Hormones are chemical messengers or any member of the class of singling molecular areas secreted directly in the bloodstream of individuals, which carries them to the tissue and organs of the body to exert their function, there are many types of hormones present in the human body that act on the different aspect of bodily function and processes.
As previously mentioned, various glands are present in the human body secrets hormones that are essential to growth, development, and reproduction, here are some important hormones and their functions.
- Hormones of the thyroid gland- Triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4), help control the body’s metabolism, regulate the body weight, and determine the energy level and internal temperature.
- Insulin – release from the pancreas (gland, located in the abdominal cavity), the main function is controlling the blood sugar level from getting too high (hyperglycemia) or too low (hypoglycemia)
- Oestrogen – Female sex hormone released from the ovaries, responsible for reproduction, menstruation, and menopause. Imbalance as an excess of this hormone increased the risk of breast cancer, uterine cancer, depression, and moodiness and less level leads to acne, skin lesions hair loss, etc.
- Progesterone – Produced in ovaries, the placenta, and the adrenal gland while a woman gets pregnant and has an important role in maintaining pregnancy, like regulation of monthly cycle and preparing the body for conception, and when pregnancy doesn’t occur, progesterone level drop and menstrual cycle occur.
- Prolactin – This hormone is released from the pituitary gland after childbirth for lactation (breastfeeding).
- Testosterone – Male sex hormone, mainly helps in building body muscles, development of male reproductive tissue, testes and prostate and hair growth, imbalance of these hormones can lead to abnormality including frailty (condition of being weak and delicate) and bone loss.
- Serotonin – Mood boosting effect hormone (also called nature feels good chemical), regulates the mood (learning and memory), muscular functions, sleep, and digestion.
- Cortisol – Produced by the adrenal gland, the main function is controlling physical and psychological stress, in danger, it increases heart rate, respiration rate, and blood pressure. A high level of cortisol leads to ulcers, high blood pressure, high levels of cholesterol, anxiety, and low level of these hormones create alcoholism, a condition responsible for chronic fatigue syndrome.
- Adrenaline – Secreted in the medulla in the adrenal gland, also known as emergency hormones cause its initiate the quick reaction which makes the individual think and responds quickly to the stress, increases the metabolic rate, dilation of blood vessels going to the heart and the brain, adrenaline quickly release in the bloodstream and send an impulse to organs to create a specific response.
- Growth Hormone – Also known as somatotropin or protein hormones (has 190 amino acids synthesized and secreted by the cells called somatotrophs in the anterior of the pituitary gland), important in human development, cell reproduction, cell regeneration, and boosting metabolism.
Unexplained weight gain or weight loss
- Unexplained excessive sweating
- Change in the sensitivity to cold and heat or dry skin or skin rashes
- Change in blood pressure or heart rate or blood sugar concentration
- Brittle or weak bones with irritability or anxiety or unexplained long-term fatigue
- Increased thirst or depression and headache with bloating.
- Puffy face, blurred vision, in women, breast tenderness, and deepening of the voice
Hormonal Imbalance in Men and Women
Men – Natural causes of hormonal imbalance in men is Puberty and Aging, but as per medical condition, Hormonal imbalance in men include Prostate Cancer and Hypogonadism (Low Testosterone Hormone). Symptoms are as follows,
- Reduced sex drive
- Erectile Dysfunction (ED)
- Low sperm count
- Reduced body hair growth
- Overdevelopment of breast tissue or breast tenderness
Women – Women naturally experience several periods of hormonal imbalances throughout their lifetime during puberty, menstruation, pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, perimenopause, menopause, and post-menopause. Medical conditions causing irregular hormones imbalance in women as:
- PCOS or PCOD (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome)
- Hormones Replacement or Birth Control Medication
- Early Menopause or Primary Ovarian Insufficiency (POI)
- Ovarian Cancer
- Most common symptoms in women of hormonal imbalance are heavy or irregular or painful periods, night sweats, vaginal dryness, breast tenderness, indigestion, constipation or diarrhoea, acne just before menstruation, uterine bleeding not associated with menstruation, increased hair growth on the face, neck, chest or back, infertility or weight gain.
Ayurvedic Concept with Management
Ayurveda is an ancient healing system based on a wisdom tradition that originated in India over 5,000 years ago and focused on the balance of Body, Mind, and Consciousness. Ayurveda does not have any identification anymore because it is rapidly spreading throughout the USA and European and Western Countries, the traditional western approach has generally prescribed substitution for the Hormone utilizing Hormone Replacement Therapy or Surgery. Since the approach has risks associated with the treatment plan itself, western medicine is looking to Ayurveda and other natural systems with new hopes.
Ayurveda’s comprehensive understanding of Endocrinology applies a natural and holistic approach that may significantly help prevent and reduce hormonal challenges.
Its foundation is a ‘Tri-Dosha’ theory which views the individual’s constitution as a mixture of ‘Vata,’ ‘Pitta,’ and ‘Kapha,’ which are three distinct combinations of the universal five elements of wind, space, fire, water, and earth. A person’s unique combination of these elements and the effects of past lifestyle and dietary choices are considered when developing a personalized care program. However, since Ayurveda is a science of body, mind, and consciousness, it is not enough to merely focus on just physical symptoms and imbalances, mind and consciousness also play a major role, especially in endocrinology. Therefore, the Ayurvedic perspective is to explore and offer support for the healing of ‘stuck emotions,’ which directly and deeply impact an individual’s overall health. In this way, Ayurveda goes well beyond the physical level when addressing hormonal imbalances.
In general, Ayurveda simply stated that every Vikruti (imbalance) is based upon the person’s Aahar (diet or intake of food ) and Vihara (lifestyle). So here the basic principle of treatment depends on the organic and natural diet and yoga (meditation).
‘Panchakarma’ A gentle but deep Ayurvedic Cleansing Programme is the best treatment. Panchakarma is an ancient Indian healing modality involving the successive application of medicated oils to the entire body to penetrate the skin and remove soluble toxins at the cellular levels. This treatment is generally done daily for a period of 7 to 21 days, depending on the severity of the imbalance and whether it’s been a chronic condition. After the cleanse, since the cells are no longer coated with toxins, the cellular ‘fire’ and intelligence are improved, and healthy functioning is restored at the deepest level. Treatment is done under careful supervision by our Ayurvedic Practitioner (Vaidya) in our Pranava Kerala Ayurveda Clinic.
As per our Ayurvedic Physicians, Shirodhara is another ancient tradition whereby warm oil is poured on the forehead area known as the ‘Third Eye,’ which is associated with the Pituitary and Pineal glands. It is a highly recommended treatment that is generally done as part of Panchakarma since it directly targets the central nervous system and associated Pineal and Pituitary glands.
Pranava Kerala Ayurveda Clinic provides the classical Ayurvedic Aushadhi (herbals preparation) which balances the body, mind, emotions, consciousness, and disease management with the ancient tradition and wisdom of Ayurveda.
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