Your hormones are critical to optimal body function, but many factors can interfere with your hormonal balance and cause disruptive symptoms. Madison Fandel, ND, provides customized hormone health treatments, including bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, at her practice in Pacifica, California. If you’ve been feeling fatigued or are gaining weight despite not changing your diet or exercise habits, call Dr. Fandel or schedule a consultation online today.

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What are hormones?

Your hormones are chemicals created by the glands in your endocrine system that help your body function correctly. For example, your hormones regulate:

Growth and development


Sexual function

Reproductive systems


Several internal and external factors influence your hormones. Health conditions like diabetes, thyroid disease, and Cushing syndrome can all interfere with hormone production. Additionally, stress, medications, and nutritional deficiencies can also affect your hormone production.

What are the signs of a hormone health problem?

If you have a hormonal imbalance, you might experience some distressing or uncomfortable symptoms. Health issues like low testosterone or menopause-related estrogen loss are common causes of hormonal imbalances. Both men and women may experience:

  • Weight gain
  • Fatigue
  • Hot flashes
  • Muscle mass loss
  • Muscle aches and stiffness
  • Decreased libido
  • Thinning hair
  • Frequent urination
  • Mood changes
  • Irritability and anxiety
  • Changes in bowel movements
  • Increased temperature sensitivity

Women might experience abnormal menstrual cycles, vaginal dryness, or excessive body hair growth. Symptoms specific to men include breast tissue development, erectile dysfunction, and a decrease in facial and body hair growth.

How are hormone health issues treated?

Dr. Fandel begins with a thorough consultation and blood tests to assess your current hormone levels. Then, she creates a customized treatment plan to restore your hormone health and address any imbalances. Depending on your needs, your plan might include bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, nutritional changes and supplements, and other lifestyle changes.

The following is a list of a few hormones found in the body and their functions in the body, and what it can look like when they are out of balance. 


  • protects against osteoporosis, heart disease, memory loss, colon cancer, incontinence, and tooth loss
  • enhances sleep, emotional well-being, mental acuity and focus, memory, attention span, communication, vision, hearing, taste, touch smell, digestion, libido, blood sugar regulation, and skin tone

Symptoms of Estrogen Deficiency:

  • hot flashes
  • night sweats
  • vaginal dryness
  • anxiety
  • mood swings
  • insomnia
  • depression
  • painful intercourse
  • bloating
  • flatulence
  • indigestion 
  • osteoporosis 
  • hair loss
  • frequent urination 
  • weight gain 

Symptoms of Estrogen Excess:

  • cervical dysplasia
  • depression with anxiety or agitation
  • weight gain (abdomen, hips, thighs)
  • water retention
  • poor sleep
  • headaches
  • swollen breasts
  • painful periods 
  • heavy periods
  • hypothyroidism 
  • fatigue 



  • has a calming effect and enhances mood
  • regulates fluid balance
  • increases blood sugar, thyroid function and mineral balance
  • relives menopausal symptoms 
  • protects against osteoporosis and heart disease
  • helps balance estrogen 
  • increases metabolic function 

Symptoms of Low Progesterone:

  • anxiety
  • depression
  • irritability
  • mood swings
  • insomnia
  • pain and inflammation 
  • osteoporosis
  • heavy, painful periods 
  • nervousness
  • headaches before periods
  • weight gain 

Symptoms of Progesterone Excess

  • elevated cortisol
  • increased insulin resistance 
  • increased appetite and carbohydrate cravings
  • bloating and gas 



  • builds muscle and promotes muscle tone
  • increases energy and libido
  • enhances sense of well being
  • helps strengthen bone 
  • helps skin from sagging 
  • decreases excess body fat 

Symptoms of Testosterone Loss:

  • muscle wasting
  • weight gain
  • fatigue 
  • low self esteem
  • thinning and dry hair
  • sagging cheeks 
  • anxiety 

Symptoms of Testosterone Excess:

  • anxiety 
  • depression
  • fatigue
  • facial hair
  • acne
  • weight gain



  • helps you respond to and cope with stress 
  • increases energy and metabolism
  • helps regulate blood pressure
  • reduces allergic and inflammatory response 
  • anti inflammatory 

Symptoms of Cortisol Excess:

  • decreased immune function 
  • increased osteoporosis risk
  • fatigue
  • irritability 
  • sugar cravings
  • decreased memory
  • night sweats
  • blood sugar increased
  • increased blood pressure
  • thin skin sleep disturbances
  • impaired thyroid hormone conversion 

Symptoms of Low Cortisol 

  • fatigue
  • low blood pressure
  • insomnia
  • digestive problems 
  • emotional imbalances
  • hypocalcaemia
  • decreased immunity
  • lack of stamina
  • emotional paralysis 
  • poor wound healing 



  • Thyroid hormones: T3, T4, T2, and T1
  • T3 is the most metabolically active, T4 is converted to T3 mostly in the liver
  • T4 to T3 conversion must happen in order for the your cells to utilize your thyroid hormone 
  • Thyroid hormones have many functions in the body it conrols metabolism, has other metabolic actions, has cardiovascular and neural effects

Symptoms of Low Thyroid Production:

  • depression
  • weight gain
  • constipation
  • Headaches
  • Brittle nails
  • Dry skin
  • Menstrual irregularities 
  • Slow speech 
  • Anxiety/panic attacks
  • Decreased memory
  • Muscle and joint pain 
  • Reduced heart rate 
  • Insomnia
  • Fatigue 
  • PMS
  • Carpel tunnel syndrome 
  • Arrhythmias 
  • Gallstones
  • Recurrent miscarriage 
  • Osteoprosis 

Symptoms of Thyroid Excess 

  • nervousness
  • increased motor and mental activity
  • excessive sweating
  • fatigue
  • heat intolerance
  • rapid heart rate
  • increase appetite 
  • weight loss
  • insomnia 

Call Madison Fandel, ND, today or make an appointment online to learn more about hormone health and optimization.