Functional Q&ASecrets of Amazing Shatavari for Hormones

Secrets of Amazing Shatavari for Hormones

I know people are talking about Shatavari for hormone balance. I even see allopathic doctors recommending Shatavari to women over 40 as support for peri menopause to build up their estrogen. Is shatavari truly the magical hormone elixir and should I be taking it?

Secrets of Amazing Shatavari for Hormones:

In a functional approach to hormone balance, there are no quick fixes and everyone is truly unique. There are multiple causes and systems involved in balancing hormones in a woman’s body and while we cannot go into great depth in one article, this is to bring a bird’s eye view into hormonal health in girls and women of all ages, in modern society. Stay tuned to more in depth articles on women’s health as we go forward.

 

Xenoestrogens in plastics

Secrets of Amazing Shatavari. Is it for you?

Looking at girls reaching puberty, today we are seeing a trend of it being earlier and earlier, due to a number of reasons, mostly that as a society, we are exposing our girls to xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens. Xenoestrogens are the estrogen that we are exposed to in our environment from pesticides, plastics, cosmetics and fire retardants. Phytoestrogents are plant estrogens, some of which can help support us, but we want them in limited amounts. Both these mimic estrogen in the body.

Another cause for girls having early puberty is hormones from farmed meat and dairy which stimulate early breast development and increased estrogen production. This is also not considering the processed food, lack of fibre and bad fats that many young girls are eating.  Early puberty then sets the stage for estrogen dominanace, PCOS, endometriosis and adrenal dysfunction.

With the added stress of growing into young women, having inadequate sleep, pushing themselves with excessive exercise, body conscious to the point of unhealthy food habits, nutritional stress from deficiencies, various emotional stressors, blood sugar imbalance and further estrogen dominance, women’s hormones can get into a spiral from which one magical cure is absolutely impossible.

Secrets of Shatavari. Helpful for menopause?

During peri menopause, with today symptoms starting at 40 itself from the cascade of estrogen buildup through life, and with our ovaries producing less progesterone earlier, we continue to become more estrogen dominant. At this point, please make a note that we might still be low in estrogen overall, but in relation to progesterone we are estrogen dominant. We’ll come back to this point later as this is really important. 

Estrogen dominanace at any age can be visisble through a multitude of symptoms like excess weight in the waist, depression, mood swings, infertility, fluid retention, irritability, candida overgrowth, headaches, fatigue, sleep issues, PMS sypmtoms, palpitations, multiple aches and pains, vaginal dryness, fibromyalgia and tearfulness. This list can go on and on.

Balance

The balance between Estrogen and Progesterone is the backbone of hormonal health. They need to flow gently up and down, through the month, without volatile mountains and valleys. They need to rise gently like a wave. They need to work together like a healthy relationship. If Progesterone prevents cancer in breasts, Estrogen stimulates tissue growth in breasts. If Estrogen makes us sharp in the brain, Progesterone makes us calm. 

Secrets of Amazing Shatavari. When should you be cautious?

Coming back to shatavri, it is a phytoestrogen and from the asparagus family making it a diuretic. It does have many benefits. While it can be helpful in some cases, mostly when overall toxic load is low, where detoxification in a body is optimum, and in a body which does not have excessive Estrogen dominance, for everyone to be taking it, prescribing it and telling their friends to take it as a magical hormone fix can be counterproductive.

It can further aggravate Estrogen dominanace, and increase all symptoms of estrogen dominanace related to a specific age, and further upset the cascade of hormones. With estrogen further dominating, and progesterone lower in comparison toeEstrogen, symptoms related to lower progesterone can arise, such as aggaravating mental symptoms, sleep disorder, weight gain, fluid retention and more.

Hormone balance in women

It all comes back to the functional approach that there are no magical pills, potions or protocols, and caution must be exercised when looking at any thing, even a healthy herb, with you as a unique individual.

It requires looking at a variety of factors from our environmental exposures, our gut health, our detoxification capabilities, fat reduction, balance between estrogen and progesterone, and overall homeostasis in the body. For healthy and happy hormones, a multi system approach is required, while respecting the unique individual.

 

10 Comments

  • Nidhi

    Thanks Deepa! I resisted taking the pill with a gut feeling of following a holistic approach as my mother always did too. Do you recommend taking regular hormonal tests?

    • Deepa Kannan

      Nidhi, Hormones are a symphony. They work so uniquely in each body, and the thought that one magic pill exists is so strange, for if such a thing did exist, every woman would be happy! Kudos to you for listening to your instinct! Testing from the Functional perspective is very different. I will soon write about how unique it is. In the meantime, tests can only be a guide. We still have to listen to our bodies, our symptoms and really be aware. It takes time to bring hormones into balance, for they are bombarded by factors that can throw them off every day! Makes sense?

  • Mishie

    What are other way to balance hormone using natural ingredients ?

    • Deepa Kannan

      Mishie, As I mentioned to Nidhi below, Hormones are a symphony. They work so uniquely in each body, and the thought that one magic pill exists is so strange, for if such a thing did exist, every woman would be happy! Kudos to you for listening to your instinct! Testing from the Functional perspective is very different. I will soon write about how unique it is. In the meantime, tests can only be a guide. We still have to listen to our bodies, our symptoms and really be aware. It takes time to bring hormones into balance, for they are bombarded by factors that can throw them off every day!

  • Laryssa

    Hi Deepa! Very good article. I started taking Shatavari with Milk in the mornings to keep my reproductive system healthy as I am 35 and I started have problems in my breast. Tenderness and pain during all my cycle. Went to the doctor and they found Brest cysts. He mentioned I was probably with high Estrogen. I have had an Ayurvedic consultation and started taking some medicines that in less the one week had an effective response. Your article just helped me to clarify what is going on. Thank you

    • Deepa Kannan

      Laryssa, So glad that it made sense! It's become such a dangerous space of loose advice that sometimes things can harm you. Do reach out anytime on [email protected] if you need any help.

  • Donna

    FDA and Western medicine refuses to look at Bio-identical hormones. I have not been able therefore to see if I can take Shatavari and bio-identical hormones together for total balance. Does anyone know?

    • Deepa Kannan

      Donna, That really depends. It is important to check your hormones for the level of estrogen or progesterone dominance. Beyond that, you probably need to work with a skilled practitioner who is able to navigate that space between functional nutrition and ancient wisdom, and guide you towards how to use both through the month.

  • Andrea

    So am I too understand, this article cautions against taking shatavari if you have estrogen dominance symptoms? Interesting because my consultaion with an herbalist resulted in her wanting me to take shatavari to balance hormones. Why would she do that if it is not good to take if you already have too much estrogen?

    • Shyam Prasad Nair

      Andrea, please understand that shatavari can help in hormones if your body has the capabilities to support. If your body shows the symptoms of not able to balance it, It can only aggravate the possibilities of triggering the opposite reaction. Please note that herbalists often look at the positive side of the products like shatavari whereas a functional approach is to look at it from a overall medical angle as to how it reacts with your current state of your body.

Comments are closed.

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