What does your nutrition have to do with your hormones and brains? The answer is “A LOT.” Here is a three step plan which will make a huge change in your hormone and brain function.
First of all, eat fats—lots of them. We have been sold a low-fat diet for health for the past 40 years but this is not healthy for your hormones or your brain. Two-thirds of the weight of your brain is fats. You need plenty of fats in your diet to keep your brain working well. You also need plenty of fats to keep your hormones working well. You only need to look at long distance runners and ballerinas who suffer from lack of menstrual periods to know that body fat and dietary fat are connected to healthy hormone function.
We have especially been told that saturated fats are dangerous and the cause of cardiac disease. This has been proven to be false, but there still is resistance to eating fat. We have also been told that eating cholesterol is bad for your health. Guess what? Cholesterol is the starter chemical for all of your steroid hormones. See the chart below:
Cholesterol is the start of all of your important steroid hormones—pregnenolone, progesterone, DHEA, testosterone, and estradiol (the most important estrogen). If you skimp on the eggs and grass fed beef because you’re afraid of saturated fats, you will not be able to make adequate amounts of hormones.
Other important saturated fats are coconut oil and MCT (medium chain triglyceride) oil which are both great for brain function. Avocados, olive oil, and fatty fish like wild salmon should be staples in your diet.
The second step is to increase vegetables to 6-9 servings per day. The fiber in these vegetables feed your healthy microbiome (healthy bacteria in your intestine). This is essential for the healthy production and safe metabolism of hormones.
The third step is to ditch the sugar and refined carbs like bread and pasta made from wheat, and even gluten free products which are made of highly refined non-wheat flour. These products cause inflammation and adversely affect brain and hormone health. Sugar and refined carbs interfere with human growth hormone through the release of high amounts of insulin which interferes with growth hormone’s healing actions. High amounts of sugar also cause cortisol levels to increase which diverts from pregnenolone, estrogen, testosterone and progesterone production.
Diet is key to healthy hormone and brain function. It is also key to Alzheimer’s prevention. Click the title link to obtain a copy of my book, Boost Your Hormones, Boost Your Brain: Five Key Steps to Improve Your Memory and Prevent Alzheimer’s.
Dr. Susan Sklar is a nationally recognized Harvard trained physician and a fierce health detective who believes that you can age gracefully and feel great while doing so. She believes that that hormonal and other biochemical deficiencies cause humans to age and decline in ways that are not necessary or inevitable. She utilizes the cutting edge science of functional medicine to support the body to heal itself through the restoration of hormones, proper nutrition, lifestyle and appropriate supplementation.
After more than 25 years of experience as an Obstetrician-Gynecologist Dr. Sklar started the Sklar Center in 2007 as a response to the unmet needs of men and women who are looking for answers to the questions of how to feel good in midlife and maintain optimum health long term.
She is certified in the Bredesen Protocol for slowing and reversing cognitive decline. Dr. Bredesen’s protocol is the most well known approach for successfully tackling the problem of dementia.
She sees private patients at her center in Long Beach, California. To learn more about Dr. Sklar, visit www.sklarcenter.com