In today’s episode, we are joined by Megan Bliss, a nurse practitioner and hormone specialist. We dive into the effects, key indicators, and solutions to hormone imbalance, including the importance of regular exercise, mental health, and understanding your sex drive. Could hormones be the culprit of weight gain, acne, depression, hair loss or even low sex drive?
2:25 Discovering The Importance of Hormones
The first five years of being a nurse practitioner, Megan was working in a family practice with a lot of stress. She had two small kids at home, her husband was in grad school, she was training for a half marathon, breast feeding, and gaining weight the entire time. She felt frustrated!
All of these women would come in to get checked, upset that they are gaining weight, and Megan couldn’t do anything because there was never an issue in their tests. Her heart broke for these women because she knew that something else was going on.
Then, she went to a hormone conference and it changed everything. She learned that she needed new tools, new information, and began running with it. She decided to start building a hormone program helping not only her patients, but herself too.
6:07 The Indicators of a Hormone Imbalance
There are things that we ignore because nobody else can see them. The top three things that people come to Megan for are:
- Weight Gain
- Hair Loss
Some internal signs are irregular periods, irregular bowel movements, and being moody. However, it’s important to note that everybody is different.
15:08 Weight Loss & Hormones
Hormones can impact weight loss in a huge way. People can do all the things, working out, eating healthy, and still aren’t losing weight.
Estrogen and progesterone can be imbalanced and be the underlying factor behind not losing weight. The ovaries produce estrogen, as well as fat cells. When you have excess estrogen, you hold onto more weight, and those fat cells use that extra estrogen to make more fat cells.
A lot of testosterone can stay sky high and keep on the weight as well.
Megan uses a lot of supplements, hormones, diet, and exercise to treat her patients with this weight gain.
24:13 Hormones Affecting Mental Health
Many women go to their doctor with a lack of motivation, exhaustion, and just a feeling of “blah.” A lot of women meet the criteria of being depressed, but it also overlaps with hormone imbalances. Megan likes to really do the digging into what vitamins are affecting your mental health. She does this before prescribing medication because a lot of the time, a certain vitamin is all you need.
28:05 Important Steps to Take
When it comes to hormones, weight, or similar topics, there’s never one key thing to look at. Genetics play a role but Megan is a firm believer that you can fight against your genes. Our nutrition, infections, stress, and trauma are all factors. Some key steps Megan recommends taking is meditation, daily moderate exercise
34:12 Developing A Healthy Sex Life
Within 3 months after stopping breastfeeding, if you feel like you aren’t wanting to have sex, you might have an estrogen deficiency. Other factors include stress levels and quality of relationship.
37:40 The Impacts of Birth Control
Megan suggests testing your hormones before taking birth control. For the past 14 years of marriage for Megan, birth control wasn’t an option. She had an IED placed 2 weeks before marriage and she bled for 6 weeks. For people who are done having children, she recommends having your husband get a vasectomy.