Women have a hormone that is produced in the ovaries and the adrenal glands that is like valium bathing the female mind. It helps reduce anxiety and is known as the peaceful hormone. It also helps us sleep soundly through the entire night and combats the excess androgenic hormones that are found in women who have PCOS.
What is this amazing hormone? Progesterone.
Progesterone acts on the gamma amino butyric (GABA) receptors in the brain (the same receptors sleeping pills, anti-anxiety medication and even alcohols act upon), producing a calming effect. GABA is the primary inhibitory transmitter in the brain. If you wake between 2am and 4 am wide awake, you likely have a progesterone deficiency. Women with PCOS almost always have low progesterone.
Progesterone also affects the elasticity of our skin, memory, is anti-inflammatory, is a natural diuretic and helps normalize blood sugar. It also stimulates the cells that make new bone called osteoblasts.
There is a unique benefit of progesterone for women with PCOS. Progesterone may block the enzyme 5-alph-reductase, which is involved in the metabolism of testosterone. Additionally, progesterone is the hormone to help regulate your monthly cycle and help ovulation to occur. Many women think that their increased irritability, loss of enjoyment of life and trouble sleeping if from their 24/7 lifestyle, but it is likely more often due to a progesterone deficiency.
Here are 7 common symptoms associated with low progesterone:
- Waking at night
- Fibrocystic breasts
- Bone loss
- Low libido
- Infertility or irregular periods.