Liz on 400mg Natural Progesterone. Thank you!
I would like to share my experience with natural progesterone which I have been using for about 12 months.
I find many people often only bother to write in when they're in a negative place and then vanish once they are well.
This is human nature of course. (Think about online reviews as an example)
This leaves an imbalanced user experience when reading the comments on this site and I want to try and rebalance the scales a little if possible.
I am 45 and I use 400mg of natural progesterone every single day and have done for 11 months and lower doses of between 100 and 200mg daily for 6 months prior to that.
Before Natpro I was having insomnia, night sweats, day sweats, anxiety, swollen sore breasts, heavy flow with clotting and depression to varying degrees leading up to my period.
All of this was new to me when I hit 40. Until around the age of 40 I did not have PMT. (seriously) so when it DID hit I assumed I was depressed and put on anti depressants. A common tale you will find if you research. It took me two years to work out my symptoms happened the 2 weeks leading up to my period.
That's when I learned about peri menopause and the bumpy hormone fluctuation Hell it can be.
It's been a bumpy ride over the last 17 months as we are not cookie cut and there is not one dose that suits all women.
I started at 100mg and felt immediate relief but then as is often the case, oestrogen reacted to the progesterone and symptoms returned.
This is a classic case of oestrogen dominance.
When we start using progesterone (Natural not synthetic) it wakens our oestrogen receptors and this can be confusing as we naturally assume the progesterone cream is the anomaly and might want to stop using it.
This also happens when women only apply the typically recommended dose of 20mg - 40mg a day and/or are advised to only use it the cream two weeks of their cycle.
Once in peri-menopause,(late 30s early 40s) for progesterone to work you have to make it the dominant hormone and that takes a higher than the commonly recommended amount and no breaks for 3 to 6 months.
Having a week or two "progesterone break" allows oestrogen to become dominant again and when you start applying progesterone cream again the whole oestrogen dominance begins again.
In short, you are left in a constant state of oestrogen dominance cycles.
You're no better than you were before you started using it, you may even feel worse.
It's little wonder women stop using the progesterone cream.
From my many hours/days/weeks of research, it seems in fact, you need to apply a minimum of 100mg every single day of your cycle for 3 to 6 months and see how you feel.
It takes time. It's not a pain killer that works in 20 minutes.
You are rebalancing the roller coaster of hormones and that takes time and perhaps more importantly, patience!
You may find you need more. I suggest increasing in 100mg increments waiting 3 months then seeing how you feel.
Once you feel stable, you can, if you feel you need to (for financial reasons) start to reduce the amount of progesterone but please don't do as I did and just half the dose. It caused an almighty hormonal upheaval for me which nearly sent me over the edge. A very dark place I am still not sure how I managed to get through.
***Please search this site on how to reduce gradually****
Today I am on 400mg natural progesterone daily and I am 90% better.
Some symptoms can re-appear and then vanish again and this used to cause me to panic but I have come to understand that oestrogen and testosterone are still fluctuating regardless of the steady dose of progesterone I am applying.
Progesterone cream softens the blow but it might not blanket the symptoms 100% or all of the time.
I literally cannot live without Natpro and progesterone prescriptions now but like many women the transition can be bumpy until you find a dosage that works for you and stick it out some months too.
Please also read the supplement advise on this website.
I find inositol an amazing relaxer and calmer as well as zinc, B6 and Omega Fish Oil.
Last but CERTAINLY not least, VITAMIN D3
Vitamin D is technically a hormone (Not a vitamin) and works in synergy with Oestrogen and Progesterone (And other hormones) and yet it is estimated that 85% of the Western population is deficient due to fear of skin cancer and UV protection in makeup and sun creams as well as sitting in offices all day.
We can only make D3 by sun light on naked skin or by supplementing. When we were "Hunter gatherers" we were in the daylight considerably more than we are now. Hence we have a pandemic of D deficiency which has its own symptoms. (Research this)
I had a blood test that came back at a blood serum level of 21 my partners was at 6!
A healthy level would be 60 - 80.
Anything less than 30 in the UK is considered "deficient" but the UK are now admitting the recommended serum level of 30 is out dated.
So take 10,000 IUs of a GOOD Vit D3 along with magnesium (They need each other to work)
Hope this helps someone out there lost on the hormonal highway..