Women, we lose again. When it comes to weight, we already know that testosterone burns more fat, and yes, as it turns out, the ideas behind PMS are not all in our minds. Estrogen (and other female hormones in hormonal imbalances) could actually contribute to binge eating.
Yong Xu MD PhD, assistant professor of pediatrics at Baylor University says,
Previous research has shown that women who develop binge eating often have irregular menstrual cycles associated with a dysfunction in estrogen, suggesting the hormones play a role in this behavior. But it’s not necessarily what you would think. They compared their research to previous reports of lowering estrogen being associated with an increased binge eating behavior. As it turns out, higher estrogen levels meant less binge eating. How does that work?
Binge eating disorder, which is basically eating large amounts of food in a short period of time, is the single most common eating disorder. It is not a matter of just saying
stop eating so much. For 5 to 10% of the population, this is a serious thing that is hard to control, but how do we stop it?
One would think that estrogen therapy would be obvious, but as we have seen in hormonal menopause treatments, this can come with complications of its own. Xu found that current estrogen regimens can actually increase risk of breast cancer in women.
There are a number of foods that mimic the appearance of estrogen to the body. There are studies that have shown that foods like soy for example, or some herbs can help you without the negative impacts of hormone therapy (to a limited degree of course). But they are still testing a lot of it out.