THIRD SPACE & HORMONES
The story of our lost energy
In 2012, Australian scientist, Dr Adam Fraser, came up with the concept of “Third Spaces”. These “Third spaces” are the sum of life’s transitions between different tasks, roles and environment. These spaces deeply reset our mind and regenerate our energy.
Over the past weeks, the frontiers between our different roles have melted away. The absence of work commuting, of social meetings and group training, have made our “regenerative third spaces” disappear. How to get back in control of our roles to feel present and vibrant in all circumstances is the purpose of this article.
Do you feel uncommonly tired?
The aftereffects of such a drastic change in our daily routine are countless. Our hormones constantly fluctuate in response to our outer environment. With the disappearance of our “third spaces”, our hormone balance suffers. Our appetite, sleep patterns, how we respond to stress, our libido, whether we are happy or anxious and everything in between is affected.
It is time to reflect on what you CAN do to balance our hormones back and build our resilience up. So we feel more energised.
One thing we can control that has a big impact on our hormonal balance is food. While working from home, having your work shifts altered or being stressed for your health or your loved ones, you may have succumbed to more sugar or alcohol.
These substances play havoc with your hormones leading to many metabolic imbalances that make you feel tired, tensed and less resilient.
When you eat sugar or refined flour, or when you drink alcohol, your brain releases dopamine and serotonin. These hormones boost your mood. But the short term effect has long term drawbacks. The more you eat, the more you want to eat because your brain becomes adapted to the effects of those foods.
As you are eating more, your blood sugar levels go up and down, your pancreas secretes more insulin, and you end up with cravings for those foods. Doesn’t it look like a catch-22 pattern?
But there is more. Blood sugar is linked to oestrogen. Oestrogen not only regulates the reproductive system but also plays a role in glucose homeostasis.
Women over 40, watch out!
The effects of those foods are different in the peri- to post-menopause period. If you keep doing what you did, you may be caught up in a series of undesirable effects. The recent underlying stress related to uncertainty and changes come into play to further disrupt your powerful and fine-tuned hormonal balance. And you quickly end up tired, unmotivated, teary, angry while your waistline changes.
Common hormonal imbalances show up as fatigue, sleep disorders, difficulty concentrating, feeling irritable, bloated and more. These are the complaints have heard recently as we have lost our “Third Spaces”.
1- You CAN recreate for yourself your “Third Spaces”, these moments between two roles, two actions, two locations. These moments where you breathe deeply, reconnect to yourself, re-balance your energy and are in tune with your deep personal needs.
2- You CAN re-assess how much and how often you ingest sugar and alcohol. To do this exercise you need to look to the obvious and the less obvious in your food (pasta, bread, fruit juices, yoghurts, tomato sauce, “healthy” snack bars.) – Sugar comes under many names on food labels. Check some names here. And look to the obvious and less obvious circumstances when you reach for alcohol (social situations, tiredness, fear, stress, overwhelm).
2- You CAN reach for fresh whole foods to replace these nutrient-depleted foods. The secret here is to Plan, Prep and Prac’ so healthy foods become convenient foods. There is nothing quicker prepared than a can of lentils with fresh tomatoes, parsley and a few walnuts.
In those challenging time, you may need some guidance to get back on track with a diet based on wholefood and no processed sugar. The Real Food Resolution runs over 10 days. It’s an all-done-for you program that keeps your busy life in mind.