Because progesterone is a precursor to cortisol, progesterone levels will start to drop. This can cause heavier menstrual cycles to occur. If cortisol gets high enough for too long, it can cause a drop in estrogen and menstrual cycles can become irregular, skipped, or absent. Cortisol also has a strong effect in male-pattern hair loss in women and/or increased hair growth on the face and body (hirsutism). We can also see increased bone loss/osteoporosis, hot flashes, abdominal weight gain, insomnia, loss of sex drive, fatigue, and mood changes.
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