During perimenopause many these eleven body systems require special care and support.
Immune functions -Supporting the immune functions buffers against the possible weakening effects of long-term grief on immunity. Women may experience this long-term grief reaction strongly or more subtly as a response to a perceived loss in menstruation or in response to the approach of menopause. Furthermore, it is important to support immune functions because of the possibility that estrogen may make a women’s immune responses so sensitive that they attack her own body tissues.
Pituitary – The pituitary assists in stimulating all the glands of the body and releases FSH and LH. FSH and LH act directly on the ovaries to promote the development and enlargement of the follicles. In the post-menopausal years, the pituitary is responsible for secreting higher levels of FSH and LH. This post-menopausal increased production of FSH and LH results in more consistently elevated brain levels of these two hormones. Some think that these elevated brain levels of FSH and LH acting as neurotransmitters in the brain may be the mechanisms for the increased intuitiveness and awareness of post- menopausal women.
Adrenal glands – In the menopausal years the adrenal glands are important for balanced energy production and for the production of small amounts of testosterone from a precursor hormone called adrostenedione. The secretion of these small amounts of androgens (testosterone being one hormone from this class of hormones) help maintain the female sex drive, build bone and muscle strength and increase vaginal lubrication and elasticity. Androgens promote general well-being for the rest of a womens life. The production of testosterone is thought by some to facilitate the developing assertiveness in post-menopausal women.
Pancreas – is responsible for the production of balanced sugar levels that may become unbalanced by loss of estrogen. Frequent and rapid changes in blood sugar may play havoc with emotional responses.
Nervous system – The nervous system may need extra support in order to cope with and compensate for the effects of all the hormonal revamping that occurs in menopause.
Brain functions – Memory, concentration, and attention functions may become unbalanced by the changes in hormone levels.
Liver – During the perimenopausal years it is important that the liver is strong and healthy so that it can metabolize and break down estrogen and its by-products. The liver is responsible for transforming the main type of estrogen, called estradiol, into other forms of estrogen. Estradiol in too high amounts or for too prolonged a period of time may be carcinogenic. The liver prevents excessive build-up of estradiol in the blood circulation by inactivating it. When the liver is healthy the conversion of estradiol occurs efficiently.
Digestive processes – Poorly functioning digestion stimulates the growth of certain types of bacteria in the intestinal tract. These bacteria chemically change the breakdown products of estrogen into forms that can be reabsorbed back into the body. This elevates the levels of estrone and estradiol in the bloodstream. These elevated levels of estrone and estradiol may be carcinogenic to certain sensitive tissue such as breast, ovarian, and uterine tissue.