Originally published December 17 2008
Hormones May Be Slowing Your Fat Loss
by Teya Skae
(NaturalNews) Have you ever wondered if hormones could be in your way of losing weight or just slowing you down in life? Did you know that there is a relatively large group of people, women and men aged between late 20s and 50s, who find it difficult to lose weight because they are hormonally `stressed` or imbalanced? Hormonal imbalance is very high particularly if stress is prominent in your daily life and your diet includes everyday meats and poulty which is laden with hormones and chemicals, or meats, cooked in microvaves and stored in plastics, all a by-product of living in chemically laden 21st century, unless you actually make a concerted effort to stave off the chemicals. Yet, there is more to understand here and it is to do with biochemical stress.
So what does that mean exactly?
Biochemical stress is a by-product of our 21st century western society where there is an over-use of chemicals in foods, household products, pesticides, added hormones in chickens and antibiotics in meats (unless it is organic or free range). If you have been overtraining, feeling stressed, regularly consuming protein sources that are laden with hormones, growth hormones and antibiotics (eggs, chicken, meat poultry) then you may be a candidate for oestrogen dominance.
What is oestrogen?
Oestrogen is important for the maintenance of normal brain function and development of nerve cells in both males and females. It is a steroidal hormone produced that stimulates the development of secondary sexual characteristics and, in women, induces menstruation. If the balance between oestrogen and progesterone gets disrupted in any way, oestrogen dominance then results, creating a number of common symptoms that get overlooked as hormonal imbalance between the two hormones - oestrogen and progesterone.
What is oestrogen dominance?
Oestrogen dominance is a condition that occurs when there is not enough progesterone (foundational hormone in all vertebrates) due to too much stress on the organics, consumption of chemicals and adrenal exhaustion (which at least 85 per cent of the population suffers at some stage). All of these give rise to higher levels of oestrogen in relation to progesterone. Even men, due to depletion of testosterone from overtraining and consumption of commercial chemically laden chickens, can start to develop weight gain around their middle region, due to excess oestrogen in relation to those foundational hormones (testosterone and progesterone).
What are some typical symptoms of oestrogen dominance?
Water retention and bloating
Cellulite in women
Abdominal fat in men even stretch marks
Loss of energy
Inability to lose weight no matter what
Higher per cent of fat storage and more.
What is the safest way to balance oestrogen dominance?
When oestrogen becomes the dominant hormone it can potentially become toxic to the body; and the need for progesterone to balance it is increased. Therefore progesterone has a balancing or mitigating effect on oestrogen. Oestrogen dominance, therefore, can be overcome with its counter-hormone - progesterone. By simply withdrawing oestrogen and replacing it with more progesterone, hormonal balance takes place much more naturally over weeks and months, especially if the use of hormone-laden meats and chickens are reduced from your overall diet.
So what is progesterone?
Progesterone is a steroid hormone made by both men and women. In women, it is made in the corpus luteum of the ovary and in smaller amounts by the adrenal glands. In men, it is produced in adrenal and testicular tissue. Progesterone receptors are present in men, women and children of all ages; therefore progesterone is a fundamental hormone. It is essential for life to all vertebrates: fishes, reptiles, birds and mammals, including humans. It has countless functions in both males and females of all ages including regulating blood sugar, developing intelligence, building bones, enhancing brain activity and much more. Our bodies make it all the time.
Why is this important?
Progesterone is made in our body from cholesterol and is the essential raw material from which our body makes many of the other steroid hormones, including cortisol and testosterone. Progesterone is converted by the adrenal glands into other hormones such as cortisone, oestrogen, testosterone and others. It is involved in reproduction but not being exclusively a sex hormone it does not impart any secondary sexual characteristics. Research has shown that women with good progesterone levels had less than a fifth of the amount of breast cancer, and less than a tenth of all the cancers that occurred in women who were low in progesterone. These outcomes suggest that having a normal level of progesterone protected women from nine-tenths of all cancers that might otherwise have occurred.
Getting progesterone back into your body
Natural progesterone or bio-identical progesterone is routinely used in fertility clinics around the globe to help sustain pregnancy in high-risk situations. Please note, bio-identical progesterone is not the wild yam creams that are touted as progesterone replacements.
How did bio-identical progesterone cream come about?
In 1943 Russell Marker made progesterone cream from the plant steroid diosgenin. He used the Mexican wild yam (dioscorea villosa) as a source plant; however, diosgenin has now been found in many other plants, including the spice fenugreek and the soya bean.
There is much confusion in the minds of both the public and the professions between progesterone on the one hand, and the progestins or progestogens and `yam extracts` on the other. Progesterone is a natural hormone made by the body and which is now being made from the plant extract diosgenin. Progestogen, on the other hand, is a synthetic hormone (with a molecular structure that differs from that of progesterone) used by the drug companies in oral contraceptives and hormone replacement therapy (HRT) in preference (for commercial reasons) to the natural hormone. The contraindications, precautions, and adverse reactions of these synthetics make horrifying reading.
Many people confuse natural bio-identical progesterone with yam extracts and yam creams, which do not contain progesterone. The yam creams can have a beneficial adaptogenic effect on the body but, unlike progesterone, they cannot correct hormonal imbalances such as excessive levels of estrogen or estrogen dominance.
A study published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology (June 1999) states that `In order to obtain the proper (effective) serum levels with use of a progesterone cream, the cream needs to have an adequate amount of progesterone in it [at least 30 milligrams per gram]. Many over the counter creams in US have little [for example, 5 milligrams per ounce] or none at all. In addition, the creams that are made from Mexican yams are not metabolised to progesterone by women.`
If natural progesterone has so many benefits, why don`t physicians routinely prescribe it?
Progesterone cream is currently being used by thousands of women in the western world to ensure they maintain progesterone balance. The speed with which the cream relieves symptoms varies depending upon both the health problem itself and the quality of the cream being used. Some women find relief within five days, while in others it can take three months or longer; the reversal of osteoporosis, however, could take six months.
In summary, oestrogen dominance is becoming much more common in our western society because of the use of chemicals, pesticides added to our foods, and hormones given to our livestock and the use of plastics. There exists a very simple test without the need for blood, urine or saliva samples that can help you identify if you are oestrogen dominant and to what extent. It just might just shed some more light on your current weight loss battle, especially if you have been over-training and struggling to lose weight and/or gain lean muscle tissue.
Lee, John R., MD, Natural Progesterone: The Multiple Roles of a Remarkable Hormone (1995) (BLL Publishing, Sebastopol, CA, U.S.A.)
Martin, Raquel with Judi Gerstung, DC, The Estrogen Alternative (1997) (Healing Arts Press, Rochester, Vermont, USA)
Neil, Kate and Patrick Holford, Balancing Hormones Naturally (1998) (Judy Piatkus Ltd, London)
Owen, N, Nicola - The case that made legal history (1992) (Bantam Press)
Rushton, Anna and Dr. Shirley A. Bond, Natural Progesterone (1999) (Thorsons) http://www.natural-progesterone-advisory-net...
About the authorTeya Skae M.A. ATMS
Corporate Wellness Presenter/Researcher and Author
As the founder of Empowered Living Teya has developed a results based I.D.E.A.L Solutions for increasing your energy, focus and personal Success!
Teya is also a QUIT smoking specialist with proven results in one session guaranteed.
For Tangible Results and Solutions to Fat Loss, Physical, Emotional and Mental Fitness visit
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