By Lauren Denos: 5/3/2015 (Concerns)

 

Hormones are a large and important topic that can make or break so much of your health. People have written entire books on hormones alone because it is such a large and important subject. For this article, we are going to look at hormones, explain their importance and what you can do without being too long winded about it.

What are Hormones?

Hormones are a regulatory substances that are used as the body’s chemical messengers. The hormones are released straight into the blood stream so that they can be transported to all of the organs and tissues of the body.

Hormones are secreted through the

  • Pituitary gland

  • Pineal gland

  • Thymus

  • Thyroid

  • Adrenal glands

  • Pancreas

  • Testes

  • Ovaries

How many types of hormones do you have? There are a ridiculous amount of hormones in the body. Here is a list to give you an idea of the magnitude of hormones. Yes, this list is meant to impress you!

  • Thyroid- Stimulating hormone (TSH)

  • Follicle- stimulating hormone (FSH)

  • Luteinizing hormone (LH)

  • Prolactin (PRL)

  • Growth hormone (GH)

  • Adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH)

  • Vasopressin

  • Oxytocin

  • Thyroid- releasing hormone

  • Gonadotropin- releasing hormone

  • Growth hormone- releasing hormone

  • Corticotrophin- releasing hormone

  • Somatostatin

  • Dopamine

  • Melatonin

  • Thyroxine

  • Calcitonin

  • Parathyroid hormone

  • FGF-23 (Phosphatonin)

  • Osteocalcin

  • Erythropoietin

  • Glucocorticoids

  • Androgens

  • Adrenaline

  • Noradrenaline

  • Estrogens

  • Progesterone

  • Human chorionic gonadotropin

  • Insulin

  • Glucagon

  • Somatostatin

  • Amylin

  • Erythropoietin

  • Calcitriol

  • Calciferol

  • Atrial- natriuretic peptide

  • Gastrin

  • Secretin

  • Cholecystokinin

  • Fibroblast growth factor 19

  • Incretins

  • Somatostatin

  • Neuropeptide Y

  • Ghrelin

  • PYY

  • Serotonin

  • Insulin- like growth factor

  • Angiotensinogen

  • Thrombopoietin

  • Hepcidin

  • Betatrophin

  • Leptin

  • Retinol Binding Protein 4

  • Adiponectin

  • Irisin

That is a lot of different hormones. Do you see now when I say there are a ton of different hormones in your body? I really do mean it.

What Do They Do?

Hormones are a part of many of the functions of your body. For instance, they regulate…

  • Blood sugar

  • Growth

  • Metabolism

  • Sexual function

  • Cognitive function

  • Mood

  • Maintains body temperature

  • Fluid levels in body (including thirst)

Hormones are involved with a ridiculous amount of processes throughout the body. If your hormones are not in balance, a slew of health related problems can ensue. Hormones are most commonly seen as something that can keep weight on, or make you gain weight. This makes the most sense as they are what regulates your metabolism. Even so, metabolism is more than just about losing and gaining weight. Your metabolism breaks down the food to repair and rebuild every systems in your body! That is a big deal.

It can have an effect on how your brain is functioning, mood swings, memory issues. It has also been linked to many other illnesses as well. One thing people do not think about much is that insulin is also a hormone. People think of things like diabetes and insulin resistance as something completely separate from the hormonal system, but it is just as tied into your hormones as mood swings and weight gain are.

The kicker is your hormones do not need to be very low or high to wreak havoc in your body. Furthermore, what is considered to be in a normal range may still be a low range for some people. If one of your hormones is within the predetermined regular range, or even on the low end of that range, you can still have symptoms such as weight gain, exhaustion, moodiness and much more.

Despite what many believe, men can be affected by hormonal imbalances just as much as women can. The difference is that many men ignore the signs that come up. Men in general are less likely to go to a doctor for help than a woman. That is why we tend to think of this as something that affects mostly women.

Symptoms for this can be all over the board. The most common complaints associated with hormone imbalances are:

  • Weight gain

  • Fatigue

  • Lowed sex drive

  • Mood swings, irritability and depression

  • Infertility

  • Foggy headed or inability to think clearly



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-Lauren