hormone, hormone imbalance, nutrient deficiencies
Dr. Laura Pipher

Dr. Laura Pipher

Why your hormone imbalances are related to nutrient deficiences

As a naturopathic doctor focusing in women’s health, I regularly encounter the complex interplay between hormone imbalances, nutrition, and overall well-being. Hormones act as chemical messengers, coordinating various bodily functions, including menstrual cycles, fertility, metabolism, and mood. Maintaining hormonal balance is crucial for women’s health throughout life, and understanding the impact of nutrient deficiencies on this balance is essential. Because of this, I want to discuss the role of nutrients in hormone balance. 

The Essential Role of Nutrients in Hormone Production and Regulation:

Our bodies rely on various nutrients to synthesize, transport, and utilize hormones effectively. As a result of nutrient deficiencies these processes can be disrupted, leading to hormonal imbalances and associated health concerns. The following are some key nutrients to consider when looking at hormonal imbalances. 

Vitamin D

Vitamin D acts more like a hormone than a vitamin and as a result plays a vital role in regulating various hormones, including sex hormones and insulin. Studies have shown a link between vitamin D deficiency and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), due to its impact on insulin regulation. Additionally, research has also looked at vitamin D deficiency and the role it plays in ovulation, painful periods and PMS. 

B Vitamins

B vitamins are essential vitamins crucial for the metabolism of hormones like estrogen and thyroid hormones. Deficiencies in B vitamins, particularly B6 and B12, can contribute to irregular menstrual cycles, mood swings, and fatigue. 


This mineral plays a significant role in over 300 bodily processes, including hormone regulation. Magnesium deficiency has been linked to premenstrual syndrome (PMS) and irregular menstrual cycles. Magnesium is also required for adequate thyroid function and inadequate stores can influence metabolism and the ability to have a good night’s sleep. 

Omega 3 Fatty Acids

These healthy fats are essential for maintaining cell membrane health and hormone signalling. Studies suggest that omega-3 deficiency might contribute to menstrual irregularities and PMS symptoms. Adequate omega 3 fatty acids can also help reduce inflammation seen in endometriosis and painful periods. 

Additional Considerations:

Beyond specific nutrient deficiencies, other factors  to consider when it comes to hormonal imbalances can include :

  • Stress

Chronic stress can elevate cortisol levels, disrupting various hormonal pathways.

  • Gut Health 

The gut microbiome interacts with the hormonal system, and imbalances in gut bacteria can influence hormone production and metabolism.

  • Environmental Toxins

Exposure to environmental toxins can disrupt hormonal function.

Promoting Hormonal Balance through a Comprehensive Approach:

A holistic approach is key to optimizing hormonal health. Here are some steps women can take:

  1. Prioritize a balanced and nutrient-rich diet: Focus on whole foods, including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, and lean proteins.

  2. Consider supplementation: Consult a qualified healthcare professional to determine if specific nutrient deficiencies warrant personalized supplementation.

  3. Manage stress: Integrate stress-reduction techniques like yoga, meditation, or mindfulness exercises into your daily routine.

  4. Support gut health: Consume fermented foods, prebiotics, and probiotics to promote a healthy gut microbiome.

  5. Minimize exposure to environmental toxins: Choose organic produce when possible, use non-toxic cleaning products, and limit exposure to plastics and other harmful chemicals.


By understanding the roles of specific nutrients and taking a comprehensive approach to health, women can empower themselves to maintain hormonal balance and promote well-being throughout their lives. Remember, consulting a qualified healthcare professional can provide personalized guidance and support on your journey towards optimal hormonal health.


  1. Mohebbi, M., Mehdizadeh, M. R., Jafari-Nasab, R., & Moattari-Mehrabi, A. (2016). Vitamin D deficiency and polycystic ovary syndrome: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 101(11), 3980-3988. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC10328709/

  2. Bánki, E., Béres, E., Molnár, É., Trummer, G., & Szanyó, B. (2010). Vitamin and mineral deficiencies in women with premenstrual syndrome. International Journal of Women’s Health, 2(2), 187-19

  3. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6226777/)

  4. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2823660/)

  5.  (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5728718/)

  6. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3183450/)

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