Here’s What You Need to Know About Hormones and Diastasis

hormones diastasis recti

Diastasis recti is the separation of the abdominal wall due to overstretching and damage to the connective tissue that runs directly down the center of your abdominal wall (the linea alba).  There are many contributing factors involved in how this damage occurs, and how it can be prevented and repaired. We address this in detail at The Tummy Team and through our online functional core rehab programs, but hormones and hormonal imbalances also play a role in diastasis recti.

The best way to understand hormones is to think of them as “chemical messengers.” They are secreted from a gland and circulate through the bloodstream until they finally reach the organ intended, where it exerts its effect. The body is constantly communicating to itself; it is the way we regulate and control our body function. So while the hormones are communicating in one direction, your body is communicating back to those hormone-producing glands. This means that part of the healing process is not to remove or replace hormones, but rather improve the communication to better regulate what is being circulated in your body. Understanding the influence of certain hormones can be essential to the diastasis recti rehabilitation process.

In the video blog below, we are going to focus on four hormones that have the most direct effect on connective tissue.


I hope this information was encouraging to you and helps equip you with the knowledge you need to make informed decisions during your rehabilitation journey. If you have any questions please feel free to leave them below.



Schauberger CW, Rooney BL, Goldsmith L, Shenton D, Silva PD, Schaper A. Peripheral joint laxity increases in pregnancy but does not correlate with serum relaxin levels. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1996;174:667-71.
Wolf JM, Williams AE, Delaronde S, Leger R, Clifton KB, King KB. Relationship of serum relaxin to generalized and trapezial-metacarpal joint laxity. J Hand Surg Am. 2013;38:721-8.
Hypermobility Syndromes Association.  Hormones and hypermobility. Alan Hakin June 9, 2013. (web)
Shawn M. Talbott.  The Cortisol Connection. Chapter 6-9. Book published 2002.
Brent Barlow.  Negative effects of Cortisol. Natural Health News by Dr Brent Barlow.  (Web) July 12, 2011.
Park SK, Stefanyshyn DJ, Loitz-Ramage B; Hart DA; Ronsky JL.  Changing hormone levels during menstrual cycle affects knee laxity and stiffness in healthy female subjects.  American Journal of Sports Medicine, March 2009, vol/is 37/3 (588-98) 2009 Mar.
Zaxulak BT; Paterno M; Myer GD; Romani WA; Hewett TE.  The Effects of the menstrual cycle on anterior knee laxity: a systematic review.  Sports Medicine, 15, July 2006, vol/is 36/10 (847-862)
Women In Balance.  About Hormone Imbalance, how does my hormonal cycle work? (web)
Steven R Goldstein, MD.  Progestrone. (web)
Gladson M, et al.  Interaction of estradiol, progesterone and corticosterone on uterine connective tissue degrading enzymes.  Endocrinology Research. 1998 FEB; 24 (1) ; 89-103
Society for Endocrinology.  (Web)  Relaxin, March 09, 2015


12 responses to “Here’s What You Need to Know About Hormones and Diastasis”

  1. Anna says:

    That video was so informative! I’ve done a ton of research on DR and have come across very little info on hormones. I’ve been either pregnant with twins or nursing twins (two sets) for 4.5 years straight and I’m about to be done nursing the second set (18 months old) so hearing this info gives me hope that my body might actually start working with me rather than against me shortly after being done nursing. Thanks for the info!!

    • TheTummyTeam says:

      I am so glad this gave you hope Anna! Yes, there is very little information on the influence of hormones on diastasis. We took the research done on the effect hormones has on tissue/fascia and married it to what we know from working with clients of diastasis to offer an understanding of what’s going on inside our bodies. Did you see our offer for a discounted course? We’d love to work with you to heal your core when you’re ready!

  2. De says:

    I have resting Diastasis Recti. My muscles separate when lying down and join together when standing up, although the bump is still there. I’m scared to use the traditional exercises and there is little information elsewhere on this. Anyone else experience this? Any advice would be beyond appreciated. Or ‘I have no idea’ would be helpful too so I can keep searching.

    • TheTummyTeam says:

      I would recommend our Core Foundations course, or if possible seeing us in person. While you can engage your core close the diastasis, the muscles are not working consistently in functional integration. Our program will instruct in the best way to train the core in life and when transitioning into fitness.

  3. Dara Quintero says:

    I’ve been pregnant the last 2 years with complications. I’m still nursing the second of those babies. Will the hormones allow my body to heal the diastasis?

    • TheTummyTeam says:

      Hi Dara,
      The hormones won’t prevent you from being able to heal your diastasis, but being aware of how they play a role is important. We can absolutely help you heal your core – even if you are still nursing. I would recommend our Core Foundations Online course and an Abdominal Rehab Splint.

      If you want to talk further about any other symptoms or specifics of our program, feel free to email me at:

  4. Melanie says:

    Wow! I’ve noticed at 9 months postpartum while breastfeeding that my diastasis (and back pain) both worsen around ovulation and I thought I was crazy to make that connection. Thanks for the validation and I can’t wait to learn how to strengthen my core with the tummy team!

    • TheTummyTeam says:

      I am so glad this brought you validation! It’s easy to think we’re going crazy with all those hormones and lack of sleep 😉 You did a good job listening to your body and together we’ll get you feeling stronger!

  5. Adri says:

    Good evening. Wow im so glad i found this sight. I live in south africa and have nooo idea where to find a core rehab centre.. So yay. Im very very glad. I just have one question. I had diastisis recti with my first born but also a belly button hernia. which i only noticed when i got preagnant again.. I didnt have time to start doing any exercises for diastisis recti so the preagnancy made it worse…. I know you can fix hernias without surgery. Could you maybe tell me if i will be able to do the diastesis recti exercises woth the hernia? And also the core rehabilitation?

    Many thanks to yoy

  6. TheTummyTeam says:

    Hi Adri, thank you for reaching out. It would be good for you to watch our video on hernia vs diastasis:
    Sometimes a herniated belly button is not really a hernia but more of stretching of the connective tissue and a detaching of the umbilical trunk that kept it an “innie”. Functional core rehab will help your diastasis is close and take the pressure of your belly button. We work with clients around the world through our comprehensive Core Foundations online program. I think this would answer a lot of your questions and give you the tools to heal your core. We have a ton of information at and here is a direct link to the core foundations program:

  7. Elisa Gallo says:

    Good evening I’ve had 6children and all was ok then my husband divorced me and took my kids home I was left on the street . So stress for me has given me this .
    I look pregnant it’s aweful as I have fybromyalgia and fluids around my heart
    I’m so fed up
    3years ago I remarried and again my husband has stressed me out to the max and my
    Abdomen has gone huge . I have menopause so don’t get periods no more
    I need an operation to fix this as I can’t bend forward …
    have a nice day . Great speach ….

    • Kelly Dean says:

      Hi Elisa, I am so sorry. It sounds like you have been through a lot. We would like to help you if we can. Our specialty is functional core rehab which works on regain the strength around your core so your muscles will elongate and support you better. There is a lot of healing that can come from reconnecting to your core and feeling grounded physically. If you are interested in doing our online Core Foundations course we may be able to give you a partial grant to help you financially. You can reach out to us via email to

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