Did you that a huge majority of women suffer from it? You might feel like you are 1 in 100 with the anxiety, the social anxiety, the fear of crowds, palpitations even when you are at home and so on. I want women out there to be aware that they are not alone. It’s still something many women feel ashamed to discuss, even with their besties. But I am seeing it more and more and feel it needs to be discussed. Often you have already been to the Dr and offered anti-depressants, which in some cases yes might be needed for a period of time. But unfortunately this is not fixing the underlying issue.
The thing with anxiety is it has such a hormonal component to it. Many women are unaware of this and feel month to month that the anxiety comes and goes often not putting the two together. Simply put, low progesterone, especially in the week before your period (yes that good old PMS) is aggravating, if not causing you to have higher anxiety.
Think of progesterone as the happy calming hormone. It is the one that prior to a period should actually make us feel at our best and ready to take on the world. Only problem is just about every single women I have tested with saliva testing is low in progesterone to some degree. And with this low progesterone comes a whole range of symptoms. One of the main symptoms I hear about is the dreaded PMS. That 2-7 days before your period when you are more anxious, teary, fluidly, bloated, headachey, pimply, angry and just not the type of person you want to be. This does not have to be the case! It has almost been accepted as the new normal, but let me tell you it isn’t actually meant to be like that.
Funny thing is this low progesterone is made worse by stress and anxiety. So the anxiety is then driving us to have more anxiety due to hormonal imbalances. If we have higher stress in our lives (whether it be emotional, mental, physical or chemical stress) our bodies are busy dealing with making our stress hormones and start to run out of building blocks to make hormones, like progesterone.
Ever noticed that your periods are worse if you have been more stressed recently? Have your periods become worse over a 6 month time frame after a recent stress? These are common things I hear my clients talk about when referring to their cycles.
So here we are again talking about our stress levels, and maybe getting you ladies to think about slowing down a bit to reduce your stress levels. If you are finding putting your health first hard (as us women often do), then start really small. The next week ahead start committing to just one thing you can start to change in your life that has a positive effect on your health. It could be drinking more water, getting to bed earlier, taking a Sunday night bath, reading a book, or simply just sitting quietly and having some switch off time.
All of these things are going to have an impact on how much cortisol and stress hormone you are producing, in turn reducing your progesterone and increasing your anxiety. Just remember progesterone is our friend, and we want more of it. The more we have the better we feel throughout our whole cycle.
So here’s to our friend progesterone, may you keep calm so your body can make some more for you.
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