surviving estrogen dominance

Hi, your website has been so helpful to me. Thank you. I recently started progesterone cream and have been experiencing pretty extreme "estrogen dominance wake up crisis" now for 2 weeks now since I started the cream. I keep reading online that I should increase my intake of phytoestrogens to help with the estrogen dominance wake up, but every time I consume any phytoestrogens at all (even 1 cup of chamomile tea) I immediately feel so much worse. Am I just so incredibly deficient in progesterone that even the phytoestrogens bother me right now? I have upped my dose of the cream to about 500 mg per day now and the symptoms are much better (but not gone), but I still don't understand why phytoestrogens are recommended? A few years ago before I developed this problem I could consume phytoestrogens with no symptoms whatsoever, so this is very new to me,and before I started using progesterone cream I was having symptoms of both low progesterone and low estrogen. Then, just a couple of days after starting the cream I went from low estrogen symptoms to extreme symptoms of high estrogen. Any advice you can provide would be much appreciated.

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Oct 05, 2012
SURVIVING ESTROGEN DOMINANCE
by: PEG

Hi, just a question, what were your estrogen dominance symptoms?

Oct 07, 2012
surviving estrogen dominance
by: Wray

Hi there Very pleased the site has helped you. Phytoestrogens are in all the food we eat, we can't avoid them, even meat has some, see 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. It depends on how much you were eating in the past, and what kind. Oil, oilseeds and nuts have the highest content, followed by legumes and grains. As we don't that many nuts or use that much oil, I continue to eat these. I avoid all legumes, besides by stomach can't handle them! And I don't eat grains at all, although sorely tempted by home made bread and croissants, so give in occasionally. Age also counts, I don't know how old you are, but possibly now in Peri-menopause? Or maybe in those years prior to it, but older than 35? This is when anovulatory cycles begin, and progesterone begins dropping. The phytoestrogens would add an extra oestrogen burden to the body, but with lessening progesterone to counter it. Any oestrogen, be it natural, synthetic or a phytoestrogen, has an oestrogenic affect on us. The reasoning goes that the 'weak' ones occupy the receptor sites, so the more potent can't 'latch' on, but by doing so they still have an oestrogenic affect, see here, here, here, here and here. It appears you were using a small amount of progesterone when first using it, hence the crisis. I'm pleased the increase has helped you, but it will take time, you've only been using it for two weeks you say. I hope this has answered your questions. Take care Wray

Oct 07, 2012
surviving estrogen dominance
by: Anonymous

Thank you so much for your response. I am 39 years old, but realize my low progesterone symptoms started about 5 years ago (although I didn't know it at the time). They just got much worse as I got older. My symptoms are anxiety, insomnia, tingling skin, pounding heart, irritable mood swings, bloating and nausea and joint and muscle aches and pains. The first 2 weeks of using the progesterone cream I saw my symptoms improving slowly, but when I hit the third week they suddenly got much much worse and have been for 1 week now. I keep increasing the cream (as well as taking a lot of calcium d-glucarate and DIM), which provides some relief, but I just feel very frustrated that in spite of using so much cream I'm still having all these symptoms. Before using the cream I was having all the symptoms of low progesterone I mentioned above plus off and on some symptoms of low estrogen (hot flashes, dry skin/hair and depression). As soon as I started using the cream the low estrogen symptoms stopped and now I only feel estrogen dominant. I suppose the progesterone cream just needs time to build up in my body?

Oct 08, 2012
surviving estrogen dominance
by: Wray

Hi there So you are in that early phase when progesterone begins dropping. The anovulatory cycles are usually few and far between, but speed up in peri-menopause. But this also depends when you will go into Menopause, the average age of this is 51. But the best guide is to ask your mother when she went into it, as daughters usually follow the same time line. P-M starts 5 to 10 years before menopause. So if she went into menopause at say 49, then you could be in the beginning stages of P-M. You certainly have all the symptoms for it, but then stress also exacerbates things. Incidentally those 'low oestrogen' symptoms are actually low progesterone symptoms. All doctors seem to think they are low oestrogen, but it's because they have never bothered to look at progesterone and what it's loss does to us. We do have a page on Hot Flushes you could look through. I've found 400mg/day and over are needed to stop them if severe. The hair and skin are helped by progesterone, not by oestrogen, see here. And these here and here. We do have a page on Hair Loss which gives a list of nutrients which help it. And finally oestrogen is an excitatory hormone, whereas progesterone is calming, and helpful for depression. Please see our page on Anxiety. So the progesterone evidently helped the low oestrogen symptoms, which only proves they are caused by a lack of it. Continued below.

Oct 08, 2012
surviving estrogen dominance Part 2
by: Wray

Hi there You could have a low vitamin D level too, as this is vital for the hair, for depression too. Please have a test done. For more info on vitamin D levels, test kits etc see the Vitamin D Council, GrassrootsHealth and Birmingham Hospital. Blood levels should be 70-100ng/ml (175-250nmol/L) and not the 30ng/ml (75nmol/L) most labs and doctors regard as adequate. The minimum daily dose should be 5000iu's per day, although recent research indicates it should be 10,000iu's per day, see here. It does take time, and you have a host of adverse symptoms to contend with, please preserve as I know you will come right. It might help to read these pages here, here and here for encouragement. Take care Wray

Oct 25, 2012
estrogen dominance
by: Anonymous

Bless you Wray for your support and taking so much of your own time to help other women with progesterone deficiency. My dr. did test my Vitamin D several months ago and it was a little low so he does have me taking 5000iu per day, so hopefully that is improving. I had a year of tremendous stress which led up to the start of most of my symptoms, so I'm not surprised perimenopause started for me at 39. My sister started peri at 42. Luckily the year of stressful events is over and now I'm focusing on getting my health back. Thank you so much for directing me to the stories of women who had to use huge amounts of the cream for many months to get better. I was nervous each time I increased the cream, but feel better after reading other women had to too. I am at about 1000-1200 mg per day now and I am still having some estrogen dominance wake up, but it is a little more tolerable than it was. I started the cream 6 wks ago, so hopefully the high doses will eventually help. I have also added maca and extra B5 to my supplements, which has made me feel much better.

Oct 26, 2012
estrogen dominance
by: Wray

Hi there Thanks for the kind words. I'm hopeful that the amount you are using, which is very good, will sort out the problems soon. You haven't been using it for long. It is trial and error, and plenty of patience! Once your D levels come up that should help too. Pleased the maca and B5 have helped, B5 does drop with stress, and you've had plenty by the sounds of things. Progesterone of course drops with stress, so too does vitamin D, so I'm not surprised your level was low. Don't forget the other nutrients listed on the anxiety page, as they do help too. Please let me know how you get on. Take care Wray

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