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gut health and hormones

Gut Health and Hormones: How Chinese Medicine Can Help

Your gut health and hormone levels are intrinsically linked. While we sometimes think of the body as a set of closed systems, in reality, what happens to one part of the body affects another. Hormones, in particular, regulate your gut health and metabolism.

The gut microbiome is closely involved in the production, metabolism, and signaling of numerous hormones that govern crucial bodily functions. Studies have demonstrated that poor gut health affect hormones and increase the risk of hormonal issues like PMS, PCOS, estrogen dominance, endometriosis as well as infertility.

Keep reading to learn more about hut health and hormones and how Chinese Medicine can offer a natural solution to address hormonal imbalances by targeting the root cause.

What’s the Link Between Gut Health and Hormones?

Western Medicine & Research

Thus Gut health and hormonal balance work synergistically, each influencing the other’s function. It is challenging for a healthy gut to exist with hormonal imbalance and similarly, balanced hormones may not exist with an unhealthy gut.

Imbalances in gut bacteria have been associated with hormones such as estrogen, disruption in the gut microbiome results in decreased circulating estrogens. Cortisol which can lead to inflammation, thyroid cause either an accelerated or slowed metabolism, resulting in hormonal conditions such as:

gut health and hormones
Chinese Medicine, Spleen, Stomach & Hormone

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has long held that the body’s systems are interconnected – a delicate balance of hormones, Qi (vital energy), Blood and organ function.

Gut health is refer as The spleen and stomach organs function. They ensure provide nourishing blood facilitates regulated metabolism, internal balance, coordinated organ interaction, and control over processes like growth, development, and reproduction – which hormones govern.

For example, in traditional Chinese medicine, a healthy spleen and stomach organ function ensures a woman has regular menstrual cycles because it allows the body to produce the necessary hormones. An imbalance in the organ function could disrupt this hormonal process and her cycle. Thus, while not referring to “hormones” directly, regulating the spleen and stomach organ function is important to harmonize hormonal activity according to these ancient principles.

5 Root Causes of Imbalanced Gut Health and Hormones According to Chinese Medicine

In Chinese Medicine, the approach to addressing imbalanced gut health and hormones is deeply rooted in the principle of identifying and addressing the root cause of the imbalance rather than merely alleviating symptoms. It recognises that symptoms are manifestations of underlying imbalances within the body.

Some of the most common deficiencies and patterns observed with gut health and hormones include:

  • Liver Stagnation: The Liver regulates the smooth flow of Qi and Blood. Emotional stress or a sedentary lifestyle precipitate Liver Qi stagnation. This results in digestive issues and hormonal imbalances. Common symptoms include irritability, mood swings, and menstrual irregularities – all symptoms of altered gut microbiome.
  • Dampness: Arise from poor digestion and is often exacerbated by a diet high in greasy or cold foods. Such high levels of dampness block the natural flow of Qi, leading to the formation of Phlegm (a more congealed and substantial form of dampness). This can obstruct the flow of Qi and affect the endocrine system, potentially leading to conditions such as thyroid disorders or hormonal imbalances.
  • Imbalance in Spleen and Stomach: The Spleen and Stomach are central to digestion in Chinese medicine. The spleen is responsible for transforming food into Qi and Blood. If weakened – due to poor diet, stress, or overthinking – it leads to an accumulation of Dampness and Phlegm, which impairs nutrient absorption and energy production.
  • Inflammation: In Chinese Medicine, Inflammation is linked to excess Heat and Dampness, can affect digestion and body ability to absorb nutrients, inflammation can also weaken the body’s defensive energy (known as Wei Qi), and disrupt the smooth flow of Qi and Blood. This affects the hormonal balance, leading to various imbalances and symptoms such as menstrual irregularities, fatigue, and mood swings.
  • Stress: Stress is a major contributor to gut health and hormonal dysregulation. Chronic stress disrupts the flow of Qi, exacerbating issues like Dampness and Phlegm and causing poor digestion and nutrient absorption. It can also reduce the appetite, despite increasing energy consumption leading to weight loss.
gut health and hormones

Chinese Medicine Treatment To Restore Gut Health and Hormones

Several potential treatments exist to combat problems with gut health and hormone levels based on the principles of TCM.

Acupuncture

Acupuncture involves inserting fine needles into specific points on the body associated with the flow of energy. It’s works by addressing the root cause that are affecting the gut health and hormones. By modulating neurotransmitters and hormones, acupuncture regulates the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, mitigating symptoms of hormonal imbalances such as irregular menstruation, infertility, and menopausal discomfort.

Acupunctures anti-inflammatory effects reduce gut inflammation, promoting digestive function and nutrient absorption. In one study, acupuncture improved symptoms in people with Crohn’s disease. After 12 weeks of sessions, patients saw higher levels of intestinal anti-inflammatory bacteria, a stronger intestinal barrier, and prolonged remission of symptoms. Other studies confirm its effects on regulating gut motility, nutrient absorption, and maintaining the gut barrier.

Additionally, acupuncture can help reduce stress by lowering cortisol levels and promoting relaxation, which indirectly benefits hormonal balance and gut health.

Recommended Supplements

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GinSen’s Gut & Hormonal Balance Range supplements are ideal to be added to your daily routine and suitable for vegetarians.

Her Estro Balance
Her Estro Balance
Shen Ling Bai Zhu Tang
Shen Ling Bai Zhu
Ren Shen Jian Pi Tang
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Moxibustion for gut health and hormonal balance

Meanwhile, moxibustion – involving burning dried moxa on or near the skin’s surface to stimulate acupuncture points – shows some efficacy in increasing the beneficial gut microbiota, offering a potential indirect treatment for endometriosis. In a study, the relative content and species of beneficial bacteria increased due to moxibustion on the stomach meridian group.

Moxa Stick: These pure moxa sticks are effective and safe to use at home. Moxibustion is a Traditional Chinese Medicine treatment used for warm up the meridians and dispelling coldness. Offering an abundance of health benefits. 

Pure Moxa Sticks

Diet and Lifestyle

Chinese medicine heavily emphasises the use of diet and lifestyle to maintain gut health and hormonal balance. Consuming warm, cooked foods such as soups and stews supports the Spleen and Stomach, promoting proper digestion and nutrient absorption.

Avoiding cold, raw foods and greasy, heavy meals prevents the accumulation of Dampness and Phlegm, which can obstruct organ function and disrupt hormonal balance.

Incorporating stress management techniques is crucial. Practices like Tai Chi, Qigong, and meditation help maintain the smooth flow of Qi, reduce stress, and improve overall well-being. Regular physical activity supports liver function, enhances the regulation of Qi and blood, and contributes to a balanced hormonal and digestive system. Together, these dietary and lifestyle adjustments foster optimal gut health and hormonal harmony.

gut health and hormones
TCM consultation

Good digestion is central to our good health. When indigestion symptoms become regular, there may be a larger issue that needs to be addressed at its root cause. Some of the most common digestive problems include heartburn, acid reflux, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)… At GinSen, we offer a range of natural Chinese Medicine for indigestion discomfort you may be experiencing. For more information about how Chinese Medicine can help you with gut health and hormones, book your free consultation with our Chinese Medicine experts today

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. We can’t guarantee the treatment result, as the symptoms of conditions are unpredictable and vary greatly from person to person. The treatment length and recovery time also varies for individual. Please visit our clinics website: GinSen where a specialists will discuss your care and provide a consultation, and the treatment will be designed to meet your individual needs.

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