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Foods That Regulate Hormones According to Traditional Chinese Medicine 


When hormones are not in proper balance, it can result in a number of unwelcome symptoms.  These symptoms may include anything from weight gain to fatigue. Often, people may not realize that it is a hormonal imbalance that is the cause of their ailments. Though many believe that these imbalances are just an inevitable part of the aging process, the truth is that diet plays a huge role in regulating hormones. That is why it is so important to eat a healthy diet to ensure the body is able to properly balance hormones. To learn more about balancing hormones with food, read on.

Hormonal Imbalance from a Chinese Medical Perspective

It is completely normal for a women to experience fluctuation in hormones. When a woman is menstruating estrogen and progesterone ( Yin and Yang ) are in imbalance as they prepare for ovulation. The production of hormones decrease and your menstrual cycle begins (unless you are pregnant). Chinese medicine examines the principles of heat, cold, excess, and deficiency to balance hormones. 

A deficiency pattern can be recognised in a person who has difficulty transferring nourishment from food to blood and Qi, while an excess pattern can be seen as weight increase (also known as stagnation). The hot and cold nature of the body, which differs from its actual temperature.

Kidney is one of the organs that is responsible for regulation hormones

In Chinese Medicine Jing is stored in the Kidney. Kidney is one of the organs that is responsible for regulation hormones, it is closely related to the endocrine system.  Kidney yang is responsible for the metabolic process including the creation of kidney yin. The kidneys also store jing, or essence, which diminishes with age. Jing supports the functions of kidney yin and yang, so as it diminishes, an imbalance between yin and yang can occur. When yin and yang are not in proper balance, this can lead to hormonal imbalances. 

The good news is that there are plenty of healthy foods that regulate hormones. Simple changes in diet may be all it takes to get on the path to feeling better. Though it may seem difficult to make dietary changes, balancing hormones with food can be done easily.

Learn more about Chinese Medicine for hormonal imbalance here.

Hormone Balancing Diet

Balancing hormones with food is a lifestyle change that is very simple to incorporate. There are a lot of flavourful vegetables, lean meats, and low sugar fruits that can be added to any meal to help the body properly balance hormones while reducing or eliminating many of the unwelcome symptoms. A few examples of foods in a hormone balancing diet include: 


Cruciferous vegetables: Vegetables in the cruciferous family include spinach, rocket, boy choy, and broccoli. These foods are low in sugar and will not lead to large spikes in insulin. They are effective in clearing heat and reducing water retention. Spinach,  it’s known for its ability to tonify blood and yin. It also helps to clear heat. It is also easy to incorporate in many recipes or can be enjoyed on its own as a side salad, has been shown to regulate the hormones associated with hunger. 


Healthy fats: The name fat often gets a bad reputation since it is associated with the accumulation of adipose tissue which is also known as fat. Avocados are cool in nature and are especially important to nourish yin, building blood, moisten the intestines. They also high in healthy fats and can even help to reduce cholesterol levels. The fats found in the cocoa that makes up dark chocolate contain flavanols which may help to bring balance to insulin levels. In addition to hormone balancing, healthy fats such as olive oil may also reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. 


Colourful vegetables: When incorporating vegetables into a hormone balancing diet, eating a variety of colorful vegetables will ensure the proper intake of many essential micronutrients.  They are also high in fiber which helps the gut microbiome to flourish. As the gut ferments the fiber into short-chain fatty acids end products such as propionate, they then activate receptors to bring balances to hormones such as glucagon and leptin. When balancing hormones with food, include colourful foods such as sweet potato, tomatoes, eggplant, and radish. 


Cinnamon: Adding Chinese cinnamon to recipes or teas will help to control the levels of both insulin and leptin. 


Meat, fish, and eggs: A hormone balancing diet must include high-quality proteins daily. Sources such as grass-fed beef, poultry, and eggs are all great options for getting the right amount of complete protein.  Foods such as beef and salmon also contain leucine. Leucine is an amino acid that helps to activate the pathways that bring balance to insulin levels. These pathways also aid in cell-cycle progression and growth. Foods such as chicken will help to tonify the blood and qi while expelling coldness.


Magnesium: Avocados, nuts, seeds, and tofu are all good sources of magnesium. Without magnesium, the body is not able to properly synthesis the essential micronutrient Vitamin D. It also correlates with levels of thyroid hormone in women. When women approach perimenopause, magnesium levels will begin to decline. This may result in lower levels of thyroid hormone making it of great importance for women to ensure they are getting plenty of magnesium in their diet. 

Incorporating TCM Food into a Healthy Diet

Foods that regulate hormones are easy to incorporate into every meal. One way to ensure that every meal contains the right foods is to plan ahead. Take some time out each week to gather recipes that contain lean meats along with leafy or colorful vegetables as well as good fats like olive oil and avocado. Choose low sugar fruits, such as berries, for snacking. Planning ahead will also help with making better food choices rather than snacking on junk food. When dining out, view the restaurant’s menu ahead of time in order to make the best choice of the items available. When dining at home, keep things simple and enjoy a spinach salad with berries and a drizzle of olive oil alongside a lean cut of protein.

It is also important to consider which foods to avoid. Fried foods and alcohol should be avoided.



A change in diet may seem like an overwhelming undertaking. However, with a little bit of planning, it is easy to incorporate foods that regulate hormones into your everyday meals. Take time out to plan meals so that you are sure to get the right amount of colorful vegetables, lean meats, and essential micronutrients. As a result, you may feel less tired and have more success with weight management. If you would like to know more about balancing hormones with food, speak to a TCM practitioner about your options.  

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* 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 consultation page where a specialists will discuss your care and provide a consultation, and the treatment will be designed to meet your individual needs.

balancing hormones with food

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