Estrogen Dominance and Hypothyroid

by Angie

Ok, so I have been on bio-identical HRT since February 2008 and was diagnosed with hypothyroidism around 2005 and I am currently taking Armour Thyroid for that.

Recently I have read more and more articles on estrogen dominance and I am beginning to wonder if I even have a problem with my thyroid. Was doing good for awhile and just recently I have been gaining, gaining and gaining some more. Now with a 5'4" frame, I stand at 180 pounds. Haven't been that big since my son was born more than 25 years ago. I work as a housekeeper, so I am always moving and the scale will just not budge. And most of my weight carries around my belly, hips and thighs. And it is getting pretty uncomfortable.

I guess what I am wondering is if I were to stop my HRT and my Armour Thyroid and just use progesterone cream (currently everything I take is in pill form and I know that it's not the way to go) will things level out or do I keep taking all these other hormones and hope for the best? I am on 4mg estriol, 150mg progesterone and 5mg testosterone and I was on 120mg Armour, but have recently lowered it to 90mg. The progesterone was just increased to 150mg from 100mg over a month ago, but I haven't really seen a difference in anything except I am not as cranky. Intolerance to heat and night sweats are still the same, plus reading the list of estrogen dominance symptoms, I have almost all of them. I am about at my wits end.

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Jan 16, 2011
Estrogen Dominance and Hypothyroid
by: Wray

Hi Angie I don't think we need extra oestrogen, we get enough as it is, with the many endocrine disruptors in the environment, see the website Our Stolen Future. The amount of progesterone is good, but not much is being absorbed as it's oral. Most of it is destroyed in the gut and liver, see our page on Delivery systems. If you say you have most of the symptoms of excess oestrogen, it will be coming from the oestrogen you are taking. Interestingly oestrogen is not destroyed in the gut. It also slows the thyroid down, whereas progesterone, because it's thermogenic, helps speed the thyroid slightly. Progesterone certainly helps hot flushes and night sweats, I've found a high amount is needed initially to stop them, or make them manageable. About 400mg/day for 4-5 days is needed, after that the amount should be reduced slowly. Please have a vitamin D test done. A lack of this vitamin reduces the benefits of progesterone, slows the thyroid and causes weight gain. For more info see the Vitamin D council website. And these papers here, here, here, here here and here. Take care Wray

Jan 21, 2011
by: Angie

Thanks Wray!

I recently went to my doctor, pretty much in tears, and asked to be switched from pill form to cream. She didn't want to stop the estrogen all at once so she is knocking it down to 2mg. Just waiting for it to be filled at my local compounding pharmacy. As for the vitamin D, I take more than 5,000iu a day so I'm sure I'm good there. When you say to get at least 400mg a day in progesterone cream to start, is that what will be delivered into the skin? I think my doctor will only prescribe 150mg. Not sure she would go that high. So if 400mg is what I should be using then I will have to buy some Natpro.


Jan 26, 2011
by: Wray

Hi Angie I'm pleased you've switched to the cream, but please read our page on Oestrogen Dominance first. This can occur when changing from oral to topical, and it also occurs when increasing the amount, unless a high level is used. And yes, 400mg progesterone is the amount I've found needed to stop or reduce dramatically the hot flushes. I'm not sure what strength of cream you will be given, but there's no need to change creams. Just use enough to get the 400mg/day, you can work this out from the strength, or how much progesterone is in the container. You might find 150mg/day is enough, although from my experience it does have to be more to alleviate hot flushes. Please see our page on Peri-menopause, or if you're in Menopause, this page. Once the hot flushes have been helped, start reducing very slowly, to prevent them returning. It's best to use the cream at least twice a day, if not more. As soon as you feel a flush coming, rub some on. I have some women using it hourly to help, there's no hard and fast rule to using it. And no rule about the amount either, the more severe the symptom, the more is needed. Take care Wray

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