Progesterone Dominance - My Personal Experience

by Anonymous
(USA)

Hello:

I know on this site many feel that it is pretty much impossible to get too much progesterone. From my own experience, I disagree.

At different times, I have tried both oral micronized progesterone (200mg) and natural compounded 10% progesterone cream (100mg) for fourteen days out of the month. Although my ratio with estrogen was over the recommended 600:1, my serum progesterone levels were very elevated and I still never felt well. My boobs swelled and gained a cup size...I got extremely depressed....I was sleeping over ten hours a day and didn't want to get out of bed...I had cystic acne on my chin...extreme bloating and weight gain all in the midsection. My estradiol levels have always been on the lower end but I have never taken any type of bioidentical estrogen...just natural progesterone. I think, however, adding the progesterone when I have low estradiol actually caused some of the same symptoms as estrogen dominance! There are doctors out there who believe that women who have weight issues should stay away from progesterone...especially women who have low estradiol levels to begin with and that adding progesterone alone can cause an increase in acne, weight gain, etc.,.

I think progesterone, from my own personal experience, was not the end all be all. I know others on here will disagree and say that progesterone is the only answer. We are all different. I think everyone should have their levels tested before they go on it to see if they really need it). It's too easy to throw around the term "estrogen dominance" these days and rx a script for mega doses of progesterone. Yes, I am sure many women who are truly estrogen dominant will benefit...but some of us out here just can not tolerate it for whatever reason. I've tried lower doses...higher doses...and can't achieve balance even when I am at the recommended 600:1 ratio. I am off it now and am feeling better, but I am sure it has built up in my system over the years. You probably disagree with Dr. Mercola that progesterone can cause complications, but I think he is on to something. Too much of a good thing in excess can cause problems for some.

Just wanted to share my own personal experience. I so wanted to have good results like many on this site...I envy those that achieve balance!!!

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Jun 16, 2012
Progesterone Dominance - My Personal Experience
by: Wray

Hi there Thanks for sharing your experience with progesterone, so pleasantly put too. Some people are very aggressive if they've had a bad time using it. But you are right, I do disagree with you! Oral progesterone does make one sleepy, plus it's the least effective Delivery system as most gets destroyed by the gut and liver. 100mg/day is the smallest amount I recommend, it will only work if symptoms are mild. If too low an amount is used it does lead to Oestrogen Dominance. There's more info on our page How to use progesterone cream. I'm surprised you say your serum levels were elevated, as these don't normally show this, saliva does of course. I don't know who worked out your ratio, but it could be they forgot to convert the pg/ml that oestrogen is tested in, to ng/ml which progesterone is tested in. A pg is 1000 times smaller than a ng, so it should be divided by 1000 before dividing the result. There's more info on our page on Hormone Testing. Oestrogen causes water retention, hence the swollen boobs. Progesterone is an excellent diuretic, so good over 1200mg/day is now given via IV transfusion to Traumatic Brain Injury victims. Oestrogen also destroys beta-endorphin neurons, see here, which could cause the depression plus upsetting the reproductive system, plus it suppresses progesterone which is a potent anxiolytic, see our page on Anxiety. Oestrogen causes weight gain and Insulin Resistance, it's a mitogen stimulating cells to proliferate, including fat cells which secrete oestrogen. Progesterone inhibits mitosis and speeds metabolism slightly, so cannot cause weight gain. Testing is of interest, but symptoms are a far better guide, no test can tell how a person is feeling. Continued below.

Jun 16, 2012
Progesterone Dominance - My Personal Experience Part 2
by: Wray

Hi there The amount of progesterone needed is dependant on symptoms and how much oestrogen and/or testosterone is present. Oestrogen stimulates subcutaneous fat, whereas testosterone stimulates visceral fat, hence your midsection problems, see here and here. Testosterone also causes Acne, progesterone cannot, plus it suppresses testosterone as it increases SHBG, see here. Some women find 400-500mg/day is needed initially to overcome the symptoms. You might find these comments here of interest. The body knows how to metabolise progesterone, it's highly unlikely it builds up, we have more info about this on our Progesterone Misconceptions page. I would hope you might consider using it again, I don't know how else I can advise you on gaining hormonal balance. Although some of the pages I've given you do give advice on what foods not to eat, and what nutrients to take. Possibly this is all you need. There's more info on our Nutrition too. I do hope you come right. Take care Wray

Jun 16, 2012
Thank you
by: Andrea

Thank you for sharing your experience.

Jun 16, 2012
Progesterone Dominance
by: Carol - Cape Town

Hi. I have read your comments and would like to add that your symptoms sound like you are Estrogen Dominant. Please take Wray's advice and bear in mind that not all Progesterone is the same. You say you have used 10% Progesterone - I think Natpro is 33%. Wray can clarify this but either way, you are not using the right product and not enough. I get Dr Mercola's newsletter every day and find his advice extremely good but honestly, I do not share his views on Progesterone. He has said that Progesterone builds up in the cells. I can tell you that in my experience that is rubbish. Since using Natpro and rubbing it onto my thighs and stomach, the weight has fallen off me. I also rub it into my face. Everyone who sees me is blown away by how great I am looking and there is only one reason - Natpro. I am using quite a lot. 12ml a day - about 400mg but it is WORTH IT!!!! I hope this has helped you. Stick with Wray and trust her. She really knows her stuff! All the best.

Jun 16, 2012
Just Curious...
by: Anonymous

Has anyone on this board ever taken the 400mg to 500mg amounts mentioned to overcome initial symptoms? I would be interested in hearing individual experiences on those dosages and how long you were on them (I assume you taper down after an initial ramp up)...Do physicians even prescribe transdermal creams that high in dosage? I don't think I could convince my doc to go along with that high of an amount even for a trial period....Thanks!

Jun 18, 2012
Just Curious...
by: Wray

Hi there Yes there are plenty who have done this. It's best I give you the various pages you can read through, you'll notice it's not a quick fix, but eventually does work. These are the pages here, here, here, here, here and here. You'll also notice all but one bought their own progesterone, and did not go through a doctor. The idea behind the high initial amount is to reduce or eliminate symptoms quickly, and then reduce over a few weeks till the optimum is found. I have found I need about 170mg/day, but when stressed increase it substantially. Then reduce again once the stress has passed. Take care Wray

Jun 18, 2012
Progesterone Dominance
by: Wray

Hi Carol Thanks for the support! Just to clarify, Natpro is 3.3%. As you've found, it's not the strength of the cream, but the amount of progesterone that's critical. So with creams containing only 16mg/ml of cream, ie a 1.6% strength, you would have to use double the amount than if you were using a 3.3% cream. This can get very costly! I also have to agree with you about the build up, I've never experienced this either. And in fact did a page on some of the Progesterone Misconceptions that do the rounds. Take care Wray

Jun 18, 2012
Rubbish is right
by: Annette Canada

Hello there, I have been on extremely high amounts for a year and a half (1500 milligrams or more). Im just now seeing my symptoms ease. It was a long haul for me due to the fact I was on bcp for 15 years. Destroyed my body but thank goodness for progesterone saved my life. Just this week I'm seeing a break in my body i have been under extreme stress and went as high as 2200 milligrams just to get over. So no I don't believe it store in the fat stores! I had extreme PND as well. Never thought it would end but I finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. Wray and Joy the end is finally near! Rejoice with me I thought I was never going to make it! Thanks for your love and support and will be in touch soon!

Jun 18, 2012
Rubbish is right
by: Wray

Hi Annette Well it's so good to hear from you! Joy and I have been concerned about you, you have been so silent. Not your normal chatty self. Will be good to catch up. I'm delighted you say you're finally seeing light, it's been a very long haul for you. Take care Wray

Jun 18, 2012
Progesterone Dominance - Carol
by: Joy (South Africa)

Hi Wray - I think the 33% that Carol is referring to is per milligrams which is the same as 3.33% concentration. Please correct me if I am wrong.
Thanks.

Jun 18, 2012
Quick Questions...
by: Anonymous

I am trying to find some other websites/research (besides this one) that discuss success with higher amounts of natural progesterone (400mg or more), but I am having difficulty. Are there any other doctors or any other websites out there that would recommend a dosage of around 400-500mg or more for difficult symptoms?? It is hard to find any out there besides this one that recommend even 100mg - 200mg...most seem to recommend the typical 20-30mg. Is this website pretty much the only one that supports this method of using higher dosages? I really want to make the right, informed decision before I increase to such a high amount..I know my doctor would not support higher amounts so I would have to be on my own if I tried it. If 100mg cream causes someone to be excessively tired, wouldn't jumping to a higher dosage make it even worse? I thought that excessive sleepiness was a sign of too much progesterone...is that true? Also, I didn't think you were supposed to rub it on your inner thighs or stomach like some others have mentioned...I was told to rub it in on thinner skinned areas of the body (like neck, inner arms, etc.). Is that a misconception? Is there EVER an instance where too much progesterone can have negative effects or do you think that all women are able to tolerate it??? Thanks for your help and patience, Wray...I am continually learning about this and am sure you can understand why someone like myself would be hesitant to use such a high amount, especially when so many out there suggest using low amounts. I want to be sure I am doing the right thing for myself. Thanks again!

Jun 20, 2012
Progesterone Dominance - Carol
by: Wray

Hi Joy You could be right, and your maths is correct too. A 3.3% cream contains 33.3mg/ml of cream, whereas the 10% cream mentioned would contain 100mg/ml of cream. Take care Wray

Jun 20, 2012
Quick Questions...
by: Wray

Hi there You are right, I don't believe there are any other websites besides this one which recommends such high amounts. I certainly haven't come across one. As for research, there are hundreds of studies that have used levels far higher than 100-200mg/day. I'm not sure if you are new to the page, or yours is the first query here, but please read the page on Oestrogen Dominance. This explains that when using too low an amount it stimulates oestrogen causing a worsening of symptoms. The amount needed is entirely dependant on symptoms, and the amount of oestrogen and/or testosterone present. The worse the symptoms the more is needed. I gave the page on TBI under the heading 'Progesterone Dominance - My Personal Experience', please read it and you'll see the method used and the amount too. You can also look through all those pages I gave to the query entitled 'Just Curious…' of women who used high amounts. One of whom is Annette who has also posted on this page. She's now using levels Dr Dalton would regularly give her patients with severe PND or psychosis. You can read about this on this page here, scroll down to 'Progesterone contraception' if you don't want to read the whole page. As for the typical 20-40mg/day normally recommended, this has to be a thumb suck amount. During the luteal phase we make 5-20ng/ml, some women up to 40ng/ml, see the page I gave on hormone testing. This is fine if there are no problems, and we obviously don't need supplemental progesterone. But to give that amount when there are problems is pointless as it doesn't raise levels to that found in the luteal phase. In fact it only raises it to levels found in the follicular phase. I've given info about this to the anon under 'Progesterone Dominance - My Personal Experience Part 2', it's on our Progesterone Misconceptions page. But the women coming to this site do have problems and want them resolved. For whatever reason, they are not making enough progesterone to counter the symptoms and the excess oestrogen/testosterone. Increasingly now, women are getting anovulatory cycles where no progesterone is made, a typical example is PCOS, which is rising with each passing year. Anovulatory cycles are commonplace in Peri-menopause, which increase in frequency until Menopause is reached when we stop ovulating. Stress stops ovulation, and there are very few who are not stressed now.
Continued below.

Jun 20, 2012
Quick Questions... Part 2
by: Wray

Hi there All drug based Contraceptives stop ovulation, and millions of women use them. A lack of vitamin D causes anovulation, most of us have too low a level. It's a vital nutrient, needed by every cell to function normally. In fact there are so many similarities between Progesterone and Vitamin D that I've now done a page on this. Many women have a defective luteal phase too, where insufficient progesterone is secreted. There's info about this on our Pregnancy page. Progesterone does help sleep, see here, here and here. But doesn't cause excessive sleepiness, unless it's oral. It can be used as an anaesthetic too, but levels far higher than those I recommend are needed, see here and here. Interestingly it's been found that less anaesthesia is needed if a woman undergoing an op is in her luteal phase, see here. Although this paper mentions progesterone's 'depressant' affect, it in no way implies it causes 'depression'. But it's affect on the GABA system. If it did cause depression, Dr Dalton would not have prescribed the 2400mg/day she did for her patients with depression! As you can see the upper tolerable limit appears to be anaesthesia, which would be impossible to achieve with a cream. Besides which women make over 400ng/ml during the third trimester, if we couldn't tolerate this much, none of us would opt for Pregnancy! As for where to rub it, there are so many misconceptions about this, I've mentioned them in full on the page about misconceptions. Take care Wray

Jun 22, 2012
Question
by: Marie

Hi Wray:

You mention that the 20mg-40mg is a "thumb suck" amount....but aren't some women out there able to do very well on these amounts? Or are you saying all women need to use at least 100mg-200mg to see a benefit??? I gather from reading on here, that symptoms are more important than testing...however, what if a woman is using 20-40mg and gets tested and she is way high out of range??? Doesn't that suggest maybe she doesn't need much progesterone to begin with? I mean you really need to be tested to ensure that your ratio is near the recommended 600:1, right??? Recommended ranges count for something, don't they? Don't you think it is possible if a woman has very low estradiol levels and you just give massive amounts of progesterone without adding in bioidentical estradiol you are creating an imbalance in itself? There are some women out there who said they were not able to drop their weight in their midsection until they got their estradiol levels up to around 90...are you against using estradiol and/or estriol in all cases or do you ever see a case where it should be used??? And isn't estriol breast cancer protective?

Jun 23, 2012
Question
by: Wray

Hi Marie I appreciate questions such as these, as it makes me look over my own views and why I hold them. They are mine of course, and no one need take any heed of them! I only hope they will read the papers I give and make their own decisions. Thumb suck was maybe a rather rude way of saying have they given any thought to it. And they don't appear to have read any studies. I feel it's a thumb suck based on the fact we make 5-20ng/ml per day, some women up to 40ng/ml per day. So it's a 'safe' amount to suggest we use it. But even 40mg/day does not raise levels of progesterone to that found in the luteal phase, see Progesterone Misconceptions. One study found it only raised levels to a median 2.5 nmol/l (0.79ng.ml). During our follicular phase we make <1ng/ml, in other words it was no more than that found in the follicular phase, see Hormone Testing. So as you can see there is no possibility of a woman's level being 'high out of range' on such a low amount. The people coming to this site are all in need of help. Many have been on amounts such as the 20-40mg and have only put on weight and had an increase in their adverse symptoms. There are probably women who benefit from the small amount, but I imagine their own progesterone production is adequate. Women with a defective luteal phase, see the Pregnancy page, or those who have anovulatory cycles, as in PCOS or Peri-menopause need far more. Stress drops levels, these women, men too, need far more, hence my advice to use at least 100-200mg/day. If there is any severe problem, very high levels are needed. For instance Dr Dalton gave 2400mg/day to many of her patients, see here. Or if someone has suffered from a Traumatic Brain Injury they are given over 1200mg/day via IV transfusion.
Continued below.

Jun 23, 2012
Question Part 2
by: Wray

Hi Marie I feel too much emphasis is put on testing, in fact a doctor now will only go by tests for any disease. Gone are the days when the family doctor would look at the evidence, ie symptoms. My other concern about testing is the ratio, there are only two labs I know of who check this, ZRT Labs and Genova Diagnostics. So the woman could be sent away with 'your hormones are fine', when they're not. And a clear message that it's all in her mind. Oestrogen could be high normal and progesterone low normal, and yet the woman feels awful, she would. Even if oestrogen is very low, but progesterone lower, she'll still feel awful. So yes testing is very useful, but not essential. Many women don't have insurance, one has written in saying she's trying to save for her test. She has all the symptoms of oestrogen dominance, so I've advised her to try the progesterone rather than waste her money. Recommended ranges vary so greatly, I don't think they have much meaning. For instance some give the range as 100 to 500 : 1. I have to go by the Saliva Tests we run, and the results in the women tested. Maybe others have found the ratio can be lower, I don't know. I've not found anyone else doing saliva tests on their cream. It's not often women have low oestrogen levels. Even during anovulatory cycles oestradiol is still made, along with testosterone, see the misconceptions page and Menstruation. Once in Menopause fat cells secrete oestrone. In fact it's this which increases post-menopausal women's risk for cancer and heart disease. Menopausal symptoms can be relieved by oestriol, see here. I haven't found any papers saying oestriol is protective against breast Cancer, whereas there are plenty on progesterone. I would prefer to use this in preference to any oestrogen. Continued below.

Jun 23, 2012
Question Part 3
by: Wray

Hi Marie I can only assume those women who increased their oestradiol levels to 90pg/ml must have been suppressing their testosterone levels. As it's testosterone which increases visceral fat, see here and here. I would never use oestradiol for that purpose or any other. It's a mitogen, causing cells to proliferate, including subcutaneous fat cells. Plus it causes water retention and is an excitatory, inflammatory hormone. It destroys beta-endorphins in the brain, with subsequent problems in reproduction, see here. For more on oestrogen's actions please see the HRT page. In all cases I would prefer to use progesterone for any problems, it has been used safely for over 60 years now, there are no reports of adverse effects in it's use. There are plenty on oestrogen. Take care Wray

Jun 27, 2012
Today's Docs...
by: Anonymous

Wray:

Why do you think other doctor's aren't catching on to this?? If the higher levels of progesterone provides so many benefits as you have pointed out, why don't any other docs see this...even those docs that are more "current" and prescribe bioidenticals don't seem to prescribe amounts in the topical 100-200mg range as you suggest....they seem to stick to the typical 20-30mg range (or the 100-200mg oral dose, which equates to only 10-20mg). Do you ever see any doctor's changing their position on the dosing amounts and actually prescribing the higher topical amounts you recommend???

Jun 29, 2012
Today's Docs...
by: Wray

Hi there There are a few, but far too few who recommend higher amounts. One woman wrote in saying hers wanted to give her 3000mg/day! Another woman with recurrent miscarriages was given 1600mg/day, when the normal range is 200-600mg/day. I think many of them believe giving the 20-40mg/day is giving the woman the amount they normally make in the luteal phase. But as I point out on the progesterone misconceptions page given above, this doesn't raise levels to that found in the luteal phase. I don't think they know this. Dr Dalton was prescribing progesterone over 60 years ago to her patients, the amount she gave varied depending on the problem she was faced with. Never lower than 100mg/day, normally 400mg/day, if a problem like PND was encountered 800mg/day. And if the woman had post natal psychosis 2400mg/day. She was quite condemning of studies where too little was used, saying of course they won't get good results, which they didn't. So then of course they thought progesterone didn't work, when it does. I wish they would wake to this fact and begin giving higher amounts, it would save many women a great deal of anguish and suffering. It would also prevent the huge increase in weight women get when using too little. I seem to spend more time doing damage control than anything else! Take care Wray

Jan 31, 2013
Progesterone dominance - not estrogen dominance
by: Anonymous

I read the above post and felt I needed to comment on my journey with progesterone as well. I started using Progest-e as per instructions from a specialist.
For the first year and half it was really great. I felt a liviliness that I had not experienced since being a teenager. My mensual cycle also returned to a 28 day cycle.
After the year and half, I started to notice my libido lowing slightly and alot of weight gain around the middle and very bad peripheral edema.
As estrogen dominance and progesterone dominance have the same symptoms, I did not know what to do, but as the symptoms kept getting worse, I stopped the progest-e. Over the last two months I think the edema is slightly better. I believe I will need to stop progesterone for months (possibly a year or more) before my body can remove all the progesterone stored in my fatty tissues.
I would still use progest-e after the dominance symptoms cease, but will listen to my body more carefully next time, and at the first sign of edema and shortened mensual cycle, I will stop to let my body clear the excess out.
The emotional well being I acquired has not gone away since stopping the progesterone so I think that also shows my body has enough at present.

Feb 01, 2013
Progesterone dominance - not estrogen dominance
by: Wray

Hi there Thanks for sharing your experience with progesterone, but as with the first comment on this page, I have to tell you it wasn't progesterone, but Oestrogen Dominance you began to experience. The amount you were using would have been very low, possibly 20-40mg/day. I'm surprised this helped you, but maybe your symptoms weren't bad. Oestrogen deadens our Libido, whereas progesterone plays an important role. In fact we have many men using it to raise theirs, having found testosterone doesn't help them. The weight gain around the middle is caused by excess testosterone, see here and here. The small amount of progesterone you were using was beginning to stimulate testosterone production. Women make more testosterone each month than oestrogen, but most of it is converted by aromatase into oestrogen, see this chart by Genova Diagnostics. The oedema is caused by excess oestrogen, see here, here, here and here. Whereas progesterone is an excellent diuretic, over 1200mg/day is given via IV transfusion to Traumatic Brain Injury victims to reduce and prevent oedema. I haven't heard what the symptoms of progesterone dominance are, I would like to know. A recent study used huge amounts with no signs of toxicity at all, and only good came of it, see here. I've done a page on the many Progesterone Misconceptions to try to clear up issues like the 'fatty tissue' one. I'm delighted the emotional wellbeing hasn't left you. Take care Wray

Feb 11, 2013
Sad
by: Lynda

Makes me sad to read forums and comments such as these. I believe women should be supporting each other to find their own truths and follow their instincts. Goodness knows we've spent years being told by Dr's to listen to them and not our own bodies! My experience has been a Dr wouldn't test my hormones because I was too 'young' (early 40's), so I organised my own saliva testing and proved what I thought all along. I brought Dr Lee's very own progesterone cream and tried recommended dose, more than recommended and less than recommended. I used myself as my own personal test lab rat and I continue to do so. However the reality is the best I feel is when I leave the cream and concentrate on phtyoestrogenic herbs. I do believe it is possible to become progesterone dominant and it is a VERY unpleasant feeling. But more importantly shouldn't we be respecting and encouraging other women to trust their own instincts and their own bodies instead of telling them they're wrong? Isn't it time to do that?

Feb 13, 2013
Sad
by: Wray

Hi Lynda It is sad women aren't helped by their doctors, and have to resort to getting advise from the internet or other women. The women on this site do support each other hugely, which is a blessing. Like you I was my own lab rat, as I had no one to turn to for advice. I had read Dr Lee's books, and Dr Daltons and others too. It wasn't until I met Dr Dalton about 2 years later that I did get it. As I've mentioned above she gave very high amounts, as low levels don't help much, certainly not if symptoms are severe. I still haven't found out what progesterone dominance symptoms are! I don't believe any woman needs more oestrogen, whether synthetic, natural or as a phytoestrogen. These last are ubiquitous in our diet, grains and legumes having the highest level, see here, here, here and here. These papers here and here, on infertility in sheep, show how a high level of phytoestrogens in food can affect the reproductive organs. I agree about encouraging women to trust their instincts, but often these have been over ridden by processed foods, drugs etc. So they are trapped in a cycle they can't seem to get out of. So my advice to them is read the studies I give, read the stories on this site about other women's journeys, and then they can make an informed decision. Take care Wray

Feb 13, 2013
Sad
by: Joy (South Africa)

I have been reading this website and looking at posts and cries for help for a number of years now, not once have I ever noticed Wray mention that a person is wrong! She has suggested and advised people on the benefits of natural progesterone through her own personal experience and that of so many others.

It is indeed sad that doctors do not fully understand the benefits of progesterone and would rather prescribe drugs or suggest hysterectomies due to heavy bleeding and clotting, when most of the time it is so unnecessary! There are however, some doctors who do prescribe progesterone which is wonderful, but they still do not realise that larger amounts of progesterone is needed to overcome symptoms.

The aim of course, IS to make progesterone the dominant hormone. Once this has been achieved symptoms improve, or clear up totally. People who find that their symptoms worsen when first using progesterone is due to the fact that they are using too little. 100 to 200mg per day is normally recommended but sometimes higher amounts are needed depending on how severe symptoms are.

Dr Lee gives good advice in his book, but he prescribed low doses which did not seem to help. So perhaps Lynda, you were not using enough progesterone which is why you did not benefit. Or you did not give it enough time to work.

I certainly trust my instincts which is why I use natural progesterone and will continue to do so for the rest of my life!

People come to forums such as this one because they are desperate as their doctors can't help them.

So many people, men included, have benefited greatly and are enjoying better health because of Wray, I know, because I am one of them.

I certainly hope that she continues her good work for many more years to come!

Take care.
Joy

Feb 14, 2013
Sad
by: Wray

Hi Joy Bless you for your support! Take care Wray

Mar 15, 2013
Progesterone is problematic for some
by: Kate

I sure agree with you that progesterone is problematic for some of us. My very well regarded M.D. who has extra certification and training in HRT, says she herself has to be very careful with the progesterone as it causes acne and depression for her. I have same experience. But estrogen makes me feel absolutely wonderful. Another of my well regarded doctors says that progesterone is indeed a precursor to androgens--hence the acne. And he said its the progesterone that can lead to androgenic hair loss---but estrogen helps this. I am frankly astounded at all the devotees of progesterone and passionate followers of the misguided Dr. Lee. I think it is akin to the current fad of "anti-gluten." People are just being led by hype. If you doubt what I say, consider this: A young woman's body makes estrogen every day--but only makes progesterone (that is in appreciable amounts) when she ovulates and it is released by the ovary---then the healthy female body only has this appreciable amount of progesterone for half of the month. IN menopause none is produced by ovaries--(and such teensy amounts from adrenals as to be insignificant) ---although some estrogen is still produced. Sounds like nature thinks estrogen is more important for women. Also, PMS occurs in the latter part of the cycle---after progesterone is released.

Mar 16, 2013
Progesterone is problematic for some
by: Wray

Hi Kate As you've probably gathered from what I say in answer to queries, I'm not in favour of oestrogen, and all in favour of progesterone. When comparing the two, you say a tiny amount of progesterone is produced, but in actual fact it's the other way round. Oestrogen is measured in pico grams and progesterone in nano grams, a pico gram is a 1000 times smaller than a nano gram. Yes progesterone is the precursor to the androgens, which is turn are the precursors to the three oestrogens. Why is it that pregnant women have such wonderful hair? And if it was progesterone causing the Hair Loss why do men suffer from this far more than women? And we aren't all followers of Dr Lee, who was not misguided. I learnt from Dr Dalton, who began using progesterone in 1948 for her patients, very large amounts too. PMS is caused by progesterone withdrawal at the end of the cycle, leaving oestrogen dominant. I suggest you read the studies done on it, you might find your confusion clears. Plus read about the dangers of oestrogen on our page about HRT. It increases the risks of cancer, heart disease, small cell lung cancer, incontinence, dementia and more. You might like to read a recent study from Emory University, who found it reverses tumours, see here. They were also the first to find that progesterone is the only substance out of over 50 tested over a 30 year time span than can help Traumatic Brain Injury victims. Finally there is evolutionary evidence that we shouldn't have excessive oestrogen, see here. These are two others worth reading, see here and here. I wonder if you'll read them? Take care Wray

Oct 11, 2013
Progesterone Dominance in Menopause
by: Anonymous

I am in the throes of progesterone dominance right now. I am 61 and postmenopausal 10 years. I've used between 15 and 20 mg. of Life-Flo progesterone for 12 or 13 years without a break. I sailed through menopause with barely a symptom, with the exception of vaginal dryness and lowered libido. In May 2013, I tried Estrace vaginal cream for two doses during one week. I developed ankle pain for which I had a cortisone shot. 10 days later I started having anxiety which became constant. Never had anything like this before. Also had palpitations for awhile that made me go to the Emergency Room. I still have a feeling of a slightly irregular heartbeat at times. Dr. upped my progesterone to 40 mg. a day. and by late August I had developed shortness of breath that was pretty much constant. I am now discontinuing progesterone and am trying to eat more phytoestrogens and am considering taking a supplement. My saliva tests show low estrogen and moderately high progesterone. I have bloating, brain fog, minor acne and insomnia as well, all of which are out of character for me. I believe my tissues have become saturated with progesterone over time, and I may have to try taking some estrogen at some point, but I'm going to see if my body will normalize on it's own first. Bent Formby wrote some articles on this very problem and has tried to help those involved in a progesterone "hoax" that was perpetrated on a huge number of women. It was called the Wiley Protocol. Found some info on rhythmicliving.org. I need to figure out how to get my hormones balanced as quickly as possible. The shortness of breath is starting to get to me. I've been checked out by a cardiologist, a pulmonologist, my gynecologist, etc. and everything seems to be normal, including my thyroid. If anybody has any suggestions, I'm certainly a listener. I'm an avid researcher and am fairly knowledgeable about women's health and nutrition. I think I have investigated other possibilities thoroughly and am now convinced that the shortness of breath is hormonal.

Dec 21, 2014
Concerned Over The High Doses Of Progesterone This Website Advises?
by: Liz UK

I saw the comment about how this is the only website that recommends such a high dose of progesterone whilst others only say 20 or 30mg.

That may be the case for commercial or over the counter (OTC) natural progesterone but what is important to know is you can get progesterone compounded by pharmacists and chemists in the USA and other counties which is prescribed by doctors from 100 mg to 300 mg or even more.

More importantly, and what made "me" subscribe to Wrays belief and research is that here in the UK (And other countries) there is a prescription pessary of natural progesterone whose information leaflet claims it is given to treat PMS
Although in the UK, it is mostly given to women who have a history of loosing their babies in the first trimester due to their low progesterone levels.

The pessaries come in 200mg and 400mg dose pessaries and the leaflet advises to use 2 a day (Of either dose depending on what you are prescribed) So that's 400mg to 800mg per day.

Although the company that makes it claims it is given to people to treat PMS, here in the UK I don't know of anyone who has been prescribed it for that reason, other than me.

I had to show the information I had researched, this website and the tube of Natpro to my female doctor and explain how much better I had felt since using the cream but at the dose I am taking (400mg every day through my cycle) I could not longer afford to buy it.

Also, supply reliability was an issue for me.

Having had UK supplies run out once before and on a 400mg dosage, I cannot afford to take a risk of being left with no progesterone.

The crash from such a high level would be akin to depression.
I have experienced it only once and I have no desire to go back there again. It took me 3 weeks to get back on an even level and I still have the scars in my arm from the morning I woke up after the reduction caught up with me (I have no history of self harm but I guess that's how post natal depression must feel like when progesterone levels drop very suddenly)

So I am VERY lucky that my UK doctor was open to my suggestions and that she prescribed me the natural progesterone although it is always a concern that she may well decide not to prescribe it anymore. I hope not.

The initial advise was to fit me with a coil that releases progesterone so to balance out my erratic periods.
But from research, it also releases copper and that in turn upsets the apple cart.

So you see, Wray may be the only "commercial" progesterone provider that suggests these doses but they are available on prescription and in compounding chemists all over the world and prescribed by doctors if you are lucky enough to have an open minded one.

Liz

Feb 21, 2015
Me too
by: Anonymous

I've been told many times that I'm estrogen dominant, but recently, my endo put me on a temporary high dose of estridiol for 2 weeks. Let me tell you, I felt AMAZING. I was more focused, felt motivated, was less tired, my skin cleared up, I stopped having incontinence issues, and lost about 4 pounds in just water weight after 2 days on the estridiol. Now that I've been off the med for two weeks, I'm back to having all the issues listed above. Progesterone dominance is a thing, and I clearly have it. You might, too!

May 13, 2015
Is this a reult of progesterone dominance?
by: Anonymous

I began using progesterone cream ( appx 20 mg or 1/4 tsp twice a day) two months ago for symptoms of estrogen dominance which also included a recurring thickening of the uterine lining and mucus discharge. I had one period after I started treatment ( I am 52) and none last month.

I had my serum levels checked a few days ago after 2 cycles of the cream, each lasting 3 weeks: Estradiol is 12.75 pg/ml ( at the lower end of the post menopausal range) while progesterone is 0.9ng/ml (< 0.2 ng/ml is the stated value for post menopausal women).
I do not plan continuing with the cream for the moment as I now seem to be progesterone dominant! Although my other symptoms seem to have improved, what bothers me is a clear, runny vaginal discharge that seems to have increased over the last month. I wonder if this could be an outcome of the high progesterone. A gynaec evaluation I had some months ago was normal.

Oct 18, 2015
progesterone cream can be toxic
by: janeyb

Have just had my blood tested after being on progesterone cream (compounded pharmacy not cheap stuff off ebay) 20mg per day 3 weeks a month for 2 months. The clinic were so concerned about my elevated progesterone levels (off the scale) that they called me. The reason for me having the tests was because I started having hot flushes 24/7 and assumed my oestrogen had plummeted. It had not in fact this was at normal levels. So using so little cream in a short space of time had led to this. I also felt really sluggish, low heart rate, itchy skin, constant thick headed feeling and very depressed (all the clinically recognised symptoms of high progesterone). I have now stopped using it altogether but am concerned about how long it could take to get back to normal levels and feel myself again - oestrogen dominance symptoms were far preferable to this.
This website concerns me, I keep coming back to it and it is very high on the Google search. Despite women reporting very similar stories to mine the mantra appears to be 'that can't be right' (ie completely marginalising peoples lived and real experiences) high doses of progesterone are great and totally safe, got symptom well whack it up even more. This makes no sense, if something makes you feel bad your body is giving you a sign it is toxic and you need to stop. It is also marginalising the experiences of women who are detoxing from the Wiley protocol - lots on this and makes worrying reading too.
Everyones body chemistry and metabolism is different and an imbalance is rarely healthy. I am not against progesterone - I successfully used utrogesten capsules during IVF and never had problems with that. I just think that the cream is unpredictable - you never know how your body will process it, it is fat soluble so can sit in fat cells and be released sporadically into blood. I am extremely slim but still a build up has clearly occurred. I just hope that people who come to this site do additional research also before embarking on a high dose cream regime.

Nov 02, 2015
Progesteron Dominance is real for some
by: JB

I was put on progesterone cream 10 years ago to promote pregnancy. I quit after 3 days of no sleep and have had severe insomnia ever since. Hormone tests (9 months ago) show that I have low estrogen with progesterone dominance. About 8 months ago, I tested very positive for Lyme disease which I can trace to a tick bite about 15 years ago (didn't know anything about Lyme at the time). I've found personally (though much trial and error) that hormone levels are largely dependent on personal nutrient/mineral status. I've had issues with low copper and high vitamin A and zinc. This promotes low estrogen. I've followed a careful, nutrient-dense, Weston Price type diet for years (also promoting lower estrogen compared to progesterone). Environmental toxicity and the current SAD (standard American diet) promote estrogen dominance. I agree with the author - progesterone dominance, though maybe uncommon, is a possibility for some people and shouldn't be taken lightly.

Nov 23, 2015
Help please
by: Anonymous

Hello, I've been on a higher dose (300mg) of natural progesterone cream for a month and I'm still experiencing what I think it estrogen dominance. I am putting on weight and my breasts are large and very sore. How much more should I increase the progesterone? And do you recommend taking it all month long or only during the luteal phase?
Thanks!

Dec 06, 2015
Daily Progesterone
by: LM

I remember reading that Joy recommended taking it daily until symptoms start to improve then slowly weaning until right amount is needed, adding more as needed with increased stress, etc. I have been on Progest for 3 weeks, starting at 1-200mg and now up to 4-500mg and I don't think it's enough. I am still flying off the handle about little things and full of rage. I have been on Cymbalta 20 mg for about 9 yrs after severe PND. I read recently that it raises estrogen levels. When I weaned myself off it 5 years ago I had a psychotic episode. It was so horrific!!! Back on it and petrified to go off.

Dec 06, 2015
Insomnia
by: LM

I am experiencing insomnia. Maybe if I take more that will get better. I need to know how Dr Dalton administered the high doses. I am assuming injection? I may need 1000 mg per day but can't possibly do that with cream! And who would give me that much. I'm yelling at my kids like never before. I'm a mess on 4-500 mg per day. Any advice?? Thanks!

Feb 23, 2016
Everybody is different.
by: Anonymous

I did things my naturopaths way for almost 3 years. 30 lbs and a lot of of health issues later, my naturopath is now trying things my way. Her change of heart is the result of her own experience with hormone imbalance, which turns out, mimics my own. Neither of us can take progesterone without complicating our health issues. The hot flashes didn't stop until the progesterone stopped and the slightest amount of Bi-est was supplemented. We both feel much better, and look forward to improved health and quality of living. These were my guidelines. I had a top end amount of Bi-est creme that I could tolerate, .5 ml daily. My breasts hurt when I was use too much. So my maximum Bi-est dose was determined by my breasts. I then decreased my progesterone creme until my hot flashes stopped. Turned out, I had to stop it completely. I am also taking 500mg of Panax Ginseng daily for natural testosterone supplementation. Supplementing minimal amounts of Bi-est and testosterone stopped my hot flashes. Progesterone doesn't. And Bi-est and progesterone doesn't. Everybody is different. By the way, the hormone testing did not help in determining what hormones to supplement in what amounts.

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