Photo credit by Life Mental Health
For women, the two main hormones in the body, progesterone and estrogen, must remain in harmonious balance with each other. Once that balance is disrupted, things can start going downhill. A variety of hormonal imbalance symptoms will arise, and it’s important to recognize these symptoms and correct that imbalance before it leads to something much worse.
Women aged in their late 20’s to early 40’s can experience hormonal imbalance. It normally occurs during the woman’s menstrual cycle, in which the body only produces estrogen for the first 10-12 days. Because there is no progesterone to balance this level of estrogen in the woman’s body, it’s normal to experience premenstrual syndrome (more commonly called PMS) at this time, in which crankiness, mood swings, angry outbursts, tearfulness, bloating, weight gain, increased appetite and breast swelling can occur. Later, progesterone is produced once ovulation occurs. This balances both hormones and everything should be well again.
At any other time of the year, a woman’s body does produce both hormones. However, this balance can be disrupted when a woman is exposed to xenoestrogens such as birth control pills and car exhaust fumes. It can also happen when ovulation does not occur.
One of the symptoms this imbalance can cause is depression and anxiety. This will also promote mood swings and make daily life pretty unpleasant. It’s no wonder that a woman’s cravings for chocolate at that particular time occur; chocolate contains magnesium, and a deficiency of magnesium can make these symptoms worse. It also contains tryptophan, the “feel good” amino acid. Additionally, chocolate triggers the release of endorphins, which help relax irritable moods.
Another symptom is endometriosis. Endometriosis occurs when tissue from the endometrial stroma in the uterus is found outside of the uterus and somewhere else in the body. This can cause pelvic pain, scar tissue and the fusion of internal organs.
A urinary tract infection (UTI) and incontinence can also result from a hormone imbalance, as can hair loss and unwanted hair.
While anyone can experience allergic reactions at any time of the year, it seems that a hormone imbalance in women can also cause allergies. Some women may notice they have an “allergy” to certain foods or smells when it’s that time of the month. Chances are pretty good that this is a hormone imbalance symptom they are experiencing.
Other symptoms include fatigue, uterine fibroids, low libido, fibrocystic breasts, dizziness and wrinkly skin.
This threat of hormonal imbalance in a woman is greater once menopause occurs. After menopause, the body no longer produces that needed progesterone.
To combat this imbalance, a progesterone cream is usually recommended. This cream is safe to use and can be explained in better detail by your doctor. It usually takes a few months before you’ll start seeing results.
Another way to set this imbalance straight is to use natural sources of progesterone, such as those provided in the form of supplements. Talk to your doctor about other sources of progesterone you can try.
Hormone imbalance occurs when the levels of progesterone and estrogen are not in harmony. Therefore, when trying to ease the symptoms of hormone imbalance, don’t add more estrogen to your diet. The key ingredient to look for is progesterone. Once that is added, it’s likely the two hormone levels will once again be in sync and the symptoms of hormone imbalance should eventually disappear.