There are two basic forms of estrogen deficiency which include congenital and general; both the conditions are characterized by inability to perform certain estrogen specific functions, due to inadequacy of the hormone.
Congenital estrogen deficiency is further classified into estrogen insensitivity syndrome and aromatase deficiency, both of which are associated with a genetic defect. Estrogen insensitivity is extremely rare and characterized by inability of the body receptors to identify the hormone and hence fail to perform the functions for which this hormone is required.
Aromatase deficiency is relatively common condition which is associated with deficiency of aromatase enzyme, which is required to convert testosterone to estrogen. Aromatase deficiency affects only females, while congenital estrogen deficiency can affect both sexes.
General estrogen deficiency usually affects only females belonging to any age group from menarche to menopause. This form of estrogen deficiency is acquired, though the exact mechanics of the onset of the condition is not clearly understood.
Causes Of Estrogen Deficiency
While genetic deformities are responsible for congenital estrogen deficiency, general estrogen deficiency (i.e. the acquired form) can be attributed to several causes,
- Acquired estrogen deficiency is common in pre-menopausal age group and may be associated with early onset of menopause. This condition may run through families.
- Low amount or excessive amount of fat in the body can interfere with the conversion of testosterone into estrogen and thereby leading to estrogen deficiency.
- Very serious medical conditions like presence of tumors and malignancies in the adrenal glands or ovaries can also be linked with faulty and deficient production of estrogen. Other endocrinal disorders like thyroid disorders are also linked to the development of this condition.
- Indiscriminate use of performance enhancing drugs is also linked with estrogen deficiency, especially among female athletes. This is attributed to the imbalance between testosterone and estrogen, which can lead to the onset of the condition by default.
Symptoms Of Estrogen Deficiency
While symptoms may vary from person to person, some of the common symptoms associated with the inadequate supply of this hormone include,
- Irregular menstrual cycle symptoms including missed periods or complete cessation of monthly menstrual cycles.
- Vascular symptoms including hot flashes, night sweats, migraine and headaches.
- Vaginal dryness with loss of libido.
- Frequent and recurrent urinary tract infections are common especially due to urinary incontinence.
- Fatigue, muscular weakness, insomnia and abnormal palpitations.
- Mental symptoms including anger, mood swings, depression and despair.
- Over a prolonged period of time, estrogen deficiency can lead to osteoporosis and obesity.
Natural Remedies For Estrogen Deficiency
The focus of the treatment is aimed at treating the underlying cause linked to the condition and thereby help in elimination of the distressing symptoms. Here are some important home based treatment solutions,
- Weight management plays a vital role in the treatment of estrogen deficiency. A well balanced diet along with regular exercise can be fundamental in the treatment of this condition. Ensure that your diet includes fresh fruits, fresh vegetables, lean meat, dairies, pulses, legumes and whole grains in adequate quantities.
- Including mood foods in your diet can help eliminate some of the symptoms associated with mental disturbances. These mood foods include strawberries, dark chocolate, milk and milk products like cheese and butter, bananas and honey. While consuming these foods can help uplift mood, regular meditation can also help in improving the overall mental state.