Dr. Bindiya Gandhi joins me to talk about how hormones relate to weight loss and fertility. We also discuss the effect of gluten and Celiac disease on hormones and fertility.
Dr. Bindiya is a functional and integrative doctor who specializes in helping patients to alleviate their leptin resistance, lose weight, and return to wellness.
For a long time Dr. Bindiya suffered from nutritional deficiency due to a “healthy diet.” She suffered from constipation, anemia, acne, headaches, skin rashes, irregular menstrual cycles, constant fatigue, etc. She kept looking for answers on her residency program and traditional medicine and treatments without success until she started working with a functional integrative medicine doctor.
She finally found out she had Celiac Disease, which is a chronic digestive and autoimmune disorder that damages the small intestine. The disease is triggered by eating foods containing gluten. It turns out she had severe gluten sensitivity. So she started working on healing her “gut” and that’s when she finally started feeling better.
It was a great timing for her to discover this because she had just turned 30 and was going to get married and wanted to have kids. But that represented another problem.
There is a transition in learning how to eat gluten free and it takes time for the gut lining to heal and recover. It’s not just about avoiding gluten but how do we help our bodies recover from gluten damage to the gastro-intestinal tract.
There have been cases of people with fertility issues due to hormonal imbalances caused by Celiac Disease. Hormones can be such a mystery and so can fertility and weight loss for many, especially women.
In her practice, Dr. Bindiya was helping other women get pregnant but could not get pregnant herself due to hormonal issues. She was found to be estrogen dominant. So she started working on “rebalancing” her hormones and that is when she started learning about leptin.
What Is Leptin?
Leptin is the hormone that sends satiety cues to your brain when you eat, telling you that you’ve had enough. Consequently, leptin resistance is a hormonal condition in which inflammation disrupts the communication between your brain’s hypothalamus and your fat cells, thereby blocking leptin’s messages.
Often caused by inflammation, poor sleep, an unbalanced diet, or even chronic stress, leptin resistance heightens a patient’s risk factor for obesity, metabolism imbalances, and more.
Also, having high estrogen or low estrogen can impact fertility very differently. They both go hand in hand with your leptin levels and that’s what makes it challenging. But we can learn how to get to the right balance sending our bodies the right signals so it can regulate estrogen, progesterone, and leptin altogether, so you don’t have fertility and/or weight problems.
Leptin is a hormone that is produced by our fat cells and it communicates with our brains. It’s our satiety hormone. It lets us know if we’re full, if we need to eat again, etc. When this communication is off there is something called leptin resistance developing.
This is why people have weight loss plateaus where they lose weight and then their weight stalls. This is also why people have difficulty losing weight no matter what diet they’re following.
Leptin is a very important hormone. You may suspect there is something going on with your leptin levels if you find yourself constantly snacking or craving sugary foods for example. Also if you feel like you’re hungry all the time or if you just ate and half an hour later you feel like you need to eat again.
Unfortunately, most conventional medicine doctors do not check for this leptin level, and even if you go to an endocrinologist, which is a hormone specialist, they don’t check this level either because they don’t know what to do with it.
The other important thing about leptin is that it also regulates your metabolism. Leptin also communicates with your other hormones that regulate your insulin levels, it communicates with your estrogen levels and with your adrenal stress hormones so it’s very important be aware of your leptin levels.
There is a trendy diet now known as intermittent fasting which can cause an imbalance of leptin by sending a starvation signal. This ends up confusing the hormone signals and can cause problems like missing a menstrual cycle, which affects your fertility.
Another impact of leptin in our bodies is mood. When your leptin levels are really low, you tend to have more anxiety.
Many people have gluten digestion problems as an issue or leptin problems without even knowing about it. So they need to think outside the box and look for help with the right people who are willing to help them in nontraditional ways to get to the root of the problem and really start healing.
What Can You Do?
It’s about helping you and your body understand these signals so you can make different choices, make peace with your body, and learn how to feed it properly so all systems are in balance and functioning correctly.
If you want to learn more about your specific food sensitivities, such as gluten sensitivity, and what you can do to better feed your body and heal leaky gut, purchase my IgG & IgA Food Sensitivity Home Test Kit.
I have also developed a Leaky Gut Pro Package for enhanced gastrointestinal support and recovery from gluten and Celiac disease: https://doctordoni.com/product/leaky-gut-pro-package/
Find my online Heal Leaky Gut Program – available immediately – at https://doctordoni.com/leaky-gut-program
Or you can reach out to me to set up a one-on-one appointment if you prefer and I can guide you to know which tests I find to be most helpful for identifying hormone imbalances and underlying causes of weight gain and fertility issues.
We’re here to help you!
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