Entry 4 – Day 56

Again, it’s been a very interesting couple of weeks for us. John continues on as he has from the very beginning with pre-Conceive, down the hatch and job done. For me it has been a little different. I continue to notice that at the beginning of my cycle I really do not find the drink pleasant, and as my cycle progresses, I notice it less and less. I would also say as delicately as I can, for anyone taking the drink, it does get your digestive system moving!!

In my last piece I spoke about my PMS symptoms showing a marked change and I had seen this as my body having a good old clear out. I’m happy to report that this month my PMS symptoms improved considerably. As someone who has always had PMS since my very first period, for me this is the first time I’ve taken something that has made such a difference and I’m incredibly optimistic about that improvement all on its own. I shall see how the third month progresses and if it continues I will absolutely stay on pre-Conceive because of this added bonus.

I had gotten in touch with Mark at Pillar Healthcare, the creator of pre-Conceive,  about this and he pointed me in the direction of the relationship between the stress hormone cortisol, oestrogen and progesterone.

When we have an imbalance in our oestrogen/progesterone levels, we get symptoms like allergies, breast tenderness, headaches, hot flushing, irritability, low mood, difficulty concentrating, forgetfulness, fatigue, loss of confidence, aching joints, water retention, weight gain (especially around the hips and thighs), digestive complaints, endometriosis, fibroids and infertility among others.

Our hormone balance is affected by a wide variety of factors including the presence of quite a few xeno-oestrogens in our environment. However, the more I look into my own hormonal story, the more information I read about diet and lifestyle and if I look at that relationship between cortisol, progesterone and oestrogen, the need to manage my stress levels to reduce cortisol jumps out at me and slaps me on the head!

Cortisol is stress hormone and is fantastically useful for our flight/fight response, so that we either fight a sabre-toothed tiger or run for your life. In my own clinics, I’m very aware of the effect of this response on our digestive health, as it effectively slows your digestive system down and speeds up the nervous system. However, what I had not fully taken on board was the marked effect on our hormones and how cortisol directly competes with progesterone in our bodies and progesterone is the hormone that gets us and keeps us pregnant.

So if I’m constantly stressed, cortisol is beating my progesterone up and winning, my oestrogen than has free rein and I know this because I have quite a few of the above symptoms and have never truly managed to get rid of them.

It seems that pre-Conceive is giving my body what it needs to respond to stress and strengthen my progesterone. It’s kind of hard to put this into words, but I have noticed that I am much more able to let things go, to be more philosophical while at the same time not over-analysing or worrying quite as much.

Facing potential infertility does bring into sharp focus what’s important in life and my pre-Conceive journey has led me to the realisation that for me, the here and now and the people in my life now that I love are really all that’s worth investing my mental and emotional energy in. I find once I do a good job, everything else takes care of itself and so I am less stressed and with hopefully happier hormones.

Continue to page 5 for the next Entry in Victoria’s Diary…