Estrogen in itself furnishes many good benefits in the female body when it is naturally occurring and in the correct amounts each month.
However it’s important to make a distinction between the 27 different healthy estrogens our body makes versus the SYNTHETIC estrogens that are found in most commercial meat and dairy, the pesticides on produce and the petroleum based chemicals found in personal, cleaning & fragrance products that act like estrogens by plugging into hormone receptors. (steroid hormones plug into to hormone receptor sites, much the same way a key plugs into a lock)
Synthetic estrogens have been studied and proven for decades to have harmful side effects, this is why when you go on birth control or HRT you are given papers that have long lists of many of the side-effects and risks associated with the use synthetic hormones. All synthetic hormones even synthetic progesterone, called progestin, have side-effects and are potentially dangerous. Some very common side-effects that you may have even experienced yourself are:
- Mood swings
- Appetite loss/increase
- Sleep disorders
- Water retention
- Increase risk of blood clotting/stroke/heart attack
- Bone loss
These are just a few estrogen dominance symptoms and associated risks of using birth control and HRT. This very important distinction between synthetic hormones and biologically identical hormones, which is almost always confused, is the one the most important parts of your education on this topic.
Did you know that a cycling woman only requires 1/3rd mg of estrogen 14 days out of the month? Conversely, during the 14 days progesterone phase, your body requires 22-25mg/day of progesterone. Why would we be getting enough estrogen but not be making enough progesterone? Well let’s look at one very common source of estrogen. An average piece of chicken that is grown commercially and fed hormones has 2-3 mg of estrogen per 4 oz serving! If you ate 20 ounces of chicken a week, even with your liver bypassing 80% of the hormones your eating, your still ingesting 16 mg all month long and that’s just from chicken. It’s noteworthy to see how easy it is to get too much estrogen in our system and that estrogen can and will block normal progesterone production and function.
If I am a vegan, why would I need to be on progesterone cream? We need to highlight envrironmental estrogens, how many chemicals are in the average home and how they are estrogenic after being inhaled and applied to the skin.
Naturally occurring estrogens (estrogens that your body makes) are very important for women. When natural estrogen is in balance with progesterone and in the correct phase of the month it has many important roles in both genders. A few of these benefits for women are:
- Maintaining of the uterus
- Promotes ovulation ……Looking for a better word here than promote, the info I read on this is as follows: Surge in estrogen level induces the release of luteinizing hormone, which then triggers ovulation by releasing the egg from the Graafian follicle in the ovary.
- Increased sexual receptivity
- Stimulate endometrial growth
- Thickening of the vaginal wall
- Primary hormone to promote female secondary* sex characteristics
- Aids in protecting arteries from damage thus lowering the risk of cardiovascular disease
- Aids to the sheading and rebuilding of bone tissue
Here is another interesting fact, only when estrogens are balanced with progesterone can they have the positive effect that they were meant to have. Without progesterone to balance estrogen they can actually cause harm! There is even a name for it… its called Estrogen Dominance. This syndrome has a very long list of unpleasant symptoms and syndromes. If you think you might be living with estrogen dominance take our fast, simple quiz here and see if your lifestyle is putting you at higher odds for this disorder.
Consequences of Estrogen Dominance
Estrogen dominance, almost always caused by synthetic sources, is also a leading cause of many female specific diseases in women of all ages. In clinical studies, estrogen molecules have been shown to increase the amount of unstable/abnormal cell growth, while the progesterone molecule has shown to do the exact opposite! Abnormal cells have stopped growing when progesterone is present*. Lets put a little footnote below with a link to that cell growth study; we need to start dabbling into the cell growth disease prevention and help even though this is just the overview.
We should consider the direct effect of one of the most commonly experienced female diseases, Endometrioses. Estrogen is the hormone responsible for the thickening of the endometrium; it is by design a cell grower, which has a natural purpose when balanced by progesterone. However the….David can you please help me here? I’ve been researching this topic for two days now and just cant’ seem to come up with the correct verbiage to give a simple clear example of the roles of both hormones in this disease. Please keep it conversational simple and scientific. The master hormone progesterone is pretty amazing!
So while natural estrogen certain is a necessary, beneficial hormone in the female body, the overdose of it can be a hazard. It can and will cause us a lot of unnecessary health problems. We live in an estrogen rich environment. Estrogen MUST be balanced by the master (or one that controls) female hormone, progesterone. Is there more you can do? <I think this would be a good place to have a link to info on hormone healthy lifestyle (which is going to be the title on one of our pages as you’ll see below) and YL oils.
Progesterone that is being taken as a supplement needs to be biologically identical to what your body already makes and in a topical form thus making it free from side effects that synthetic hormones offer. Why is this?