By: Krystle Crossman
One of the most frustrating things in life is when you exercise constantly but continue to gain weight. This is a struggle for many women and some may end up cutting back on their exercise because they feel like it isn’t doing them any good anyway. The truth is that your body may be telling you something very important but you have to listen for its cues. Hormones play a huge part in weight gain and loss. If you are having trouble losing weight even when you are eating right and exercising you may have a hormonal imbalance. Fear not, there are some things that you can do to get your hormones back in check so that you can continue with your routine and not keep gaining weight.
Alisa Vitti, HHC, is a nutritionist who focuses on hormones and how they relate to your diet and weight. She says that this is a common problem but one that is easy to solve once you understand how hormones work. She used to be 200 pounds and has PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome) but was able to drop 60 pounds by figuring out how to balance her hormones out. Her first piece of advice is to slow down on the exercise when you have a high hormonal level, such as during your period. Exercising too much can cause you to gain weight no matter what because of the hormones you have in your body at that time.
When you have extra estrogen in your system, whether it be from a hormonal disease, pregnancy, or your period, your body is telling you to store every last bit of sugar that you eat as fat because of the extra hormones. This is why it is horrible to crave sweets when it is that time of the month! When you eat too much sugar, have too much stress, or drink too much your adrenal glands that produce fat-burning cortisol do not produce as much and so all of that sugar and those extra calories are stored as fat.
When you have these hormonal issues the best thing to do is 20 minutes of weight training or cardio. After that if you still want to do more do something slower like Tai Chi or yoga. These will still help you to build muscle and keep your metabolism going but you won’t be wearing out your adrenal glands. This way the hormones remain balanced with the amount of cortisol that is produced and you will be able to keep your weight off or lose it.