The Role of Hormones in Losing Weight
You have no doubt heard, or even used, the excuse, “I have a hormonal imbalance”, when it comes to being overweight or trying to lose weight. The struggle to lose weight can be very difficult, and many feel that there has to be a reason that the weight is not coming off. While it is true that hormonal imbalance affects some overweight individuals, the number is minute. However, hormones do play a role in weight loss and gain, but the role is dependent on the individual, and his or her way of life.
A hormone is a chemical messenger from a cell in the body. A hormone is produced by almost every organ system. Secreted directly into the bloodstream, hormones work as signals to certain cells to perform certain functions. Hormones can:
Stimulate or inhibit growth
Activate or hinder the immune system
Control the reproductive cycle
Groom the body for a phase – puberty, parenthood, or menopause
The level of hormones can also affect our mood and energy amount. We, however, affect hormones, to a certain degree. Our way of life plays a huge role in the hormonal makeup inside us. For example, if a person is inactive or sedentary, certain hormones decrease, such as testosterone. Testosterone is a hormone that works to increase metabolism, and therefore regulate weight and encourage weight loss.
On the other hand, a more active person will have a greater number of chemical reactions in the blood, and thus a change in the body’s hormonal makeup. This is so that the body can cope with its own need to adapt to the stress put upon it during exertion. Consequently, the body will see a boost in metabolism, which can lead to weight loss and maintenance.
Therefore, hormones do play a role in weight loss, but it is largely dependent on our choices. While it is possible to have an imbalance that will not be affected by the level of activity, most people have the ability to make their hormones help them in the battle to lose weight. By exercising regularly, the body will produce hormones that will help to increase the body’s metabolism, and therefore help you to lose weight.