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Libido in relation to Estrogen

What science can tell us about sex.
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WirelessRouter
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Re: Libido in relation to Estrogen

Post by WirelessRouter »

From what I've found, yes, estrogen levels, in conjunction with testosterone, are related to sexual desire (spontaneous drive) in women. However, that isn't the whole story as progesterone and prolactin exhibit an inhibitory effect on libido. In addition, the neurotransmitters dopamine and serotonin have stimulating and inhibitory effects respectively on female drive (and also on ability to orgasm).

Oy, women are complicated....
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Re: Libido in relation to Estrogen

Post by Deleted User 1388 »

"Oy, women are complicated...."  Yeah, but we love them and cannot live without them!!
MrEden
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Re: Libido in relation to Estrogen

Post by MrEden »

"However, that isn’t the whole story as progesterone and prolactin exhibit an inhibitory effect on libido. "

True, but, like estrogen,  low progesterone level will also mess with libido, and erections in guys. I take a low dose of progesterone.
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WirelessRouter
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Re: Libido in relation to Estrogen

Post by WirelessRouter »

Personally, I'm wondering whether xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens have different effects on women than estrogens created by the body, but if it's been researched it'll be difficult to find.
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Re: Libido in relation to Estrogen

Post by MrEden »

A few years back our hormone doctor had just returned from the annual American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine conference when we had our appointment.  He shared some of the hilights from the conference.  One was a presentation from a researcher who had concluded that plant estrogen -- soy and wild yam for instance -- has no estrogen effect at all.

If that is so, all of the concern about soy products causing breast cancer are unfounded.  Which jives with the fact that Asian women are big consumers of tofu, yet have a low incidence of breast cancer.  If tofu really elevated their estrogen levels above normal, they would have more breast cancer.
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DoveGrey
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Re: Libido in relation to Estrogen

Post by DoveGrey »

Below is a piece from NIH. It's mainly a literature review discussing the history and science of the testosterone/estrogen debate. If you don't have the inclination to read the entire piece, the conclusion starts on p. 60.

In short, it states that current studies trend toward estrogen, not testosterone, being the hormone that drives female libido. However, it also indicates that the jury's still out, in part because we may have been focusing on the wrong thing for too long. As @WirelessRouter has stated, women are complicated.

Of more importance than all of this, in my opinion, is that too much focus on medically "fixing" the female libido sends a message to women that there is something wrong with them. That they are, somehow, not "normal" when in fact there is a wide range of normal. I understand that there are people who would rather have that high libido for as much of their life as they can. So any advances that are made are great for them. I don't begrudge them that joy.

However, as we've seen on this board in the last week, it can be a very difficult thing when a woman has low libido and is made to think that she needs to fix a problem. The psychological impact of that can be devastating. I don't know for sure which hormone increases female libido, but I can tell you for sure that a negative self image will kill it. Been there, done that, designed the t-shirt.

I'd like to see science spend as much money as it does on the magic "fix" on women's understanding of their own bodies, their own minds, and embracing what sexuality can mean in their unique situation. You can't package that in a bottle or a syringe, but it will go a long way toward making many women feel better about sex.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4720522/
Wife of 21 years
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