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Women’s Hormones

Restoring a Natural Balance

Osteoporosis, heart disease, endometriosis, PMS, premenopausal symptoms, weight gain, low libido, fibrocystic breasts – most women will experience these or other hormone-related problems. Today, millions of women concerned about aging must decide whether or not to undergo synthetic hormone replacement therapy – and suffer its side effects and increased risks of cancer. As we consider the benefit to risk ratio, we must take into account new evidence and ongoing research about alternatives to traditional therapy, that is Bio-identical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT).

Natural Progesterone

Progesterone is one of two main hormones, the other being estrogen, made by ovaries of menstruating women. More specifically, it is the hormone made by the corpus luteum starting just prior to ovulation and increasing rapidly after ovulation (to about 20mg/daily) to become the major female gonadal hormone during the latter two weeks of the menstrual cycle.

Deficiency of progesterone is implicated in menopause, PMS, osteoporosis and some “female” conditions eg. endometriosis, ovarian cysts, fibroids, pelvic inflammatory disease etc..

Progesterone is also the major precursor for other hormones, e.g., testosterone and estrogens.

If the progesterone spigot is turned off, as occurs at menopause, estrogen and testosterone levels may also fall. As a woman approaches menopause, estrogen levels drop but progesterone levels plummet down to very low levels The imbalance of progesterone and estrogen becomes more apparent during peri-menopause because of a major decline in progesterone leading to estrogen dominance.

Progesterone

  • Is necessary during pregnancy for maintenance of the uterine lining
  • Prepares the breasts for lactation
  • Stimulates osteoblast mediated new bone formation (increases bone mass and density)
  • Protects against endometrial hyperplasia resulting from estrogen therapy
  • Is metabolised to other active hormones

Natural progesterone is commonly prescribed (in the form of cream, troche, capsule, or pessary) for perimenopausal women to counteract the condition known as “estrogen dominance.” Perimenopause is the time between the onset of changes in hormonal secretions and menopause, and is characteried by fluctuating hormones. Estrogen dominance occurs when a woman produces smaller amounts of progesterone than normal relative to estrogen levels.

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