Moods and Hormones: Emotional Health and Well-Being Throughout the Lifecycle
Just mention those three little letters - PMS - and you're bound to get a reaction. Women nod in sympathy; men cringe at the thought. Everyone seems to know someone whose moods go through a "Jekyll and Hyde" type of transformation during that time of the month.
But the emphasis on PMS and its effects on a woman's moods seems blown out of proportion, especially in light of the fact that a woman's life is a continuum of hormonal upheavals that affect her moods. From puberty through menopause, women experience a continuous cycle of hormonal fluctuations that affect brain chemistry and, therefore, their moods.
This physiological fact of life may partially explain why "depression and anxiety disorders are 2-3 times more common in women than in men," a worldwide, cross-cultural phenomenon, according to Dr. Elizabeth Lee Vliet. this is a serious issue, which demands that we look beyond the all-too-common jokes about PMS to get a better understanding of how hormones affect a woman's emotional health and well-being, throughout her lifetime.
Hormones, Moods & Emotion:
An Interview with Dr. Phyllis Bronson
Written by Carol Petersen, RPH, CNP - Women's International Pharmacy
We had an opportunity to speak with Dr. Phyllis Bronson, a recognized expert on the influence that hormones have on moods and emotions. Dr. Bronson holds a doctorate in molecular chemistry, and she currently teaches and continues to conduct research at the University of Denver. Her doctoral thesis focused on the molecular structure of progesterone; specifically, the significant molecular difference in the fat-soluble structure of "real" progesterone and the water-soluble structure of medroxyprogesterone, and how this difference impacts a person psychologically.
Dr. Bronson's work as a clinical biochemist enables her to continue to explore the relationships between hormones and psychology, gathering data as she works alongside practitioners while assisting them with patients. in fact, Dr. Bronson is currently working on a book with the tentative title Hormones, Mood and Emotion, Finding Balance As We Age, which intends to bring the observations she has amassed through her years of research to the general public.
One of the things we learned during our interview is Dr. Bronson's dislike for the word "anti-aging" when it comes to describing hormone therapies. She explained that she sees the body more....
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