7 Ways Progesterone, the “Mother of Life” Hormone, Protects Women
By Judy Couch, FNP-C
If oxygen is the father of life, then progesterone is the mother. Known as the “pregnancy hormone”, progesterone is the oldest-known hormone on record. With a history that spans billions of years, progesterone outdates modern plants and animals by millions of years, making it an ancient bio-regulator that helped sculpt life as we know it today.
While many people focus on progesterone’s benefit to women regarding pregnancy and the female menstrual cycle, progesterone is vital to women’s health for more than just reproduction reasons. As estrogen’s sidekick (and balancer), progesterone is the most protective hormone our bodies make; it protects our brain, breast, bone, and uterine tissue, and it also has a potent calming effect.
In fact, progesterone protects women in the following ways:
- Increases bone density
- Increases breakdown of fat
- Increases feeling of overall well-being (it’s a natural antidepressant)
- Decreases breast and uterine cancers
- Decreases carbohydrate cravings
- Decreases risk of heart attacks
- Decreases PMS symptoms (moodiness, irritability, bloating, headaches)
Unfortunately, progesterone is the first hormone deficiency that develops in women. Most women experience the beginning of the deficiency in their mid-30s, however, it can occur at earlier ages. When this deficiency develops, it creates an estrogen-dominant state in the body. While estrogen itself is natural and necessary for healthy women, it can cause some life-altering downsides when it is overproduced and establishes dominance.
Estrogen dominance symptoms include:
- Low libido
- Weight gain
- Heavy periods or PMS symptoms
- Mood swings, anxiety, and irritability
Low levels of progesterone are also found in many diseases and disorders, because the protective layer of progesterone is absent. Some examples include:
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Asthma and respiratory problems
- Autoimmune diseases (MS, Lupus, arthritis, Sjogren’s syndrome)
- Depression and Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)
- Heart disease
- Peripheral Neuropathy
- Polycystic ovaries
When balanced correctly, these two steroid hormones support health and wellness in our bodies. It’s easy to see why women (and men – they need both hormones too!) want to avoid being progesterone deficient.
If you suffer from severe PMS symptoms and/or desire protection from heart disease, breast cancer, uterine cancer, and osteoporosis, you should have your progesterone levels checked. A simple blood test can determine where your levels stand, and our experts can develop a unique treatment plan to help you feel better, live better, and look better. Call 513-791-9474 or fill out our online consultation form to get started today!