Cholesterol is the Backbone of all of our Sex and Stress Hormones

Cholesterol is essential for health hormones. It’s how we make all of our sex and stress hormones. The interesting thing about cholesterol and our hormones is that they can both impact each other. Not only does cholesterol impact our hormone levels, but our hormones impact our cholesterol levels.

“​​National Institutes of Health researchers have shown that women’s cholesterol levels correspond with monthly changes in estrogen levels. This natural variation, they suggest, might indicate a need to take into account the phases of a woman’s monthly cycle before evaluating her cholesterol measures. On average, the total cholesterol level of the women in the study varied 19 percent over the course of the menstrual cycle.”

This should impact when we test cholesterol levels during a woman’s cycle. I would personally opt to test them at the end of my luteal phase in order to avoid getting a false high reading.

There are also studies on birth control and HRT that I discuss in the full podcast episode! Swipe to the last slide to see how to listen.

Our thyroid also plays a crucial role in our cholesterol levels. Inadequate thyroid hormone can lead to elevated cholesterol levels. Thyroid hormone is one of the main governors of LDL receptor activity, which controls how our cells take up cholesterol and remove it from the blood.

The other big regulator of our LDL receptor activity is insulin. Insulin resistance can lead to an increase in cholesterol production and a reduction in LDL receptor activity, which raises blood cholesterol levels overall.

From all of this, we can conclude that supporting healthy thyroid function, blood sugar balance, and insulin sensitivity, which all support balanced hormones, can optimize cholesterol levels. High cholesterol is a symptom that something needs your attention.

Listen to my podcast episode cholesterol and your hormones to dive even deeper into this topic!

reminder: i’m currently taking on 1:1 clients. if you’d like to explore what it would be like to work together and if we are a good fit, fill out this form to get more details!​

Amanda Montalvo

Amanda Montalvo is a women's health dietitian who helps women find the root cause of hormone imbalances and regain healthy menstrual cycles.

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