A Lifetime of Progesterone
Progesterone is an essential element of a long and healthy life. The body's need for progesterone spans an entire lifetime, from being essential for conception to offering disease prevention and other significant health benefits throughout all life stages.
In women, progesterone is secreted in the second half of the menstrual cycle (after ovulation) by the ovaries and, in much greater quantity, by the placenta during pregnancy. In both sexes, progesterone is also synthesized from cholesterol in the cortex of the adrenal gland, where is is a necessary precursor for the production of other hormones including testosterone, and it is also produced by cells in the nervous system.
Progesterone's effects on a women's body are far-reaching and affect her entire lifetime. The role of progesterone spans all life stages, from the most basic prenatal needs, to menarche in puberty, during pregnancy and postpartum in the reproductive years, and throughout the transitional years of menopause.
Hormones & Traumatic Brain Injury
Written by Carol Petersen, RPH, CNP - Women's International Pharmacy
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is an area that has received little clinical attention—until now.
The staggering number of soldiers returning from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq with head injuries caused by improvised explosive devices prompted medical researchers and practitioners to review the literature for anything that would help these veterans recover. A 2010 update to a literature review in Future Neurology notes that there are literally hundreds of studies regarding the “neuroprotective” effects of progesterone and its metabolites, with most of these studies being published in the last few years. In particular, two clinical trials demonstrated the effectiveness of using progesterone to successfully treat patients with moderate-to-severe head injury, resulting in sparing the lives of about 50% of those treated. This revelation provided a ray of hope for both practitioners and veterans.
February is American Heart Month:
Melatonin and the Heart
Written by Kathy Lynch, Pharm.D - Women's International Pharmacy
Melatonin is becoming more widely accepted by the scientific community as a beneficial hormone for heart health. It appears that melatonin decreases inflammation and positively
affects blood pressure and cholesterol. Melatonin has also been identified as a powerful antioxidant.
Not only have low melatonin levels been observed at various stages of coronary heart disease, but the role melatonin plays in normal heart function is well established. Human coronary arteries have melatonin receptors on them, though their exact function has yet to be fully determined.
Melatonin is currently being studied to see if oral doses can protect against damage done when blood returns to a heart previously deprived of blood flow, for example, after a heart attack. Because melatonin has low toxicity and has been proven safe in varying strengths, both oral and intravenous, scientists are interested in studying melatonin for the treatment of heart disease.
For additional information on hormones and their relationship to heart health, please see our publication: Matters of the Heart.
Dominguez-Rodriguez A, Abreu-Gonzalez P. "Myocardial ischemia-reperfusion injury: Possible role of melatonin." World J Cardiol. 2010 August 26; 2(8): 233-236
Online Health Library
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