Do you know what estrogen is? Do you know why it's important? What about progesterone? And testosterone (yes, ladies, you need testosterone too!)
Let me break it down for you...
Estrogen is one of the main sex hormones that women have, and we have 3 types of estrogen.
Estradiol: the most common type in women of childbearing age-produced in the ovaries and its main function is to mature and then maintain the reproductive system. During the menstrual cycle, increased estradiol levels cause the maturation and release of the egg, as well as the thickening of the uterus lining to allow a fertilized egg to implant. The hormone is made primarily in the ovaries, so levels decline as women age and decrease significantly during menopause.
In men, proper estradiol levels help with bone maintenance, nitric oxide production, and brain function. While men need lower levels than women, they still require this important hormone to function well.
Estriol: the main estrogen in pregnancy and is produced by the placenta.
Estrone: the only estrogen our body makes after menopause-yep, we still make and need estrogen after menopause! It is produced in the ovaries, adrenals and adipose (fat) tissues of the body. Women lacking estrone may develop osteoporosis. Low estrogen levels can also cause the symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes, fatigue, poor sex drive and depression.
The other sex major sex hormone for women is progesterone. It is important because it helps to support an environment for a growing fetus and it keeps us from feeling homicidal. Lack of progesterone can make for some crazy PMS symptoms and feelings of homicidal rage.
Progesterone prepares the endometrium for the potential of pregnancy after ovulation. It triggers the lining to thicken to accept a fertilized egg. It also prohibits the muscle contractions in the uterus that would cause the body to reject an egg. While the body is producing high levels of progesterone, the body will not ovulate, and the body will not produce progesterone if it doesn't ovulate.
Adequate amounts of progesterone are necessary to carry a fetus to term.
And I mentioned it above, we also have testosterone. The best way I can describe why women need testosterone is this: Imagine that you and your male roommate decide to lose weight over a period of a month. You, as a woman, eat clean, workout 30 min or more 6 days per week, you do all the right things and your male roommate says "I'll give up butter for 30 days" and at the end of the month, he has lost 15 pounds and you've gained a pound. That, my friends is the power of testosterone.
We don't need it in large amounts, but we do need it.
It is produced in the ovaries and the adrenals and is influenced by the amount of estrogen our body produces.
There are also external estrogens that impact our health.
Xenoestrogens and synthetics are the "bad guys, the playground bullies, the Frankenhormones." Xenoestrogens are in the environment in plastics, BPA, parabens, phthalates, pesticides, herbicides, etc...Synthetic estrogens are produced by the pharmaceutical industry and are found in hormonal birth control and hormone therapy and are therefore in our water table, because as soon as someone takes them in and then pees them out, into our water table they go.
They are dangerous to our system because they compete with our own natural estrogen for hormone receptors. When the brain looks down and sees a massive amount of estrogen in the system, it thinks, no need to make estrogen anymore and it shuts down our own natural production. But as you've hopefully learned, our natural estrogens are also driving the production of progesterone and testosterone. Once the brain/pituitary gland shut that down, you'll start to experience lack of progesterone, testosterone and ironically, estrogen.
Most of the symptoms that we experience that we blame on our lady hormones are not actually our natural hormones at play at all...it's an overabundance of frankenhormones.
The good news is that there is one more player, phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens are estrogenic compounds naturally found in fruits, veggies, legumes, grains and soy. They function like estrogen, binding with estrogen receptors but are 500-1,000 times weaker than what our bodies produce naturally and they can help to rid our bodies of harmful xenoestrogens.
And I find that they work most effectively when I have also loved on my liver. The liver is another key component to ridding the body of harmful metabolites, like xenoestrogens and synthetic hormones. Every 3-6 months I do a liver, colon, kidney, lung and liver cleanse that detoxes my body from the xenoestrogens and then I add the phytoestrogens into my routine.
My perimenopausal symptoms have almost disappeared thanks to this routine and a few of my friends who were struggling with fertility are now expecting.
If you find yourself struggling with any of these symptoms
I recommend 30 days of Zendocrine softgels + Zendocrine complex, followed by adding 1 phytoestrogen and a swipe of Clary Calm daily. (You can order here
for the best pricing).
hormone balancing oils will also be a huge help.