Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Subscribe to the Magazine for free
Subscribe for free to keep reading! If you are already subscribed, enter your email address to log back in.
Thanks for subscribing!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Are you a healthcare practitioner?
Thanks for subscribing!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

8 Supplements that Balance Hormones to Look Out For

Medically reviewed by 
8 Supplements that Balance Hormones to Look Out For

Hormone health has garnered much attention in the functional wellness world and for good reason. Our hormones orchestrate a complex and intricate web of communications that directly impact all systems in the body from metabolic and adrenal health to reproductive health and well-being. When this communication system falters, symptoms and disease can result, from the fatigue and weight gain of hypothyroidism to irritability and disrupted sleep from chronic stress.

The good news is that we can help support a healthy balance of hormones through foundational changes in diet, exercise, and stress mitigation practices and through the addition of key supplements.


Understanding Hormones and Their Impact 

Hormones act as chemical messengers, playing a pivotal role as the body’s key communication system. There are over 50 known hormones in the human body, each performing a particular function. These messengers are released by various glands and travel throughout the bloodstream to bind to specific cellular targets, called receptors, initiating a process that ultimately results in the increased expression of certain proteins (19). For example, after a large meal, the pancreas gland will release the hormone insulin to facilitate the movement of glucose from the blood and into cells where it can be used as energy. Insulin also acts on the liver to store glucose for later use. In this way, insulin is vital in maintaining healthy levels of glucose both in the blood and within cells. 

The glands that secrete hormones are referred to as endocrine glands. Major endocrine glands include the thyroid, adrenals, pancreas, reproductive organs, and the pituitary. The pituitary gland acts as the master regulator of the endocrine system by regulating hormone release from endocrine glands in response to changing levels within the body. When levels are too high, the pituitary gland releases hormones that act on downstream glands to slow their secretion, and conversely, when levels are too low, the pituitary releases hormones that promote greater stimulation of hormone secretion. This complex calibration of hormone level fluctuations helps ensure homeostasis within the body which is essential for health and function (19). When this process breaks down, hormone imbalance can occur which can have detrimental effects on overall health and well-being. 

Who Should Consider Using Supplements to Balance Hormones?

Because the endocrine system is highly dynamic and complex, it is unfortunately all too common for imbalances to occur. When imbalances are persistent they can lead to all sorts of unwanted symptoms and disease. Supplements, when used appropriately and along with proper lifestyle and nutrition, can help support hormonal health to prevent imbalances and maintain healthy hormonal homeostasis (45). In order to decide whether supplements are right for you, let’s take a closer look at common signs and symptoms of endocrine dysfunction. 

As described previously, imbalances of pancreatic hormones can lead to blood sugar dysregulation and have profound impacts on metabolic health including the development of insulin resistance and diabetes. Thyroid hormones are also involved in metabolic processes and are responsible for growth and development. When hormones are dysregulated, hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism may result. Symptoms of metabolic hormone imbalance include:

  • Unexplained weight loss or weight gain
  • Persistent fatigue
  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Rapid pulse or unusually slow pulse
  • Skin changes such as dry skin, brittle nails, or darkened patches of skin
  • Hair texture changes or hair loss
  • Mood changes
  • Numbness and tingling sensations in hands or feet
  • Increased thirst, hunger, or urination

The adrenal glands along with the pituitary gland and hypothalamus create the Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal axis (HPA axis) which helps to regulate the body’s stress response via stress hormones such as cortisol and epinephrine. It also plays a minor role in sex hormone production via the hormone DHEA and electrolyte balance via aldosterone. Common symptoms of adrenal dysfunction include:

  • Burnout
  • Fatigue
  • “Wired and tired” feeling
  • Anger and irritability 
  • Disrupted sleep
  • Brain fog
  • Sugar and salt cravings
  • Acne

Another major endocrine player is the reproductive organs such as the ovaries and testes. These are responsible for the release of sex hormones such as testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone which are essential to reproduction and sexual function. Sex hormone imbalances can show up as:

  • Irregular menstrual cycles
  • Heavy and/or painful periods
  • Low libido
  • Difficulty gaining muscle
  • Fertility issues
  • Hair loss or excessive hair growth
  • Acne
  • PMS
  • Menopause-related hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness

If any of these symptoms ring true for you, it may be possible that hormonal imbalance may be at play. Luckily, there are many supplements, lifestyle, and nutrition options that can help to optimize hormone health and regain healthy functioning. 

The Top 8 Supplements to Balance Hormones

Below are the top 8 best supplements recommended for hormonal balancing:

1. B Vitamins for Hormonal Balance 

B vitamins play a multitude of essential roles in the human body, one of which is contributing to hormone production and regulation. One of the primary ways B vitamins can help achieve hormonal balance is by supporting liver detoxification processes. The liver is a key player in safely inactivating and eliminating harmful substances, including outside hormones and hormone metabolites, from the body. One of the ways in which it does this is through a process called methylation which relies on adequate levels of folate, B12, and B6 in order to function properly. For example, some estrogen metabolites can cause DNA damage in significant amounts. Methylation helps to neutralize these metabolites into less harmful forms that are able to be excreted safely from the body. B vitamin deficiencies can therefore interfere with this process, resulting in excess levels of hormone metabolites. 

B vitamins are also important in metabolic hormone function and processes. B12 deficiencies are often seen in patients with hypothyroidism (4). B6 deficiency has been implicated in patients with both Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes. Insulin and glucagon are both metabolic hormones that help to regulate blood sugar levels. Deficiencies in B6 can inhibit both of these hormones which in turn can upset blood sugar balance (23). Furthermore, studies show that deficiencies in B6, B12, and folate can lead to oxidative stress, causing decreased insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance which increases the risk of diabetes. A good B complex that includes vitamins B3, B6, B12, and folate, therefore can play an important part in a healthy blood sugar protocol

B vitamins also can help improve sex hormone regulation. B6 in particular has been studied extensively for its effects on PMS. One study showed that regular intake of B6 reduced excess estrogen levels in the blood while increasing progesterone levels. Another study that followed 94 women over three cycles found that supplementing with B6 significantly reduced PMS symptoms such as bloating, mood swings, irritability, and anxiety. It is important to note that oral contraceptives often deplete B vitamins, so supplementation should be considered in these cases (23). 

2. Probiotics and Gut Health for Hormone Balancing

Hormones have long been known to play a pivotal role in digestive health and function. For example, cortisol a stress hormone released from the adrenal glands, can alter gut motility, gut barrier function, and the microbiome. Declining estrogen levels, as seen in perimenopause and menopause, can increase intestinal permeability and with it, inflammation (17). Emerging evidence shows that the relationship between hormones and gut health is not one-way and that the gut microbiome can also exert a significant influence on hormone health. 

When supplied with a rich diet of fiber, some bacteria within the microbiome are able to produce short-chain fatty acids (SFCAs) as byproducts of digestion. These SFCAs act similarly to hormones and can travel to organs outside the gut where they have positive effects on energy levels, glucose balance, lipid metabolism, and inflammation modulation (27 Taking probiotics can help enhance these effects by supporting the bacteria that produce SFCAs. 

Beyond SFCAs, the microbiome influences many other hormonal systems in the body. Via the gut-brain axis, it is able to produce neurotransmitters such as GABA, dopamine, and serotonin that impact mood and focus. It partially regulates sex hormones through the secretion of beta-glucuronidase which helps to modulate the circulation of estrogens. Supplementation with probiotics has shown positive effects on sex hormone issues such as infertility, PCOS, and excess estrogen (22). Probiotics have also been shown to exert a positive influence on trace elements important to endocrine function, such as selenium and zinc, which are essential to thyroid health (28). The probiotic Akkermansia muciniphila promotes metabolic hormone function by decreasing gut barrier inflammation and dysfunction (27).

3. Zinc for Hormone Balancing

Zinc is an essential element that plays a key role in many different hormone functions. Zinc helps activate thyroid hormones by aiding thyroid receptor binding and protects the thyroid against oxidative damage. Zinc is also required for the production and proper secretion of insulin from the pancreas. It plays a major role in sex hormone function as it is necessary for the healthy production of sperm, ovulation, fertilization, and pregnancy. In men, it helps to regulate testosterone levels. Its ability to inhibit 5 alpha-reductase makes it an important treatment consideration for PCOS as it helps to reduce the androgen dihydrotestosterone that causes hirsutism and acne (24). 

4. Omega-3 Fatty Acids for Hormone Balancing

Omega 3s are a type of essential fatty acids that are well known for their ability to lower inflammation. They also help to promote healthy sex hormone regulation. Supplementation with Omega 3s can not only optimize levels of luteinizing hormone, total testosterone, and sex hormone binding globulin in women with PCOS, but it can also increase their insulin sensitivity (46). Omega 3s can be an important consideration for post-menopausal women. One study showed that 1000mg of Omega 3 fatty acids taken daily for 4 months increased levels of estrogen. As estrogen decline post-menopause is a driving factor of osteoporosis, intake of Omega 3s is a possible bone loss prevention strategy. A particular Omega 3 fatty acid, DHA, helps increase free estradiol levels by reducing sex hormone-binding globulin activity (15). 

5. Vitamin D3 for Hormone Balancing

Vitamin D is itself a hormone with receptors that are found throughout the body including in the brain, breast, prostate, and pancreas (30). Among its many actions, it is involved with sex hormone production, bone health, and insulin sensitivity. Vitamin D helps facilitate sperm maturation and adequate levels are associated with healthy sperm motility (5). Vitamin D can increase estradiol and progesterone levels by acting as a transcription factor for these hormones. Vitamin D deficiency is implicated in the development of osteoporosis, and supplementation is often a part of osteoporosis prevention (2). It can also increase insulin sensitivity for metabolic health by stimulating the expression of insulin receptors which enhances glucose transport (30).

6. Rhodiola for Hormone Balancing

Rhodiola is an herbal adaptogen that works on the HPA axis to help mitigate the physiological effects of chronic stress by modulating the release of adrenal stress hormones such as cortisol. It is well known for its positive effects on cognition and energy especially as it relates to improving these outcomes under chronic stress (25). 

7. Red Raspberry Leaf for Hormone Balancing

Red raspberry leaf is another herbal medicine that has a long traditional history of use as a uterine tonic, helping to strengthen and tone the tissues of the uterus. It is thought to increase pelvic and uterine blood flow and improve pelvic tone, helping to alleviate menstrual cramping. Red raspberry leaf is also rich in nutrients and minerals including calcium, iron, potassium, and vitamins A, C, and E (3). 

8. Chasteberry/Vitex for Hormone Balancing

One of the most popular herbs for hormonal support is chasteberry, also referred to as Vitex.  Chasteberry acts on the pituitary gland by functioning as an agonist for dopamine-2 receptors in the anterior pituitary. This reduces the release of the hormone prolactin and causes a rise in luteinizing hormone which promotes the development of the corpus luteum. The corpus luteum, in turn, increases progesterone levels to help correct progesterone deficiencies if present. Studies have demonstrated that supplementation with chasteberry resulted in a notable reduction in PMS symptoms such as irritability, breast tenderness and swelling, food cravings, and cramps. In women experiencing menopausal symptoms, taking chasteberry for eight weeks significantly reduced anxiety and hot flashes. 

Lifestyle Changes to Support Hormonal Balance 

In addition to proper supplementation, lifestyle changes such as dietary modifications, stress mitigation practices, and exercise can be fundamental in improving hormone balance and function. 

Increasing fiber intake by adding a variety of vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, and legumes into the diet can help support a robust and diverse gut microbiome which in turn can have broad effects on hormonal health. Adding in probiotic foods such as yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, miso, and kimchi can help increase beneficial bacteria strains in the gut. Fiber also helps to reduce spikes in blood sugar by slowing down its absorption which can be helpful for maintaining blood glucose levels. 

Vegetables in the brassica family (broccoli, mustards, brussel sprouts, kale, collards, etc) are high in a compound called diindolylmethane (DIM) which can help lower estrogen levels and reduce the production of the estrogen metabolites known to cause DNA damage (16). Additionally, brassicas, and in particular broccoli sprouts, help to boost the body’s production of antioxidants which helps protect against oxidative damage. 

Sea vegetables such as kelp and kombu are a natural source of iodine which is essential for proper thyroid functioning. Iodine is involved in the production and release of the thyroid hormones T3 and T4. Low levels of iodine suppress thyroid hormone production which can lead to hypothyroidism. 

Eating a varied diet rich in vegetables, fruit, legumes, whole grains, healthy fats, and proteins helps to provide the body with the micronutrients, minerals, and vitamins that help support healthy hormone function. Wild-caught fish such as salmon increases omega-3 fatty acids. Pumpkin seeds are a great source of zinc. Just a few brazil nuts a day can provide optimal levels of selenium which is important for thyroid health. 

Beyond diet, stress mitigation practices are also vital in balancing hormones by helping to regulate the HPA axis. Incorporating stress-reducing activities such as yoga, meditation, breathing practices, and daily walks in nature can help to reduce stress hormone activation and the resultant physiological effects. 

Regular exercise is an essential component of the hormone-balancing protocol. It can improve hormonal functioning in people with PCOS, improve fertility outcomes, reduce endometriosis symptoms, reduce PMS frequency and severity, and increase metabolic health and insulin sensitivity. It has also been shown to increase brain-derived neurotropic factor which can decrease inflammation, improve gut health and function, and further mitigate stress. 


Key Takeaways

Hormone balance is pivotal to human health and well-being. The role hormones play as the body’s communication system is multi-faceted and complex and has direct implications on our metabolic, reproductive, adrenal, and functional health.

By incorporating healthy nutritious foods into our diet, engaging with regular physical activity, mitigating stress, and using appropriate supplementation, we can help support our hormones in maintaining homeostasis to help ward off imbalance and disease.  

The information provided is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always consult with your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider before taking any dietary supplement or making any changes to your diet or exercise routine.
Learn More
No items found.

Lab Tests in This Article

No items found.
  1. Abraham, G. E. “Nutritional Factors in the Etiology of the Premenstrual Tension Syndromes.” The Journal of Reproductive Medicine, vol. 28, no. 7, 1983, pp. 446–464, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  2. Al-Shaer, Amani H, et al. “Assessing the Effect of Omega-3 Fatty Acid Combined with Vitamin D3 versus Vitamin D3 Alone on Estradiol Levels: A Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Trial in Females with Vitamin D Deficiency.” Clinical Pharmacology: Advances and Applications, vol. Volume 11, Feb. 2019, pp. 25–37,
  3. Aviva Jill Romm. Botanical Medicine for Women’s Health. St. Louis, Missouri Elsevier, 2018.
  4. Benites-Zapata, Vicente A., et al. “Vitamin B12 Levels in Thyroid Disorders: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.” Frontiers in Endocrinology, vol. 14, 22 Feb. 2023,
  5. Chen, Yilu, and Xu Zhi. “Roles of Vitamin D in Reproductive Systems and Assisted Reproductive Technology.” Endocrinology, vol. 161, no. 4, 18 Feb. 2020, Accessed 18 Jan. 2022.
  6. Christie, Jessica. “95% of American’s Aren’t Getting Enough Fiber: How Many Grams Should We Be Consuming per Day?”, 13 Dec. 2022, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  7. ---. “Niacin for Diabetes: Understanding Its Impact on Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes.” Rupa Health, 22 Nov. 2023, Accessed 8 Mar. 2024.
  8. Cloyd, Jamie. “Chasteberry (Vitex): A Herbal Approach to Hormonal Imbalance in Women’s Health.” Rupa Health, 15 Jan. 2024, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  9. ---. “Rhodiola Rosea: A Natural Approach to Managing Adrenal Fatigue.” Rupa Health, 8 Jan. 2024, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  10. ---. “Saw Palmetto’s Role in Hormonal Balance and Prostate Health.” Rupa Health, 12 Jan. 2024, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  11. ---. “The Gut-Brain Axis in Clinical Practice: Functional Approaches to Mental Wellness.” Rupa Health, 5 Dec. 2023, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  12. ---. “Zinc’s Influence on Hormonal Health: An Essential Mineral in Endocrine Disorders.” Rupa Health, 12 Jan. 2024, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  13. Cloyd, Katelyn. “Calcium-D-Glucarate’s Effectiveness in Estrogen Balance: An Integrative Endocrine View.” Rupa Health, 10 Jan. 2024, Accessed 8 Mar. 2024.
  14. DePorto, Tanya. “Omega 3’S: The Superfood Nutrient You Need to Know About.” Rupa Health, 6 Jan. 2023, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  15. Didier Majou, and Anne-Lise Dermenghem. “DHA (Omega-3 Fatty Acid) and Estradiol: Key Roles in Regional Cerebral Glucose Uptake.” Oilseeds and Fats, Crops and Lipids, vol. 30, 1 Jan. 2023, pp. 22–22, Accessed 15 Dec. 2023.
  16. Fujioka, Naomi, et al. “Harnessing the Power of Cruciferous Vegetables: Developing a Biomarker for Brassica Vegetable Consumption Using Urinary 3,3′-Diindolylmethane.” Cancer Prevention Research, vol. 9, no. 10, 18 Aug. 2016, pp. 788–793, Accessed 26 Mar. 2021.
  17. He, Song, et al. “The Gut Microbiome and Sex Hormone-Related Diseases.” Frontiers in Microbiology, vol. 12, 28 Sept. 2021,
  18. Henson, Jeremy D., et al. “Enhancing Endocannabinoid Control of Stress with Cannabidiol.” Journal of Clinical Medicine, vol. 10, no. 24, 14 Dec. 2021, p. 5852,,
  19. Johnson, Reijonon. “The Role of Hormones in the Physiological Processes of Human Body.”, 30 June 2023,
  20. Kashanian, M., et al. “Pyridoxine (Vitamin B6) Therapy for Premenstrual Syndrome.” International Journal of Gynaecology and Obstetrics: The Official Organ of the International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, vol. 96, no. 1, 1 Jan. 2007, pp. 43–44,, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  21. LoBisco, Sarah. “How Food Affects Your Mood through the Gut-Brain Axis.” Rupa Health, 16 Sept. 2022, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  22. López-Moreno, Ana, and Margarita Aguilera. “Probiotics Dietary Supplementation for Modulating Endocrine and Fertility Microbiota Dysbiosis.” Nutrients, vol. 12, no. 3, 13 Mar. 2020, p. 757,
  23. Mascolo, Elisa, and Fiammetta Vernì. “Vitamin B6 and Diabetes: Relationship and Molecular Mechanisms.” International Journal of Molecular Sciences, vol. 21, no. 10, 23 May 2020, p. 3669, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  24. Nasiadek, Marzenna, et al. “The Role of Zinc in Selected Female Reproductive System Disorders.” Nutrients, vol. 12, no. 8, 16 Aug. 2020, p. 2464,
  25. Panossian, Alexander, and Georg Wikman. “Effects of Adaptogens on the Central Nervous System and the Molecular Mechanisms Associated with Their Stress—Protective Activity.” Pharmaceuticals, vol. 3, no. 1, 19 Jan. 2010, pp. 188–224,,
  26. Preston, JheriAnn. “The Benefits of Exercise for Women’s Health.” Rupa Health, 27 Mar. 2023, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  27. Rastelli, Marialetizia, et al. “The Gut Microbiome Influences Host Endocrine Functions.” Endocrine Reviews, vol. 40, no. 5, 13 May 2019, pp. 1271–1284,
  28. Sevim, Çiğdem, and Mehtap Kara. “Can Probiotics Win the Battle against Environmental Endocrine Disruptors?” Arhiv Za Farmaciju, vol. 71, no. 6, 2021, pp. 565–580, Accessed 27 Aug. 2022.
  29. Spinella, Toni C., et al. “The Impact of Cannabidiol Expectancy on Cortisol Responsivity in the Context of Acute Stress: Associations with Biological Sex.” Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research, 7 Aug. 2023,, Accessed 8 Mar. 2024.
  30. Sung, Chih-Chien, et al. “Role of Vitamin D in Insulin Resistance.” Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology, vol. 2012, 2012, pp. 1–11,
  31. Sweetnich, Jerrica. “Complementary and Integrative Medicine Approaches to Type 2 Diabetes Management.” Rupa Health, 25 Apr. 2023, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  32. ---. “Getting to Know Vitamin D: From Testing to Supplementing and Meeting Your RDA’s.” Rupa Health, 4 May 2023, Accessed 8 Mar. 2024.
  33. ---. “Health Benefits of Zinc.” Rupa Health, 5 Apr. 2023, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  34. ---. “How to Make Sure Your Patients Are Getting Enough Vitamin B6 in Their Diet: Testing, RDA’s, and Supplementation 101.” Rupa Health, 24 Apr. 2023, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  35. ---. “Integrative Treatment Options for Adrenal Disorders: Specialty Testing, Nutrition, Supplements.” Rupa Health, 12 June 2023, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  36. ---. “Iodine 101: Testing, Top Foods, and Supplements.” Rupa Health, 17 Mar. 2023, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  37. ---. “Selenium 101: Testing, Top Foods, and Supplements.” Rupa Health, 22 Mar. 2023, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  38. Teeter, Lauren Ann. “Using Functional Nutrition to Address Hormone Imbalances.” Rupa Health, 13 Apr. 2023, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  39. Ulloque-Badaracco, Juan, et al. “Vitamin B12, Folate, and Homocysteine in Metabolic Syndrome: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.” Frontiers, Frontiers of Endocrinology, Dec. 2023, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  40. van Die, M., et al. “Vitex Agnus-Castus Extracts for Female Reproductive Disorders: A Systematic Review of Clinical Trials.” Planta Medica, vol. 79, no. 07, 7 Nov. 2012, pp. 562–575,
  41. Weinberg, Jennifer. “A Functional Medicine Protocol for Hyperthyroidism.” Rupa Health, 7 Feb. 2023, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  42. Weinberg, Jennifer L. “An Integrative Medicine Approach to Hypothyroidism.” Rupa Health, 7 Sept. 2022, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  43. Yoshimura, Heather. “A Comprehensive Guide to Nutrition and Supplements for Supporting Detoxification Pathways.” Rupa Health, 1 Aug. 2023, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  44. ---. “The Role of B Vitamins in Methylation Processes: Clinical Applications and Dosage Guidelines.” Rupa Health, 2 Feb. 2024, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  45. Yoshimura, Heather . “Balancing Hormones in Younger Women: A Comprehensive Guide to Hormonal Health.” Rupa Health, 8 Aug. 2023, Accessed 7 Mar. 2024.
  46. Yuan, Jialing, et al. “Efficacy of Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids on Hormones, Oxidative Stress, and Inflammatory Parameters among Polycystic Ovary Syndrome: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.” Annals of Palliative Medicine, vol. 10, no. 8, Aug. 2021, pp. 8991–9001,
Subscribe to the Magazine for free to keep reading!
Subscribe for free to keep reading, If you are already subscribed, enter your email address to log back in.
Thanks for subscribing!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Are you a healthcare practitioner?
Thanks for subscribing!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.