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09-17-2009, 10:45 AM
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So, I am reading a very good book right now on natural progesterone and have learned some interesting things! (It's actually about menopause, but has a lot of useful info in it.)
In the third trimester of pregnancy the placenta is producing 300-400 mgs of progesterone a day. Progesterone has very positive and balancing effects on the body and this is why some women feel so great in the third trimester. After birth the levels of progesterone drop dramatically and drop to almost zero in some women. Apparently this can cause post-partum depression. Oftentimes a simple check of the progesterone levels a day or two after birth can determine whether supplementation is needed.
Also, when progesterone was discovered years ago one of the ways it was obtained by scientists was through extraction from the placenta after birth. So obviously it still contains large amounts of progesterone.
I've done a lot of research on eating placenta after birth and have always wondered what in the placenta gives all the positive effects. I've read of women who have faster recovery time, no depression, feel better, milk comes in better, etc. Now I am realizing this may be because of the large amount of progesterone obtained through eating it?
PPD is often difficult to treat and can be ongoing. I have never heard of progesterone being used to treat it, but it makes sense. Many American women already have too little progesterone (typical American lifestyle - poor diet, too little exercise, too much stress) and when this happens estrogen dominates. Estrogen has its purpose, but when there is not enough progesterone to balance it, some unpleasant side effects can occur.
I know I am definitely planning on eating some placenta and having some natural progesterone cream available after I give birth!
This is all interesting and new to me, so forgive my rambling. Thoughts anyone?
Single Mama to five 6 and under!