Dr. Jean writes…..What is Progesterone?

Progesterone is produced by both women and men. Progesterone, also known as the “pregnancy hormone”, is both a male and female hormone.

Post-menopausal women and men produce most of their progesterone from the adrenal glands. In men, some is produced in the testes. Both sexes synthesize a small amount in the nervous system. While progesterone is produced in more abundance in young fertile women, the hormone cannot be called a male or female hormone. It is reported that progesterone deficiency can produce a variety of effects in both men and women. Some of these reported symptoms are depression, increased risk of breast and uterine cancers, prostate problems (men), hormonal problems and more.

Unlike estrogen that generally falls to only 40 to 60 percent at menopause, progesterone levels can fall to nearly zero. There are two ways to increase progesterone levels in the body – naturally and through synthetics. Pharmaceutical companies produce synthetics. Since you cannot patent a natural product, they have to produce molecularly different variations of progesterone. It is important to note the difference between “transdermal” (which means through or by way of the skin) and oral progesterone: with the transdermal delivery system, active ingredients are delivered to the body rapidly and completely without being metabolized by the liver first (going through the liver reduces the bio-availability of the active ingredients by 80 – 90%, plus, it is taxing on the liver). Today we can measure the progesterone levels from a simple drop of blood from the finger, that can even be done at home. Some of the benefits that can be gained from increased progesterone levels include restored sex drive, protects against fibrocystic breasts, acts as a natural antidepressant, normalizes blood sugar, zinc and copper levels, helps prevent breast cancer, and improves sleep patterns.

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