from making melatonin, which interrupts our sleep, therefore makes the depression even worse. Our eyes do so much more than just see! Our eyes signal essential chemicals to be release in our brains. I knew computers and lousy lighting could be unhealthy, but it was not until I read Head Strong, by Dave Asprey, did I learn the depth of impact light has on our bodies. Here is a link to the book if you want to check it out.

This book is insanely informative!

Talk to a professional

The act of expressing how you feel encourages your brain to release feel-good chemicals. Did you ever notice how much better you feel after you confide in someone about something your struggling with? Try to find a therapist that does Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, a type of talk therapy that has been proven to help folks with SAD.

Ways

Ask your primary care physician for a referral of a therapist that does Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Try to find a depression support group, online or in person. Tell you besties what is going on with you. Believe me, they picked up that you were feeling a little off, but did not want to say anything. Women are incredibly perceptive when it comes to a change in someone’s energy. There are online psychologists now that you can Facetime. If you don’t have the time to get to a therapist, why not bring them to you? I believe a face to face interaction is more effective because physical interaction releases endorphins (feel-good hormones). However, any talk is a good talk, no matter how you achieve it.

Herbs and supplements

Before there was big pharma, there were medicine men/women. SAD is not a modern experience, it has been plaguing folks for eons.

If you are concerned about the side effects of some of the medications, you can try supplements that are known to improve depression symptoms.

Ways

Excellent results for people with depression

There are several herbs you can try for your SAD. One prevalent herb is St. John’s Wort. St. John’s Wort is a plant that grows wild and is prescribed in Europe to treat depression. Some people experience relief with St. John’s Wort, unfortunately, I was not one of them. I took it for a while, and I did not have any relief. However, this does not mean it will not work for you. Please consult with your doc before trying this if you are on other medications. SAMe (S-adenosyl methionine) is a natural compound found in the body that is involved with many actions, such as activation or breakdown of lipids and hormones. SAMe is prescribed in Europe for the treatment of depression, as well as 100 other ailments. SAMe can interact with antidepressants and other medications, so ask your doc before you try it. Omega 3 fatty acids are extremely important for brain health. A deficiency of omega 3 fatty acids could trigger symptoms of depression. I recommend Krill Oil because it has the lowest amount of contaminants and is most effective. 5-HTP (5-Hydroxytryptophan) is an amino acid that is a precursor to the production of Serotonin (the feel-good neurotransmitter). Again, in Europe, 5-HTP prescribed for the treatment of depression. Vitamin B6 has been known to improve symptoms of depression and bipolar disorder. NAC (N-acetylcysteine) is the new kid on the block. Your body needs NAC to make the most potent antioxidant, glutathione. NAC also keeps a neurotransmitter, glutamate in check. When glutathione and glutamate are out of balance, a person can experience depression, OCD, and bipolar disorder. NAC improves the balance of these important compounds and alleviates symptoms of depression. There have been some excellent studies that back NAC’s effectiveness. It is a good idea to take this even if you are not suffering from SAD.

Medication is an option

We can breathe a sigh of relief that the days of stigmatizing medicines for depression is finally over. I know more people on Zoloft than I do people who take Advil. If you tried all of the methods above and have not experienced any relief for your SAD, then perhaps you should consider medication. Don’t think about medicine as a bad thing, sometimes it is a game-changer. Your quality of life is everything, and that should be your primary concern. Talk to your doctor and tell him/her what is really going on, maybe they can direct you to a medication that targets what you are experiencing.

Some of the more popular medications for treating SAD are:

  • Zoloft
  • Lexapro
  • Prozac
  • Paxil
  • Celexa
  • Wellbutrin

Please keep in mind that these medications take time to work. There are no magic bullets, just tools to help you through this tough time. Do not combine these medications with the supplements before speaking to your doc.

Last but not least, exercise

I know I always mention exercise in every blog, but there is a reason for my harping. Exercise is essential for our overall well-being.

Photo by RUN 4 FFWPU on Pexels.com

Ways

Take a 15 walk around the block, throw yourself on the floor, and do a sit-up, get tension bands, and work your arms. Start to exercise slow and work your way up at your own pace. Don’t start out with 10,000 steps a day. 10,000 steps is really an ambiguous number that was a starting point for an experiment. Just move your body and do it daily.

Hopefully, some of the suggestions in this blog are helpful to you. Be very kind to yourself during this low energy period, the sun will come out again someday. Treat yourself to a massage or get your roots done. Talk to someone, anyone, and make sure you practice self-love. Remember, you are so worth the effort!

References and excellent websites to visit for this topic

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/9293-seasonal-depression

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/seasonal-affective-disorder/symptoms-causes/syc-20364651

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/10306.php#symptoms

https://www.sleepfoundation.org/articles/sleep-hygiene

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/vitamin-d2-vs-d3#section6

https://medlineplus.gov/druginfo/meds/a695033.html

https://www.drweil.com/health-wellness/body-mind-spirit/mental-health/seasonal-affective-disorder-sad/

Estrogen Gone Wild!

About two years ago, when I was 49, I took a trip to Scottsdale, AZ, with my husband and another couple. We ate like the world was ending and drank enough alcohol to stock a full bar, but we had so much fun. During our trip, I made sure I got a ton of exercise to combat the over indulgences because, in the past, it has always balanced it’s self out. Usually, during our vacations, I may gain 3 maybe 4 pounds, and I would lose it when I got home and back into my routine. However, on this ill-fated trip, I gained 8 stinking pounds, 8! Those 8 pounds stayed with me for two years and became the bane of my existence. No matter what I did, I could not budge the scale.

Muffin top!

Not only were my jeans too tight, but I was sluggish and felt as if I were living in a fog. As a self-proclaimed biohacker and human Guinea pig, I tried all sorts of methods to lose weight. For the first 4 months, I did the ubiquitous caloric restriction, low carb, and limited my intake of anything pleasurable, diet. Even though I was pretty strict (minimal cheating) and I lost a pound or two, I always gained it back. Sometimes I was horrified to see that I gained even more weight, what the what?! Was I doing everything so wrong that I could not lose weight and seemed to always gain more? I felt terrible, I couldn’t sleep, had no energy, and my sex drive waxed and waned. As if all of the symptoms were not enough, I had no desire to do anything, including the things I loved, like karaoke with my friends. I went to my doctor, and do you know what she said? She looked me in the eye and said these words’ “lose 8 pounds.” Needless to say, I wanted to poke her eyes out.

My desire to discover alternative treatments for my health has been one of those topics that ignites passion and excitement in my soul. As a Registered Respiratory Therapist, I have worked in conventional hospitals for over 24 years. I swear there is a revolving door in the lobby because I would see the same patients over and over with the same issues. We would treat the symptoms, get the patients functioning just enough, and discharge them, only to see them come back a week later. Conventional medicine has excellent attributes. However, it is only one half of the wellness equation. The medical community is trained to compartmentalize or bodies, our symptoms, and our complaints (I know because I teach medical students). My experience in conventional medicine is the reason why I sort out non-conventional, holistic treatment for bodies that are out of balance. Unfortunately, I could swear that doctors forgot they are dealing with the miraculous human body that has a built in ability to cure itself, with the right tools. Our bodies require an all system approach, which includes nutrition, psychological, emotional, and physical support. Some doctors do take the whole-person approach, they are called osteopath’s, or integrative and functional medicine practitioners. Personally, I believe whole body integrative doctors are the only practitioners we ladies should utilize for our best health. Integrative doctors treat your whole body, not just your parts (as if they are not all connected).

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The 8 pounds, holding on to my body like a baby koala, forced me to start thinking outside the box. I stop focusing on what I was putting into my mouth and start thinking about the imbalance that was turning me into a doughy version of my former self.

When I encounter a problem I do research, not the stop at a Google search kind, or Wikipedia kind, but the consult professionals, read a hundred books and then use myself as a guinea pig kind. Ladies, what I discovered worked for me, and I bet many of you suffer the same imbalance that I experienced.

Let’s keep in mind that I am not a doctor, nor should you consider this medical advice. I am merely relaying what I discovered through trial and error that really worked to help me lose weight, clear up brain fog, improve libido, pump up my energy level, and increased my desire to live and live well.

The problem was Estrogen Dominance, and yes, girls, it is a very real thing.

Most of us think of estrogen as the female hormone, the soft and sweet hormone that makes ladies so angelic. The truth is that both men and women have estrogen, as well as testosterone and progesterone. The balance of these hormones is essential for all the well-running operations of the body, especially maintaining a healthy weight and energy level. When estrogen becomes dominant, it begins to offset the balance and wreak havoc on everything from the way you feel physically to your mood. Why and how does estrogen get so out of balance? One of the major contributors is our age ( I hate to admit that).

As we approach menopause or go through menopause (even after) our estrogen levels can surge, contrary to what we are told.

Estrogen

The medical community deduced that as a woman ages there is a steady decline of estrogen, but it’s not true for all women. Some women (like myself) experience an overabundance of estrogen, and it is a very disruptive event.

Most estrogen is produced in the ovaries and visceral fat (tummy fat that is stored around the organs). Progesterone is mainly produced in the outside of the mature egg as it goes on its journey to the uterus. As our egg production decreases, so do progesterone levels, allowing estrogen to increase. Not only do our estrogen levels increase, but the fat we gain (because of the imbalance) is creating estrogen as well. It takes a while before a woman starts to experience the side effects of estrogen dominance, but symptoms can mean it’s really getting out of control. Here is a list of some symptoms of estrogen dominance:

  • Fuzzy thinking
  • Weight gain (especially around tummy and thighs)
  • PMS like irritability
  • Decrease sexual desire
  • Decreased drive to do things you love
  • Insomnia
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Water retention
  • Fibroids
  • Heavy menstrual bleeding
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Poor concentration
  • Breast pain
  • Polycystic ovaries
  • Hair loss
  • Bloating

If you feel there is something wrong, don’t ignore it. There is no reason to accept a decreased quality of life because we can no longer reproduce.

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The mainstream medical community poo poo’s diminished quality of life in women 40 and over. This is why you need to take your health and happiness into your own hands. If you believe you are experiencing estrogen dominance, go to your doctor and ask for a hormone panel. If your doctor refuses, get a new doctor! Look for an integrated practitioner in your area or a wellness center. There is no reason for you to struggle anymore.

Factors you can change right now to improve your health:

Increase your fiber intake

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The gut is where it all goes down ( no pun intended). Increasing your fiber intake will help your body excrete excess estrogen.

Ways:

Add Benefiber (or the Costco brand Optifiber) to your coffee every morning. Aim for eating two salads a day, add nuts and seeds. Make almond bread and psyllium husk (an excellent source of fiber) muffins (link), and eat two a day. Beans, almonds, chia seeds (make chia seed chocolate pudding YUM! link coming), and organic oats are an excellent source of fiber. Try to make sure you have fiber in every meal. This is a fantastic start to healing your estrogen imbalance.

Decrease your sugar intake

Sugar wreaks havoc on all of your vital organs and taxes your liver. Sugar produces lactic acid, which feeds and attracts bacteria. In an imbalance, such as estrogen dominance, eating sugar is like pouring gas onto an out of control fire. It is not a healthy mix for someone with estrogen dominance. Besides, the liver metabolizes excess estrogen, and adding too much sugar to your diet will decrease its’ function.

Here is a free, easy to read ebook about the devastating impact sugar has on our bodies. Click on the book for a free PDF download.

I would like to thank the folks at Lakanto for giving me permission to post their eBook on Fity Fity Fifty

Ways:

Lakanto Monk Fruit

Don’t replace sugar with artificial sweeteners (like Splenda) because they come with a plethora of other issues that cause inflammation. Instead of artificial sweeteners, try natural ones like Stevia and Monk Fruit. The best tasting stevia I have found is Trader Joe’s. Costco now carries Monk Fruit as a sweetener alternative. Monk Fruit is one of the word’s sweetest fruits, and a little goes a long way. The brand Costco carries, Lakanto, contains Erythritol (a very safe sugar alcohol that does not raise blood sugar) combined with monk fruit. The Lakanto Monk Fruit is AMAZING, and I have completely replaced all sugar in my baking with it. I even made chocolate with it! If you would like to try the Monk Fruit without the Erythritol, try this brand https://www.netrition.com/lc_foods_luo_han_guo.html.

Get the toxin’s out and eat as clean as possible

Ways:

Did you ever hear of the dirty dozen? Not the movie, the produce! The dirty dozen is a list of produce that should not be eaten from conventional sources (they contain the most pesticides). Spend the extra money and get the organic version of the produce listed on the dirty dozen list. Here is a link to the list of the dirty dozen (and clean 15) https://www.greenmatters.com/p/dirty-dozen-clean-15

Clean your produce with my homemade produce spray. Fill a spray bottle: 1/4 vodka, 1/4 vinegar, 1/4 peroxide, 1/4 water, and a few drops of lemon oil. Let the produce sit after spraying for two minutes and scrub the fruits and veggies if you can. You can use this spray to clean pretty much everything around your house, and it is non-toxic.

Drink fresh water (not straight from the tap)

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Ways:

Personally, I am not going to open a hundred bottles of water a day. I drink a ton of water, and drinking bottled water is not feasible. I also do not have a bottle delivery service in my budge. I use the Brita, a decent filtering system. The Brita isn’t perfect, but it is better than straight from the tap water.

Do not heat food up in plastic food containers (they can release chemicals that increase estrogen). Remove the food from the plastic container and place on glass before you microwave.

Try not to use products with parabens (a preservative in cosmetics, toothpaste, hair care products that can mimic estrogen production)

Ways:

Look at the label! Looking at the label is one of the simplest ways to eliminate many harmful ingredients from your world. Look for words that have METHYL, BUTYL, PROPYL, or BENZYL in them. Check out this link for more information https://www.peacefulmountain.com/2015/12/understanding-parabens/

Don’t eat fast food (yes I said it, preservatives, unhealthy oils, way too much sodium and low-quality products. It really is less expensive to cook at home).

Photo by freestocks.org on Pexels.com

Sometimes you have no choice and have to grab something quick.

Ways:

My go-to for fast food? The supermarket! So many supermarkets have pre-made food bars, such as soups, salads and hot food. I always go straight for the sushi bar. Sushi rolls are not all raw fish. There are plenty of veggie options that come with chopsticks and wasabi. Most deli sections have pre-made sandwiches or quick meals (like meatballs and spaghetti). The price of fast food is just about the same for heather options in the supermarket.

Avoid Soy

Soy products like soy sauce, soy milk and, miso increase estrogen levels. Did you know that women with estrogen sensitive breast cancer are told to stay far away from soy? If conventional medicine is recognizing the estrogen soy connection, then anyone with estrogen dominance should stay far away.

Shake that body

Ways:

Take a 15 walk around the block, throw yourself on the floor, and do a sit-up, get tension bands, and work your arms. Start to exercise slow and work your way up at your own pace. Don’t start out with 10,000 steps a day. 10,000 steps is really an ambiguous number that was a starting point for an experiment. Just move your body and do it daily. Here is a link to the tension bands I use https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00MBYC3YY/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Love yourself more

Do something beautiful for you, today, right now ( self-love is healing for all aliments)

Ways:

Self-love does not mean you have to spend money. All too often we think a new pair of shoes or a new wardrobe is going to make us happy, and it does, for a little while. For me, words have power. I put lotion on my face and tell my skin how beautiful it looks. This may sound crazy or too “hippie” ish, but there is scientific proof that our molecules react to intent and our words are intent. Check out Dr. Masaru Emoto’s water experiment https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Moz82i89JAw This will blow your doors off.

Carve out time just for you, take a bath, paint, create and spend time with your friends. When you show love and compassion for yourself, you will find it easier to show love and compassion for others.

Make sleep a priority

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Chronic fatigue causes weight gain, which increases estrogen levels. It really is a vicious cycle, estrogen dominance causes insomnia, and insomnia causes weight gain which increases estrogen.

Ways:

Try to go to sleep at the same time every night. This may seem impossible, but there has to be an effort made to keep to a schedule. Do not eat after 6pm and stay away from alcohol for a little bit. (I do not want to start a riot). Both food an alcohol disrupt sleep patterns. Try not eating after 6pm and laying off the wine for one week and see how you feel. Ask your doctor for a temporary fix, like Lunesta (a sleeping pill). I don’t always believe a pill is the way to go when it comes to sleep, but if it is bad enough you do what you have to do. Check this article out for sleep hygine ideas https://www.dailywellness.com/2017/06/05/youre-sleeping-poorly-mean-estrogen-off/

Try Progesterone cream

I highly recommend you use progesterone cream while being supervised by a doctor or nurse practitioner. However, I have no patience’s when it comes to feeling crappy so I tried it and it is fabulous. Progesterone can help balance out estrogen and can be easily purchased online without a prescription. This is the one I use: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00EB0AQA4/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o05_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 Remember, progesterone is a hormone and should be used very sparingly and carefully. I used too much the first day I received it and I felt like I wanted to beat somebody up!

Please follow the directions on the label or use however your doctor prescribed.

Herbs and supplements

Ways:

There are many herbal remedies that help combat hormonal imbalances. My kitchen is like a apothecary, I have so many herbs! For estrogen dominance try Milk Thistle ( a powerful liver cleanser, tea and capsule form), Maca (a type of ginseng the can improve sleep and libido, liquid or capsules), Magnesium (an essential mineral that place a role in many biological processes, capsules), and omega 3 fatty acids (an essential oil for brain function, can assist with better sleep, memory, and well-being. Wild fish, krill or purified fish oil capsules are safest. Don’t forget to eat your cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage), they contain a compound that brings estrogen levels down. Check out this website for more information: https://www.jillcarnahan.com/2018/12/06/how-to-reverse-estrogen-dominance-naturally-detox-food-supplements/

Do your research

There is so much information on the web about estrogen dominance and how to treat it. Do some of your own research, read articles, get a few book. The more information you have the better you will understand what you need to do.

I cannot stress the importance of cleaning up your body by consuming clean food, drinking clean water, and taking meticulous care of your well-being.

As a woman, I refused to accept feeling like crap and getting fat as a part of getting older. I don’t mind getting older, but I do mind feeling and looking older. Today I feel better than I have in over 10 years. My skin is pink, bright, and supple. My mind is sharp, and my reaction time is excellent ( I know this because my husband is always throwing things at me). I am happy now, and I really feel good. Take control of your life and your bodies, Ladies! Living your best life might require some changes, but you are so worth it.

If you have any topics, comments, or suggestions, please leave me a message in the comments. I love to hear from all of you.

DEE #fityfityfifty