The adaptogenic hormone, pregnenolone, is the critical building block in the production of other hormones - DHEA, estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and even cortisol. It prevents memory loss, relieves anxiety and depression, alleviates PMS and menopause symptoms, lessens fatigue and increases endurance, eases joint pain, lowers cholesterol, and combats addictive behavior.
I recently received the results of my latest salivary hormone test and was not surprised to learn that, once again, my levels of DHEA were lower than I’d like.
DHEA or dehydroepiandrosterone is a hormone secreted by the adrenals and is considered the “mother” of many other hormones. The salivary hormone test often serves as a friendly reminder that I need to take action to raise my levels of this hormone.
I’ve been working with this type of testing for nearly a decade. Raising suboptimal hormone levels of any kind — without resorting to synthetics (which are not tolerated well by many women) — can be tricky and a bit challenging.
Raising Hormone Levels Without Synthetics
After a great deal of research and evidence-based testing, I discovered that the adaptogenic hormone, pregnenolone, can help raise ALL hormones because it can help your body produce whatever it is lacking — DHEA, estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and even cortisol.
Pregnenolone — which continues to lack the attention it deserves — has really powerful effects on aging, memory, mood, sexuality, and even sleep. It is the critical building block in the production of most other hormones.
In fact, this uber-hormone may be the ultimate raw material in your entire body. It’s so essential to health that it’s produced not only in the adrenal glands and sex organs but also in the brain and the spinal cord.
Pregnenolone: A Bundle of Benefits
Science has uncovered all sorts of benefits about this hormone of all hormones:
- It boosts memory. This hormone appears useful in creating memory as well as in preventing its loss, and it supports memory-protecting sleep.
- It helps brain function by raising brain levels of acetylcholine, the neurotransmitter needed for thought processes, which is low in Alzheimer’s disease.
- It relieves anxiety and depression (according to two studies at the University of California, San Francisco). People with schizophrenia, who are very anxious, have the lowest levels of pregnenolone.
- It alleviates PMS and menopause symptoms, particularly hot flashes and loss of libido (according to Ray Sahelian, MD., a medical expert on hormones).
- It counters the effects of stress to lessen fatigue and increase endurance — whether you’re exercising or at work.
- It eases joint pain as well as rheumatoid arthritis and gout, even when conventional drugs don’t help.
- It lowers cholesterol. In one study, this hormone helped decrease the subjects’ total cholesterol levels from 263 to 188.
- It combats addictive behavior and chemical dependency (according to the Journal of Pharmacological Science), whether you’re trying to kick the nicotine habit or other addictive drugs.
Give Pregnenolone A Shot
Since I have found that so many of my clients do really well on low doses, I recommend trying one of the lower-dose types of pregnenolone on the market.
In the body, pregnenolone is made from cholesterol. In the laboratory, it is derived from wild yam — so it is not a steroid-based product. Perhaps this is why a growing number of health professionals are recommending it as a natural alternative to other types of hormone replacement.
I generally recommend that people start with one tablet of 5mg of pregnenolone per day and slowly progress to a maximum of two per day .
The body’s production of this foundational hormone declines with age, stress, depression, hypothyroidism, and environmental toxins.
But with light supplementation, you can feel youthful and vital from the inside out.