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Ladies! Other Hormones That Contribute to Perimenopause Part 2

We have already learnt in the previous blog that in perimenopause, a women’s hormone levels fluctuate and change considerably , it can often be described as a ‘hormone rollercoaster!’

Apart from oestrogen and progesterone, there are so MANY more hormones that cause madness throughout our body.


Make an appointment with Sonia Ellery in her Camden Clinic to feel like your 'old' self again.

Other Hormones and a few examples of roles of each are

· Testosterone increases libido, helps with muscle and tone, reduces depression and is produced in ovaries, and the adrenal glands ,it is synthesised by a metabolite of DHEA and progesterone.

· DHEA – declines with age, is the principle androgen in men and women, improves mental function, protects against stress, aids weight loss, helps prevent wrinkles

· Cortisol – produced by adrenal glands in response to mental , physical and emotional stress , mobilises body’s immune response .

· SHBG - this is a protein that the liver produces when exposed to any oestrogen, either naturally or phytoestrogens. They bind to circulating oestrodiol, DHT, and testosterone in the blood stream to prevent their rapid metabolism and clearance and limit their bioavailability to tissues. Its level in the blood changes with sex and age, other factors affecting SHBG levels are obesity, hyperthyroidism, and liver disease. Thyroid hormones increase SHBG, insulin decreases SHBG, increased oestrogen increase SHBG, decreased levels associated with hypothyroidism.

· PROSTAGLANDINS – are not produced by glands , they inhibit the aggregation of blood platelets as they are local acting vasodilators, they are produced locally or in many places in the human body – they peak preovulatory ( with increased oestrogen) and premenstrual

In just reading the roles of the hormones – you can understand the complexity and the influence they exert each have on each other – the body is always trying to maintain balance, and in doing so , where there is imbalance- it has a knock on effect - a rollercoaster hormone ride.

This is why women have symptoms associated with

Oestrogen Dominance symptoms

· Lowered sex drive

· Irregular/abnormal periods

· Bloating(water retention)

· Breast swelling/ tenderness

· Fibrocystic breast

· Headaches (especially menstrual)

· Mood swings (irritability & depression)


· Painful sex, lack of lubrication

· An increase in UTIs( due to thinning of urethra)

· Irregular or absent periods

· Mood swings

· Hot flushes

· Headaches/accentuation of pre-existing migraines

· Depression

We see symptoms of low progesterone , testosterone – that also contribute to symptoms of weight gain, poor sleep quality and loss of libido.

How can I help?

I will take and in depth information gathering at your initial consult (allow 60-90minutes) - I often integrate pathology data with your physical/emotional/social environmental and genetic information to help provide individualized evaluation and to provide you with optimal therapeutic guidance.

As a naturopath I will also delve into how your body is metabolising your hormones, so questions will incorporate other body systems, for examples such digestion and liver functions.

With the use of dietary and lifestyle changes, I may incorporate herbal mix of either phytoestrogens or nonphytoestorgens , to combat your perimenopauseal symptoms.

Other herbs may be added to support your digestion, liver and or nervous system.

Nutraceutical supplements may be prescribed and mind body medicines to help with stress reductions ( A major contributor to disruption of hormonal imbalances).

My therapeutic approach is very individualised and proactive in strengthening your overall health and give preventative approach to your health in general. This may incorporate referral to other health practitioners for further testing.

I look forward to seeing you soon at the Sonia Ellery Naturopath Clinic located in Argyle Street, Camden.


[1] Roepke, T. A. (2009). “Oestrogen modulates hypothalamic control of energy homeostasis through multiple mechanisms.J Neuroendocrinol 21(2): 141-150.

[10] Karim, R., et al. (2015). “Association of endogenous sex hormones with adipokines and ghrelin in postmenopausal women.J Clin Endocrinol Metab 100(2): 508-515.

Prior, J., (2011).” Progesterone for Symptomatic Perimenopause Treatment – Progesterone politics, physiology and potential for peri-menopause” Facts, views & vision in ObGyn Vol 3, (2): 109-120.


The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2016. Australia's Health 2016

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