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BE YOUR OWN HEALTH MANAGER

"You're Not Crazy, It's Your Hormones!
The Hormone Diva's Workbook"

by Larrian Gillespie, copyright June 2003

Sample Chapter 1 (Continued)
Read more of this chapter> Page 1 | 2
(NOTE: Images and charts on this page are for sample purposes only and may not reflect the actual image size.)


Ovulation graphTHE NORMAL CYCLE
Let's follow what happens during a normal menstrual cycle. Day 1 is the first day you bleed. As you can see, your body temperature is around 36.2 degrees centigrade, or about 98.6. Your progesterone level has bottomed out because pregnancy did not occur. Estradiol,(E2) the active form of estrogen, is also low at this time. The uterine lining is beginning to shed, but really doesn't reach its lowest level until days 5-7. This is known as the pre-follicular stage, as the ovary has yet to choose the next egg up to bat. Around Day 10 the selected egg goes into training. Estradiol levels start to rise and a big cheer goes up when leutenizing hormone(LH) along with follicle stimulating hormone, (FSH) spike the egg into ovulation. This ends the follicular phase. The luteal phase begins with a rise in your body temp in response to Progesterone,(P) the designated hitter, taking over and running the bases, along with estradiol, for a double play. The uterine lining builds up, ready for implantation. If fertilization has not occurred, both hormones get tagged out and the uterine lining begins to shed.

THE ABNORMAL CYCLE
So what happens when your cycle isn't a classic 28 days? The answer lies in the follicular phase. In perimenopause, the LH surge moves up a few days, shortening your cycle by 2-3 days. If the menstrual cycleLH surge is delayed or there is not sufficient estradiol and FSH to spike ovulation, your cycle may lengthen to 32 days or even longer. The luteal phase remains constant at 14 days regardless of the behavior of the follicular phase.1

Now take a look at the hormones produced by the ovaries. Notice that estrogen should be no lower than 200 pg/ml between days 13 and 15. Progesterone should always be low in the first half of your cycle, because it's the ovulated egg that stimulates progesterone production. If you don't ovulate, your progesterone levels will be low in the second half, as will your basal temperature reading. How do you know if you've ovulated? Here's a great little secret "old time" docs used to determine ovulation before blood tests were available.

ovulation

During ovulation (Days 11-14) estrogen increases the amount of potassium chloride and sialic acid (neuraminic acid) in your saliva. Crystals form a unique "fern" pattern when your saliva is dried on glass, making it simple to determine if you have actually ovulated.2,3,4 This test is 90% accurate even in non-medical hands. In Chapter Eight I will tell you how to obtain a sialic acid tester as part of your Hormone Diva Survival Kit.

 

Charting your symptoms as they relate to your menstrual cycle is important. Hormone divas simply have too much on their minds to trust their memories. So I've made a simple chart that will keep your important observations accurate. I've placed a master copy of this chart in Appendix 1 so you'll always have a clean one for each month. Since no two hormone divas have the identical complaints, I've left space for you to put in any symptoms unique to your cycle. Remember Day 1 is the first day you bleed. Rank your symptoms each day using 1 for no symptoms, 2 for mild, 3 for moderately severe and 4 for "feels like hell." You'll see the pattern in no time this way.

Now that you have a firm grasp of "what's normal" I'm going to show you how the other team players can throw a hormonal foul ball your way. Their lineup is composed of thyroid, adrenal and ovarian disorders than can knock your fast pitch out of the ballpark. In order to help you figure out their strategy, I'm going to start with a relevant quiz in each section, so sharpen your pencils.


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Personally autographed copies available upon request.
You're Not Crazy It's Your Hormones! The Hormone Diva's Workbook will show women how to take control of their hormones by taking them step by step through a complete hormonal workup.With a hefty dollop of knowledge, a pinch of guidance and a twist of determination, every woman can learn the secrets to balancing her hormones.

 
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