What is progesterone?

Progesterone is a hormone produced and released by the ovaries and the adrenal glands. Progesterone regulates various body functions, such as ovulation, and plays an important role in maintaining pregnancy.

What does progesterone do?

  • It helps to prepare your body for conception and pregnancy.
  • It helps to normalise the menstrual cycle, and plays a part in sexual desire.
  • After ovulation each month progesterone helps to thicken the lining of the uterus in preparation for a fertilised egg.
  • The lining of the uterus needs to be thickened sufficiently for the fertilised egg to be implanted.
  • If the egg is not successfully implanted, pregnancy will not occur.

Your progesterone levels can be determined through a simple blood test by the doctor, who will know what the levels should be.

What are the symptoms of low progesterone?

If you do not have enough progesterone, you may struggle to fall pregnant, or have a problem staying pregnant. For women who are not pregnant, low progesterone may cause some of the following:

  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding.
  • Low sex drive.
  • Anxiety or depression.
  • Headaches or migraines.
  • Irregular menstrual cycle.

If you have any of those symptoms, discuss it with your doctor.

Some progesterone benefits available to all women

  • Is a natural anti-depressant and helps deal with anxiety and stress.
  • Normalises blood sugar levels.
  • New studies are indicating which shows that the benefits of progesterone may include breast health, cardiovascular health, and also the nervous system.
  • Restores sexual desire.

These benefits are not restricted to either post-menopausal women, or women still of child-bearing age. In fact, the health benefits are available to all women of any age. A blood test will give you an accurate result of your hormone levels.

Treatment protocols

A female hormonal imbalance is usually treated by what is known as hormone replacement therapy – HRT. Depending on your bloodwork results, the doctor will decide which hormone is low enough to need replacement and prescribe accordingly. For a successful result, it is important that you follow the doctor’s instructions re dosage etc.

Diet is also important to balance progesterone

Studies have indicated that certain foods are known to boost progesterone levels, and women who prefer the natural route, please take note!

Foods which help to boost and keep progesterone stable include:

  • Foods rich in magnesium, like nuts such as almonds, cashews, walnuts, and sunflower seeds, all work to raise progesterone naturally.
  • Moderate amounts of dark chocolate may even improve your overall hormone health.
  • Chicken is high in amino acids, which the body needs to function. Amino acids are the building blocks of the body’s protein, and you need to get the 9 essential amino to maintain general well-being, and most of all your hormone health, especially progesterone levels.

If you are trying to fall pregnant, progesterone plays a major role in preparing your body for pregnancy, as well as maintaining the pregnancy – should it occur.

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May 30, 2024