Questions About Natural Progesterone Cream

by Shawn
(Los Angeles)

Will someone please kindly answer these questions because I've posted about three questions in the past several months and received no response.

I read somewhere online that many natural progesterone creams contain estrogenic ingredients such as rosemary oil (the one I use contains this). I noticed Natpro contains caprylic acid which is also estrogenic. Why are ingredients like these included and do they defeat the purpose and prevent us from getting all of the benefits from natural progesterone cream?

Also, after using progesterone cream successfully to fight estrogen dominance for about three months, the estrogen dominance symptoms came back with a vengeance...very sore breasts, no sex drive, increased hair loss and water retention. I was applying about 170mg per day of the cream at that time. I didn't know whether to increase it or decrease it so I stopped applying it all together. What should I have done in this case?

I really appreciate anyone with insight about these questions taking the time to answer. Thanks!

Comments for Questions About Natural Progesterone Cream

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May 27, 2011
Dose of P-Cream
by: Anonymous

Shawn, you shouldn't be taking so much. 8-10mg is enough for a man, 20-40mg for a woman to start off.

May 27, 2011
Questions About Natural Progesterone Cream
by: Shari

Hello. I also had great results for about three months and then it was as if a switch flipped and everything got even worse than before I used it. Now 5 months later, I am finding that I need over 400mg a day to just hold my head above water. I am so confused by it too. I do know that if I don't use it I feel horrible, but using this much helps my night sweats, etc, quite a bit. I am going to increase it further I think to hopefully conquer this. I hope you find relief. It is so hard to go thru.

May 27, 2011
a few thoughts
by: Natasha UK

Hello Shawn,

I can't answer all your questions but I can try to help.

Both rosemary oil and caprylic acid are anti-fungals which I've used to keep candida over growth in check & they have worked for me. Some of the symptoms of candidiasis and oestrogen dominance are similar - eg carb cravings, water retention, fatigue. Is this what you mean by oestrogenic?

I've suffered permanently with candidiasis for about 8 years & strict diets/probiotics/antifungals alone have not worked to keep it in check. I think my hormone imbalance, ie too high oestrogen, low progesterone has led to this. Oestrogen dominance leads to too much sugar in the blood and candida growth, it seems. One of my big hopes for progesterone treatment is to get this cleared up. So it makes sense to me that an anti-fungal would be part of this cream.

I don't yet have enough experience to know why your symptoms have returned. I would anticipate that Wray will encourage you to use a higher dose of progesterone cream and that makes sense from all my own research.

I hope you get more answers too. Its such hard work, doing all this alone. I understand that.

Natasha

May 27, 2011
Confused
by: Anonymous

Hi Shawn I know your frustration in regards to what to do increase or decrease. In my experience I increased and have been not well for awhile but I believe I'm just estrogen dominant. I would say that is what you are going through and would suggest you up the cream to 300 to 400 milligrams a day. You may have to go more if you get more symptoms and I think it's all in what you can handle. I'm up to 600-1000 milligrams a day but I was on birth control for many years. I was very sick on low doses almost went crazy. One woman has introduced me to cell salts and she shared that it wasn't until she went on these, was she able to lower her dose and come off thyroid meds. They are pretty amazing and I just started them myself. I would say if you were level that would of never happened with increased symptoms it is just my opinion. Take care
Hyland bioplasma 12 is the name of the cell salts check it out on line how they work.

May 30, 2011
to the person with candidas
by: Anonymous

My daughter who was in 7th grade this past year mssed 15 days of school because her stomach was hurting all the time. She would throw up, etc, etc. Her blood tests showed she was sensitive to brewers yeast and bakers yeast - I knew then she had candidas. If you go to a site called i-am-perfectly healthy.com you will find an enzyme called Candisol and a prebiotic called Syntol. Together these two got rid of her candidas along with progesterone. I was amazed to find out what all yeast infections can cause (learning disabilities for one). Hope this helps all of you that have suffered with candidas for many years.

Jun 03, 2011
Questions About Natural Progesterone Cream
by: Wray

Hi Shawn I'm sorry if I've missed your comments, there are so many now. I've not heard that caprylic acid is oestrogenic, it seems highly unlikely to me too. It's found naturally in breast milk and coconuts, it's systematic name is octanoic acid. It's an eight-carbon chain saturated fatty acid, these do not contain any double bonds at all, see here. Whereas all three oestrogens have three double bonds, all in the A-ring. You might like to see the oestrogen molecule on our page here. Interestingly, the phytoestrogens have a phenolic or triple bonded A-ring too. This enables the phytoestrogens to exert an oestrogenic effect on the cell it binds to. Unfortunately Oestrogen Dominance can occur at any time in the early months of use. I wish it was possible to let women know when or how severe it might be, but it isn't. Have you had anymore stress recently, as this drops progesterone levels sharply. I would always recommend increasing the amount, rather than decreasing or stopping it. I've found a high amount of progesterone is the only way to get rid of oestrogen dominance symptoms. You might like to read this comment here for encouragement. Take care Wray

Jun 03, 2011
Dose of P-Cream
by: Wray

Hi there Unfortunately 20-40mg/day progesterone is enough to keep most women in a state of permanent Oestrogen Dominance. I recommend 100-200mg/day or more. This has certainly helped all those who have tried a higher amount, see here for one example. I recommend men use 10-100mg/day of more, we have many using the higher amount and finding it of benefit. Including those with BPH or prostate cancer, see here. Dr Dalton would give 2400mg/day progesterone to her patients with post natal psychosis, they needed it. Traumatic brain injury victims are given over 1200mg/day via IV transfusion, they need it. Incidentally over 70% of TBI victims are men. It really depends on the problem. If severe, a high amount is needed to help, low amounts merely exacerbate symptoms. Take care Wray

Jun 03, 2011
Questions About Natural Progesterone Cream
by: Wray

Hi Shari There's no way of telling how anyone will react to progesterone. Many have used very high amounts and have found a benefit eventually. Please see this comment here for encouragement. I've heard from many women that they had to use 400mg/day for 6 months before things starting looking up. Looking back to when the switch flipped, were you having more stress than normal? Stress drops progesterone levels sharply, so more is needed to overcome the adverse symptoms. Dark cloudy or winter days drop levels, large meals too. Excess exogenous oestrogen effects it, either from foods that have been sprayed, or if spraying itself is going on. Heavy pollution in the atmosphere or contaminated water, as there are now over 100 oestrogen mimics, no one can escape them. See this excellent website Our Stolen Future for more info. If you feel your oestrogen is too high, you could consider taking Calcium D-Glucarate. Oestrogen is metabolised in the liver by glucuronic acid, the process is known as glucuronidation. The process also removes other substances, including toxins, drugs, bilirubin, androgens, mineralocorticoids and glucocorticoids. It's then excreted in the bile, but an enzyme in the intestine called beta-glucuronidase breaks the oestrogen/glucuronide bond, which allows oestrogen to be reabsorbed. Calcium D-glucarate inhibits beta-glucuronidase, see here and here Incidentally this enzyme is produced by undesirable gut bacteria, supplementing with probiotics suppresses the bacteria, and subsequently the beta-glucuronidase. Take care Wray

Jun 03, 2011
a few thoughts
by: W

Hi Natasha Many thanks for your comment. I know what a 'roller coaster' you've been through. I do hope with the caprylic acid you're taking, plus the progesterone to suppress the excess oestrogen, that you finally come right. It is a long haul, and if symptoms are bad, far more than normal is needed. I've given a link to one comment I received recently to Shari, please read it for encouragement. I can't remember if I told you to take Calcium D-glucarate, please read the links I've also given her. I do hope you're taking enough caprylic acid too, I've found the oil is better than the tabs, about 3000mg/day caprylic acid, which is found in 5ml of oil, more is not harmful. But over 60ml per day can have a laxative effect. Incidentally the oil is used by bodybuilders for energy, as medium chain triglycerides are not broken down in the gut, but travel directly to the liver, and thence to cells where it is burned for energy. Much the same way carbs are, but without the damaging effect. It's also given to patients who are on a ketogenic diet, ie those with epilepsy or cancer. Another point to take note of, your skin will become wonderfully soft. It makes a good bath oil, although it does sit on top of the water without an emulsifier added. Alternatively it's a lovely after shower/bath rub as it soaks in so quickly and is not at all greasy. Take care Wray

Jun 03, 2011
Confused
by: Wray

Hi there Eve's advice is so good, I'm happy you felt encouraged by her story. In fact I've given the link to it to a number of people, some on this page too. I would be so interested to hear if the cell salts help you too, it's always worth knowing so that I can spread the word. You might like to look at the links I've given for the Calcium D-glucarate too. Take care Wray

Jun 03, 2011
to the person with candidas
by: Wray

Hi there Thanks for the link and advice. I'm so pleased the progesterone was also included in the protocol, it does help, whereas oestrogen exacerbates it. We do have more info on our page on Candida. Take care Wray

Jun 26, 2011
Help!
by: Anonymous

Dear Wray, This is the second month that I have used natpro. I began it on the 14th day of my cycle the first month and on the 12th day of my cycle this month. I bought natpro because for years I've been suffering from progressively worse premenstrual issues. These include: 24 -48 hour migraines beginning on the first day of my period and the day I ovulate; horrible cramping & backache during menstruation; menstrual flooding with large clots; horrible insomnia; bloating; weight gain (17 pounds in 9 months);fatigue; brain fog & nausea. I'm essentially debilitated for 2 days out of ever 21-24 days! My symptoms have not improved at all since I started the natpro. I was using about 1/2 teaspoon each morning and evening for the first month but since I saw no results I doubled this dose for the second month. Still no change :( Any suggestions? I'm desperate here... Thanks, L

Jun 28, 2011
Help!
by: Wray

Hi L It's very unusual for progesterone to begin working within the first month. In fact often symptoms get worse! For more info on this see our page on Oestrogen Dominance. I'm not sure why you are starting the cream on day 12 or 14, do you have a 26 to 28 day cycle? If so this is correct, progesterone should be used from ovulation, for the next 12 to 14 days. In other words it should be used during the luteal phase when we would normally make it. There's more info on our page How to use progesterone cream. The amount you were and are now using is good, I would just ask you to persevere. You might like to read these comments for encouragement, see here ad here. Take care Wray


Jul 09, 2011
Progesterone dosage
by: Anonymous

Hi there,
I've been reading your blog and numerous books on progesterone use find myself utterly confused. Some people suggest lower dosages like John Lee and others 100-200mg. I've read that after a few months your fat cells can become saturated with progesterone at which point it is no longer effective. Can you shed any light on this?

Jul 14, 2011
Progesterone dosage
by: Wray

Hi there I'm thoroughly unconvinced about the 'saturated' fat theory. I've used and advised on progesterone for 15 years, and I've never come across anyone who has suffered from this. I've also experimented too, by increasing the amount I use from my normal 170mg/day to over 330mg/day. And each time I do I get oestrogen dominance symptoms. I'm certainly happy my own receptors are working well, I see no reason why they wouldn't be in other people. The normal recommended amount is 20-40mg/day, as Dr Lee advised. Dr Dalton would use 400-800mg/day for her patients, going to 2400mg/day for women with postal natal psychosis. I've found without doubt that Dr Dalton's advice is correct, if symptoms are severe high amounts are needed. Progesterone unfortunately stimulates oestrogen, the converse is true too. But by using low amounts, I've found it keeps stimulating oestrogen and symptoms continue to trouble people or get worse. I'm not sure of your age, but we do have a few pages you might like to see on How to use progesterone cream, Peri-menopause and Menopause. You might like to read these comments too, all from users of high amounts, see here, here, here and here. Take care Wray

Jul 19, 2011
What went wrong and how can I make it right?
by: Anonymous

Hello,

Firstly, thank you so much for providing this forum.

I am 29 years old and my body started acting crazy about 2 years ago during a stressful time. I was gaining weight for no reason and decided to go off the nuvaring (which i had been using for 2 years). I didn't have a period for about 7 months after stopping the ring. My gyno said this is not unusual. The weight gain continued, even more rapidly. My doctor and I had no idea what the problem was and the symptoms continued to accumulate. Beginning last year, my blood work has consistently come back with low iron, low vitamin D, and varying thyroid. Before this all began I had been extremely healthy, active and 130lbs for 2 solid years. I have always struggled to maintain ideal weight for extended periods of time, despite impeccable diet and excessive exercise. This never made sense to me, as it does not add up when I compare my lifestyle to that of everyone else around me. I have gained about 30 pounds in 2.5 years, but the first 20 were during the first year.

Anyway, this brings me to my current situation. Two years of frustration and hopelessness later, and right as I was starting to feel that I might be crazy for believing there was something wrong with me, my doctor suggested we test progesterone. I had somehow started getting my period every three weeks - which has never happened to me before. So, 4 days before I got my period (day 17)we did a blood test and it came back as 1.39 - dr. says it should have been 5-20.

She put me on 100 mg/g cream. I take .5 gram in the morning and the rest at night. I have almost completed one whole cycle. I'm on day 26 and have not yet gotten my period - so that's good, I hope.

I, like many other women who have commented here, am experiencing weight gain, water retention, fatigue, bouts of serious depression and an unclear mind. It has been so long since I have felt great - or even just consistently good. I am so exhausted by this entire ordeal and if it doesn't eventually work, I don't know what I'll do.

I am wondering how long I may have had this issue? Could it have begun when I was much younger? What may have caused it? How is it related to iron levels, vitamin d and hypothyroidism? Am I taking enough progesterone? Is it likely that I will eventually lose weight? And is it likely that I'm infertile.

Thank you again for listening. I think much of my despair comes from the fact that I am 29 and have to deal with this all so prematurely. I know this is a lot to read and respond to. I am truly grateful.

Best,
H

Jul 20, 2011
What went wrong and how can I make it right?
by: Wray

Hi H Stress does cause havoc with us. For one thing it drops progesterone levels sharply, yours were already low due to the NuvaRing. I have no doubt that the Contraceptive was also behind your weight gain. It suppresses progesterone, plus filling you with oestrogen. This hormone is a mitogen, causing cells to divide and multiply, including fat cells. It also causes water retention. Oestrogen itself, and all contraceptives, can cause Insulin Resistance, which leads to weight gain and more. A lack of vitamin D leads to weight gain and IR too. Your progesterone is low, it should be between 5-20ng/ml, see Medline Progesterone. 100mg/g cream, means you are using a 10% progesterone cream. You say you're using .5g in the morning, ie 50mg progesterone, and then rest at night, but how much is the rest, you don't say? Is it another 50mg? Are you getting 100mg/day progesterone? If so, with your symptoms, I don't believe this is enough. They are all signs of Oestrogen Dominance. I suggest you double the amount and see how you fare on that. We do have more info on our page How to use progesterone cream. For encouragement you might like to read these comments from users of high amounts, some of whom had been on contraceptives too, see here, here, here and here. I'm running out of space so will start a new comment below. Take care Wray

Jul 20, 2011
What went wrong and how can I make it right?
by: Wray

Hi H Progesterone can upset the cycle when first using it, making it either early or late. I'm concerned you say you vitamin D is low, most doctors and labs use 30ng/ml as the cut off point for 'normal'. This is far too low. Please take at least 5000iu's per day, possibly 10 000iu's and try to get your level to 70-100ng/ml. You wonder how long you've had the problems, but you say they started 2 years ago. Did you have problems before this and what were they? Thyroid problems are often caused by a lack of vitamin D, a lack also reduces the benefits of progesterone. I see no reason for you not to loose weight, once your hormones are balanced and you get your vitamin D level up as fast as you can. For more info on vitamin D please see the Vitamin D Council and GrassrootsHealth websites. Take care Wray

Jul 23, 2011
RE: what went wrong
by: Anonymous

Hi Wray,

Thank you for your response. I am taking a total of 100mg per day. So .5 gram at night and .5 in the morning. You think I should double it to a total of 2 grams per day? I'm on my break right now until day 12, but I would be willing to try it then.

I also forgot to mention that I have gotten occasional tension/swelling in the thyroid gland area since I began the progesterone - I have never before had this symptom. Is this a point of concern, or just something to watch...?

You asked what symptoms I had before. I had never had blood work done before 3 years ago, so I can't tell you what my results were. But I can tell you that I have always had difficulty retaining normal healthy weight. Also, I have always been mildly depressed. I never really thought much of it, just assuming that's how I was. But now that I have this explanation, I'm wondering if I've always had a hormonal imbalance. It seems I've always had the symptoms.

As far as the Vitamin D goes, I've been taking 5000 iu for the past 6 months or so, and i'm still really low. I stopped taking the iron supplement because it makes my bowels crazy - even the slow release brand. I feel like all of these symptoms are somehow related. The iron, the vitamin D, the progesterone and the weight gain - and perhaps others that I am not aware of. Thoughts?

Anyway, I will take your advice on upping the dosage. Let me know if you have any other input. Thank you again!

Be well,
Hila


Aug 03, 2011
RE: what went wrong
by: Wray

Hi Hila I feel it would be worth trying more progesterone. 100mg is the minimum I recommend, and evidently it's not helping you. So 2g would give you 200mg/day, to my mind a better amount. We have many women using far more than this to overcome bad symptoms, so please play around with the amount. You say you will start using it again on day 12, is your cycle 26 days long? Ovulation always occurs 12-14 days before bleeding, although I prefer women to use it for the full 14 days as a precaution. I have never heard of tension/swelling in the thyroid area being caused by progesterone. I can only assume it's an effect of excess oestrogen, as this does cause water retention. Hormonal imbalances can occur at puberty, before in fact, although not recognised as such. So it wouldn't surprise me if they are part of your problem. Although I think low vitamin D seems a more likely cause, or it could be both. I feel you have Insulin Resistance, did you get a chance to read this page? The weight problem and the mild depression fit, but as IR is caused by a lack of vitamin D, we come back to that! Please consider increasing your vitamin D to 10 000 or 20 000iu's for a month or two to get your level up. Don't be concerned about toxicity in doing this, amounts of 500 000iu's have been given as a single dose to elderly people in a home. You might like to read this paper here. Take care Wray






Nov 30, 2011
questions on therapy
by: Juders

Hi Wray, I've been on Natpro for 3 months now and just started the Energy Boost about 3 days ago. I thought I was feeling pretty good initially on the cream at the higher dose almost 3/4tsp (3.75ml) contains 124.8mg twice a day--everyday--no change(as I had partial hysterectomy). Initially I lost a little weight, urinated more frequently, felt better, breast soreness was reduced on the cream. But breast soreness returned the third month with a vengeance as with some weight gain. I put cream on arms, legs, neck, and back twice a day. I've also been taking D3 for 6 months now. I was hoping the energy boost would help with my hypoglycemia. Right now, I feel bloated more than before. Was hoping the higher dose of progesterone would do the trick. Doesn't seem to be happening. Any insight? BTW, these were my saliva test results I shared before...
My saliva test came back Estradiol 2.5, Progesterone 69.3, Ratio of PG/E2 27.3, Testosterone 48.3, Dhea 120.3, Cortisol 3.1, Cortisol Morning 3.1, Cortisol Noon 4.7, Cortisol Evening 0.05 and Cortisol night 0.08. My Pg/E2 ratio intimates estrogen dominance. I was at 25 (or in ballpark) for Vit D.
Take care!

Dec 01, 2011
questions on therapy
by: Wray

Hi Juders Oestrogen Dominance can come out of the blue. But were you/are you going through more stress? As this drops progesterone levels. And when did you increase the amount, as this can also cause oestrogen dominance. If you live in the northern hemisphere, you're going through winter now, dark days affect progesterone levels adversely. Plus it also drops vitamin D levels, and a lack of vitamin D reduces the benefits of progesterone. Your ratio is still very low, unless these were done before using progesterone. As you've probably read, we've found from Saliva Tests it should it 600:1 and over to feel well. Interestingly large meals also drop levels, due to an increased metabolic rate. Have you been entertaining a lot, this also causes stress, however much fun it might be. Sore breasts can be caused by lack of iodine, see here, here, here and here. An easy way to find out if the level is low is to get a tincture of iodine. Put 3 drops anywhere on the inner arm, rubbing them in with the dropper. If the patch fades in a few hours it means there's a deficiency. Continue applying it until the patch takes days to fade. Alternatively have a blood test. Your vitamin D is very low, or was if they are old tests. I'm not sure if you've seen the info I give out on testing etc, see the Vitamin D Council, GrassrootsHealth, Birmingham Hospital and Vitamin D Links websites. Blood levels should be 70-100ng/ml or 175-250nmol/L and not the 30ng/ml or 75nmol/L most labs and doctors regard as adequate. And the minimum daily dose should be 5000iu's per day, although the latest research indicates it should be 10,000iu's per day, see here. Continued below. Take care Wray

Dec 01, 2011
questions on therapy
by: Wray

Hi Juders The EB takes time to work. I find I can't do without it now, stops that afternoon crash. Initially there can be a detox reaction, it could be this you're experiencing. I wish it was a simple procedure, rub on the cream and all will be well! But I've found so many women go through many ups and downs before things settle. Some having to use very high amounts, and taking 6 months or more to feel well. Getting your vitamin D levels up will help, please have another test 6 months after the previous one. Take care Wray

Dec 28, 2011
questions on therapy
by: Juders

Hi Wray, I wrote you back on Nov 30th regarding the Natpro therapy I've been on now 4 months. Yes I was entertaining a lot and reside in Virginia so it's been darker earlier in day. Also drinking coffee which needed to stop. I've been off coffee for a few days and hope I can remove it altogether as it exacerbates my stress. My breasts worry me as most of my body seems okay but breasts are very bloated/lumpy, and sore even redness continually now. If I put cream directly on them, it gets worse. You mention Iodine. I was on Lugols Solution 5% (as it's affordable), one drop a day for about 6 months but stopped it due to my stomach issues and bloating. I thought it might be causing me to swell and retain water. Is there a problem mixing it with Vit D3 which I also take in the dropper form (5000 IU-4 drops per day)? The breast symptoms did follow more in force after I stopped now that I think about it. I have not had a saliva test in years. I don't have a doctor who understands what we are doing here. They are more of the traditional ilk (scripts, etc.), or the other extreme and are messing around with the bio identicals a bit but really don't have much a clue as to their administration. Honestly, I have learned more on this site than in many years of researching. The latter doctors are also an out of pocket expense and you end up spending a lot on visits and tons of liquid herbs or other vitamins (at one point I walked out of office with 20 vitamins and herbs to take each day!) Another instance, a doctor had a new gadget in his office which looked like a "plastic hand" and it was linked by a cord to his computer and I put my hand on the computer hand and a few clicks of his mouse and some blinking lights he was able to diagnose me. But nothing worked. I cannot bear these experimentalists any longer or their fees. I just want to get the important tests done so I know where I stand and make adjustments from there. I was hoping I could go to my primary for blood-work which they are good to do, then just do a saliva test via a reputable company directly without a doctor for the rest of the needed tests and they would give me a diagnosis. Is that possible? Can you recommend one for the saliva test? Also, what kind of blood-work should I have done, what specific tests are important (blood and saliva)? I am on the Natpro everyday (I had a partial hysterectomy) at about 3/4 teaspoon twice a day. I'm thinking I need to increase the dose. Thanks for your feedback. Look forward to hearing back. Take care, Juders

Jan 09, 2012
questions on therapy
by: Wray

Hi Juders Somehow I missed this post of yours, many apologies! Interesting the Lugols caused bloating, why not try it on your skin instead and see if that's better. I've not heard of a reaction to mixing it with the D3, but try it on your skin first, before taking it again. Rubbing the cream directly on your breasts would stimulate the oestrogen in them, hence the soreness increasing. If you can bear it, try it again, but using as much as you can each time. As for 'messing around with bio-identicals' I've found this so true. Many write in complaining about progesterone, until I discover they've been put on a cocktail of hormones. Bless you for the kind words about the site! I haven't heard of a computerised hand before, but have had consultations with therapists using the BEST and QX Machine. Told me a great deal, but they seem to leave out the hormones. Blood tests only show the amount of a hormone in serum, not in the tissues. Saliva tests give a better idea of levels, the best are performed by ZRT Labs. You might like to read their comments comparing the two, see here. To save on costs, get your oestrogen, progesterone and testosterone checked. ZRT also do vitamin D tests, please have that done again. Let me know if the increase in progesterone has helped you. Take care Wray

Jan 09, 2012
questions on therapy
by: Wray

Hi Juders Somehow I missed this post of yours, many apologies! Interesting the Lugols caused bloating, why not try it on your skin instead and see if that's better. I've not heard of a reaction to mixing it with the D3, but try it on your skin first, before taking it again. Rubbing the cream directly on your breasts would stimulate the oestrogen in them, hence the soreness increasing. If you can bear it, try it again, but using as much as you can each time. As for 'messing around with bio-identicals' I've found this so true. Many write in complaining about progesterone, until I discover they've been put on a cocktail of hormones. Bless you for the kind words about the site! I haven't heard of a computerised hand before, but have had consultations with therapists using the BEST and QX Machine. Told me a great deal, but they seem to leave out the hormones. Blood tests only show the amount of a hormone in serum, not in the tissues. Saliva tests give a better idea of levels, the best are performed by ZRT Labs. You might like to read their comments comparing the two, see here. To save on costs, get your oestrogen, progesterone and testosterone checked. ZRT also do vitamin D tests, please have that done again. Let me know if the increase in progesterone has helped you. Take care Wray

Feb 17, 2012
What could have happened to me?
by: Anonymous

Hi Wray,
Thank you for your website. I am a 33 yr old woman who went through a severe bout of adrenal fatigue after a low-carb candida diet and a bad virus. I was hypoglycemic (so too much adrenanline wreaking havoc on my adrenals), low cortisol during the day, high at night, anxiety, horrible insomnia, heart racing, weight loss, it was awful. But, the diet had gotten rid of my PMS and once I started healing my adrenals by taking some herbs, vitamins and hanging in there, I started sleeing again. I started taking saliva tests and have always been a little estrogen dominant. After about 5 months following the adrenal fatigue I am now to the point where my estrogen dominance symptoms are awful. Painful periods, puffy swollen eyes, and the worst is that the racing heart and insomnia are back. I started taking pro-gest cream about 2 months ago, 1/2 tsp twice a day, sometimes more. I now have my period, stopped taking the progesterone as advised and I cannot sleep, racing heart, anxious all day and am afraid I'm going to ruin my adrenals again. I feel like my world is falling apart, is there any advice you can give me? Should I stop the cream? Saliva test is as follows: progesterone 614 pg/L, estradiol 5.2 pg/L, ratio of 123. Thank you so much.

Feb 18, 2012
What could have happened to me?
by: Wray

Hi there Candida can play havoc with us, excess adrenaline too. I'm puzzled why the herbs etc for the Adrenal Fatigue have caused your symptoms to return. Your ratio is not as bad as some I've seen, but from Saliva Tests we run, we've found the ratio should be 600:1 and over to feel well. The amount of progesterone you're getting is about 80mg/day. I recommend 100-200mg/day, more if symptoms are severe. Please consider increasing the amount, and do not stop using it. This allows oestrogen to rise again. Try using it daily, through any bleeding for 2-3 months, before attempting to follow your cycle. This will ensure excess oestrogen is suppressed and progesterone becomes dominant. When you feel stable, you can begin following your cycle, we have more info about this on our page How to use progesterone cream. Oestrogen causes prolongation of the QT interval, which results in palpitations, arrhythmia and Torsades de Pointes. Whereas progesterone shortens the QT interval, see here, here, here, here, here and here. So it's not excess adrenaline causing your racing heart, but excess oestrogen. Progesterone does help sleep too, see here and here. Continued below.

Feb 18, 2012
What could have happened to me? Part 2
by: Wray

Hi there Anxiety too, look through this page and see here, here, here and here. If you had a bad virus, it's seems your vitamin D could be low, please have a test done. For more info on vitamin D levels, testing etc see the Vitamin D Council, GrassrootsHealth, Birmingham Hospital and Vitamin D Links websites. Blood levels should be 70-100ng/ml or 175-250nmol/L and not the 30ng/ml or 75nmol/L most labs and doctors regard as adequate. The minimum daily dose should be 5000iu's per day, although the latest research indicates it should be 10,000iu's per day, see here. I'm pleased the site is of help. Take care Wray

Feb 27, 2012
Too much or not enough?
by: Katie

Wray, I've been taking 1/8 tsp. of 4% progesterone cream (40mg/gm)at bedtime for the last two years. I have steadily gained weight (about 25 lbs. over 2 yrs.) And although I work out 7 days/week and eat fewer than 1500 cal/day nothing helps. I had a hysterectomy 20 yrs. ago. My doc has also proscribed 10 mg of DHEA daily as well as.625 of tri-est 2x daily (I'm afraid to take the tri-est because breast cancer runs in my family). I've been reading that maybe I don't need the progesterone cream and if I would stop taking it maybe I could lose the weight. I've also read that DHEA is connected to cancer. Can you help me?

Feb 27, 2012
Too much or not enough?
by: Wray

Hi Kate The amount of progesterone you're getting is only 25mg/day, plus it should always be used at least twice a day. I recommend 100-200mg/day, more if symptoms are severe. If too low it stimulates oestrogen, hence the weight gain, see Oestrogen Dominance. Oestrogen also causes water retention. So to my mind the amount you're using is far too low. We do have a page which explains this, see Progesterone Misconceptions. You are right about DHEA, see here, here, here and here. It increases testosterone levels, testosterone is notorious at increasing visceral fat, see here and here. Plus testosterone increases the risk of insulin resistance, heart disease and cancer, see here, here, here, here here, here, here and here. I'm relieved you haven't started the oestrogen, I don't believe any woman needs more. There are over 100 oestrogen mimics in the environment now, see Our Stolen Future. And for more info on oestrogen, please see our page on HRT, and our Cancer page. Take care Wray

Jul 08, 2012
Help with dose
by: Jen

Hello: I am struggling with hormone issues. I am currently taking .3 gram once a day of a 50mg/gram naturally compounded cream. I was doing well for several months but now I feel awful. I am 42 with a toddler and have the adrenal issues, which didnt get better from the herbs because my stomach starts reacting to them, I am too sensitive. Sometimes my period is coming way too early. When I ask my doctor about increasing the dose, she says no because the blood tests show that the levels are OK. I know I could seek out another doctor who would do the saliva tests if I could find time. (on my way out of town to visit a dying a relative this week, and my child keeps me so busy.)
Would it be safe to try increasing the cream, any risk? I am having depression symptoms quite badly as well which I havent had in several years and I have continually had beast tenderness on the days that I take the cream. I also have vestibulitis/ pain with sex issues that continue to flare.

Jul 09, 2012
Help with dose
by: Wray

Hi Jen You appear to be using about 16mg/day progesterone. I'm surprised you did well on it! I have found 100-200mg/day is needed, often more if symptoms are bad. It should be used twice a day too, as levels drop after about 13 hours. The problem with blood tests is very rarely are the ratios checked between progesterone and oestrogen. This is the critical factor not the amount. We run Saliva Tests and find the P:E2 ratio should be 600:1 and over to feel well. From about age 35 we begin getting anovulatory cycles when our ovaries make no progesterone. Plus you are now heading towards Peri-menopause when these cycles increase in frequency. I would definitely recommend you increase the amount. There's more info on our page How to use progesterone cream. I also suggest you use some of the daily amount in your vagina at night, it helps with inflammation. We do have a page on Breast Tenderness too. Plus you might like to look through our page on Natural Antidepressants. Take care Wray

Jul 11, 2012
Reply
by: Jen

Thanks Wray. Is it essential that I get the saliva test done or can you just go on how you feel? How do I know if I am taking too much once i have raised it? Would it be the sleepiness and bloating that I felt in the beginning?

Jul 12, 2012
Reply
by: Wray

Hi Jen I don't believe tests are essential, they can only tell how much hormone is present, not how we feel. Besides the ratios are very rarely checked and this is the critical factor, not the amount. I find tests of interest, and corroboration of why there are adverse symptoms. I wish it wasn't, but finding the optimal amount really is a question of trial and error. I only suggest 100-200mg/day as a guide line, but find many women do better on more. The sleepiness and bloating are two symptoms you could get, others are listed on our Oestrogen Dominance page. All too often women get these symptoms, blame the progesterone and either reduce or stop using it. Ironically it does help, as it's no longer stimulating oestrogen, but this defeats the purpose, which is to suppress it. There's more info on our page Progesterone Misconceptions. Do let me know how you get on. Take care Wray

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