Estrogen is a female hormone, which keeps under the control your menstrual cycle, fertility, bone health, brain functioning and even skin appearance. It is mainly produced in your ovaries. Small amount of estrogen is also synthesized in the adrenal glands, located on the top of the kidneys.
Estrogen gives a signal to your ovaries to release an egg. Ovulation normally occurs in the middle of the cycle, giving you ability to get pregnant. While aging, levels of sex hormones decline bit by bit. Lack of estrogen causes irregularity or absence of the periods, hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings and bone brittleness. You know these menopause symptoms, aren’t you?
However, not only estrogen deficiency may be unpleasant and harmful for your health. Experts say that too much of this hormone can significantly increase your risks of breast and endometrial cancers. How can you get excessive amount of estrogen? In the majority of cases women experience this problem, when taking inappropriate doses of estrogen-containing medicines (hormone replacement therapy or birth control pills).
It was also found that steroids, phenothiazines and certain antibiotics can also increase production of estrogen. Moreover, numerous researches show that people with obesity, diabetes and uncontrolled high blood pressure have much higher levels of estrogen than others. Sometimes synthesis of sex hormones may be increased due to development of the ovarian or adrenal tumor. How can you recognize that your body contains too much of estrogen? Check up these early signs of estrogen overload:
#1. Irregular periods
It's one of the most common signs of hormonal imbalance. Surplus of estrogen can disturb duration of your menstrual cycle and cause heavy bleedings or, conversely, scanty vaginal discharge.
#2. Weight gain
You've probably heard that women in menopause are more likely to gain weight. While lack of estrogen leads to accumulation of the fat on your waist, excess of this chemical stores fat around your hips.
#3. Breast lumps
Finding new lumps in the breast is a stressful situation for each woman. The good news is that most of the breast lumps are benign. Hormonal imbalance usually leads to fibrocystic changes in the breasts.
Women with elevated estrogen levels often suffer from thrombophlebitis, deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism. The reason is that too much of this reproductive hormone is linked with increased blood clotting.
#5. Aggravation of PMS
Your monthly events can be normally accompanied by headaches, mood changes, abdominal cramps and bloating. Excess of estrogen can worsen these symptoms, making it difficult even to perform your daily tasks.
#6. Increased breast sensitivity
Have you noticed that your breasts become more tender, swollen and aching several days before menses? It's mainly because of high estrogen levels. If having too much of it in the body, these symptoms may be felt for a long time.
You may feel full, swollen, gassy and uncomfortably because of estrogen increase.
#8. Decreased sex drive
Having too high or too low estrogen levels may reduce your libido and lead to problems in relations.
#9. Mood swings
Changes in the hormonal balance may lead to mood swings and depression.
Hormonal fluctuations usually cause so-called premenstrual headaches. If estrogen levels stay high for a long time, you may notice that your headaches appear more often and last for several days.
The BetterMe Team wants you and those close to you to live a healthy, happy life! Your health is a valuable thing; look after your body and your mind so that you can live your life to the fullest – Remember you only get one!
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