1

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HACK MY HORMONES

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created May 06, 2012 at 5:45 PM

I am a 21 year old female, 5'3 and an athletic 135 pounds. I have experienced a small amount of facial hair growth in my life- just a few hairs here and there (i am of middle eastern descent) but recently my body hair has gotten totally out of control.

Been paleo for over a year now. Initially when I was very strict about it and while doing my whole 30 it seemed to be getting a little better, but not much. I have since gotten a little looser about my diet (a little dairy here and there, occasional corn, tequila, cigarette) I i used to drink from 3-5 cups of coffee a day but quit doing that about three weeks ago. since then I have experienced what feels like an explosion of body and facial hair!!! I replaced the coffee with a dandelion root beverage and have started taking a little milk thistle to help my liver detox hormones.

i also take calcium d glucarate and dim daily, as well as some omega 3s

the hair springs up on my cheeks neck and chest as well as some on my stomach around my navel. i tried taking iodine once and the next day a large black coil of hair sprung from the middle of my chest! super gross. not sure if that information is helpful or just TMI. also suffered with bulimia nervosa and anorexia until I was 18, and was on birth control pills for about a year (but that was a while ago). unsure if those things factor into it

i want to figure out what i can do to get my hormones balanced, let me know if you have experienced anything similar or have any insight into what kind of imbalance this is and where is stems from!

HELP ITS DRIVING ME CRAZY

9da46402c1c027ed7fec51dcac895643

(10)

on May 07, 2012
at 06:03 PM

It seems to be a common symptom. Other common symptoms of PCOS besides facial hair are acne (especially around the jawline) and insulin resistance.

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32564)

on May 07, 2012
at 12:59 PM

And yes, birth control & eating disororders can mess up your hormonal balance, but a nutrient-rich diet, sleep & gentle exercise can remedy that. It just takes time & patience! Give yourself 6 months-1 year to see significant changes.

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32564)

on May 07, 2012
at 12:57 PM

Replenishing is about focusing on getting the micronutrients your body needs. Sunshine (Vitamin D), organ meats, fish, bone broth & gelatin are often ignored as part of a "clean" Paleo diet, but they all have vitamins & minerals your body needs for good hormonal balance. Your hormones are mostly determined by your diet & environment--much less so by heredity.

192a2d6a31fe367deb913ccaa2c97460

(145)

on May 07, 2012
at 03:06 AM

thank you for the link!

192a2d6a31fe367deb913ccaa2c97460

(145)

on May 07, 2012
at 03:05 AM

@roth i imagine it could be connected since i was eating very very poorly from age 13-18 (pretty formative for hormonal composition i imagine)- but i've been healthy for a few years now and the hair is pretty thick. I think lanugo is more of a soft downy kind of layer?

192a2d6a31fe367deb913ccaa2c97460

(145)

on May 07, 2012
at 03:02 AM

thanks! i like the idea of replenishing my body but i'm not really sure what that means. even when i was eating super clean for an extended period of time i was having these issues, albeit not quite so strongly. it makes me feel like there is an inherant hormonal imbalance that cannot be corrected by the approaches i have taken before, especially since i have taken birth control and been through eating disorders. apparently those things wreak havoc on hormonal balances... hopefully i am wrong!

192a2d6a31fe367deb913ccaa2c97460

(145)

on May 07, 2012
at 02:59 AM

yeah i always assumed it wasn't pcos because i'm a normal weight and havent had any problems or pains during my cycle. definitely will be getting my hormones tested.

192a2d6a31fe367deb913ccaa2c97460

(145)

on May 07, 2012
at 02:58 AM

Interesting! i'll look into the acupuncture. Is PCOS always characterized by irregular periods? that's something i don't have issue with.

3327924660b1e2f8f8fc4ca27fedf2b2

(2919)

on May 06, 2012
at 10:17 PM

@Stella Lanugo?

192a2d6a31fe367deb913ccaa2c97460

(145)

on May 06, 2012
at 06:15 PM

thank you, i'll check with the student health services!

192a2d6a31fe367deb913ccaa2c97460

(145)

on May 06, 2012
at 05:59 PM

Not on any medications. I got them checked a few years ago, but was told they were "normal". didn't get any specifics from them at the time though. I don't have a doctor right now, and wouldn't know what kind of test to ask for or doctor to see! If you have any ideas that would be great. Also money is tight, I am a student.

4b05d725a8332e8e917a4ca58b6e8a1e

(1239)

on May 06, 2012
at 05:53 PM

Have you actually gotten your hormones checked by a doctor? That might be a good place to start if not. I know hirsutism can be a symptom of PCOS, which is another thing to ask you doctor about. Also, are you on the pill or taking other medications?

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5 Answers

best answer

1
4b05d725a8332e8e917a4ca58b6e8a1e

(1239)

on May 06, 2012
at 06:04 PM

A gynecologist will do a hormone test for you. If you're a student, your student health center should offer that test for a pretty reasonable cost. See what the test says and ask the doctor where to go from there. Hirsutism is a symptom of something else, so until you figure out what's causing it, it's probably not going to get better, unfortunately. It's a very frustrating symptom, I know! Good luck!

192a2d6a31fe367deb913ccaa2c97460

(145)

on May 06, 2012
at 06:15 PM

thank you, i'll check with the student health services!

best answer

3
Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32564)

on May 06, 2012
at 06:07 PM

Focusing on replenishing your body so that your hormones can balance themselves is the approach I would take.

Sufficient Vitamin D is essential, along with other co-factors.

This blog post I wrote on Pregnancy nutrition is actually a good place to start. Essentially the same diet I would recommend for hormone balancing. It's working for my perimenopausal symptoms!

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32564)

on May 07, 2012
at 12:57 PM

Replenishing is about focusing on getting the micronutrients your body needs. Sunshine (Vitamin D), organ meats, fish, bone broth & gelatin are often ignored as part of a "clean" Paleo diet, but they all have vitamins & minerals your body needs for good hormonal balance. Your hormones are mostly determined by your diet & environment--much less so by heredity.

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32564)

on May 07, 2012
at 12:59 PM

And yes, birth control & eating disororders can mess up your hormonal balance, but a nutrient-rich diet, sleep & gentle exercise can remedy that. It just takes time & patience! Give yourself 6 months-1 year to see significant changes.

192a2d6a31fe367deb913ccaa2c97460

(145)

on May 07, 2012
at 03:02 AM

thanks! i like the idea of replenishing my body but i'm not really sure what that means. even when i was eating super clean for an extended period of time i was having these issues, albeit not quite so strongly. it makes me feel like there is an inherant hormonal imbalance that cannot be corrected by the approaches i have taken before, especially since i have taken birth control and been through eating disorders. apparently those things wreak havoc on hormonal balances... hopefully i am wrong!

0
9da46402c1c027ed7fec51dcac895643

on May 06, 2012
at 11:46 PM

I have had problems with PCOS and saw a doctor who prescribed estrogen and progesterone creams for me. These were not helpful, they regulated my periods, but I still had other PCOS symptoms plus heavy fatigue. What was most helpful for me, and I would suggest to any woman with hormonal imbalances is acupuncture. After about 2 months of acupuncture my PCOS symptoms really improved. Also, congratulations on quitting caffeine. I am currently taking another stab at quitting caffeine because it's stress on the adrenals and insulin release just exacerbates hormonal imbalances.

192a2d6a31fe367deb913ccaa2c97460

(145)

on May 07, 2012
at 02:58 AM

Interesting! i'll look into the acupuncture. Is PCOS always characterized by irregular periods? that's something i don't have issue with.

9da46402c1c027ed7fec51dcac895643

(10)

on May 07, 2012
at 06:03 PM

It seems to be a common symptom. Other common symptoms of PCOS besides facial hair are acne (especially around the jawline) and insulin resistance.

0
F0ad82feb85e444aa0dd261e21fa5cbf

on May 06, 2012
at 08:01 PM

I second (third?) getting a complete hormonal workup. It sounds like PCOS to me, and people with PCOS can actually be of normal weight. Hormones are what stimulates the hair follicle, and if you're getting male pattern hair growth/color, then those follicles are being stimulated by an excess of androgens (assuming PCOS).

192a2d6a31fe367deb913ccaa2c97460

(145)

on May 07, 2012
at 02:59 AM

yeah i always assumed it wasn't pcos because i'm a normal weight and havent had any problems or pains during my cycle. definitely will be getting my hormones tested.

0
A13feff0f1e1b51222aae2b6a473abbd

on May 06, 2012
at 08:00 PM

You might want to see if you can find a compounding pharmacy that will do a more thorough blood panel. I did this, and it helped immensely. Check out www.cocprx.com. They do phone consultations and may e able to give you some answers. Good luck!

192a2d6a31fe367deb913ccaa2c97460

(145)

on May 07, 2012
at 03:06 AM

thank you for the link!

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