Period Health 102: Phase 2 - Luteal Phase or “Progesterone Phase”
PHASE 2: LUTEAL PHASE or “PROGESTERONE PHASE”
In a nutshell: YOU JUST OVULATED + NOW PROGESTERONE IS RELEASING
After ovulation, (where the egg was released from the follicle), the follicle now collapses on itself creating the “corpus luteum” and remains in the ovarian wall and starts releasing PROGESTERONE.
*To re-iterate, progesterone rises from the ovaries after ovulation (egg release and follicle collapse)
At this stage, Progesterone does a few important things: 1) It causes the uterine lining to thicken to support the corpus luteum 2) prevents the other less dominant follicles from releasing and 3) it causes a few changes in the female body: cervical fluid, waking basal body temperatures and cervix changes/cervical position
Progesterone has MANY important benefits, everything from serving as our body’s natural anti-anxiety, it helps with sleep, and of key importance is it helps to balance out ESTROGEN… if you are not having a strong ovulation, you are not producing adequate progesterone, and you may be left feeling highly anxious/mood swings, watery/bloated, struggle with insomnia and have a hard time losing weight… yes estrogen is high but also progesterone is too LOW. In addition to working on nutrition and stress to improve these ratios (more on that in future post!), some of my favorite products are EstroFactors and Hormone Plus Complete … and if you know from labs you’re consistently low in progesterone, you may benefit from supplementation – I love Progon B by Bezwecken!
After ~2 weeks of progesterone rising it starts to drop off a few days before you get your “period” where your uterine lining starts to shed. Some women may get slight spotting, some may feel a little PMS-y at this time, and others may actually feel like they start to have a change in energy (whether it’s up or down – depends on the individual!)
FOODS TO SUPPORT PROGESTERONE?
- FOODS: Seed Cycling
- Adequate Healthy Fats (pumpkin seeds, avocado are great)
- Foods rich in Fiber (veggies, oats, beans, seeds)
- Foods rich in Zinc (*pumpkin seeds, lean beef, seafood, oysters)
- Foods rich in Vitamin B6 (Sunflower seeds, fish, turkey)
- Foods high in magnesium (spinach, fish, dark chocolate like 1 oz dark chocolate is awesome! or a home made coconut milk with cocoa powder)
- Foods rich in Vitamin C (also really good for adrenal glands!!) - bell peppers, kiwi, citrus, dark leafy greens
- Amino acid L Arginine is helpful for boosting P and also for blood circulation (good for corpus luteum) - pumpkin seeds, salmon, lentils
NOT SURE WHERE YOU LIE ON THE MAP? If you’re interested in learning more about YOUR cycle and hormones… whether you’ve got some symptoms that you want to be efficient and effective in your protocol – I highly recommend to order the DUTCH COMPELTE test for comprehensive hormone analysis – the cost of the test on our site comes with a full lab review session and action points with myself or one of our Lab Review Dietitians!!
Want to learn how to manage your cycles? Click HERE to schedule your free Discovery Call today!