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Is your menstrual cycle out of whack? Do you wake up with a headache more often? Do you also feel cranky, angry, or maybe sad more often than usual? If so, your progesterone level could be the culprit behind these issues.
Progesterone is a female sex hormone. It is produced mainly in the ovaries following ovulation each month. It is a crucial part of the menstrual cycle and maintenance of pregnancy. But progesterone isn’t just a female sex hormone—it’s so much more! It’s vital to your health and a game changer in your menopause journey.
You might wonder if apart from making pregnancy possible, is progesterone a big deal in our body? Absolutely! It performs other tasks on a daily basis, including:
Now we know that it’s a very important hormone for women’s health and well-being. At times it goes off track and has a detrimental impact on the body. That’s why it is important to be alert and watch out for some signs that indicate your progesterone levels are not in place!
Dr Uma Vaidyanathan, Senior Consultant, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Fortis Hospital, Shalimar Bagh, New Delhi, says, “Progesterone is needed to maintain normal balance during menses. It is secreted in the second half of the menstrual cycle. Low levels can interfere with menses, and the capacity to conceive.”
Since estrogen and progesterone work together to regulate fertility and the menstrual cycle, low progesterone levels may cause estrogen levels to rise. Someone with high estrogen may experience; high risks of gallstones, weight gain, fatigue, and sex drive related issues
Dr Vaidyanathan suggests some ways to increase the low level of progesterone:
Maintaining an ideal body weight will keep your estrogen in check and will help in the estrogen-progesterone imbalance which triggers menstrual issues.
Body needs a basic amount of fat tissue to keep its functions going. Too much weight loss again can trigger an increase in cortisol levels(to facilitate fighting the stress on the body) which will lead to low progesterone.
Chronic stress disturbs your hormones which may throw off your progesterone levels. To maintain its level and to keep your stress at bay, adopt meditation in your daily routine.
There are certain vitamins and minerals that are necessary for progesterone production.
Blood sugar dysregulation creates hormonal chaos by disrupting ovarian follicle development and progesterone production. Keeping your blood sugar levels stable and your cells sensitive to insulin is an important part of maintaining hormonal balance.
So, whenever you find yourself out of track, follow these tips!