A doctor has shut down five myths that have been circulating online about how to balance hormones as searches for shortcuts skyrocket.

In the last year, the hashtag #hormonebalancing has gained more than 21 million views on the popular video-sharing app – but you shouldn’t believe everything you see online.

Dr. Emilee WayneLicensed Naturopathic Physician (NMD), member of the Endocrine Society, Medical Advisor at Mira, has warned that these so-called hormonal health hacks are not a one size fits all solution as she has responded to five of the most viewed myths being circulated online.

Myth #1: Eat 2 brazil nuts a day to make thyroid gland function

Dr Wayne says: “While this can be incredibly helpful due to the selenium in these nuts, the doses of selenium are not quantified, so a person could be getting 50mcg or 600mcg of selenium. Proper thyroid balancing requires testing and specific dosing.”

Myth #2: Drink 2 cups of spearmint tea a day to clear your hormonal acne

Dr Wayne says: “While spearmint is a great herb to help with acne, it often does not work due to the fact that it works best with other herbs treatments. 

“Thoroughly assessing the acne condition will allow for it to be cleared properly.”

Myth #3:  Use breathing training to manage your cortisol levels

Dr Wayne says: “Breathing can help with cortisol levels, but they do need to be done in a specific way in order to stimulate your vagus nerve, which in turn, stimulates your parasympathetic nervous system. 

“Does it regulate cortisol long term though, no. It is best to utilize breathing training in daily practice and as needed for times of higher stress.”

Myth 4: Have at least 20 minutes a day in the sun to improve sex drive and to increase vitamin D3 levels

Dr Wayne says: “Clinically, sunlight provides a bunch of healthcare benefits, like improving your sleep wake cycle and raising endorphins. Unfortunately, I have not clinically seen sun exposure increase vitamin D3 levels. 

“There are many factors as to why: location (the sunlight has to hit your skin at the right angle) and the pigment of your skin (darker complected or highly freckled people have more melanin blocking the sun activation of d3). 

“Additionally, vitamin D3 levels need to exceed certain levels for testosterone to be available to cause an increase in libido or sex drive.”

Myth 5: Remove stress to manage cortisol levels and practice subconscious training

Dr Wayne says: “It is important to work on stress management, but it is impossible to eliminate all stress because we need it to survive. It has a biological purpose when it is appropriate. 

“Subconscious training is great to change the way you think and experience life, but it doesn’t change how your body perceives stress, and it can take a really long time to even change cortisol levels. 

“Think of it much like PTSD. You can get past the traumatic event, but without professional help, you can often be “triggered” back into a state very quickly.”