On the internet, there are many advices you can find around hormone problems. The one screams cut carbs, the other one not. Next to this there is a discussion about eating vegan for your hormones or eat more animal fats. Crazy right!? As a dietitian to be and sadly a person who lost her period for 4 years and gained it back, I often share my story and what works for me. I am going to try to give you advice based on my experience, but also with a bit of science (ofcourse). Today we talk about: CARBS!
When you have hormones problems, there can be different causes to it, like : overweight, underweight, pcos, eating disorder, hereditary diseases and so much more. So the truth is, that everyone of these causes have there own way to ”cure” them or keep them under control. Today I am looking at underweight, overweight and eating disorder hormone problems.
Your body preferable fuel are carbs. It does not matter if it’s fruit, bread or candy, it really wants carbs. It is easy to take in and is most easy converted to fuel. ( https://www.livestrong.com/article/471359-which-burns-first-fat-or-muscle/). So If you are going to skip carbs while healing from being underweight, having an eating disorder or trying to lose weight, your body basically panics. You are forcing it to seek other types of fuel (protein and fat). So you want your body to heal, but you are making it harder…..
losing weight, is also a way of healing. If you are overweight and you need to lose a few pounds (or a lot), you are doing your body a favor, but making it harder by skipping carbs (cravings). I know there are some cases that do lowcarb and lose weight and get their virility stable. If that works for you or you don’t know it yet, try it! But in the end if you lost your weight (do it slowly, because losing weight fast messes up your hormones), you want to slowly add carbs back, because you have a social aspect to (living life and eating with others) and a lot of product with carbs have very vital vitamines en minerals. B6, iodine, zinc, koper, selenium, iron etc (https://www.voedingscentrum.nl/encyclopedie/fruit.aspx, https://www.vitamine-info.nl/nieuwsartikel/article/graanproducten-lekker-en-gezond-526/)
taking a pill for that is never the answer, it should be an extra next to your food!
So it is your body preferable fuel, it has vitamines and minerals, it has a social aspect (that helps with mentically healing to, because why go out to eat with friends and not eat anything with carbs) but maybe most important (specially for people who are underweight or people with an ED) IT GIVES YOUR BODY ENOUGH CALORIES!
Malnourishing or overnourishing your body with bad foods for a long time really kills your hormones. You need to gain trust back from your own body and you only can do that by giving your body the 3 fuels it is used to (carbs, fat and protein). Combining them all together helps with gaining weight, but also losing! This is not a one day thing, losing weight not to quickly can take 1 year or so, but same goes for gaining. let your body adopt to all the nutrients that are coming in your system and calories.
I need to emphasize that the main of your food should be COMPLEX CARBS they have the most best influence on your body, due to the nutrients. But a little simple carbs wont kill ya, especially when needing to gain weight, go for more simple carbs in the beginning, it helps with bloating.
My main message with this is, your body needs alle the three components to function 100%. Not doing that, will not help your hormones stabalize and try to eat as nutritious as possible and make your main meals with protein, carbs and fat and make sure you eat enough (yes even when losing weight)!