Sweet potatoes for Low Estrogen.
If you like sweet potatoes and think of them as a “health food” congrats, join the club! They are certainly an amazing, super yummy creation of nature that is a staple in my diet. I am assuming when you think of sweet potatoes, thoughts of fiber, carbs or the “healthy potato alternative may come to mind. Bud did you ever think of them as a female superfood? Maybe not ;) Well let me just say that yes, some foods are more “super” for either gender simply because of our differing hormonal systems. Sweet potatoes are one of those side-takers, as they are especially supportive of us women.
Story time: If you follow my Instagram account you may know my hormones have been a bit of a mess since puberty. Why? Long story but essentially, I had a terrible eating disorder that pre & during puberty that basically delayed my hormonal development and left them in a state of utter chaos. As are most of our health problems, I caused it myself without even knowing what my endocrine system was at the time by severely malnourishing my body. Still my hormones sure knew something wasn’t quite right and protested with an irregular period for years. Flash forward 7 years later and my period still has the tendency to go missing for months at a time! But, here I am, deciding to heal my hormones once and for all…naturally.
Where do sweet potatoes come in?
Well, as soon as I decided I was going to finally work on my hormones, I went to my *guardian angel* Christi Mendoza LAc., the Chinese Medicine practitioner that I give full credit for helping me heal from gastroparesis.
As a Traditional Chinese medicine practitioner, Christi is a big proponent for the “food as medicine” ideology and uses diet alterations as her first line of defense in the face of a body imbalance like my absent period.
Food as Medicine
So, during my appointment she mentioned foods that would be beneficial for nourishing my female hormones, and sweet potatoes were at the top of her list! I came to find out that aside from the great macro nutrient balance, fiber and vitamins that our western world give it credit for, yams and their cousin the sweet potato are known to positively impact our delicate balance of female hormones! (I linked a really interesting research article on it for all my fellow nerdy girls.) Now, I should just clarify, in case you don’t want to read the article: No plant foods actually contain hormones, but they can contain phytoestrogens and nutrients that can promote a healthy balance of our own.
So, after leaving Christi’s with a list of “to-dos,” one of the easiest was to include more sweet potatoes in my diet. Now, prior to this visit they were certainly apart of my diet, but they were not an everyday staple if you know what I mean. So, she suggested I make it a point to eat them everyday with the intention of supporting my estrogen and progesterone production (as she believes I have low estrogen & progesterone) by basically adding them in wherever I could.
What I DID
Off I went to Trader Joe’s to grab a bag of organic sweet potatoes, which by the way are less than $3!!!…and roasted up the whole bag to last me a full week. I would say that for about a month, maybe slightly longer, I would eat the equivalent of one large sweet potato a day and I honestly didn’t mind! Exactly one month later, the monthly gift arrived like a surprise letter from your sweet but kinda annoying third cousin. YAY!! Ya girl got her period back after being MIA for about 4 months.
Now, of course, I cannot assume causation from this one change, but it was certainly one of the changes I stuck to more consistently than others. What I am also saying is that food is powerful and hormonal issues can be supported naturally if you are willing to commit to lifestyle changes. 🤗
I’m curious: Has your period ever gone missing? How did you get it back?? Any natural hacks or stories?! I would love to hear about your experiences in the comments, as I am sure other girls would appreciate the advice as well.
Thank you so much for reading—Much Love