Estrogen is a hormone that often gets a bad rap, but it is a hormone that is super important for your menstrual health AND your metabolism, bone health, brain health, heart health, skin health, and more.
There are four different kinds of estrogen: estrone (E1), estradiol (E2), estriol (E3), and estetrol (E4). Estradiol is the kind of estrogen that is found in the most quantity in our reproductive years and it’s also the most potent kind.
We actually make most of our estrogen from testosterone. And when we break it down for elimination, most of it happens in the liver and gut. We can even re-absorb estrogens meant for elimination if we aren’t having regular bowel movements!
Here are some of its roles:
- breast development during puberty and pregnancy
- vaginal and vulvar cell proliferation and maintenance
- cervical mucus production
- thickens uterine lining during menstrual cycle
- involved in healthy cholesterol metabolism
- tells the body where to store fat (usually around the hips)
- involved in bone health, preventing bone loss