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Various illnesses have impacted human beings due to lifestyle changes. The inner circadian rhythm works with the biological clock set within. It works in response to sunlight—our sleep/wake rhythm functions by this rhythm. With the sleep /wake cycle regulation, our metabolic system gets supported with various hormones which work inwards for our well-being. The sleep/wake rhythm disturbance affects this essential metabolic organ. Several factors regulate liver function. The most important is growth factor signalling, one of the keys to igniting the liver’s ability to regulate various metabolic functions.

Hormonal imbalance and its symptoms:
According to age, the presentations differ. When a child does not get to eat and sleep on time, according to their growing period, growth hormone secretion is impaired. This then affects the insulin-like growth factor, impairs growth, and development and even offsets the repairing mechanism. Hyperactivity, reduced attention span and restlessness are some presenting symptoms of this inner restlessness.

When we spoke to Dr Karthiyayini Mahadevan, Head, of Wellness and Wellbeing at Columbia Pacific Communities, about hormonal imbalance and its symptoms, she said during the period of puberty, sex hormones surge. The liver helps in the regulation of these hormones, too. The liver gets affected when the sleep/wake cycle disturbance alters the circadian rhythm. It leads to uneven distribution of body fat, excess sebum



production leading to acne, irregular menstrual cycle, obesity and Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome.

As an adult, this disturbance in circadian rhythm affects the liver, causing fatty liver. It is mainly due to impaired metabolism of carbohydrates and fat metabolism. Impaired glucose tolerance, as a result, leads to early-onset Diabetes. Overweight and obesity, water retention and high blood cholesterol are other effects.

At menopause, adrenal exhaustion occurs due to overstressed adrenals from impaired sleep-wake rhythm. This leads to exaggerated menopausal symptoms and water retention from impaired body fluid regulation.

As ageing progresses, if the liver is exhausted, there are studies to show that there will be an accumulation of proinflammatory substances, which generally get detoxified by the liver, accumulating in the bloodstream and leading to cognitive impairment /decline.

Tips:
1. Avoid High Glycaemic index foods, which are refined carbohydrates.
2. Eat dinner early, around 6 PM, closer to the inner body clock rhythm.
3. Avoid processed food loaded with preservatives.
4. Maintain a regular sleeping rhythm.
5. Engage in adequate physical activity as per your age and ability.

Overall, a positive attitude towards life and modifying the lifestyle to empower the inner physiology play an essential role in combating these hormonal imbalances.
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