Have your bedroom activities consisted of more intimacy with your pajamas than your loved one lately? Do you find yourself making excuses not to get naked? Perhaps you go to bed before your partner so you don’t have to come up with yet another reason for why you’re not in the mood. Or you might want to reignite that chemistry, but just don’t have the energy.
If you’re feeling this way and not sure why, your hormones may be to blame—and the bedroom might not be the only place that they’re holding you back.
Our hormones affect every aspect of our wellbeing: our mood, energy, motivation, attitude, stress levels, metabolism, libido, and performance. Even how we interact with people. If this delicate balance of sex hormones (oestrogen, testosterone, progesterone), stress hormones (cortisol), and thyroid hormones are out, it inevitably starts to impact every area of our life and can lead to some serious health issues—not to mention, a lack-lustre sex drive. Even a slight imbalance can cause a ripple effect.
An imbalance in your sex hormones can manifest in both internal and external ways. Excess testosterone and/or oestrogen can result in skin issues such as jawline and chin acne while weight gain or stagnant weight loss—particularly in the midsection, or hips and thighs—is a sign of excess oestrogen and cortisol and a lack of progesterone. This telling distribution of weight is also indicative of internal issues such as Polycystic Ovaries or Endometriosis—conditions found in women of all ages that affect their quality of life, and certainly their sex drive.
Men suffering from low libido may start to see other signs and symptoms associated with sex hormone deficiencies. These can include ‘man boobs’, excess weight around the midsection, and even premature balding. These changes may lead to insecurities, embarrassment, and that ‘mid-life crisis’ syndrome we’ve all heard of, which can exacerbate the problem.
Before you start looking externally to solve the problem (read: ending relationships and quitting jobs), I’d suggest searching internally by getting your hormones assessed by a health practitioner. They may find a very simple solution that does not include the use of drugs and/or synthetic hormones, but instead focuses on repairing the stress response, re-balancing the sex hormones and assisting the thyroid hormones through natural holistic practices. This in turn can result in weight loss, muscle gain (if lacking testosterone), better sleep, less PMS symptoms, more stable moods, better performance, improved relationships and an improved sex drive.
Treatments may include a tailored diet plan to reduce oestrogen, such as a vegetarian and grain-free diet, specific supplements to enable the body to naturally increase hormone production, exercise regimes designed to boost testosterone, and lifestyle changes to assist natural healing through sleep and reduced stress.
Words by nutritionist, Pip Reed
Pip has over ten years experience in the health and fitness industry. She specialises in women’s health, weight loss, hormone imbalances including endometriosis, and healthy ageing.