Estrogens are the main hormones and responsible for the sexual characteristics of women. These are found in a high percentage in the body, especially when the process of menstrual periods begins from puberty, it is at that moment when its production begins to rise and stimulate the maturation of the reproductive organs.

They are essential for growth, good sexual and reproductive development. It has a great influence on the assimilation of food and on mood changes, especially when menopause arrives. They reproduce in the ovaries, adrenal glands and fatty tissues, this may depend on how old you are.

What is the role of estrogens?

This female hormone works directly on the sexual reproductive system, as it has the ability to promote regularity of enstruation and procreation.

When puberty is reached, it is when this hormone begins to form in greater proportion, going through a long period until the menopause stage. The main producers of this important hormone are the ovaries mainly and by the adrenal glands, but to a lesser extent.

During the time of pregnancy, the womb also produces this hormone, in this way it will be able to create the shape of the embryo and at the same time keep the baby and the mother in excellent health.

Its contribution in the process of protein synthesis in cells has a great influence on the functions of the body, so if there were an imbalance of this hormone, various diseases or conditions could arise that are related to this irregularity.

Next, we will show you the great benefits that this hormone provides in the body:

Estrogens help improve the appearance of the skin

They have an important function in the production of collagen and in the regeneration of the dermis. Prevents wrinkles and age spots from appearing, promotes skin pigmentation on the nipples and vulva, stimulates the good appearance of hair and nails.

Estrogens strengthen the bone system

They can reduce the loss of calcium and improve its adequate mineralization, this will prevent the bones from weakening so that the skeleton is kept in good condition and prevents the appearance of osteoporosis disease.

Estrogens support the function of the cardiovascular system

This happens due to its participation in the metabolism of fats and the activation of the production of good cholesterol. Thus, you can avoid the formation of fat residues on the walls of the arteries and reduce the possibility of contracting diseases such as arteriosclerosis.

Estrogens formalize the functioning of the urinary system

It helps to maintain the normality of the frequency of the urine.

Estrogens support the brain system

Due to its positive action on blood flow to the brain and glucose, it can promote the development of neurons and some neurotransmitters. When it goes through the menstruation cycle, some disorders of irritability, insomnia, joy, depression and mood swings can occur, due to the unevenness of this hormone.

Estrogens stimulate sexual desire

They are responsible for promoting sexual appetite, stimulating libido, therefore, prior to ovulation, libido is activated with more intensity, since at that time the levels of this hormone increase and prepare for the procreation process.

Estrogens develop a woman’s sexual characteristics

Its action allows the appearance of menstrual cycles, the widening of the hips and the increase in the size of the breasts to occur.

Estrogens metabolize fats

It is responsible for the assimilation and metabolization of fats, so that our body uses them as a source of energy and in this way excess saturated fats can be avoided. In the same way, it distributes fats towards the breasts and also to the hips.

Estrogens condition the uterus for the fetus

Without the existence of this hormone, it would not be possible to procreate, since it is responsible for preparing the area of ​​the uterus for when the ovum is fertilized, the embryo can be adequately gestated.

Classification of estrogens

This hormone is found in the body to perform an endocrine function, act on the cell nucleus and at the same time regulate protein synthesis, therefore, it is of great importance in sexual development and reproduction, as well as in other mental and physical processes of the organism. Next, we will show you the three existing types of this hormone:


  • It is synthesized from the production of testosterone and is the type of hormone that is found during fertility time, in greater quantity in the woman’s body.


  • Its synthesis is generated from androsterone and is produced at a higher rate during the pregnancy stage, the urine levels during this period can increase to more than one hundred percent.
  • By measuring its levels, the condition of the fetus and placenta can be frequently tested. With the analysis of its production, the existence of a problem or complication due to placental insufficiency can be verified, which could compromise the life of the baby and even in a serious state.


  • It can be synthesized through progesterone and is the least abundant. It is produced directly in the ovaries and adipose tissues.

Estrogen imbalance

The lack of this hormone in the body can significantly affect the health of women, especially when they enter the menopause process, due to the decrease in the production of eggs, which are very important for the female hormonal process.

Levels can also drop when conditions such as poor nutrition occur, after childbirth, if one suffers from anorexia or due to excessive physical exercises.

When the levels have been lowered too much, different problems can occur such as the ones mentioned below:

  • Cardiovascular diseases such as arteriosclerosis.
  • Osteoporosis.
  • Urinary infection.
  • Low level of libido.
  • Severe migraines
  • Constant fatigue
  • Insomnia.
  • Vaginal dryness and irritation.
  • Constant mood swings
  • Weight gain.

It can also happen that the production of this hormone in excess occurs, which can be counterproductive and unbalance the normal state of the body and in turn can run the risk of contracting bone diseases, gain weight abruptly and can even occur the possibility of developing cancer.

All this indicates that any type of imbalance, be it high or low in the production of this female hormone, can cause severe problems or complications in the state of health, which must be treated as soon as possible.

Menopause and estrogens

When menopause comes, it is a drastic decrease in estrogen production.

Due to its importance in many body processes, its decrease can have an unfavorable impact and produce some complications or disorders that cause anxiety, vaginal dryness, alterations in mood, burning, menstrual disorders, constant fatigue, the risk of suffering from diseases cardiovascular or osteoporosis.

In some cases, there is the need to undergo treatments with this type of hormone made in laboratories, to improve or prevent the appearance of these diseases or disorders.

Side effects of estrogens

Doctors probably recommend taking this hormone on many occasions, due to the great benefits it brings to women’s health, however, during its intake various adverse effects could occur that will require immediate medical intervention. These effects are as follows:

Common side effects of estrogens

  • Breast tenderness or pain.
  • Diarrhea
  • Flatulence.
  • Constipation.
  • Upset stomach.
  • Dizziness
  • Cold symptoms.
  • Unusual growth of pubic hair.
  • Constant nervousness
  • Pyrosis.
  • Threw up.
  • Dark appearance on white skin.
  • Depression.
  • Burning and tingling in the legs and arms.
  • Contractures in the muscles.
  • Sudden weight gain or loss.
  • Leg cramps.
  • Difficulty wearing contact lenses.
  • Changes and apathy in sexual desire.
  • Swelling, burning, irritation or redness in the vaginal part.

Serious side effects of estrogens

  • Tenderness, pain, and swelling in the abdomen.
  • Unusual weakness
  • Throat pain.
  • Bulging eyes
  • Fever.
  • Hives
  • Chill.
  • Ronquera.
  • Rash.
  • Yellowing of the eyes and skin.
  • Swelling of the face, lips, tongue and throat.
  • Difficulty controlling body movements.
  • Lack of appetite.
  • Swelling in the hands, arms, and feet.
  • Difficulty swallowing or breathing.


These female steroid sex hormones are responsible for regulating the proper sexual functioning of women, at the same time they have the ability to influence various physical processes such as bone health, metabolism and symptoms of menopause.

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Dr. Samantha Robson ( CRN: 0510146-5) is a nutritionist and website content reviewer related to her area of ​​expertise. With a postgraduate degree in Nutrition from The University of Arizona, she is a specialist in Sports Nutrition from Oxford University and is also a member of the International Society of Sports Nutrition.

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