Pregnenolone is a frequently overlooked player when it comes to optimizing hormones in men and women. From improving your mood to losing stubborn mid-section fat, this hormone plays a crucial role. But it never seems to get the attention that testosterone, DHEA, estrogen, progesterone or even cortisol get. And this is despite the fact that they are all formed from pregnenolone, which is why it is often called the “The Mother of all Hormones.”
If you didn’t already know, cholesterol is the building block of all your hormones, and its conversion into pregnenolone is the first step in this process. It is the main steroid in your body and is produced in the brain, gonads (testes and ovaries) and adrenal glands. From there it is converted into your other key hormones such as testosterone, estrogen, progesterone, and DHEA as your body needs them.
There are 4 main reasons why I recommend pregnenolone to my patients:
1. Pregnenolone improves cognitive function
Research shows that pregnenolone improves memory and learning. It’s no secret that memory loss and forgetfulness are common signs of aging. Multiple studies show that pregnenolone may preserve memory and learning and therefore slow cognitive decline.
Pregnenolone also serves a special purpose in the brain as it is necessary for the production of myelin. Myelin is the protective coating that insulates your neurons and therefore ensures speedy and accurate communication between brain cells. Pregnenolone can help reverse damage to your neurons that may have built up over time.
2. Pregnenolone aids weight loss
Cortisol is an adrenal hormone that at elevated levels causes you to store body fat. Even if you exercise vigorously, too much cortisol can hinder your ability to lose weight. Since pregnenolone can prevent cortisol levels from becoming too high, it helps your body’s ability to burn fat and lose weight. So supplementing with pregnenolone allows your other fat-burning hormones such as HGH, thyroid, and testosterone to do their job.
3. Pregnenolone improves mood
Pregnenolone is often referred to as a neurosteroid. A neurosteroid is a hormone that is produced in the brain and modulates the activity of your neurons. It has been gaining traction recently as a treatment for mental health issues and other diseases that affect the brain.
Low levels of circulating pregnenolone have been associated with increased occurrence of depression and anxiety – something we all want to avoid. Additionally, taking supplemental pregnenolone has a mood balancing effect that can help with your emotional response to stimuli. It is also being studied for it’s therapeutic benefit in diseases such as Alzheimer’s and ADHD.
4. Pregnenolone improves sleep
Taking pregnenolone can improve the quality and duration of your sleep. Most importantly, it helps with increasing deep wave sleep, which is crucial to waking up well rested. I can’t emphasize enough how important sleep is when it comes to your overall health – so having quality sleep is paramount!
Since pregnenolone is only one hormone that works side by side with the other hormones in your body, I only recommend taking supplemental pregnenolone under the care of a physician trained to optimize hormones. There are many other hormones and health factors to consider in making recommendations, so I don’t advise doing it on your own.