There are various hormones present in the body. Estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone are vital hormones needed for a woman’s overall health. A fall in any of these hormones, particularly estrogen, can cause physiological and behavioral changes that most women have a problem dealing with. It is always important to maintain normal estrogen levels for overall health.
- Estrogen is naturally produced in the body.
- With age and with the presence of underlying medical conditions, estrogen levels can fall.
- Some causes of falling estrogen levels include:
- Polycystic ovarian syndrome or PCOS
- Pregnancy failure
- Extreme exercise/training
- Anorexia nervosa
- A fall in estrogen levels can affect the woman in many ways including:
- Mood swings
- Decreased sexual libido
- Altered fertility
- Joint pain
- Night sweats
- Dry skin
- Treatment for falling estrogen levels is through hormone replacement.
- Estrogen is available through hormone replacement pills.
- Estrogen is also available in natural sources and foods.
- Estrogen from food sources is the best type of estrogen because this is the hormone in its natural form.
- Estrogen in prescription drugs is actually a synthetic form of estrogen and is nothing like the natural estrogen present in the body.
- Synthetic estrogen is treated differently by the body than natural estrogens.
- Even when supplementing using estrogen from natural sources, it is recommended that a doctor should still be consulted.
Natural Sources of Estrogen for Women
Herbs are a natural source of estrogen.
- Black cohosh
- Dong quai
- Red clover
- Gingko biloba
- Macafem: It is different from other herbs because rather than containing estrogen, it helps the body to produce the hormone.
Natural Food Sources of Estrogen
There are many food sources of the hormone estrogen, most of these so common that many women tend to overlook it. Estrogen from plant and animal sources are called phytoestrogens.
- Olive oil
- Dairy foods especially eggs
Other food sources include:
- Fruits: Papaya, apples, plums, dates, cherries, apricots, prunes
- Vegetables: Chickpeas, split peas, alfalfa, pumpkin, potatoes, peas, tomatoes, cucumbers, eggplant, carrots
- Legumes and seeds: Red beans, sesame seeds, soybeans, oats, wheat, barley, rice, sunflower seeds, flaxseed
Foods that naturally inhibit the production of estrogen include: