Natural Progesterone questions and answersA Few Frequently Asked Questions.
After purchasing natural progesterone cream how do I start using it?
During the first application of Natural Progesterone Cream, the usual procedure is to begin with 2 to 3 times the dosage recommended, and after two or three months, or when your symptoms are under control, gradually reduce the dose, month by month until you reach a balance between an economical use of the cream and no symptoms.
What if I have cramps during the first day or two of menstruation?
If cramping occurs there is usually a previous history of cramps. As you continue using Natural Progesterone Cream, the number of days of menstrual cramping will diminish from a few hours to virtually none over three to four cycles. For now, apply the cream at the rate of two to three times a day or even more frequently until the cramping subsides and ceases. Stop application when the cramping ceases or until the end of the period. Then begin applying the Natural Progesterone Cream twice daily as before, assuming that this is the end of your first cycle using Natural Progesterone Cream.
Why is it that women can have cramps so severe they have to remain in bed?
Some women undoubtedly have a long history of premenstrual distress dating from the onset of menarche (when the periods start the onset of puberty). One of the many functions of the adrenal glands is to produce cortisone which is a hormone that reduces pain. Cramping starts when the adrenal gland has exhausted its supply of cortisone.
The reason that Natural Progesterone Cream helps is because it contains natural progesterone, a hormone that has a regulatory function. It rushes in to assist when help is needed in this case, it helps the adrenal gland make cortisone, a pain relieving hormone, which relieves cramps.
I get ravenously hungry usually for sweets a few days before the period. What can I do?
Here again, one of the hormone producing glands, the pancreas, is under stress, because the adrenal as well as other endocrine glands are also stressed.
The pancreas makes a hormone called insulin. When under stress it attempts to produce more insulin to help the adrenal and other glands. When stress increases, many people respond by eating sweets.
Natural Progesterone Cream works in a manner that leads to a decrease in craving for sweets and should virtually eliminate he craving after continued use of Natural Progesterone Cream.
What if periods are missed or do not happen for a long time?
Women who have highly irregular periods and missed periods have reported that after using Natural Progesterone Cream consistently for several months, their periods become regular. Diet is also important and is discussed in a later section.
What if there is a heavy discharge during the period; or, if there is a continuous discharge of blood during the month?
Such a problem can have a number of causes. In this situation, as in all cases of a serious nature, a physician should be consulted. The doctor may suggest natural progesterone to help clear the irregular (intermittent) discharge during the month, and control the heavy flow during the period.
If a physician does agree to recommend natural progesterone, then Natural Progesterone Cream could serve as a source of progesterone (transdermal application: topical use). In addition, perhaps the diet should be taken into consideration.
This issue might seem surprisingly obvious, yet diet is frequently ignored. Fresh air and exercise, as well as rest and relaxation are also essential for optimal health and proper hormone activity.
How much and for how long can I use Natural Progesterone Cream?
Use should be as described earlier. It should be continued for several months to a year depending on the severity of symptoms. When the symptoms are under control, usage should be adjusted to individual needs:
- A smaller amount (one fourth teaspoon or less) once or twice daily.
- Twice (or more) per day from ovulation until menstruation.
- Discontinue altogether for awhile to see if symptoms are under permanent control.
- If symptoms are not under permanent control then resume application of Natural Progesterone Cream as each woman should be her own judge for determining the schedule best suited for her needs.
(If you are in doubt consult a physician preferably one who is nutritionally oriented.)
In some cases, symptoms may return after a few months if Natural Progesterone Cream is discontinued. Some women may need to use the cream indefinitely in order to maintain a proper balance between progesterone and estrogen levels.
Can the use of natural progesterone cause side effects?
Does it interfere with other medicines? Quoting from the research and development literature published by Dr. Dalton and others: synthetic progestogen and natural progesterone can trigger uterine bleeding similar to menstrual flow.
However, since natural progesterone has been in use, there have been only a few reported cases of incidental spotting for one or two periods after starting with natural progesterone. After the third to the fifth period, the cycle was regulated and spotting did not recur.
No human cancer has been reported as a result of natural progesterone treatment. In fact, there are reports in the scientific literature indicating that natural progesterone has been used to treat specific uterine cancers! There have been no reports of natural progesterone interfering with prescription or over the counter medicines.
Should natural progesterone be used during pregnancy?
In his book, "Premenstrual Syndrome & You", Neils H. Lauersen, MD, from the Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York, states that natural progesterone maybe helpful to maintain pregnancy. However, synthetic progestins should not be used because they may adversely affect the developing fetus.
No adverse effects on fetal development have been reported when natural progesterone was used during pregnancy.
Dr. Lauersen says studies on the offspring of women who took natural progesterone during their pregnancies have given birth to especially well adjusted children.
Dr. Dalton summarized her 1968 research of 90 children whose mothers received antenatal progesterone compared with matched controls. She noted that more children of mothers who had received antenatal progesterone were still being breast fed at six months; more were standing and walking at one year; and at 9 to 10 years of age, more had demonstrated superior performance compared to the control group, in academic subjects such as verbal reasoning, English, arithmetic and craft work.
Both groups were equally developed in physical education. None of the antenatal progesterone mothers experienced toxemia during the pregnancy; in the control group, more than half experienced toxemia.
The cream is not only safe for use during pregnancy, but is also recommended. It is suggested to be used from conception to delivery, applied primarily to abdomen, breast, low back, and upper thighs (where it will tend to prevent the skin from stretching).
For the first two trimesters of pregnancy (the first six months), use an average of one half to three quarters of a teaspoon two to three times a day.
During the last trimester, apply one teaspoon two or three times each day.
Discontinue at delivery and resume again at a level of twice per day beginning one month after delivery.
The cream is also useful for post partum depression which many women experience after childbirth.
WHAT IS A HORMONE?
Hormones are substances secreted directly into the bloodstream and are produced by several glands and organs in your body such as the ovaries, testes, thyroid, pancreas, pituitary, liver and others.
They travel through the bloodstream from where they are produced to where they interact with receptors to do the work for which they were intended.
They initiate reactions in the body, whereas enzymes usually help to facilitate them.
Hormones regulate fluid retention, mineral metabolism, sexual function and libido, reproductive functions, growth and development, aging and numerous other functions.
WHAT IS PROGESTERONE?
Natural Progesterone is an important hormone manufactured by the adrenal glands in men and women and in the ovaries in women. Extra amounts are manufactured by the placenta during pregnancy. Progesterone is responsible for numerous functions taking place that are necessary for optimum health.
WHAT IS ESTROGEN?
Estrogen is a hormone produced in the body. Estrogen is to a woman what testosterone is to a man. However, both women and men have some of each, but women have more. It is the basic female sex hormone and is responsible for the development of female characteristics. It is balanced in healthy individuals by progesterone.
WHAT ARE XENO-ESTROGENS?
These are synthetic compounds that occur as a result of petrochemical industries and environmental pollution. When ingested or exposed to our bodies, they act like estrogen and can cause the same negative effects such as the unopposed synthetic estrogen that is prescribed by physicians.
WHAT ARE PROGESTINS?
Progestins are synthetic compounds that are intended to mimic the actions of natural progesterone. However, they actually cause numerous side effects and should be avoided.
Hormonal imbalance is a term that has become popular to describe an incorrect relationship that exists between levels of progesterone and estrogen. It occurs in nearly every instance where synthetic hormones are prescribed by physicians.
CAN YOU EXPLAIN "HORMONE CYCLES"?
During the first half of a woman's monthly cycle her body is prepared for accepting a fertilized egg. As estrogen levels increase during the first half of the cycle, water and nutrient storage takes place. At this point, progesterone begins to become the dominant hormone for the second half of the cycle. If fertilization occurs, progesterone levels increase to very high levels for several months. If fertilization does not occur, levels of both estrogen and progesterone lessen, but progesterone remains dominant.
WHAT IS HRT?
HRT is an abbreviation for Hormone Replacement Therapy. Several years ago it became popular for doctors to prescribe the hormone estrogen for women with menopausal symptoms. They thought they were replacing the hormones lost with the advent of menopause.
Contemporary physicians now know that estrogen is not the hormone needing to be replaced. They are becoming increasingly aware that it is progesterone that is desperately in need of replacing. So, when synthetic estrogen is given, it actually aggravates the symptoms all the more.
Later, these synthetic estrogen products were formulated to include synthetic progestins to offset some of the bad effects of estrogen dominance.
This vicious cycle is just now beginning to be understood with the advent of natural progesterone.
WHAT BENEFITS CAN I EXPECT FROM NATURAL PROGESTERONE?
There is much evidence that men and women, especially women, suffer from reduced levels of progesterone. Keeping progesterone levels to optimum levels can help fight depression and anxiety, increase sexual libido, prevent bone loss (osteoporosis), fight aging skin, wrinkles and brown spots, help oxygenation of cells, alleviate sleeplessness, control acne, reduce premenstrual discomforts, protect against breast fibroids, reduce hair thinning, reduce hot flashes etc.
WHY NATURAL PROGESTERONE ONLY?
Synthetic progesterone (progestins) simply do not perform the same functions in the body. They can even lower your levels of progesterone. Natural progesterone is also a precursor to many other hormones in your body, so it is imperative that it be used in its natural form.
WHAT ABOUT MY EMOTIONS?
Most women notice a leveling off of their emotions when they get their progesterone levels up to where they should be, especially if they have been a victim of estrogen dominance.
Some women actually report a feeling of well-being or euphoria. Thus, it has been dubbed 'the happy hormone.'
SHOULD I USE PROGESTERONE IF I AM ON BIRTH CONTROL PILLS?
Birth control pills usually contain synthetic progestins. It is not recommended to take them together. Birth control pills have been known to cause many health problems when taken over a long period of time.
DO POST-MENOPAUSAL OR HYSTERECTOMIZED WOMEN STILL PRODUCE HORMONES?
The best way to describe a hysterectomy is "instant menopause." What is not really understood by most doctors is that the body continues to produce about 40% of the estrogen it had been producing before menopause or hysterectomy, even through the ovaries have been removed.
However, progesterone levels decrease more severely. The symptoms usually attributed to low estrogen are really due to a lack of Progesterone. Women who are in this category seem to notice the benefits of natural progesterone much quicker than those who are still menstruating.
CAN I DISCONTINUE HRT?
Many women now taking estrogen or estrogen combined with progestins are able to discontinue their HRT. Please consult with a medical professional before doing so.
It is possible that if adequate natural progesterone levels were present, any needed estrogen could be made from it. Because progesterone sensitizes estrogen receptors, it makes sense to supplement with progesterone rather than estrogen.
If you are taking hormone replacements and begin applying progesterone and do not lower your estrogen dosage, you may experience symptoms of estrogen-dominance, so with your doctor's permission, lower your estrogen dose.
Continue replacing your HRT with progesterone and after a while you will have discontinued your HRT.
HOW CAN I TELL ABOUT MY PROGESTERONE LEVELS?
A woman can usually tell by how she feels. However, blood or saliva testing is recommended. (Dr. John Lee recommends only the saliva test.)
There is no question that estrogen can be linked to certain cancers. For instance, it has been shown to contribute as much as a 30% increase in breast cancer. It has also been shown that as many as two thirds of women taking estrogen develop uterine lining abnormalities. Also, evidence shows that estrogen can be associated with cancer of the bladder, pancreas, cervix, endometrium and brain.
It is known that as much as 75% or more of women living in the United States eventually develop osteoporosis. Fortunately, progesterone can stop it and even reverse already existing bone loss.
WHAT ABOUT PMS?
Estrogen dominance is usually associated with PMS. In the earlier parts of the cycle and just before it begins, progesterone levels are usually low while estrogen levels are beginning to increase.
Applying progesterone is one sure way of balancing out the estrogen dominance. Numerous benefits can occur by using a progesterone cream during the month. It is usually recommended to use it each day, except the days of menses.
SHOULD I USE PROGESTERONE?
It is highly recommended. Due to faulty diets, decreased nutrients in our foods and the stress that we experience, most women have reduced levels of all hormones, but especially progesterone. We are exposed to numerous xenoestrogens (certain chemicals in the environment that have effects on the body similar to estrogen). Keep in mind that health problems arise from not only the estrogen itself, but from imbalance resulting from a deficiency in progesterone.
IF NATURAL PROGESTERONE IS SO WONDERFUL, WHY ISN'T IT USED BY MY DOCTOR?
This is the question most frequently asked of Dr. Lee during his more than 30 years of active clinical practice. To quote from Dr. Lee: "The medical-industrial complex refers to the close knit association of organized medicine with the pharmaceutical manufacturers and governmental medical regulatory agencies...
The system taken together is neither necessarily corrupt nor evil, but, like any human agency, is subject to the frailties and faults of humankind.
Medical research is dependent on the billions of dollars of grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the private pharmaceutical industry. The two are closely interlocked.
Any given pharmaceutical company, like any private enterprise, must make a profit to stay alive. Profit comes from the sales of patent medicines. The system is not interested in natural (non-patentable) medicines, regardless of their potential health benefits. Thus the flow of research funding does not extend to products which cannot be patented.
Few people know that the definition of malpractice hinges on whether or not the practice is common among one's medical peers and has little (usually nothing) to do with whether the practice is beneficial or not. A doctor willing to study, to learn the ins and outs of an alternative medical therapy, and to put what he has learned into practice in helping patients is potentially exposing himself to serious charges of malpractice. But what does all this have to do with natural progesterone? The answer is quite simple, really. Ample medical research regarding progesterone was carried on from the 1940's through the 1960's, and amply reported in mainline, recognized medical literature. Since the early 1970's, however, medical research has become much more expensive and the grants subsidizing progesterone research, (or any unpatentable medicine or treatment technique), have dried up and been blown away by the contemporary trade winds of synthetic drugs, particularly the progestins.
The potential market for patentable progestins is vast--contraceptive pills, irregular menses, osteoporosis--literally every woman through the age of puberty on is a target for a sale. Do you think the prevailing powers wish to see this lucrative market left to an over-the-counter natural product not in the hands of physician prescribers and not controlled by the pharmaceutical industry? Thus, when he (the physician) hears of the use of natural progesterone, he wonders why none of his associates know about it. If it is not commonly know, 'it must in some way be false and/or unapproved.'
Having given lectures on the role and medical uses of natural progesterone, I have observed numerous instances wherein perfectly fine physicians will inquire about obtaining product for use by their wives or mother-in-law but not for their patients. What can account for such behavior by professionals? I suspect that it is fear of alienation from the flock that is paramount in their minds.
If progestins were the equivalent of natural progesterone in effect and safety, the argument would be moot. But progestins are not the equivalent of natural progesterone and never will be. --Dr. John R. Lee, CA, USA
WHY IS A PREMIUM QUALITY PROGESTERONE CREAM SUPERIOR TO CAPSULES OR SUPPOSITORIES?
Nature did not intend women to put hormones into their stomachs. Consequently, about 80% of orally administered progesterone is intercepted by the liver and passed out of the body, unused. Progesterone in suppository form is also intercepted by the liver and bound up by the wax vehicle. In either case, because there is no sound basis for putting an extra burden on the liver, informed women have chosen to use a transdermal cream which is almost 100% biologically available, as shown by salivary hormone assays.
WHY PROGESTERONE? ISN'T MEXICAN WILD YAM ENOUGH?
A component of yam (diosgenin) was, at one time, thought to be converted in the body to progesterone but that has been proven to be unsubstantiated. In fact, while it has certain health benefits, there are no published studies that would allow one to conclude that Mexican Wild Yam will increase progesterone levels in humans or animals.
Only supplemental natural progesterone has been demonstrated to increase serum and saliva progesterone levels in women, a fact that is verified by ample clinical and published scientific research.
WHAT CAUSES UNNATURAL FACIAL HAIR, ESPECIALLY ABOVE MY UPPER LIP?
This is a condition called 'hirsutism' (defined as excessive growth of facial and body hair). It indicates that there is a hormonal imbalance between estrogen, testosterone (dominant male hormone), and progesterone. As explained previously, progesterone acts as a regulator for the entire endocrine system.
A woman who has the hirsute problem probably has PMS too. Both menopausal and menstruating women have reported that abnormal facial hair (and body hair) decreased or completely disappeared after three to six months of regular application of the natural progesterone cream twice a day.
I ALWAYS GET A YEAST INFECTION AFTER I TAKE ANTIBIOTICS OR WHILE I AM ON BIRTH CONTROL PILLS. I HAVE HEARD THAT HORMONES AGGRAVATE YEAST INFECTIONS, IS THIS TRUE?
Because of the general use of antibiotics given for a variety of conditions without accompanying acidophilus, Candida Albicans, the primary yeast fungus, has become a serious health problem for many women (and men). Candida also aggravates premenstrual syndrome (PMS).
Natural Progesterone supports all hormone activity in the body, so it acts to strengthen the body's defense (immune) system. However, the synthetic progestagens tend to weaken the immune system and in general should be avoided. The progesterone cream, which contains natural progesterone, can be safely used because it supports the immune system and thereby helps to correct the yeast fungus problems.
MY HANDS AND OTHER JOINTS ARE SWOLLEN AND PAINFUL. I CANNOT MAKE A FIST OR GRASP ANYTHING FIRMLY. WILL THE NATURAL PROGESTERONE CREAM HELP?
There are reports from people (men and women) who experienced this problem. They claimed that after applying the natural progesterone cream several times a day for five consecutive days and less frequently thereafter, there was a noticeable reduction in swelling and joint pain, and increased hand flexibility occurred.
CAN THE NATURAL PROGESTERONE CREAM BE USED ON ABRASIONS, MUSCLE SORENESS,
CUTS AND SKIN ULCERS?
The natural progesterone cream is reported to alleviate aches and pains from cuts, bruises, lacerations and skin irritations. It has been used to rapidly heal skin ulcers and in some cases has been reported to benefit skin graft operations. People who have muscle fatigue have reported relief from rubbing the natural progesterone cream on the affected area. Incidentally, there have been reports from pet owners that application of the natural progesterone cream is also beneficial to animals with lacerations or skin ulcers.
Dr. John Lee, M.D., is a true pioneer in the use of natural progesterone therapy.