This information is for educational purposes only and not intended to diagnose or highlight imperfections. You've likely landed here following your results of my quiz at YourHormoneQuiz.com. No matter what you discover in these results, you're beautiful and perfect as you are. You're good enough and trying hard enough. We're all unique and will experience hormonal shifts differently. This information is here to highlight that, despite what we've been told, we're not just little men — our bodies work differently — and if our hormones have us feeling less than our best, we absolutely can do something about it. My aim is to support and empower you on your journey, where you need and want it. Take what you need, leave what you don't. No judgement here, just good honest support.
While common in post-menopausal women, symptoms of low estrogen can be experienced by women of any age. You might notice fatigue, mood issues, sporadic or missing periods, weight issues, and more. Low estrogen levels could impact many aspects of a woman’s overall wellbeing, especially her physical, emotional, and sexual health. It could also increase a woman’s risk of more serious conditions, such as osteoporosis (softening of bone tissue), heart disease and obesity.
Different ways our estrogen hormones go low:
- Aging — for most women, estrogen starts to decline in our mid 30s but the age varies from woman to woman and usually low estrogen due to aging happens during perimenopausal and menopausal years.
- Excessive exercise
- Chronic stress
- Eating disorders, such as anorexia or extreme dieting
- Low body fat
- Pituitary gland dysfunction, such as hyperprolactinemia
- Post pregnancy
- The birth control pill
- Post birth control (estrogen levels may be low for a while)
Low estrogen might look like:
- Vaginal dryness
- Painful sex, or loss of feeling
- Hot flashes
- Night sweats
- Low mood or depression
- Headaches or worsening migraines
- Weight gain
- Poor sleep
- Low libido
- Dry eyes
- Achy joints
- Extra light or sporadic periods (in non-menopausal women)
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What’s happening physiologically when estrogen goes low?
Estrogen’s role goes far beyond pregnancy, sexual health and menstruation. It affects over 400 functions in our bodies and when estrogen gets out of balance with other essential hormones, you’ll feel it. It can affect our energy, mood, sleep, skin, appetite, sex life, our ability to burn fat, and more. Estrogen is a fundamental regulator of the female metabolic system, is important for brain, bone and heart health, it protects against adiposity (obesity), insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, and the list goes on.
What we can do about low estrogen:
If a women’s estrogen has gone low because of age or other medical reasons, there are a variety of options for hormone replacement therapy should one need and prefer. Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) can help with symptom management as well as health improvement, and can help reduce the risk of certain health complications. HRT can come in synthetic as well as bio-identical hormones (BHRT) and a variety of forms and applications, from oral to injections, vaginal to sub-dermal.
It’s best to discuss the individual benefits and risks with a knowledgable and experienced practitioner to decide what is right for you and your body. Many women find that their general practitioner or even their gynecologist is not that person. Do seek someone with adequate expertise in the area of female hormone replacement who has similar values and is willing to thoroughly educate you on the subject.
I can definitely help you with this.
For women who’s estrogen has gone low due to other reasons, it’s important to figure out what could be at the root of it all. Most often, it starts with getting back to foundational basics such as improving diet, movement, sleep and stress management practices. Dealing with the root cause or causes is essential for longterm improvement and health.
Not sure where to start?
Here are 3 easy and free ways you can get started right now:
- Opt for a nourishing, colorful and nutrient-dense whole-foods diet and be sure to get adequate protein for your activity level.
- Upgrade your sleep quality and quantity to match your stress levels and lifestyle, as well as syncing up your sleep and light exposure (especially blue light) with the daylight hours.
- Book a call with me. See below.
Check out this post for even more ways to get your hormones back in harmony.
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This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, manage, or treat disease or serious conditions. Always check with your doctor before making any changes. It's important to consult a well-informed health practitioner for personal advice about your situation before relying on general information — we're all wonderfully unique.
Laurie Villarreal, CHWC, CFNS, LMC, CPT, RYT
As a functional nutrition practitioner and fitness expert specialized in women’s hormones, I help active, driven women, like you, get back to feeling, performing (heck, even looking!) your best when nothing else has worked. From personalized nutrition and lifestyle guidance to doing the deep, much needed inner work of coaching, I help you soar to new heights — to show up and play bigger (and brighter!) than you’ve ever imagined. So you can get back to living your best life and chasing your dreams — with much more joy and ease.
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