Sweet and Savory Hormone-Friendly Appetizer for the Holidays

What does "hormone friendly" even mean? When you hear the word hormone many peole think of sex hormones - estrogren, progesterone, and testosterone. However the human body has over 50 hormones.

Hormones function like a "lock and key" meaning there is a gland that releases the hormone (key) and a cell (lock) to which the hormone binds.

Once the key enters the lock the work of the hormone is carried out. For example after eating a meal (particualrly a meal with carbohydrates) insulin (key) is released from the pancreas (an organ/gland) and binds to our cells (lock). When this transaction is done correctly, the cell (lock) opens and sugar or glucose is now able to enter into the cells so they can continue to carry our their functions. We all need insulin to survive, without it our cells (cells such as your brain cell, red blood cells etc.) will not function. All of the hormones in the human body play an intricate role and any disturbances can alter other functions.

In order to understand the role of hormones it is imperative to know that the endocrine system is the star player.

The endrocrine system is the "control center" for our hormones and assist with things like:

  • energy production (metabolism)

  • reproduction

  • growth and development

  • response to stress and injury

So back to our original question, what does hormone-friendly mean?

Based on the roles described above, hormone friendly would indicate that it can assist with energy production, aid in healthy reproduction, growth and developlment and/or can provide recovery from stress or injury.

So, does the food we eat have the power to proliferate illness or even aid in recovery and healing? According to an overwhelming amount of research, chronic disease (heart disease, diabetes, cancer, etc) is majorly influenced by lifestye or behavior choices - one being your diet, aka the foods you eat. So the answer to the question is a resounding, YES. Food has power. In addition to current evidence-based science, Hippocrates knew this too well and said, “Let food be thy medicine, and let medicine be thy food."

It's the holidays and you should enjoy the foods

you love!

It also means being cautious and aware of how these foods make you feel. After eating your favorite meal does it make you feel energized or sluggish? Do you experience clearer skin or more breakouts? Or are you having upset stomach and digestion issues or is your stomach at ease?

If you're looking for foods to keep you calm, yet energized during the holidays aka hormone-balancing, then you should try experimenting with figs.