This fantastic article was written by Sarah Biren, a baker, cook, author, and blogger living in Toronto. We encourage you to check out her website here!
It is astounding how much damage can be done by one minor hormone imbalance. The entire endocrine system works throughout your body coordinating the vital chemical messengers also known as hormones. When one goes off track, the result can be major health problems, with symptoms like:
Infertility and irregular periods
Depression and anxiety
Weight gain or weight loss
Fluxes in appetite
Hair loss and hair thinning
Conventional treatment for hormonal imbalances, such as synthetic hormone replacement therapies, birth control pills, and thyroid medications, seem to help by masking the symptoms but never treating the actual issues causing them. In addition, the patient becomes dependent on them which puts them at risk for side effects like stroke, cancer, osteoporosis, anxiety, and reproductive problems.
The good news is that Mother Nature has given us the cure in the natural foods we can eat. Warm up this cold season with the classic comfort food – Green Soups! – that makes naturally balancing hormones easy and delicious.
3 Green Soups for Naturally Balancing Hormones
Chinese Broccoli Soup
Broccoli is a superfood when it comes to reducing excess estrogen. This cruciferous vegetable has a phytochemical which changes the extra estrogen into a form safer for the body. This greatly reduces the risk of estrogen-related cancer, such as breast and prostate cancer. (2)
A study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition proved the negative correlation between fibre and estrogen. The female participants doubled their fiber intake and after two months, all of them showed significantly lower levels of estrogen in their bloodstream. This reduced their risk for any cancer linked to hormones and improved their symptoms of excess estrogen, (3) such as anxiety, depression, and mood disorders. (4)
1.5 pounds broccoli
2 garlic cloves
2 tablespoon coconut oil
4 cups water
1 tsp turmeric
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1 cup coconut milk
Sauté the onion and garlic in the coconut oil in a large pot.
Add the water, spices, and broccoli.
Bring to a boil and simmer for about 20 minutes or 2 hours for increased flavor.
Puree the soup and blend in the coconut milk.
Asparagus Kale Quinoa Soup
Green soups like this will leave you feeling so refreshed and rebalanced. Asparagus is full of antioxidants and fiber which reduces damage from free-radicals, improves digestion, and aids the body in synthesizing the hormones and lowering cortisol levels. (5) This soup also features kale, which is a high source of magnesium, iron, and zinc which are necessary for hormone health. Similar to broccoli, kale also reduces excess estrogen and reverses breast cancer.(6) This soup is topped off with quinoa which contains vitamin E, zinc, magnesium and the nutrients that are crucial for hormone balance.(7)
1 pound asparagus, chopped into 1-inch pieces (about 2- spears)
4 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoon olive oil
4 cups of water
1 teaspoon salt
pinch of pepper
1 teaspoon basil
1 cup quinoa (I use a mix of white and brown.)
1 cup chopped kale
Sauté the onion and garlic in the oil in a large pot until opaque.
Add the asparagus, water, and spices.
Bring the pot to a boil and then simmer for about 20 minutes.
Puree the soup and adjust seasonings to taste.
Add the quinoa and cook on medium-low heat until the quinoa is cooked, about 15 minutes.
Add the kale and simmer for about 5 minutes until wilted.
Vegetarian Crock Pot Pea Soup
On the flip side, some women suffer from low levels of estrogen. This can negatively affect bone health, hair, skin and heart function. A natural treatment is to consume phytoestrogens. That’s what makes consuming green soups that contain peas and lentils so great. Phytoestrogens are pant-based compounds that stimulate many of estrogen’s functions. (8)
Researchers have found sweet potatoes to significantly increase estrogen in postmenopausal women as well as improving their hormonal status. Yams and sweet potatoes are also rich in antioxidants which reduce the risk of breast cancer and cardiovascular disease. (9)
2 cups dried split green peas, rinsed well
4-6 cloves of garlic, chopped (depending on taste preference)
2 medium onions, chopped finely
2 tablespoon olive oil
8 cups water
1 sweet potato, diced
1 teaspoon salt
pinch of pepper
Simply add all ingredients into the crock pot and let cook for about 6-7 hours on high or 8-10 on low.
Stir and adjust seasonings to taste.
Who knew that naturally balancing hormones could taste so good? Well, now you do! Hope you enjoy this variety of green soups.
Dr. Axe. 10 Ways to Balance Hormones Naturally. Accessed: March 3, 2016.
Jon J. Michnovicz Herman Adlercreutz H. Leon Bradlow. Journal of the National Cancer Institute. Changes in Levels of Urinary Estrogen Metabolites After Oral Indole-3-Carbinol Treatment in Humans. J Natl Cancer Inst (1997) 89 (10): 718-723. https://academic.oup.com/jnci/article/89/10/718/2526073/Changes-in-Levels-of-Urinary-Estrogen-Metabolites Published: May 21, 1997. Accessed: March 3, 2017.
D P Rose, M Goldman, J M Connolly, and L E Strong. The American Journal of Clinical Nutritional. High-fiber diet reduces serum estrogen concentrations in premenopausal women. http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/54/3/520.short Accessed: March 3, 2017
Whitney Wharton, Ph.D., Carey E. Gleason, Ph.D. Sandra R. M. S. Olson, Cynthia M. Carlsson, M.D., M.S., and Sanjay Asthana, M.D., F.R.C.P. (C). Neurobiological Underpinnings of the Estrogen – Mood Relationship. Curr Psychiatry Rev. 2012 Aug 1; 8(3): 247–256. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3753111/ Published: August 1, 2012. Accessed: March 3, 2017.
Tomohiro ITO, Kazunori GOTO, Jun TAKANARI, Takehito MIURA, Koji WAKAME, Hiroshi NISHIOKA, Aiko TANAKA, Jun NISHIHIRA. Effects of Enzyme-Treated Asparagus Extract on Heat Shock Protein 70, Stress Indices, and Sleep in Healthy Adult Men. Amino Up Chemical Co., Ltd. 2) Department of Medical Management and Informatics, Hokkaido Information University. Released on J-STAGE 20141009 Accessed: March 3, 2017.
Bo Sun, Huizhuan Yan, Fen Zhang, Qiaomei Wang. Effects of plant hormones on main health-promoting compounds and antioxidant capacity of Chinese kale. Food Research International. Volume 48, Issue 2, October 2012, Pages 359–366. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodres.2012.04.021 Accessed: March 3, 2017.
M. V. MithilaFarhath Khanum. Effectual comparison of quinoa and amaranth supplemented diets in controlling appetite; a biochemical study in rats. Journal of Food Science and Technology. Volume 52, Issue 10, pp 6735–6741. Published: October 2015. Accessed: March 3 2016.
Thompson LU1, Boucher BA, Liu Z, Cotterchio M, Kreiger N. Phytoestrogen content of foods consumed in Canada, including isoflavones, lignans, and coumestan. Nutr Cancer. 2006;54(2):184-201. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16898863 Published: 2006. Accessed: March 3, 2017.
Wu WH1, Liu LY, Chung CJ, Jou HJ, Wang TA. Estrogenic effect of yam ingestion in healthy postmenopausal women. J Am Coll Nutr. 2005 Aug;24(4):235-43. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16093400 Published: August 2005. Accessed: March 3, 2017.