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Posts Tagged ‘HRT’

What is Progesterone?
Progesterone is a hormone that has been around for about 500 million years – the oldest hormone.
There are many misconceptions held about this critically important hormone. It is NOT ‘just another sex hormone’ nor is it ‘ONLY a female sex hormone’.
Why is this important?
It is essential to all vertebrates: fishes, reptiles, birds and mammals – including humans. It has countless functions in both sexes and all ages – regulating blood sugar, developing intelligence, building bones, brain activity and many more.
Our bodies make it all the time.
In the higher animals it is involved in reproduction, but not being exclusively a sex hormone it does not impart any secondary sexual characteristics. It is converted by the adrenal glands into other hormones such as cortisone, oestrogen, testosterone and others.
This is a vital point to understand… progesterone is the essential raw material from which our bodies make the other hormones. It is this simple fact that helps anyone appreciate just how wide ranging the effects of a deficiency can be. This is why progesterone therapy can be effective in treating such a wide range of health problems.
What is natural progesterone?
“Natural” progesterone – just as your body makes it – is a unique substance with unique properties that cannot be faked and that are essential to good health and to life itself.
A phenomenon known as “oestrogen dominance” happens in many women when progesterone balance is impaired. This creates very unpleasant physical side effects and plays havoc not only with their emotions. The reason behind this is the increasing use of chemicals in the world and the widespread use of oestrogen in oral contraceptives and in hormone replacement therapy (HRT).
Unfortunately oestrogen dominance is something few people know anything about. Most women have been convinced that oestrogen is the answer to most female hormonal problems, whether in the form of the contraceptive pill for menstruating women or HRT for menopausal women. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Fortunately progesterone balance is easy to achieve and maintain by using natural progesterone.
The following list gives some of the symptoms of oestrogen dominance:
• Mastitis
• Menstrual cycles can become irregular
• Increases the risk of fibroids
• Potentially addictive and abusive
• Increases the risk of breast cancer
• May initiate fibrocystic breast disease
• Increases the risk of uterine cancer
• Water retention and bloating
• Weight gain
• Loss of energy
• Decreases libido
• Bad temper
• Increases risk of stroke and heart disease
• Causes chronic fatigue
• Causes skin to become thinner
• Incidental in the start of osteoporosis
• Can induce hypertension & high blood pressure
• Headaches
The majority of doctors have not heard of the benefits of progesterone and the concept of progesterone balance. Fortunately, however, a few enlightened medical doctors in the USA, Britain and elsewhere have been using progesterone to treat their patients for a number of years now.
Further positive effects of progesterone are that the immune system is boosted, one’s physical and mental energy is increased, and one becomes calmer. Progesterone also protects against toxic substances and acts as a natural diuretic.
Many of the above listed symptoms are those of Pre-Menstrual Syndrome (PMS) and low blood sugar. Up to 60% of menstruating women in the western world suffer from PMS in one form or another. Much research has been done on it. Some have been found to be psychological, some related to food, some to stress and some to an imbalance of hormones. Research has shown that women with PMS consume three times as much sugar as those without. This unfortunately leads to the excretion of magnesium, which is vital in preventing PMS and menopausal symptoms in the first place.
Menopause, which literally means “last period”, usually occurs somewhere between the ages of 45 to 52 with the cessation of egg production. As mentioned earlier a woman is born with all the eggs she will ever need. In the few years prior to menopause ovulation becomes erratic and with it comes a decline in progesterone. At about the same time the ovaries decrease their secretion of oestrogen.
Unfortunately with the increased use of petrochemicals and oestrogen based drugs, many women are entering their pre-menopausal years in their early thirties.

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Insulin is a hormone produced by the beta cells within the pancreas. Insulin is released into the blood stream and travels throughout the body. It is an important hormone that has many actions within the body. Most of the actions of insulin are directed at metabolism (control) of carbohydrates, fats (lipids), and proteins. Insulin also is important in regulating the cells of the body including their growth.

Insulin resistance is a condition in which the cells of the body become resistant to the effects of insulin, that is, the normal response to a given amount of insulin is reduced. As a result, higher levels of insulin are needed in order for insulin to have its effects.

Causes

There are probably several causes of insulin resistance and there is thought to be a strong inherited component. Some medications can lead to insulin resistance. Insulin resistance is seen often in the following conditions:

  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Oestrogen
  • Menopause and the years thereafter
  • The Pill
  • HRT
  • Obesity
  • Pregnancy
  • Infection or severe illness
  • Stress
  • Steroid use

A combination of raw vitamins, minerals and amino acids mixed daily with some fruit juice not only ensures the insulin response works at its optimum level, but also boosts energy and assists with weight loss. And, it’s not too disgusting to drink either!

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The link between progesterone and the menopause is highlighted by the fact that women in industrialised countries have a hard time with menopausal symptoms compared to women in rural societies. Dr. P. Ellison of Harvard University studied oestrogen levels in various ecological and cultural populations and found that oestrogen levels in western women are abnormally high. This can be due to a number of factors:

  • the food consumed (particularly animals fed oestrogen to fatten them)
  • the crops sprayed with pesticides (most of which are oestrogenic)
  • the Pill and HRT
  • drinking recycled water which has not had the oestrogen removed
  • using cosmetics which are made with liquid paraffin and oestrogenic antioxidants.

An understanding of the effects of a lack of progesterone is vital to understanding that progesterone can play an enormously beneficial role in helping to go through menopause without too many adverse affects. By naturally opposing the action of oestrogen, the symptoms of oestrogen dominance are lessened and in some cases eliminated. The easiest method to apply progesterone is in a cream form.

New research conducted by Wallace and Kelsey published in “Human Reproduction”, indicates that it might be possible to show the approach of menopause by a scan of the ovaries. Currently blood hormone levels are used to try to determine this, but these are notoriously inaccurate as it is common practice to only check oestrogen levels, not progesterone. The patient generally needs to specifically request this despite the fact that progesterone and menopause are inextricably connected. As the symptoms of menopause are caused by a lack of progesterone and too much oestrogen, the standard ‘oestrogen only’ test is of little help.

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