Ladies- Foods you should eat to help keep your hormones in balance

Ladies- Foods you should eat to help keep your hormones in balance

From the time of your mid to late thirties, your hormones will start to change. There are three distinct phases known as the peri-menopause, menopause and post menopause.

Hormonal changes are more subtle to begin with and become more pronounced through the menopausal years. These hormonal shifts, with reducing levels of oestrogen and progesterone, can cause significant distress to many women, and yet others can pass through this phase with little discomfort.

What you choose to include in your diet can make the difference to feeling out of control to remaining cool and calm.

Common symptoms that women experience are hot flashes, night sweats, sleep problems, mood swings, weight gain, lower libido and vaginal dryness. 

My previous article “Alleviating menopausal symptoms without reaching for HRT” expands on other important factors you should consider.

This article explains in more details the foods to eat in abundance to support your hormonal balance naturally.


Ladies- Foods you should eat to help keep your hormones in balance

The word “phyto” means plant, so in very simple terms, phytoestrogens are plant based compounds that have an oestrogenic effect.

They have been found to mimic oestrogen, since they bind to cell receptors to exert a gentle oestrogenic effect. How fantastic is that? 

There is no one food that has been found to be better than another, and there is no finite amount that you need to consume.

With all aspects of health, what works for one may not for another since we are all unique with different inherited traits, childhood and adult influences and lifestyles.

My advice is to continually rotate these foods and ensure you eat at least two different food types every day, if not more. 

Soya is a well known phytoestrogen, rich in isoflavones.  I recommend you choose fermented soya- tempeh, miso, natto, just like the traditional way of eating soya in the Far east.

The fermentation process reduces levels of phytic acid and oxalic acid that can hinder the absorption of minerals in your food (calcium, magnesium, iron, zinc).

Other good sources of phytoestrogens are flaxseeds, celery, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, chickpeas, lentils and peas.  I love hummus and it’s a double win as it contains both sesame seeds and chickpeas. 

Always choose milled or ground flaxseeds (and keep sealed and refrigerated to protect the fats) since whole ones are so tiny that they are likely to pass straight through.

They act as a great source of fibre but not much more. When they have been milled, it is much easier for your gut to extract the valuable nutrients.

Cruciferous vegetables 

Ladies- Foods you should eat to help keep your hormones in balance

Cruciferous vegetables contain a phytonutrient called indole-3-carbinol (I3C). I3C is then converted by stomach acid into its active form, DIM (diindolylmethane).

Putting aside these complicated names, DIM has been found to support healthy hormonal balance and metabolism. 

Most people are unaware that once oestrogen has been used, it must be processed through the liver and safely eliminated from the body.

There are different forms of metabolised oestrogen and DIM has been shown to stimulate the less potent safer form of oestrogen metabolites and help lower levels of the more potent form of metabolites.

An imbalance of these metabolites may contribute to perimenopausal symptoms including mood swings, headaches, hot flashes and poor sleep.

Cruciferous vegetables are broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, arugula, bok choy, collard greens, watercress, kale and horseradish.

Some people may consider supplementing DIM and may have heard of safety issues. The latest findings have not found any safety issues such as cancer risk. 

If anything the reverse may be true, but there is insufficient evidence to support this as yet. However, as a potential hormonal supplement, it should not be used during pregnancy and breastfeeding. 

Supporting the gut microbiome and gut elimination through foods

Ladies- Foods you should eat to help keep your hormones in balance

Gut bacteria are important for just about every aspect of your health, and we now know that they are important for oestrogen metabolism. 

Gut health is essential for efficient elimination of the bi-products of hormones helping to keep the body in balance. And a lack of microbial diversity and abundance has been found to be correlated with lower oestrogen levels.

Fermented foods such as kefir, kombucha, sauerkraut or kimchi are a useful addition to help support a healthy microbiome ratio and promote beneficial bacteria. Introduce these as part of your daily diet to support your hormone balance.

To support effective elimination of metabolised hormones, it’s so important to keep fibre intake really high. Forget “5 a day”. You should try and aim for “10 a day” of mostly vegetables with a little low sugar fruit (berries, small apples and pears) to really maximise your fibre intake.

Alongside vegetables, eat plenty of plant based proteins rich in fibre: pulses, nuts and seeds

Remember that foods are just one aspect of hormonal health. Do take a read of my other blog “Alleviating menopausal symptoms without reaching for HRT” which covers the other important factors you should consider for a comprehensive and holistic approach.

Thanks for reading and while you’re here, why not join my Facebook group?

Join my free Health Lifestyle & Nutrition Facebook Group ↓

A wonderful group where you can get help, advice, support and tips to help make the right lifestyle and nutrition choices for you.

I go LIVE regularly in the group with nutritional and naturopathic advice as well as run challenges and much much more!

You can join the group here >>

Looking for an Appointment?

You can book a free 30-minute discovery call with me simply visit, call me direct on 07730 513303 or email

Again, thanks for reading. 

Keep your eye out for more articles and Peyton Principles in the media.


Gut Health Nutritionist Caroline Peyton Principles
Caroline is a Professional Nutritionist, Naturopath based in Wiltshire.

A little more about me…

Providing expert, personalised, health advice utilising 10 years of nutritional therapy and naturopathy experience with a strong emphasis on digestion and gut health. Zoom or face to face Consultations.

I also develop and deliver well-being in the workplace workshops.

Helping people live happier, healthier more active lives.

 Get in touch here ⤵️


 Please make sure you Subscribe ⤵️ to my YouTube Channel…

Join my Facebook group Inspired Lifestyle Choices for women over 35. (Men welcome too!)

Follow me on Social Media for the latest in Natural Health…





Caroline Peyton

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 0 comments

Leave a Reply: