Difference Between Estrogen and Progesterone

Main Difference

Hormones are the specific type of chemical molecules that are secreted by glands to perform the specific functions. Endocrine system of a body is a major system of the body that controls the activities of the body; it consists of endocrine glands that are located in different parts of the body, and they secrete a specific hormone into the blood stream of the body. Here, we will discuss two hormones named as, estrogen and progesterone. Estrogen is a steroid hormone that develops and maintains the feminine characteristics of the body, and progesterone is also a steroid hormone that prepares the uterus for pregnancy and has a major role in the maintenance of pregnancy. Another difference is that estrogen is mainly secreted from the follicles of the ovary and a small amount of it is also secreted by adrenal cortex while corpus luteum mainly secretes progesterone and the adrenal cortex also secretes a small amount of it.

Comparison Chart

EstrogenProgesterone
SecretionEstrogen is secreted by the ovaries of female and also from adrenal cortex.Progesterone is secreted from the corpus lutetium and also from the adrenal
Main FunctionEstrogen promotes the development of the female reproductive system; it also brings development of female secondary sexual characters.Progesterone prepare the uterus for pregnancy and has a major role in the maintenance of pregnancy.
During PregnancyEstrogen secretion decreases in pregnancy.Progesterone secretion increases in pregnancy.
Body Fat & WeightEstrogen increases the body fat and weight gain.Progesterone decrease the body fat and loses and uses fat as for energy.
MemoryEstrogen promotes the memory.Progesterone has no such role.
Risk of Breast & Prostate CancerEstrogen increases the risk of breast and prostate cancer.Progesterone reduces the risk of breast and prostate cancer by preventing it.

What is Estrogen?

Estrogen is one of the sex hormones and has steroidal chemical nature. It is secreted in a large amount in females, and a small amount is also secreted in males, so it is taken as one of a main female hormone. Estrogen is secreted by the ovaries of female and also from the adrenal cortex. Its secretion is stimulated by stimulating follicle hormone (FSH). In males, it promotes the spermatogenesis, and in females, estrogen promotes the development of the female reproductive system, it also brings development of female secondary sexual characters like the development of breasts, softening of skin, the lighting of voice, etc. It also stimulates the formation of mature follicles in the ovaries and prepares them for ovulation. Estrogen causes early fusion of epiphysis of long bones in females which leads to the shorter height of women. In pregnant women, it induces the enlargement of breast and uterus. Other effects of estrogen are that it increases the body fat and does increase in weight, cause salt, and water retention, may also cause anxiety, depression, and headaches, it increases the risk of breast and prostate cancer, increase the mucosa of the vagina and improves the health of urinary tract.

What is Progesterone?

Progesterone is one of a sex hormone and has steroidal chemical nature. It is secreted in large amount only in females and very rare in males, so it is taken as one of a main female hormone. Progesterone is secreted from the corpus lutetium and also from the adrenal cortex. In non-pregnant females, it Is secreted by corpus lutetium, and it prepares the reproductive system of the female for the pregnancy. If pregnancy occurs, it’s secretion increases. In first three months of pregnancy, it is secreted from corpus lutetium while after that it is secreted from the placenta. It is a very important hormone because it maintains the pregnancy throughout its time if its secretion reduces it leads to miscarriage. Other works of progesterone are that it decreases the body fat and loses weight and use fat as for energy, it decreases salt and water retention, it reduces anxiety, depression, and headaches. It reduces the risk of breast and prostate cancer by preventing it, Apart from all this, it also improves the sleep pattern of female and stimulates bone formation.

Estrogen vs. Progesterone

  • Estrogen is secreted by the ovaries of female and also from adrenal cortex whereas; progesterone is secreted from the corpus lutetium and also from the adrenal.
  • Estrogen promotes the development of the female reproductive system; it also brings development of female secondary sexual characters whereas, progesterone prepare the uterus for pregnancy and has a major role in the maintenance of pregnancy.
  • Estrogen secretion decreases in pregnancy while progesterone secretion increases in pregnancy.
  • Estrogen increases the body fat and weight gain whereas, progesterone decrease the body fat and loses and uses fat as for energy.
  • Estrogen promotes the memory while progesterone has no such role.
  • Estrogen increases the risk of breast and prostate cancer while progesterone reduces the risk of breast and prostate cancer by preventing it.

Comparison Video

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Janet White

Janet White is a writer and blogger for Difference Wiki since 2015. She has a master's degree in science and medical journalism from Boston University. Apart from work, she enjoys exercising, reading, and spending time with her friends and family. Connect with her on Twitter @Janet__White

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