Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Foods Containing Natural Progesterone

Foods Containing Natural Progesterone

Progesterone is a hormone found in both males and females, even though it is identified as a female hormone. It balances the effect of estrogen in the body. Females produce the hormone in the ovaries, where it acts to regulate the lining of the uterus. In women, progesterone therapy is used as birth control, to stabilize menstrual bleeding irregularities, to reduce PMS symptoms and as part of post-menopausal hormone replacement therapy (HRT).

Progesterone in Men

    Men produce the hormone in their testes, where it eventually is turned into testosterone. In men, progesterone therapy is used to aid prostate health, reduce prostate enlargement and may prevent prostate cancer. Progesterone therapy is typically performed using an injection, pill, or cream.

Wild Yams

    Wild yams, not to be confused with cultivated yams or sweet potatoes, contain a natural form of progesterone, but is has not been shown to be effective. According to Dr. Andrew Weil, "Wild yams (Dioscorea) have been promoted as a source of natural progesterone for the relief of menopausal symptoms or a host of other female problems ranging from menstrual cramps to monthly mood swings. Claims for the effectiveness of wild yam cream are based on the fact that wild yams contain a precursor of steroid hormones called diosgenin. However, diosgenin itself has no hormonal activity and can't be converted in the human body into anything that does."

Zinc and Progesterone

    The best nutrient to consume to boost your levels of progesterone is zinc. Zinc is a hormone regulator in both men and women. Zinc helps to boost the body's levels of progesterone, while reducing the level of estrogen. Zinc also has a host of other health benefits, such as: boosting the immune system, maintaining strong bones, healing of wounds and preserving energy levels.

Food Sources of Zinc

    Zinc is typically found in protein sources. High sources of zinc include: lean red meat, oysters, dark-meat turkey, beans, wheat germ, tofu, eggs, milk, yogurt, breakfast cereals, whole grains and leafy green vegetables. Zinc is often better absorbed by the body when it is consumed alongside a source of vitamin C.

Zinc Supplementation

    Long term supplementation with zinc with above 50 milligrams per day should be discussed with your doctor, as it can lead to a copper deficiency. Be sure to include any zinc you consume as part of a daily multivitamin in that amount. Doses over 150 milligrams should be avoided, as they can cause dizziness, diarrhea, drowsiness, vomiting, lethargy and lack of muscle coordination.


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