The Influence of Blood Sugar on Reproductive Hormones

Posted by Riannon Page on

When blood sugar spikes or plummets, it sets off a cascade of effects that can disrupt the rhythm of hormones such as oestrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. These hormonal fluctuations, in turn, can impact fertility, menstrual regularity, and libido.

High blood sugar levels, often associated with insulin resistance, may lead to anovulation in women and lower testosterone levels in men, affecting reproductive health.

Due to the western diet and added sugar in packaged foods, roughly 90% of the population are living with too much glucose in their system! When working on regulating hormones in clinic we are always delving into ways to optimise a healthy glucose balance!

Here are 4 symptoms you may have to indicate irregular blood sugar:

Irresistible Cravings 

Are you having uncontrollable food cravings? Achieving balance in your blood sugar levels can make a significant difference. Contrary to common belief, food cravings are less about willpower and more about achieving blood sugar equilibrium. This is because spikes in glucose, often after meals or when skipping them, activate parts of our brain such as the hippocampus, caudate, and insula – the regions responsible for these intense cravings.

Dysregulated Hormones

High insulin levels influence our reproductive hormones including oestrogen and testosterone. High insulin levels can cause the ovaries to produce more testosterone than what is needed leading to symptoms including facial hair, weight gain, acne, poor libido. High insulin can also cause a cascade effect on sex hormone binding globulin lowering its function and allowing oestrogen levels to rise contributing to PMS symptoms, heavy or painful menses, sore breasts or fluid retention.

Energy Crashes

If your blood sugar is having extreme peaks and dips through the day, your energy will follow this rollercoaster! Come 3pm and you’ll generally notice a big slump or crash after meals. The best way to restore this is by eating a balanced breakfast including high protein content and ensuring you are having coffee with food, never on an empty stomach and ideally before 10AM!

Poor Concentration

High blood sugar levels can significantly impact cognitive function, leading to difficulty concentrating and mental fog. When blood sugar is elevated, it can affect the brain's ability to function optimally. Glucose, the primary source of energy for the brain, needs to be at stable levels for proper cognitive performance. However, with high blood sugar, the brain may struggle to receive and utilize glucose effectively. This can result in a lack of focus, decreased attention span, and challenges with memory recall.

If you are experiencing these symptoms, we recommend scheduling an appointment with one of our naturopaths to begin your journey towards a healthy blood glucose balance!

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