Is natural progesterone the best choice for my 40 something body? My gynecologist gives me that look whenever I mention using any natural substance, but what is truly best for me? My grandmother followed her gynecologists advice to the letter, developed breast cancer and died. So pardon me if I have a few questions.
For those of us who are taking natural hormones, such as bioidentical progesterone, how much do we take? How long do we take it? Will our bodies adjust? Most of us start taking progesterone to balance it out with our high estrogen level. There are so many ingredients in our lotions, makeup, laundry detergent, shampoos and deodorants that cause xenoestrogens (foreign estrogens), not to mention the excess estrogens we are exposed to through pesticides, plastics and meats. These xenoestrogens are causing estrogen dominance in our bodies, which may cause pms, foggy brain, uterine fibroids, endometriosis, breast cysts, testicular cancer, mood swings, etc.
According to Dr John Lee in his book What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Premenopause one of progesterones most important and powerful roles in the body is to balance or oppose estrogen. When our progesterone levels are in balance, excess estrogen is better handled. The fall of progesterone levels at menopause is proportionately much greater than the fall of estrogen levels.
Also from his book The uterus is one of the first organs to manifest symptoms when a womans hormones are out of balance. Two of the most common uterine symptoms of premenopause syndrome are an enlarged uterus and uterine fibroids. How many 40 something women do you know with a flat stomach? What is being done to clean up our environment and to help us get these xenoestrogens out of our bodies?
Estrogen dominance affects everyone differently. For me it was breast cysts and uterine fibroids. My doctors, and I have seen many, would ask me if I wanted to keep my uterus. Like its disposable! OF COURSE I WANT TO KEEP IT! I may want more children, and dont give me that look again! So I began the research. Dr. Lees book suggests that, after taking an ultrasound of the fibroids, women with fibroids can take one oz of progesterone cream from days 10, 11 or 12 of the cycle, to days 26 to 30. After 3 months, have another ultrasound done to see the results. If the fibroid has gotten smaller, or at least not gotten any bigger, continue with the progesterone until menopause.
I tried the progesterone, for years, along with reducing xenoestrogens from my environment. The migraines before my periods went away. The breast tenderness before my periods went away. Then THEY RETURNED. I thought I might have exposed myself to more xenoestrogens so I INCREASED MY PROGESTERONE! My symptoms got worse. I then had my hormones checked. My estradiol was low and my progesterone was high. These same symptoms were now caused by Progesterone Dominance! According to Dr. Mercola, progesterone is stored in fat cells for up to 2 years! Is this really the best solution for me to balance my hormones?
In my research I have come across an herb/root grown organically, high in the Andean Mountains in Peru, that is worth looking into. Its called Maca. It is suppose to adapt to the bodys needs and support menopausal health. It works with the body, the pituitary and hypothalamus, to bring about healthy balanced hormones. Maca is not a hormone, but a food that helps the body balance itself. I would much rather take something natural that helps my body get itself back into balance, than try and guess how much of a particular hormone to take.