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How to start the day for happier hormones

Our hormones are part of the body’s endocrine system, relaying important messages to each other and other bodily organs. They are responsible for a number of human functions such as maintaining energy levels, reproduction, metabolism, mood, sexual function, sleep-wake cycle, and response to injury and stress. How the endocrine system glands and other organs work together gets too complicated for the purpose of this post, but the key thing to know is they are part of an interconnected system, and therefore if any part of the system is not functioning well, the whole system can become imbalanced.

The human body actually produces more than 50 hormones! Some common examples and their predominant role include:

  • Estrogen – the female sex hormone, regulates the menstrual cycle
  • Testosterone – the male sex hormone (women have it too!)
  • Ghrelin – the hunger hormone, stimulates appetite
  • Leptin – the satiety hormone, tells you when you’re full
  • Oxytocin – the love hormone, also released during childbirth and helps with lactation
  • Cortisol – the stress hormone, released during times of stress 
  • Insulin – shuttles glucose from your bloodstream to be used for energy later
  • Adrenaline – the fight or flight hormone, also associated with stress
  • Melatonin – the sleep hormone, regulates our sleep-wake cycle
As you can see, our hormones are responsible for a lot, and this is only a glimpse of everything they do! Physiologically, hormone function is a basic bodily function with all systems and organs working together. When the endocrine system is working properly, we refer to this as homeostasis — a state of constancy. However, as previously mentioned, it can take only one hormone to become out of whack to affect the entire system. Our daily habits and other lifestyle factors actually have a direct negative impact on our hormones such as poor diet, lack of sleep, chronic stress, lack of exercise, and yo-yo dieting, to name a few. 

Hormone imbalance occurs when you have too little or too much of any one or more hormones. These imbalances can cause various symptoms and disruptions to an otherwise optimally functioning system. 

5 Morning Habits to Start Today

Because our overall well-being is intrinsically connected to our hormone health, creating a schedule and sticking to regular health habits can make a huge difference! (Pssst…you cannot balance your hormones if you are not managing your stress and eating a balanced diet. If you are struggling with this, please reach out to schedule a complimentary Discovery Call to discuss how I can help you.) 

As a health and wellness coach who specializes in working with high-achieving, performance-driven women struggling with adrenal fatigue, stress, and burnout, most of my recommendations are based around that specific client in mind. However, the following suggestions are generally beneficial for anyone unless you are fasting or have other diagnosed medical conditions. In that case, you should always consult with your primary care provider for his/her professional guidance.

1- Drink a glass of lemon water upon waking.
Drinking water first thing in the morning helps you rehydrate while also supporting digestion and detoxification. Lemons contain vitamin C which aids in hormone regulation. 

2- Get early morning light exposure.
Morning light supports our circadian rhythms, or sleep-wake cycles, which is regulated by hormones such as melatonin (to help us sleep) and cortisol (to help us wake). 

3- Practice gratitude.
Gratitude is a powerful emotion which triggers the release of dopamine and serotonin, our feel good hormones. By practicing gratitude every day, you can train your brain to be happy!

4- Eat breakfast within 1-2 hours of waking.
There is a LOT of conflicting information out there about breakfast. To eat or not to eat, how soon to eat, etc. So what’s the right answer? Unfortunately, “it depends”. However, eating breakfast does help lower cortisol, stabilize blood sugar and insulin levels, and provide your body with the fuel it needs to get moving. Aim for a balanced breakfast of protein, fat, and carbs.

5- Eat breakfast before or with your coffee.
For my adrenal fatigued, weight-loss resistant mamas our there, listen up! Our cortisol levels are highest in the morning in order to help us wake up. So the last thing we want to do is pump out more cortisol (stress hormone) by drinking coffee on an empty stomach. So if you need that daily cup of java, be sure you are not drinking it on an empty stomach.

I hope you find these tips helpful! As always, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to wellness so play around and find out what works best for you. 

Have any daily health habits you love for hormone balance? Let me know in the comments!

Disclaimer: I am not a licensed medical or nutritional professional, nor do I claim to be. The information provided is purely for educational and information purposes only, and should not be not taken as professional advice. Please consult with your primary care provider or another licensed professional before beginning any new healthcare regimen.

It's more important to understand the imbalances in your body's basic systems and restore balance, rather than name the disease and match the pill to the ill.

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Welcome to Everything Wellness! I’m Brittany, a Functional Medicine Certified Health Coach on a mission to help you feel alive and achieve your ideal vision of health! I help people get back on track through 1:1 wellness coaching, sharing my personal experiences with health struggles, and educating on the importance of lifestyle medicine.

Wellness Coaching

A client-centered approach to holistic wellness through lifestyle modification and behavior change.

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A form of alternative medicine that focuses on identifying and addressing the root cause of disease.

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