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How to increase progesterone naturally with the right diet, lifestyle and SupplementsĀ 

Navigating perimenopause can be a challenging journey for many women, as hormonal fluctuations bring about a myriad of symptoms. One key hormone that plays a crucial role during this phase is progesterone. In this blog post, we’ll explore the symptoms of declining progesterone and delve into practical strategies, including diet and lifestyle changes, to increase progesterone levels naturally in perimenopause.

Understanding the Role of Progesterone & its Decline in Perimenopause

Progesterone, often referred to as the “pro-gestational hormone,” plays a pivotal role in a woman’s reproductive system and overall well-being. Produced primarily in the ovaries, this hormone is not exclusive to pregnancy; its influence extends throughout the menstrual cycle. During the first half of the cycle, progesterone levels remain relatively low, but they surge after ovulation. One of its primary functions is to prepare the uterine lining for a potential pregnancy by making it more receptive to a fertilized egg. Moreover, progesterone helps regulate the menstrual cycle, promotes a sense of calm by acting on the central nervous system, and supports healthy sleep patterns. As women transition through perimenopause, a decline in progesterone, coupled with changes in oestrogen, can lead to various symptoms. Recognising the significance of progesterone in hormonal balance is essential for understanding reproductive health and addressing the challenges associated with different life stages.

This hormonal shift can result in a range of symptoms, including:

1. Irregular Menstrual Cycles

Unbalanced hormones can cause irregular periods, making it crucial to address the root cause for a smoother transition.

2. Mood Swings, Depression and Anxiety

Progesterone has a massive effect on the mood, helping to stabilise it so you remain calm, cool and collected. Declining progesterone levels can contribute to mood swings and increased anxiety.

3. Insomnia and Sleep Disturbances

Progesterone promotes relaxation and quality sleep. Learn how to optimize your sleep environment and support progesterone production for restful nights and MAKE.THIS.A.PRIORITY.

4. Oestrogen Dominance

Oestrogen dominance is characterised by an imbalance between oestrogen and progesterone. Progesterone and oestrogen maintain a symbiotic relationship, each influencing the other’s control. When oestrogen levels surge while progesterone levels decline, this delicate balance is disrupted, potentially resulting in symptoms such as ovarian fibroids, cellulite, weight gain, painful periods, mood swings, and bloating. Achieving equilibrium between these hormones is crucial for preventing and alleviating these associated symptoms.

5. Thyroid Issues

Insufficient progesterone can influence oestrogen levels, subsequently impacting thyroid function.

6. Weight Gain

Inadequate progesterone levels may hinder your body’s ability to utilise stored fat for energy, prompting the release of glucose into the bloodstream. This, in turn, can contribute to the breakdown of muscle tissue and the development of cellulite.

Ways to Increase Progesterone Naturally

 

Progesterone-Boosting Foods for Perimenopausal Women

1. Vitamin C Rich Foods

Opt for citrus fruits, strawberries, and bell peppers to boost your vitamin C intake. Vitamin C supports the adrenal glands, which play a role in hormone production.

2. Zinc Rich Sources

Include zinc-rich foods such as pumpkin seeds, cashews, and chickpeas in your diet. Zinc is a crucial mineral for the production of progesterone.

3. Foods with B Vitamins

Consume foods rich in B vitamins like whole grains, leafy greens, and lean proteins. These vitamins are essential for overall hormonal balance and can support progesterone synthesis.

4. Healthy Fats

Incorporate omega-3 fatty acids found in fatty fish, flaxseeds, and walnuts. These fats are building blocks for hormones, including progesterone.

5. Cruciferous Vegetables

Include broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts in your meals. These vegetables support liver function, helping to eliminate excess oestrogen and maintain hormonal equilibrium.

Stress Management Techniques to Increase Progesterone

1. Mindfulness Meditation

Practice mindfulness meditation to reduce stress and promote a sense of calm. Even short daily sessions can have a profound impact on hormonal balance.

2. Yoga and Deep Breathing

Engage in yoga, especially poses that focus on the pelvic region. Deep breathing exercises can also activate the parasympathetic nervous system, mitigating the effects of chronic stress.

3. Regular Relaxation Practices

Dedicate time to activities you enjoy, whether it’s reading, spending time in nature, or listening to calming music. Finding moments of joy and relaxation is crucial for hormonal well-being.

4. Social Support

Connect with friends and family regularly. Social support can act as a buffer against stress, positively influencing hormonal balance.

A Regular Exercise Routine to Increase Progesterone

1. Strength Training

Incorporate strength training exercises into your routine. Building muscle mass can help regulate hormones, including progesterone.

2. Cardiovascular Exercise

Engage in regular cardiovascular activities like walking, jogging, or cycling. Low-intensity cardio is often favoured over high-intensity cardio in perimenopause as it helps mitigate the potential stress on the adrenal glands and supports hormonal balance during this phase of hormonal fluctuation.

3. Yoga and Pilates

These exercises not only improve flexibility and balance but also contribute to stress reduction, supporting hormonal equilibrium.

4. Consistency is Key

Establish a consistent exercise routine. Regular physical activity sends positive signals to the endocrine system, aiding in the regulation of hormones.

Supplements and Herbal Support to Increase Progesterone Naturally

1. Chasteberry (Agnus Castus or Vitex)

Chasteberry is known for its ability to balance hormones, including increasing progesterone levels. Consider incorporating chasteberry supplements after consulting with your healthcare provider for the right dose and duration.

2. Vitamin E

Vitamin E is an antioxidant that supports hormonal balance. Include foods like almonds, sunflower seeds, and spinach in your diet or consider a vitamin E supplement.

3. Vitamin C

Vitamin C aids in the natural increase of progesterone by supporting the adrenal glands, which play a crucial role in hormone synthesis, including the production of progesterone.

4. Magnesium

Magnesium is essential for hormone production. Foods such as dark leafy greens, nuts, and seeds are magnesium-rich. Supplements may be beneficial for those with deficiencies.

5. Vitamin B6

Vitamin B6 facilitates progesterone production by enhancing the enzymatic processes involved in hormone synthesis. The bioavailable form of pyridoxal-5-phosphate (P-5-P) is best.

Increase Progesterone Naturally in Perimenopause

Empowering yourself with knowledge about the symptoms of declining progesterone and adopting a holistic approach to support hormonal balance can significantly ease the perimenopausal journey. By making conscious choices in your diet, lifestyle, and overall well-being, you can navigate this phase with grace and vitality. Remember, small changes can lead to significant improvements in your overall health and hormonal harmony.

If your perimenopause symptoms have got out of hand, book a discovery call to see how I can help.

 

 

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PERIMENOPAUSE & SLEEP: ARE HORMONES KEEPING YOU AWAKE?

WHY THE DUTCH TEST IS VITAL FOR UNDERSTANDING YOUR HORMONES & HRT

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