Progesterone to help balance hormones

Progesterone levels (black line) during the me...

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Progesterone is a hormone naturally produced and secreted in the last two weeks of the menstrual cycle in ovulating women by the adrenal glands and the ovaries. Progesterone is used in pregnancy and menstrual regulation. It is a valid hormone that needs to be there for many reasons in the women’s body. If it is not naturally there in the right amounts then it can be replace medically.

Progesterone or one of is man made substances is taken by women for birth control, as a hormone replacement in menopause, to regulate a woman’s menstrual cycle, to regulate vaginal bleeding if necessary and has also been used to treat PMS (premenstrual syndrome) and for women that miscarry frequently or have a difficult time getting pregnant.

As woman go through the change of life (menopause) the hormone levels tend to decrease, that is why periods become irregular and finally end. Women then take a replacement hormone to help with the hot flashes and to return the body to a more natural level of the hormone.

A vital function of progesterone secretion is to ready the uterus to accept and nourish a fertilized egg. If implantation does not occur, then progesterone drops, the endometrium then sloughs off, this is known as menstruation.

Now if pregnancy occurs, the placenta then produces progesterone and this maintains the pregnancy with the high level of the hormone. Another benefit of high progesterone during pregnancy is that it encourages the glands that produce milk that will feed the baby.

It is the higher levels of progesterone before our periods that are responsible for PMS symptoms of bloating, mood swings and breast tenderness. When for whatever reason you miss a period it is most likely due to high levels of progesterone.

If you have a shortage of progesterone in your body, you may suffer from; endometriosis, fibroid tumors, cancer, ovarian cysts, post and pre menopausal symptoms and vaginal dryness.

It is important to talk to your doctor about hormone replacement therapy to discuss just which one might be best for you. Supplemental progesterone comes in many form; injectable, oral tablets, creams, lozenges and suppositories. There are also natural forms versus synthetic forms.

The following is a description of the different routes of administration.

Shots- made as an oil and takes 10-12 hours to be absorbed

Pills- peak in 1-4 hours and should be taken with food

Creams and suppositories-Placed in the vagina, peaks in about 12 hours fully absorbed and is sometimes mixed with cocoa butter for ease of insertion

Skin Creams- Absorbs into the skin daily and is placed as a patch with alcohol and propylene glycol

The benefits a woman receives when she takes progesterone in any form and brings her levels back up are:

  • Cholesterol levels improve
  • Sleep Improves
  • Moods Improve
  • Concentration and Memory Improve
  • You have fewer problems with depression
  • Your risk of endometrial cancer is lessened
  • Your risk of breast Cancer is lessened
  • Your sexual libido is increased
  • Cognitive decline is lessened

It is important that you talk to you doctor about all the different ways that you can go to replace progesterone in your body. Talk to your pharmacist also, for they have a wealth of information to share.

Filed under: Women's Issues

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