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Evening Primrose Oil and Estrogen Dominance ... long (questions)

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#1 Negin

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 01:42 AM

I began taking Evening Primrose Oil less than a year ago - having read many of its benefits.

  • Relieves PMS, peri-menopausal, and menopausal symptoms - mood swings, cramping, tiredness during periods, hot flashes
  • In many studies it has shown to reduce size of breast lumps and fibrocystic breast disease; may reduce breast pain and tenderness in people with cyclic mastalgia
  • Youthful skin – keeps skin moist and fresh, even during weight loss
  • Heart protection and may help with hypertension
  • Reduces inflammation
  • Helps improve dryness and dry eye syndrome
  • Helps ward off rheumatoid arthritis
  • Reduces the severity, duration, and frequency of migraines
  • Essential for healthy hair - If your hair is dry and brittle, you may improve its texture by supplementing your diet with EPO

I'm convinced that in many ways it helped - PMS symptoms, dry eyes, healthier skin, hair, etc.

Now, my question is this: having gone for my first breast thermogram, I was told that my estrogen levels are a bit high. Not good at all.
I'm so happy that I went for a thermogram. Mammograms cannot find pre-cancerous conditions. Thermography is great for evaluating breast tissue for abnormalities way before cancer begins – in time to change the inner environment and hopefully prevent breast cancer. A mammogram would not have picked up my estrogen dominance.

So, because my estrogen levels are high ... I'm now on a progesterone cream (a very good one) - a small amount is applied directly to the breasts.
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"If your thermogram shows that you have too much estrogen in your breast tissues, apply ¼ to ½ teaspoon of natural progesterone cream directly to your breasts morning and evening. More progesterone is absorbed into breast tissues when it’s applied to them directly, and that’s ultimately where you want most of the progesterone to go."

Also trying to improve my diet and make other necessary changes. I've been told to avoid soy and flax. From what I've read - makes sense.

This link and some others say that EPO is not good to take for estrogen dominance. Dr. Lee and my thermogram experts agree that it's best to avoid EPO for estrogen dominance. I have not yet read any of Dr. Lee's books.

Does anyone have any experience with estrogen dominance, or EPO, or any thoughts on this? What worked? What do you know? Any tips would be greatly appreciated. Do you recommend Dr. Lee's books if you have read them? He has one on breast cancer.

Gosh, I wish I'd known about this before stocking up on a year's supply! :confused:

I'm torn between how EPO helped me in some ways and the risk of estrogen dominance. I will most likely either stop taking it altogether OR possibly take much less. I think the former is more wise. I mean I would rather have dry eyes and skin VERSUS estrogen dominance!

Thank you.

#2 Liz CA

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 01:50 AM


As long as you balance out your Estrogen with the Progesterone, it should be fine. "Balance" is the key here from what I understand from my naturopath.

Progesterone is the brake pedal for the estrogen. I am not familiar with this type of cream. My progesterone is prescribed by the naturopath and is bio-identical which I prefer over synthetic products.

You can have your hormones tested by a saliva test. It was fairly pricey for me but necessary after a surgical procedure. Some docs do blood tests, I was told the saliva test is more accurate. There may be differing opinions on this.

I am considering a thermogram. Did it take long and how was it? From what I understand nothing touches you during the thermography?


Edited by Liz CA, 30 November 2010 - 01:52 AM.


#3 treestarfae

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 02:50 AM

You can try chaste berry (Vitex). I'm not sure about EPO. I like progesterone creams results but I don't feel comfortable dosing myself with hormones.

#4 Peela

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 03:56 AM

I recommend Dr Lee's books however like treestarfae, I don't feel comfortable taking even bio identical prgesterone indefinitely. I did for 2 years. It was fantastic...it made the difference between living in h*ll and having an ok time for 2 weeks out of every 4. But then suddenly I didn't feel to take it any more and I was ok without it. It is powerful stuff.
Estrogen dominance is common.
I now take chaste tree- I used to take it years ago too and it was good- it is balancing and it promotes progesterone. EPO never seemed to do anything for me.
I would just keep going, doing what you're doing (researching, acting on what you learn) and experiment with yourself. We are all a bit different and what works, or feels good, for one, will not be the same for another. I have tried so many things over the years to balance my hormones...B6, EPO never seemed to do anything...chaste tree, taken regularly, does, for me (atm)....progesterone cream was good for 2 years but then not.
For the skin/hair symtoms that EPO relieves for you, there are other things that can help. In fact, progesterone cream can often help. Vitamin E, eating more oils like coconut, MSM...many things.

#5 Negin

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 03:57 AM

Thank you both. :)


I am not familiar with this type of cream. My progesterone is prescribed by the naturopath and is bio-identical which I prefer over synthetic products.

Liz, my cream is also bio-identical. Not synthetic.


You can have your hormones tested by a saliva test. It was fairly pricey for me but necessary after a surgical procedure. Some docs do blood tests, I was told the saliva test is more accurate. There may be differing opinions on this.

Can't do a hormone test here. At least I don't think I can. I'll probably just wait till next year when I get to have a follow-up thermogram. Then, hopefully, I can see if the progesterone cream is having the desired effect.


I am considering a thermogram. Did it take long and how was it? From what I understand nothing touches you during the thermography?

No, it didn't take long at all. Nothing touches you. It's fabulous. That link I gave gives you lots of info, including good places to go to get one.
I'm going to start another reply from an article by Dr. Christine Northrup. There's lots more info online.

You can try chaste berry (Vitex). I'm not sure about EPO. I like progesterone creams results but I don't feel comfortable dosing myself with hormones.

Thanks, I'll read up on Chaste Berry.

#6 Negin

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 03:58 AM

Article by Dr. Christine Northrup.
Every year when Breast Cancer Awareness Month (October) comes around I am a saddened and surprised that thermography hasn't become more popular. Part of this is my mindset. I'd rather focus on breast health and ways to prevent breast cancer at the cellular level than put the emphasis on testing and retesting until you finally do find something to poke, prod, cut out or radiate. That's why I call October Breast Health Awareness Month, not Breast Cancer Awareness Month. I understand that mammography has been the gold standard for years. Doctors are the most familiar with this test, and many believe that a mammogram is the best test for detecting breast cancer early. But it's not. Studies show that a thermogram identifies precancerous or cancerous cells earlier, and produces unambiguous results, which cuts down on additional testing--and it doesn't hurt the body. Isn't this what women really want?
I recently discussed thermography with my colleague Philip Getson, D.O. Dr. Getson has been a medical thermographer since 1982. As you may know, thermography is a form of thermal (infrared) imaging. Dr. Getson explains how thermography works this way.
It is widely acknowledged that cancers, even in their earliest stages, need nutrients to maintain or accelerate their growth. In order to facilitate this process, blood vessels are caused to remain open, inactive blood vessels are activated, and new ones are formed through a process known as neoangiogenesis. This vascular process causes an increase in surface temperature in the affected regions, which can be viewed with infrared imaging cameras. Additionally, the newly formed or activated blood vessels have a distinct appearance, which thermography can detect.
Heat is an indication that inflammation exists, and typically inflammation is present in precancerous and cancerous cells, too. (It's also present in torn muscles and ligaments as well as arthritic joints, which thermography can also detect.)
Thermography's accuracy and reliability is remarkable, too. In the 1970s and 1980s, a great deal of research was conducted on thermography. In 1981, Michel Gautherie, Ph.D., and his colleagues reported on a 10-year study, which found that an abnormal thermogram was 10 times more significant as a future risk indicator for breast cancer than having a history of breast cancer in your family.
Early Detection
The most promising aspect of thermography is its ability to spot anomalies years before mammography. Using the same data from the 10-year study, researchers H. Spitalier and D. Giruaud determined that thermography alone was the first alarm in 60 percent of the cases of women who were eventually diagnosed with cancer.Dr. Getson adds:
Since thermal imaging detects changes at the cellular level, studies suggest that this test can detect activity 8 to 10 years before any other test. This makes it unique in that it affords us the opportunity to view changes before the actual formation of the tumor. Studies have shown that by the time a tumor has grown to sufficient size to be detectable by physical examination or mammography, it has in fact been growing for about seven years achieving more than 25 doublings of the malignant cell colony. At 90 days there are two cells, at one year there are 16 cells, and at five years there are 1,048,576 cells--an amount that is still undetectable by a mammogram.
(At 8 years, there are almost 4 billion cells.)
Today, women are encouraged to get a mammogram, so they can find their breast cancer as early as possible. With thermography as your regular screening tool, it's likely that you would have the opportunity to make adjustments to your diet, beliefs and lifestyle to transform your cells before they became cancerous. Talk about true prevention.
Clearer Results, Fewer Additional Tests
To many, it felt like the world was set on its ear when, in November 2009, the United States Preventative Services Task Force said it recommended that women begin regular mammograms at 50 instead of 40 and that mammograms are needed every two years instead of annually between the ages of 50 and 74. Some women felt this was a way for the insurance companies to save money, but I cheered these new guidelines. (For more information read "The New Mammography Guidelines" in the Women's Wisdom Cirlce on www.drnorthrup.com.) The Task Force concluded that the risk of additional and unnecessary testing far outweighed the benefits of annual mammograms--and I couldn't agree more.
Ten years ago, Danish researchers Ole Olsen and Peter Gotzsche concluded, after analyzing data from seven studies, that mammograms often led to needless treatments and were linked to a 20 percent increase in mastectomies, many of which were unnecessary. Dr. Getson expounded, "According to the 1998 Merck Manual, for every case of breast cancer diagnosed each year, 5 to 10 women will undergo a painful breast biopsy. This means that if a woman has an annual mammogram for 10 years, she has a 50 percent chance of having a breast biopsy."
Thermography is a particularly good choice for younger breasts, which tend to be denser. It doesn't identify fibrocystic tissue, breast implants or scars as needing further investigation. It's also good at detecting changes in the cells in the armpit area, an area that mammography isn't always good at screening. Perhaps even more exciting is that a thermogram can help a woman diagnosed with ductal carconoma in situ (DCIS) decide, along with her health practitioners, whether she requires aggressive or conservative treatment. If you've ever had an unnecessary biopsy or been scared by a false positive result on a mammogram, please consider getting a thermogram and using it in conjunction with the mammogram to figure our your treatment options.
It's Safe.
Thermography is very safe--it's even safe for pregnant and nursing women! It's merely an image of the heat of your body.
It's ironic that the test women are using for prevention may be causing the very problem they're trying to avoid in the first place! Another reason the United States Preventative Services Task Force reversed its aggressive mammogram guidelines was because of the exposure to radiation. It's well known that excessive doses of radiation can increase your risk of cancer. And this doesn't even touch on the harm done to the body from unnecessary biopsies, lumpectomies, mastectomies, chemotherapy, radiation treatment and so forth.
It Doesn't Hurt
Unlike a mammogram, a thermogram doesn't hurt! Just about everyone who's ever had a mammogram has complained about how painful it is. The first time you get a mammogram can be quite a shock. Who knew a breast could be flattened like that? Well, the pain isn't in your imagination. The pressure that the mammogram machine puts on each breast when it's being compressed is equivalent to putting a 50-pound weight on your breast.
The Best Test for You
As with anything, I suggest you let your inner guidance help you in all decisions about your health. If you feel it's best to get an annual mammogram, then by all means continue with them. Just be aware of the drawbacks and risks associated with the test. One helpful way to assess your risk for breast cancer--which in turn can help you decide how often you want to have mammograms--is to use the National Cancer Institute's Breast Cancer Risk Assessment Tool. After you answer seven simple questions, it calculates both your risk of getting invasive breast cancer in the next five years as well as your lifetime risk, and it compares each to the risk for the average U.S. woman of the same age and race or ethnicity.
You would be surprised by how many women tell me their doctors make them feel guilty for not having a mammogram. Women who just know they have healthy breasts. Don't be intimidated if you prefer to forgo annual mammography.
Thermography is a better technology for all the reasons I've already described. Plus it gives results that are unique to you, time after time. But there are some things to be wary of. Dr. Getson explains, "To be sure, not all thermographic equipment is the same, nor is every center backed by qualified, board-certified physicians who are specifically trained in the interpretation of these images.
Dr. Getson says that women (and men) seeking to have infrared imaging should consider the following:
1. What is the "drift factor" in the apparatus? Anything over 0.2 degrees centigrade leads to poor reproducibility.
2. What are the credentials of the interpreting physician?
3. The room in which the study is performed should be free of outside light and the temperature should always be at 68-72 degrees Fahrenheit, with a proper cooling system in place.
4. Make sure the images are marked up (doctors call this "stat"-ed) for future comparison.
5. Ask if the studies are read on site or sent by email to a distant interpreter.
6. Be sure that the physician is available to explain and discuss all findings.
Instead of just screening for breast cancer, a thermogram can tell you how healthy your breasts are. It also has the potential to truly detect breast cell anomalies long before mammography can detect cancer, when done properly. This allows you to implement lifestyle changes that can improve the health of your breasts proactively instead of waiting for a cancer diagnosis later. In honor of Breast Health Awareness month, I encourage you to check out thermography for yourself and your loved ones.

BTW, if anyone has any additional info on EPO or more tips on lowering estrogen levels, please share. :)

#7 Negin

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 04:03 AM

I don't feel comfortable taking even bio identical prgesterone indefinitely.
Estrogen dominance is common.
I now take chaste tree- I used to take it years ago too and it was good- it is balancing and it promotes progesterone.

Peela, I was so hoping that you would post. Thank you. :grouphug:
Have copied and pasted everyone's tips. :)
I'm definitely going to look into Chaste Tree as well as Dr. Lee's books.

#8 Halftime Hope

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 07:11 AM

and I wanted to second the other poster's comment about balancing progesterone and estrogen. After you do more reading, you may decide to continue your EPO or switch to chaster berry along with the progesterone. If you are having symptoms that indicate low estrogen, you may wish to continue your supplements but complete the picture by balancing with progesterone. Many women need both, even if they are not menopausal or perimenopausal.


I wanted to recommend to you the wealth of information in Dr. Uzzi Reiss' book The Natural Superwoman. I've recently read two John Lee books, but I find this to be much more complete.

hth

#9 Lisa in Jax

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 07:42 AM

<Snip>

I'm torn between how EPO helped me in some ways and the risk of estrogen dominance. I will most likely either stop taking it altogether OR possibly take much less. I think the former is more wise. I mean I would rather have dry eyes and skin VERSUS estrogen dominance!

Thank you.


Negin, I approach things very much like you do, with regard to health (thermography, vitamins/efas, more "diet and vitamins," less meds, etc.) In your shoes, I'd probably take vitex/chaste tree berry. I've taken it in the past, and it helped my progesterone/luteal phase, PMS, sleep, focus, etc.

It's very gentle and somewhat slow to show its full effects, so give it a couple of months before deciding if it's helping.

In the meantime, if you want to decrease EPO, what about increasing your other essential fatty acids? Could you take a good flax or fish oil blend for the anti-inflammatory benefits, help with dry eyes/skin, etc., and take EPO once or twice a week, instead of daily? If you get really good results from EPO, perhaps you could get similar benefits if you cut down on it while increasing other essential fatty acids.

Also, a good friend of mine is a breast cancer survivor who is very knowledgeable about controlling estrogen. She's just started taking vitamin D3, and I think one reason she increased her dose was to help keep her estrogen levels in the right range. Have you looked into D3?

HIH,

Lisa

#10 MBM

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 10:25 AM

Although there have been conflicting results in studies, exercise seems to help balance estrogen levels. Here's a short article from Harvard Medical School that explains why.

HMS article

You might also want to read about Cynthia Kenyon's research. (One of my favorite scientists.) She suggests eating a primarily low carb diet. If you Google her name, you should be able to find some informative articles.

HTH! :)

#11 dancer67

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 10:40 AM

I was reading up on Vitex, and it says that it helps promote estrogen. How does this work for someone who is estrogen dominent then?

I am looking to take something because my progesterone levels drop and I spot for 5 days prior to getting my periods. Vitex would possibly help this?

#12 Laurie4b

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 11:06 AM

My breast specialist, a woman who is a researcher, recommended Primrose oil to me.

No way in the WORLD would I put progesterone cream on my breasts.

#13 GretaLynne

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 11:09 AM

If you have been eating soy products, eliminating them will make a *huge* difference in your estrogen levels.

I also know of two things that made a tremendous difference for me in not only reducing estrogen but in helping my body to produce healthier levels of progesterone on its own, without creams: moderating my carbohydrate intake and taking Vitamin A in the form of cod liver oil.

Vitamin A is a precursor for progesterone, so make sure you are getting enough of it. A natural food source like cod liver oil is perfectly safe, whereas the synthetic forms have been linked to toxicity. Furthermore, cod liver oil also has Vitamin D in it, which moderates Vit A, helps your body use it better, and also prevents toxicity. You can buy it in pill form so that you never have to taste it! Take a dose that will give you 20,000 IU of Vit A daily until you get your body back in balance, and then reduce to 5,000 or 10,000.

Carbohydrate intake creates an insulin response, and insulin is a hormone. If you've got too much insulin, it causes a cascade reaction with other hormones, as your body tries desperately to keep things in balance. It increases estrogen and decreases progesterone. For a more detailed description of how excess insulin leads to excess estrogen, I highly recommend the book Life Without Bread by Allan and Lutz. Wonderful book!

Before I knew the above, my progesterone levels were so low that the luteal phase of my cycle was only 9 days - that is not even enough to sustain a pregnancy, had I been trying. My bleeding was exceptionally, dangerously, heavy and lasted for seven days. After adopting a low-carb diet and taking cod liver oil, my luteal phase is now a normal, healthy 14 days, and my bleeding is light and lasts four days.

I would avoid the EPO and anything else that has xenoestrogens. The cod liver oil will give you all the benefits of the EPO, and more! I would also avoid the progesterone cream. You need to bring your body back into balance rather than just flooding it with more outside hormones.

That's my two cents. :001_smile:

Edited by GretaLynne, 30 November 2010 - 11:12 AM.


#14 MBM

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 11:44 AM

:iagree: Great info, Greta Lynne!

#15 BeckyFL

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 12:04 PM

So how do you go about getting a thermogram instead of a mammogram. Is it more expensive for the insurance companies? Do they pay for it?

#16 Parrothead

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 12:11 PM

I found this list. There is not a lab close to me. I'd have to go to CT or NY.

#17 momchiroto2

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 12:31 PM

The most important thing to help with estrogen dominance is making sure your blood sugar is regulated. That helps the liver to detoxify the hormones. Taking specific herbs to help with a liver cleanse is a bonus.
Progesterone creams can be helpful for a short period of time, but over time the progesterone gets built up in the fat layers of the body and the progesterone is continually released over time from these cells, Giving you doses of the progesterone even after you have stopped the cream as long as 6-12 months.
Excercise will also be very beneficial. As a pp mentioned...decreasing carbs and increasing veggies and lean protien (organic preferrable).
Studies have shown also that altered Fatty acid metabolism in the body also can sometimes alter the effects of hormones. Making sure that you are on a good quality fish oil supplement would be great.
I have to run will be back with more info later..........

#18 Isabella

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 08:11 PM

It's probably been mentioned, but a low carb diet and regular exercise helps stabilize hormones. Reduce body fat (if you have excess), as this is an estrogen trigger. Also estrogen dominant individuals are helped by a high fibre diet.
HTH

#19 dancer67

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Posted 30 November 2010 - 08:29 PM

I was reading up on Vitex, and it says that it helps promote estrogen. How does this work for someone who is estrogen dominent then?

I am looking to take something because my progesterone levels drop and I spot for 5 days prior to getting my periods. Vitex would possibly help this?


:grouphug: anyone?

#20 Negin

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Posted 01 December 2010 - 03:20 AM

Wow! You ladies are all amazing. Thank you. :grouphug:

Many women need both, even if they are not menopausal or perimenopausal.
I wanted to recommend to you the wealth of information in Dr. Uzzi Reiss' book The Natural Superwoman.

Valerie, good point. Balance is key. Maybe at certain times of the month, I'll take more of one or the other. Guess, I could try scheduling it in. Just not quite sure how. I'm going to look into that book. Thanks.

In your shoes, I'd probably take vitex/chaste tree berry. I've taken it in the past, and it helped my progesterone/luteal phase, PMS, sleep, focus, etc.
In the meantime, if you want to decrease EPO, what about increasing your other essential fatty acids? Could you take a good flax or fish oil blend for the anti-inflammatory benefits, help with dry eyes/skin, etc., and take EPO once or twice a week, instead of daily? If you get really good results from EPO, perhaps you could get similar benefits if you cut down on it while increasing other essential fatty acids.
Also, a good friend of mine is a breast cancer survivor who is very knowledgeable about controlling estrogen. She's just started taking vitamin D3, and I think one reason she increased her dose was to help keep her estrogen levels in the right range. Have you looked into D3?
Lisa

Lisa, thank you. Your suggestions are so helpful. :) Copying and pasting. :D
They told me to avoid flax, however. Fish Oil, I take daily. I also take D3.

exercise seems to help balance estrogen levels.
You might also want to read about Cynthia Kenyon's research. (One of my favorite scientists.) She suggests eating a primarily low carb diet. If you Google her name, you should be able to find some informative articles.

[COLOR=#008000]HTH! :)

Thank you for the much-needed reminder! I'm consciously trying to exercise daily.
I just read this:
A regular program of moderate to high intensity exercise can lower estrogen levels according to a study carried out at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Post-menopausal women who took part in a moderately intense exercise session five days a week saw their estrogen levels drop by seven percent. Those who only did stretching exercises showed no change in their estrogen levels. In addition to its many other health benefits, exercise appears to be an important tool for maintaining normal estrogen levels.
A final way to lower estrogen levels is to maintain a healthy body weight. Women who carry around excess fat tend to have higher estrogen levels. A combination of moderate intensity exercise and a reduction in calories to promote fat loss can be quite effective in reducing the effects of estrogen dominance.

Thanks also for the Cynthia Kenyon info. Will look her up.

I was reading up on Vitex, and it says that it helps promote estrogen. How does this work for someone who is estrogen dominent then?

Hmmm ... will have to do more research and get back to you on this. :confused: Maybe it helps to promote estrogen by balancing things out? :confused:

moderating my carbohydrate intake and taking Vitamin A in the form of cod liver oil.
Carbohydrate intake creates an insulin response, and insulin is a hormone. It increases estrogen and decreases progesterone. For a more detailed description of how excess insulin leads to excess estrogen, I highly recommend the book Life Without Bread by Allan and Lutz. Wonderful book!
I would avoid the EPO and anything else that has xenoestrogens. The cod liver oil will give you all the benefits of the EPO, and more! I would also avoid the progesterone cream. You need to bring your body back into balance rather than just flooding it with more outside hormones.
That's my two cents. :001_smile:

Fabulous info! Thank you!
I wonder if the Carlson's Fish Oil that I take daily is sufficient, or if I need to take Cod Liver Oil as well?
Thanks for the book recommendation and all the helpful info.

So how do you go about getting a thermogram instead of a mammogram. Is it more expensive for the insurance companies? Do they pay for it?

The link I gave in my first post and right here lists some of the centers. No, insurance companies do not pay for it. It's about $200 depending on where you live.

The most important thing to help with estrogen dominance is making sure your blood sugar is regulated. That helps the liver to detoxify the hormones. Taking specific herbs to help with a liver cleanse is a bonus.
Progesterone creams can be helpful for a short period of time, but over time the progesterone gets built up in the fat layers of the body and the progesterone is continually released over time from these cells, Giving you doses of the progesterone even after you have stopped the cream as long as 6-12 months.
I have to run will be back with more info later..........

This is so helpful. Thank you. As Peela and others have said, I cannot imagine using the progesterone cream for longer than 6-9 months.
I've heard about the liver and blood sugar factor. Thank you for the great reminder. I think Milk Thistle is good, right?
Yes, when you have some time, PLEASE share more info. :)

Also estrogen dominant individuals are helped by a high fibre diet.

Yes, heard that also. Thank you for reminding me. I usually try to take lots of fiber.

#21 Peela

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Posted 01 December 2010 - 07:50 AM

Thanks Ladies, I have learned some things here too, very appreciative.

I found this as the first link when I googled chaste tree- it says chaste tree stimulates progesterone production (doesnt mention oestrogen). Thats my understanding too.

http://health.howstu...al-remedies.htm

Edited by Peela, 01 December 2010 - 07:55 AM.


#22 dancer67

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Posted 05 December 2010 - 02:27 PM

I just saw this. Thank you for posting it. I am off to order this. Can't stand this PMS stuff, spotting for 5 days prior to periods, and bloating BLECK!!

Please Menopause get here soon!!

#23 sleepymommy

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Posted 05 December 2010 - 04:54 PM

Well I'm glad I saw this thread. I've started taking EPO everyday and certainly don't want to develop an estrogen imbalance.

The EPO has helped me so much though, my periods are shorter (5 days instead of a full 7) and my breasts used to get so sensitive. I forgot the name of the problem. But they would HURT badly for a week before my period. The EPO has helped with this tremendously.

Would Chaste Berry help with this too? Do you think alternating the EPO and the chaste berry would be better in order to keep things in balance?

#24 Negin

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Posted 06 December 2010 - 01:56 AM

I found this as the first link when I googled chaste tree- it says chaste tree stimulates progesterone production (doesnt mention oestrogen). Thats my understanding too.
http://health.howstu...al-remedies.htm

Peela, thanks for the link. I'm coming up so much info - very overwhelming - but very, very helpful and interesting. I need to make lots of changes. I hope to post my info within the next few weeks or as soon as I get done with all of it.

I just saw this. Thank you for posting it. I am off to order this. Can't stand this PMS stuff, spotting for 5 days prior to periods, and bloating BLECK!!
Please Menopause get here soon!!

Yes, I hear you. I would love to go through early menopause.

Well I'm glad I saw this thread. I've started taking EPO everyday and certainly don't want to develop an estrogen imbalance.
The EPO has helped me so much though, my periods are shorter (5 days instead of a full 7) and my breasts used to get so sensitive. I forgot the name of the problem. But they would HURT badly for a week before my period. The EPO has helped with this tremendously.
Would Chaste Berry help with this too? Do you think alternating the EPO and the chaste berry would be better in order to keep things in balance?

Yep, I loved taking EPO and although I've never had a problem w/my period, I love how it helped with my PMS breasts, as well as other benefits - dry eyes, healthier looking skin and hair. I now just take EPO on the weekends. Not a huge amount. Just 1 capsule on Saturday and on 1 on Sunday. That's it. Alternating might not be a bad idea. It's worth trying out different things - maybe use Chaste Berry on weekdays and EPO on weekends. Try that for say 6 weeks and see how you feel?
Iodoral has helped me a lot with PMS breasts. Even more than EPO. I notice a huge difference when I don't take Iodoral.

Last week, I threw away a few of my supplements since I noticed that they contain soy in different forms - soy, soy lecithin, and soybean oil.

I'm also trying to drink less milk. I'm no longer a huge milk drinker, but I've always loved milk-based desserts - ice cream, you name it. Apparently, 80% of our estrogens come from milk.

More broccoli and cruciferous veggies, more fiber (helps get rid of estrogen), and more exercise (moderate to high intensity - since stretching does nothing for estrogen).

There are other tips, but that's all I can think of for now. Will post my final "research" as soon as I can.

#25 Peela

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Posted 06 December 2010 - 05:07 AM

I had my thermogram today. Easy peasy. She didnt have time to talk to me about the results afterwards so I have to go back on Wednesday- but she did tell me not to worry - no problems there, they look good, so at least I don't need to chew on it. She said she talks to all the women who come in about "breast care" so I will be interested in what she says (if she will say anything I havent heard yet!).

Rant (only a little relevant to thread but here it is):
You know, I am normally pretty grounded about all this health stuff and have seen so many fads and conflicting information over the years, I tend not to get too excited about much. But I will say that I have been doing more research on various things- diet especially- lately, and I am darned if I can find any definitive answer at all- even in the direction of different people need different diets.
There is so much pseudo science out there mixed with real science. There are so many products that are advertised so powerfully yet really have small benefits- statistically significant but in the big scheme of things you are much better off eating your vegies.
I have been researching the dairy thing. So many cultures dont eat dairy and dont have a lot of diseases such as breast cancer. But then there are others that make fermented dairy products and thrive too.
The raw food /high protein thing is what I am especially researching. I love the whole pure diet concept, and do feel good eating high raw. But then I crave my protein and supposedly have a "protein" type metabolism (which does seem right since I crave protein if I don't eat enough). If I eat too much protein though feel terrible. But everyone who touts this and that is so adamant its the only way, the best way.
I seem to digest wheat just fine, as well as meat. It doesnt make me feel sluggish. And soy? Man. I have read the research and I cant help but think its not either- its not so wonderful the way westerners consume it, but its not the devil either. I seem to digest that just fine too. And we can easily get nonGM organic soy products here in Australia.
I suspect dairy isn't do good for my system.

So in the end...I come back to my instincts. My curiosity. My pocket and how much money i have to spend on supplements. My experience. My interest in the whole subject. My research and reading WIDELY- because if you read a little here and there you can't possibly get the bigger picture of what a maze the nutritional world is. The promises that each approach, each diet, each supplement hold, are over the top.

Anyway..thats my rant. As I said, I don't normally get worked up over the whole thing but my reading lately has provided me with COMPLETELY OPPOSITE perspectives- both backed up by supposed science and plenty of anecdotal evidence. And I have been reading and researching these things for years. I can't imagine how confusing it must be for people only just getting interested.

#26 Negin

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Posted 07 December 2010 - 02:31 AM

I had my thermogram today. Easy peasy. She didnt have time to talk to me about the results afterwards so I have to go back on Wednesday- but she did tell me not to worry - no problems there, they look good, so at least I don't need to chew on it. She said she talks to all the women who come in about "breast care" so I will be interested in what she says (if she will say anything I havent heard yet!).

Peela, so happy that all went well. :grouphug:
If you have time to share any tips that she has, please do. Would so appreciate it.

I am darned if I can find any definitive answer at all- even in the direction of different people need different diets.
So in the end...I come back to my instincts. My curiosity. My pocket and how much money i have to spend on supplements. My experience. My interest in the whole subject. My research and reading WIDELY- because if you read a little here and there you can't possibly get the bigger picture of what a maze the nutritional world is. The promises that each approach, each diet, each supplement hold, are over the top.
Anyway..thats my rant. As I said, I don't normally get worked up over the whole thing but my reading lately has provided me with COMPLETELY OPPOSITE perspectives- both backed up by supposed science and plenty of anecdotal evidence. And I have been reading and researching these things for years. I can't imagine how confusing it must be for people only just getting interested.

Yes, I totally hear you. Glad to know that I'm not the only one feeling this way. The info is conflicting and overwhelming.

I agree that compared with so many supplements, we are far better off eating more veggies and just eating healthier overall.

I think that plain yogurt is fermented. Not sure. Anyway, I eat lots of that. I've always felt that goat cheese is healthy too. Fermented dairy makes sense.

I also need my protein, but like you, not too much.

Wheat and meat don't seem to bother me at all. The only foods that make me feel sluggish immediately are deep fried, which I tend to avoid for the most part. Very cold things - like ice cold drinks and smoothies don't sit well with me either. When I eat lots and lots of sugar, I feel horrible. A little here and there is fine. Dairy is fine with me also. Many people in my culture (Middle Eastern) have problems with dairy. Not me. Nonetheless, I don't drink milk like I used to.

Soy ... I've read such conflicting stuff about this also. Before my thermogram, about a month before, I ate more soy than usual - soy milk (non-GMO, the good type), edamame, non-GMO tofu, etc - I made a concerted effort to eat one soy product per day. I thought it would help my thermogram readings, having read that cultures that eat lots of soy have lower breast cancer rates. Now, I'm not so sure. She said that my estrogen levels were too high and to avoid soy. I never told her that I had been eating soy. So, until my next thermo, which unfortunately, will be quite some time from now, given where we live, I'm going to avoid it and see if it makes a difference. It's unbelievable how many supplements and food items (particularly processed food) have soy, soybean oil, soy lecithin in them. The almond milk that I've been getting, I just realized, has soy lecithin in it.

Your post/rant is so true and describes to a "t" as to how I've been feeling lately. Again, glad to know that I'm not the only one.

And once again Peela, if you get a chance, do please share ANY info your thermo lady, or you yourself come up with. Thanks so much. :grouphug:
I wish my thermo could be sooner, just to see if the changes I'm making, including the progesterone cream, make any difference.

#27 sleepymommy

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Posted 07 December 2010 - 05:36 PM

Thanks Negin!

I will order some chaste berry and give it a try. I don't really drink much milk, just in my tea and along with cereal.

There is soy oil in my CoQ10 vitamin, I'll try a different brand next time. I don't consume much soy overall. Ds6 can't have it so I don't cook anything with anything soy related. But I do love Chipotle! They use soy oil in there food. I've emailed them several times asking them to switch to something that is not listed under top 8 allergens, but they insist on keeping the soy oil for whatever reason.:001_rolleyes:

I will have to look into Iodoral too.

I love broccoli so that's an easy one for me to eat more of. The moderate to high intensity exercise is a hard one for me! I'm more of a pilates or yoga type of gal:D.

Is walking 3 miles considered enough intensity? I walk every Friday. It's the only time I have a one full hour without either of my boys.

Thanks for the tips!!

#28 lisabees

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Posted 07 December 2010 - 06:21 PM

Thanks Ladies, I have learned some things here too, very appreciative.

I found this as the first link when I googled chaste tree- it says chaste tree stimulates progesterone production (doesnt mention oestrogen). Thats my understanding too.

http://health.howstu...al-remedies.htm


Thanks for this. I agree that much information is conflicting.

Before I knew the above, my progesterone levels were so low that the luteal phase of my cycle was only 9 days - that is not even enough to sustain a pregnancy, had I been trying. My bleeding was exceptionally, dangerously, heavy and lasted for seven days.
:001_smile:


My luteal phase is 7-8 days and my HEAVY period lasts for 7 days.

I have been using using progesterone cream conservatively, after a saliva test showed that I was estrogen dominant. I recall using Vitex years ago when trying to get pg with my short luteal phase. Worked like a charm within a few months. I'll have to try again...and I'll be sure to look into cod liver oil and low carbs.

Thanks everyone.:001_smile:

Oh - and Peela, thanks for letting us know about your thermogram. I plan on having one soon.

#29 Negin

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Posted 08 December 2010 - 02:10 AM

The moderate to high intensity exercise is a hard one for me! I'm more of a pilates or yoga type of gal:D.
Is walking 3 miles considered enough intensity? I walk every Friday. It's the only time I have a one full hour without either of my boys.
Thanks for the tips!!

Yes, I'm generally more of a yoga type also. But I can go either way. I love moderate-to-high intensity also. Yes, walking 3 miles is excellent. I've read time and time again about the benefits of walking and breast cancer prevention:
Walking, even for a few hours a week, significantly reduces breast-cancer risk, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The thinking is that walking helps reduce levels of body fat, a source of estrogen. The research looked at 74,000 postmenopausal women between the ages of 50 and 79. Those at a normal weight lowered their risk by 30 percent; those who were overweight, by 10 to 20 percent. Younger women may also gain similar benefits.

Oh - and Peela, thanks for letting us know about your thermogram. I plan on having one soon.

Good for you. :) They're well worth having.

#30 Peela

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Posted 08 December 2010 - 02:44 AM

Had my doctors appt follow up for my Thermogram. I had to wait an hour and 20 minutes though...wasn't impressed...so they took $80 off my $200 fee! How cool is that!

I have very "vascular" breasts and she reckons I have the breasts of someone much younger- especially since I breast fed (tandem) for 5 years! She even made a comment about my youthful breasts on my report:001_smile: Basically...absolutely no problem. The slight tenderness I have been feeling in one spot she put down to lumpy glandular/lymphatic tissue. of which I have a little more on that side.
No comments about hormones or anything, no suggestions other than regular breast massage and "phluffing" of all things- which means kind of doing to your breasts what you might do to a pillow to fluff it up. She reckons it's good for them :) Makes sense- would help the circulation.
She had a collection of supplements and natural products there and I heard her suggest previous clients take this or that. But nothing for me.
We had a great chat about homeschooling too. So I forgave her for making me wait so long. I came away feeling good about the whole experience.

#31 Gratia271

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Posted 08 December 2010 - 07:10 PM

Having tried to read all of this, I have several questions. I have been suffering from symptoms, some of which may be attributed to the terrible year I have had stress-wise. But I would desperately appreciate advice on what I need to take to get some relief. I have been so low (not typical for me at all) along with extremely dry eyes. My energy is basically nonexistent, and I have started gaining weight for no apparent reason. Then, my syncope kicks in, and I have anxiety attacks. I have ruled out practically everything with blood work. Could it be a hormonal imbalance?

Edited by Gratia271, 08 December 2010 - 10:14 PM.


#32 Peela

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Posted 08 December 2010 - 11:44 PM

Having tried to read all of this, I have several questions. I have been suffering from symptoms, some of which may be attributed to the terrible year I have had stress-wise. But I would desperately appreciate advice on what I need to take to get some relief. I have been so low (not typical for me at all) along with extremely dry eyes. My energy is basically nonexistent, and I have started gaining weight for no apparent reason. Then, my syncope kicks in, and I have anxiety attacks. I have ruled out practically everything with blood work. Could it be a hormonal imbalance?


I suggest you give your age...and what tests have you had? Because it sounds a lot like thyroid issues are in there somewhere. You might like to start a new thread too because this one is getting buried.

#33 Negin

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Posted 09 December 2010 - 03:30 AM

Had my doctors appt follow up for my Thermogram. I had to wait an hour and 20 minutes though...wasn't impressed...so they took $80 off my $200 fee! How cool is that!
I have very "vascular" breasts and she reckons I have the breasts of someone much younger- especially since I breast fed (tandem) for 5 years! The slight tenderness I have been feeling in one spot she put down to lumpy glandular/lymphatic tissue. of which I have a little more on that side.
No comments about hormones or anything, no suggestions other than regular breast massage and "phluffing" of all things- which means kind of doing to your breasts what you might do to a pillow to fluff it up. She reckons it's good for them :) Makes sense- would help the circulation.

Peela, thanks so much for the update. :grouphug: You're lucky that they gave you $ off however. I can't imagine that happening in most other places. Certainly not here. Otherwise the medical establishment would be broke, and the patients would be doing quite well, thank you very much. ;)
I also feel more lumpiness on on side close to PMS time.
Interesting, since yesterday in my research, I was reading about how important circulation and daily breast massage is. At least a minute on each side per day. In the shower is best. It also helps with knowing our breasts and what's going on with them. I remember you once mentioned that that is so important. So many women I know are afraid to do monthly self-exams.
When I dry body brush every morning, at least a few times a week, I also focus on my breasts, the lymph nodes near them and in the under arm area. I don't know if I'm doing the right thing. But circulation is key. My massage therapist believes this is so important.

Having tried to read all of this, I have several questions. I have been suffering from symptoms, some of which may be attributed to the terrible year I have had stress-wise. But I would desperately appreciate advice on what I need to take to get some relief. I have been so low (not typical for me at all) along with extremely dry eyes. My energy is basically nonexistent, and I have started gaining weight for no apparent reason. Then, my syncope kicks in, and I have anxiety attacks. I have ruled out practically everything with blood work. Could it be a hormonal imbalance?

Agreeing with Peela, that you should probably start a new thread.
In a nutshell - and this is basic, since I don't know your details:
STRESS: Regular exercise and good nutrition is key.
FEELING LOW: I read this recently.
All of us get depressed at times, such as when a good friend moves away or dies, or during the holidays when we’re alone. We may also get depressed from lack of sunlight during dark winter months or when we listen to the news.
Inactivity (watching TV, reading escape novels) and sugar (chocolate) are sure-fire ways of turning temporary blahs into chronic depression.
These 5 steps will help. If 5 steps are too many, just do the first one. It will help you move on to the rest.
Put a copy of these 5 steps on your fridge. Then you’ll know where to look when you’re down and can’t get up.

STEP ONE: KEEP MOVING
Regular exercise improves your mood as much as medication.
The last thing most of us want to do when we’re depressed is exercise. But it’s the most important step you can take. Force yourself to move. Within 20-30 minutes, you’ll have more energy and feel better emotionally.
Force yourself to get out and walk. If it’s still daylight, get up right now and walk just for 20 minutes. You need to exercise 4-5 times a week to beat off depression. Daily is even better.

STEP TWO: DON’T ISOLATE YOURSELF
When you’re depressed, it’s difficult to reach out to others. But that’s just what you need to do.
Stop making excuses. Your friends love you even when you’re feeling down. They want to help you as much as you want to help them when they’re in need.
Pick up the phone and make a date with a friend to get together. Have them over for a cup of coffee or tea if you can’t get out.
Look for activities that will distract you and take your mind off your problems. Arrange to go for a walk and exercise with a friend.
Reach out, even if you don’t feel like it.
If no one you know is available to get together, volunteer your services somewhere. Offer to help out one time for just a few hours. If you like it, do it regularly. You’ll meet new people and feel better being around others.

STEP THREE: EAT HEALTHY FOODS
Some foods will add to your depression. Others have the opposite effect. For instance, it’s important to get enough protein – as much as 15-20 grams with each meal. You need protein to help make mood-regulating chemicals. Protein also keeps your blood sugar from dropping. Low blood sugar can cause fatigue and temporary depression.
Avoid any foods that trigger a low-blood-sugar response, such as sugar (honey, pure cane sugar juice, etc.), alcohol, fruit juices, and high quantities of refined carbohydrates (brad, crackers, white rice).
Get junk foods out of the house today.
When you want something sweet, eat a piece of fruit.
Eat small amounts of unrefined carbohydrates such as beans, fresh fruit, and brown rice. They help your brain release serotonin. Half a cup of a starch, such as brown rice or one piece of fruit, is a reasonably small amount.
Make eating good foods easy by planning in advance. Buy healthy frozen meals, especially those that are organic.
Get pre-washed, pre-cut salad greens and vegetables to either eat raw or to sauté with your entrée.
Have some bean dip on hand to eat for a meal or as a snack with carrots and celery.
Buy healthy prepared soups, either dried, frozen, or in boxes.

STEP FOUR: USE SUPPLEMENTS
St. John’s Wort is the most popular and well-studied herb for minor and moderate depression. It has been tested head-to-head with Prozac. It often works just as well as Prozac with fewer side effects.
One reason it works so well is because of its side effect. It causes photosensitivity. Bright light therapy helps reduce depression. By increasing your sensitivity to light, St. John’s Wort magnifies the effects of normal light. It acts just like you’re being exposed to continuous light therapy.
The daily dosage varies from 300-1000 mg a day.
Try it for at least a month.
One warning: St. John’s Wort can reduce the effectiveness of some medications. If you take any drugs at all, consult with your doctor or pharmacist before taking this herb.
Raises serotonin levels
Helps relieve chronic insomnia
Helps relieve mild depression – especially if you’re healthy and not taking other medications.
May help relieve panic attacks – when taken 2-3 times a day
Because this herb can sensitize the skin to sunlight, take it in the evening after the sun has set.

5-HTP
Helps with:
• Sleep problems – quality and duration
• Emotional eating and evening cravings – helps suppress appetite
• Anxiety and depression as it increases serotonin levels
• Melatonin production
• Serotonin production
Best if taken sublingually - opening the capsule and pouring the contents on your tongue.
Try to avoid eating or drinking anything for 20 minutes before and after taking it.
No more than about 3 capsules a day – can safely take up to 400 mg per day – although most need less.
Loses its efficacy if taken every single day – best if you take breaks – sometimes alternating days – and sometimes take a break for an entire month or so
It may take 1-2 weeks to notice any effects and up to 6 weeks to notice the full benefits.
Be cautious about taking this if you’re on anti-depressants

STEP FIVE: USE AROMATHERAPY TO HEAL
Essential oils are never used topically. Never take them internally unless you are under the care of health care practitioner skilled in using them. However, you can safely rub a few drops on your wrist, put them in your bath, or add them to oil and give your hands and feet an aromatherapy massage.
Use only pure essential oils. Synthetic ones won’t work as well.
Lavender is known for its ability to lift depression. It relaxes, stimulates, calms, and invigorates.
Ravensera is energizing and uplifting. It helps relieve chronic depression and promotes energy and mental clarity.
Bitter Orange helps lift anxiety, depression, nervousness, and insomnia.
Patchouli calms the nerves, improves concentration, and lifts depression.
REMEMBER THAT: Everything changes. Today’s depression will turn into tomorrow’s peacefulness and joy if you’ll allow it. Concentrate on everything you have rather than what you don’t have. Appreciate each little blessing.

DRY EYES
Drink LOTS of water. If you already drink plenty of water, drink more!
Foods rich in Omega-3: Walnuts; Fatty fish (salmon and cod); a good fish oil - such as Carlson's - Omega-3s help the body to produce more tear layer around the eye, which creates more lubricated eyes
Limit caffeine
Eliminate artificial sweeteners
Dandelion Root Tea
Blink often

LACK OF ENERGY - again exercise, also sleep and good nutrition. There are supplements, but this could be due to many factors. Too many details and tips to post here. Maybe if you start a new thread. I often suffer from this. Too long to post here. I can share some tips later if you're interested.

GAINING WEIGHT - the bane of my existence. Again, good nutrition, but also could be due to thyroid or a whole host of other reasons. Antidepressants can lead to weight gain. There are some supplements and other tips - but too long to post here.

Edited by Negin in Grenada, 09 December 2010 - 03:33 AM.


#34 Negin

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Posted 09 December 2010 - 03:34 AM

ANXIETY ATTACKS
Info I have on panic attacks. I assume it's the same thing.
SYMPTOMS OF PANIC ATTACK:
• Rapid heart rate
• Shortness of breath
• Sweating
• Trembling
• Tightness in throat
• Dizziness
• Nausea
Panic attacks can feel scary – like you’re having a heart attack – but they won’t kill you.
In fact, most panic attacks pass within 5-10 minutes and rarely last longer than 20-30 minutes.
If you experience them frequently – several times a month or regularly over longer periods – then you have what’s called a “panic disorder”.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) teaches you to switch to healthier thought patterns.
One of the best ways to control a panic attack: Control your breathing. When you feel yourself beginning to panic, focus on making each breath slow and deep.
Put your hand on your belly, and as you inhale, focus on your belly rising; as you exhale, feel it relax and fall.

Regular exercise can decrease the frequency and intensity of panic attacks.
30 minutes a day of aerobic exercise – running, speed walking – have shown great success.
40 to 60 minutes a day of yoga, martial arts or tai chi can really help.

Certain foods tend to provoke panic, while others can palliate or prevent it.
Avoid:
Caffeine
MSG
Aspartame
Diets high in sugars and simple carbs – white bread, pasta
Eat More Of:
Complex carbs – brown rice, lentils, fresh vegetables
Protein
GABA
Green Tea
B Vitamins
Valerian

Anchor your mind – by counting each breath slowly from one to 10, and then back down from 10 to one. Do this until the attack passes.

Remember that the attack probably won’t last more than 10 minutes, and even though it feels terrible, you will be OK.

Say to yourself: “I can make it through this” and try not to let yourself get caught up in negative thought patterns.
The Bach Flower Remedies represent a form of psychotherapy in a bottle, a noninvasive modality to address negative emotional states like:
• Anxiety
• Depression
• Impatience
Bach Rescue Remedy is, in fact, used in many emergency rooms to help alleviate trauma.
A Welsh homeopath, Dr. Edward Bach recognized in the 1920s that, if herbs have healing powers, so must flowers. Over many years, he experimented with numerous flowers and trees to create a total of 38 plant-based Bach Flower Remedies.
Another essential part of detoxifying your emotions is learning how to remain calm and let a greater force take over. By breathing slowly and deeply, you are able to let go, release tension throughout your body, and even lower your heart rate.
While deep breathing, meditation, and yoga can all help you let go of whatever negative feelings and stress you hold within you, I find the following words so helpful that I read them every day:
• To let go doesn’t mean to stop caring; it means I can’t do it for someone else.
• To let go is not to cut myself off; it’s realization that I can’t control another.
• To let go is not to judge, but to allow another to be a human being.
• To let go is not to deny but to accept.
• To let go is to fear less and love more.

#35 Negin

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Posted 17 December 2010 - 03:44 PM

My research for lowering estrogen levels, more specifically breast estrogen levels, is pretty much complete.
You ladies have been incredibly helpful. Thank you. :grouphug:
Specifically, for me, my thermo showed that I'm medium risk, but on the lower end of medium. They had 3 scores:
Low: 0-10
Medium: 11-19 (I was a 12)
High: 20 and over
So, my dh reassured me and I'm not going to go crazy as I often do, but I would still like to be cautious and bring my levels down.
I thought I'd share my research with everyone here.
I have lots of info on mammograms, etc. - risk and alternatives, but this info is specifically on hopefully lowering estrogen levels. Info on soy is conflicting. I ate lots of soy before my thermo. Not anymore. Hopefully that will make a difference before my next thermo whenever that may be; along with the natural, bio-identical, non-synthetic, organic progesterone cream; exercise; etc.

LOWERING ESTROGEN LEVELS
Simply put, estrogen dominance occurs when there is more estrogen than progesterone in the system.

There are five main causes of estrogen dominance:
• Excessive stress
• An improperly functioning immune system
• An overworked liver – the liver is the organ that breaks down estrogen
• Exposure to too many environmental estrogenic compounds from chemicals such as phthalate, PCB and pesticides
• Consuming large amounts of foods that contain phytoestrogens

Estrogen-like chemicals can all lead to this kind of hormone imbalance:
• in the environment
• stress and emotional factors
• obesity
• menstrual changes
• lack of dietary fiber
• illness
• vitamin and mineral deficiencies

More than 50% of women over 35 years of age have symptoms of high estrogen overload. During menopause estrogen decreases by 40-60% and progesterone decreases by 90%.

Signs of Estrogen and Progesterone Imbalance
Fibrocystic breasts
Loss of libido
Depression
Low thyroid
Facial hair
Hot flashes
Foggy thinking
Insomnia
Heart palpitations
Bone loss
Water retention
Blood sugar irregularities
PMS
Mood swings
Fatigue
Irritability
Uterine fibroids
Weight gain
Irregular Periods
Headaches
Cramps
Allergies
Thinning hair
High blood pressure
Menopause symptoms
Infertility

High estrogen levels have been correlated with a variety of health conditions including:
• fibroid tumors of the uterus
• benign breast disease
• cysts
• breast cancer - estrogen causes breast cells to grow rapidly, so if a cancer cell is present, excess estrogen could cause the cancer cell to also grow rapidly. Most breast cancers are estrogen driven.

If you want to lower your estrogen levels naturally, there are things you can do.
1. Diet
2. Lifestyle
3. Healthy Liver – This is the organ that removes estrogens.
4. Healthy pH
– when a woman’s body is too acid, it produces too much estrogen and not enough progesterone

EAT MORE
Broccoli, Cabbage, Brussels Sprouts, Bok Choy, Cauliflower, Kale, Turnips, and Rutabagas
These cruciferous vegetables contain plant phytochemicals that help the liver flush out artificial estrogens that collect in the body from external sources like pesticides. Cruciferous veggies block breast cancer growth and have estrogen-blocking properties and Indole-3-carbinol (I3C). The breast-healing properties of Indole-3-carbinol (I3C) were recognized as far back as Roman times. I3C has been shown to increase 2-OH, the "good estrogen".
It is recommended to cook (at least briefly) most cruciferous veggies, though, since when eaten raw, these veggies may interfere with thyroid function.
Cabbage contains a compound that shifts estrogen to a safer form.
Aim for 2 servings of cruciferous veggies per day.

Juicing – there are specific vegetables that one can juice that are great for the liver as well as for maintaining a healthy pH. A weak liver fails to remove estrogens efficiently and may lead to their accumulation.
• Beets
• Cabbage
• Kale
• Celery
Make a daily juice using a combination of fresh organic broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, kale, dark leafy greens, and an apple. These are high in phytochemicals such as I-3C and help to combat breast cancer. I-3C has been shown to detoxify xenoestrogens via the liver and to even reverse abnormal Pap smears.

One of the most important nutritional changes you should make to fight estrogen dominance is to up your fiber intake.
Fiber lowers estrogen levels and has estrogen-binding properties. Foods that are high in fiber help bind with and remove excess hormones. Consuming more fiber in the form of whole grains, vegetables, fruit, legumes, and beans can reduce harmful circulating estrogen levels.
Since excess estrogen leaves the body by way of the bowel, if stool remains in the colon the estrogen will be reabsorbed.
High-fiber diets can decrease breast cancer risk by up to 54 percent.
Fiber acts like a sponge. It soaks up excess estrogen and eliminates it through the feces. High-fiber diets speed intestinal transit and promote elimination, thus keeping the blood and lymph cleaner -- which in turn keeps your breast tissue cleaner. Fiber is the reason that vegetarian women who eat lots of plant foods eliminate two to three times more estrogen than non-vegetarians according to a study published in NEJM.
A study that was reported on in 'Human Nutrition: Clinical Nutrition' said that women whose diets were high in fiber and low in animal fat had a reduced risk of overexposure to estrogen and thereby a reduced risk of breast cancer.

Sesame, sunflower seeds, and/or multigrain bread are all great sources of lignans, plant compounds that block tumor-promoting estrogen from being absorbed by breast tissue.

Try to eat organic food and grass-fed meats

Increase the consumption of garlic and onions.

Iodine-Rich Foods such as seaweed
Iodine has been shown to decrease estrogen's ability to adhere to estrogen receptors in the breast (which decreases the risk of breast cancer).
Increase your intake with mineral-rich sea vegetables (agar, hijiki, kombu, nori, and wakame) at least twice a week. You can eat as much seaweed as you want. Brown seaweeds are highest in iodine. They include all forms of kelp.
Fucus, also known as Bladderwrack - In a recent animal study published in the Journal of Nutrition, researchers found that 35 to 70 milligrams of bladderwrack seaweed daily lowered estrogen levels up to 25 percent
Hijiki and Sargassum are two other forms of brown seaweeds. Red seaweeds include dulse, nori, Irish moss, and Gracillaria.
Since toasting doesn’t affect seaweed’s iodine content, you can eat it dried or dried and toasted. Toast some in the oven or in a dry frying pan to see if you prefer that taste. You can also powdered seaweed to your food or add larger pieces of seaweed to soups, grains, or vegetables. Seaweed should be an enjoyable addition to your diet, not an unpleasant experience. If you simply don’t like its taste, you can get it in capsules.
Not all seaweeds are safe to eat. Some come from polluted waters.
Be more cautious and talk to a naturopath if you’re on thyroid meds and want to try seaweed.
You can use iodine-rich Seaweed Gomasio to season your food. (I got mine from amazon)
Eat seaweeds such as kelp and nori often. Or consider taking blue-green algae such as spirulina (1 heaping teaspoon) and chlorella (3 g) in a glass of juice daily.

Green Tea Extract may be protective against estrogen-dominant breast cancer. Drink at least 3 cups of preferably organic Green Tea daily.

Zinc increases progesterone production and curbs copper from being absorbed.
Eat more zinc-rich foods found in organic beef, eggs, and natural pumpkin seeds.

Turmeric
regulates estrogen receptors, and helps the body eliminate carcinogens.
Turmeric needs to be mixed with black pepper and olive oil in order to be effective
All of us should regularly consume a soupspoon of turmeric every day, with a pinch of pepper and olive oil. You can use it in your cooking
Because powdered turmeric is a powerful blood-cleansing herb, don’t overdo it.
CAUTION: Some brands of turmeric powder and supplements have been found to be contaminated with heavy metals themselves. If you decide to add turmeric to your diet, make sure to obtain a high quality brand.
Regular consumption of turmeric has been shown to protect against fewer lesions of the liver. Turmeric acts specifically on bile and also has significant anti-inflammatory properties
Turmeric is high in phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens are forms of estrogen that are much weaker than the body’s estrogens, but that are capable of blocking the stronger, more damaging estrogens (they can fit into the same receptors in breast cells that estrogens can, thus preventing the estrogen’s ability to dock there). Phytoestrogens also expand the length of the menstrual cycle, possibly lowering the lifetime exposure to estrogen.

Estrogen dominance can be at least partially controlled through an estrogen dominance diet. This diet recommends eating large amounts of foods that are considered anti-estrogenic each day. These foods include:
• Most vegetables, especially cruciferous vegetables such as cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts and cauliflower
• Most fruits, especially citrus fruits and berries
• Raw nuts and seeds
• Organic eggs and milk
• Grains like buckwheat and millet

Proponents of the diet stress eating as few processed foods as possible and consuming only organic produce, meats, fish and dairy products.

#36 Negin

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Posted 17 December 2010 - 03:45 PM

EAT LESS
Avoid food and products high in phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens are fake estrogens that attach to receptors for estrogen in the breasts. Flax and soy products are high in phytoestrogens. Soy is a very cheap emulsifier and is used in most processed foods. Check the ingredients of all the processed foods that you eat. If you have been eating soy products, eliminating them will make a huge difference in your estrogen levels.

Milk and Cheese
Cow’s milk accounts for up to 80% of the estrogens consumed. This may stem from the fact that cows are milked frequently during pregnancy when estrogen levels are their highest. These estrogens end up in the milk supply and can promote growth of fibroid tumors of the uterus and stimulate breast tissue, potentially increasing the risk of certain types of both benign and malignant breast disease. Substitute with a non-dairy milk such as almond or rice milk (read the labels carefully, and make sure to get one without soy). Goat’s milk may be fine. I’m not sure. It’s always said to be very healthy.
Cheese is also a source of exogenous estrogens. Goat’s Cheese may be fine. Again, said to very healthy.

Sugar
Refined sugar raises estrogen levels and negatively affects your health in many other ways as well. Investigate natural sweeteners that won't impact your blood sugar and aren't dangerous like artificial sweeteners.
Less sugar, white flour, and refined foods

Alcohol
Avoid alcohol as much as possible and don't have more than one drink per day. Alcohol will dramatically raise your risk of breast cancer due to the increase of hormones it causes.
Estrogen is metabolized or broken down by the liver. Alcohol consumption can impair liver function which makes it difficult for the liver to properly metabolize estrogen. This can allow higher levels of estrogen to build up in the body.
Ideally, if you suffer from estrogen dominance, completely avoid alcohol.

Less red meat and fowl
Hormones in beef are amongst the biggest culprit when it comes to xenoestrogen in your diet. Eliminating food that was raised using artificial growth hormones and steroids can help lower your xenoestrogen levels considerably.
Eating a meat-free diet is believed to be beneficial. Female vegetarians have lower estrogen levels than meat eaters.

Carbohydrates
Carbohydrate intake (I imagine simple/processed carbohydrates/white flour/refined and processed foods) creates an insulin response, and insulin is a hormone. If you've got too much insulin, it causes a cascade reaction with other hormones, as your body tries desperately to keep things in balance. It increases estrogen and decreases progesterone.

Decrease fats, especially animal fats. Use instead unsaturated fats such as those in cold-pressed vegetable oils.
Limit your daily fat intake to 20 percent of your overall caloric intake.
A high-fat diet produces chemicals in the intestine that bacteria convert to carcinogenic estrogens. These estrogens can then be stored in the fatty tissue of the breast, making cells in this area more susceptible to cancer growth.

Less methyl xanthines such as coffee, tea, chocolate, colas and other foods or beverages that contain caffeine
Coffee contributes to estrogen dominance. The way that it contributes may be by making the body more acid. Once our bodies are too acid, the production processes of all hormones are altered. When a woman’s body is too acid, it produces too much estrogen and not enough progesterone. Dr. Michael Lam of the American Academy of Anti-aging Research reports that in a small study of 500 women, those who consumed 4-5 cups of coffee per day had 70% more estrogen that those who drank less than one cup per day.

Excess copper – found in tea, coffee, cocoa, chocolate, water pipes, and soy – leads to estrogen dominance
You can lower estrogen levels by slashing your copper intake.
Copper keeps estrogen levels high.
How do you know if you have too much copper? Brown spots on your face or skin are a good sign. This means the liver has filtered out so much copper it is depositing the excess amounts in your skin. If your nipples turn from pink to brown, that’s another sign of copper poisoning. Of course, a Tissue Mineral Analysis (TMA) is a good way to know for sure.
Many of us are severely toxic with copper. Birth control is one reason. Copper is a primary component of the Pill since it helps control the ovulation cycle. There are other sources of copper poisoning. Copper pipes also leach the metal into drinking water. If you have a swimming pool, your green algicide is pure copper. And if you love your copper pots, guess what? They’re seasoning your food, too.
Here are the aches and pain of copper toxicity:
Frontal headaches
Depression
Fatigue
Constipation
Emotional volatility
Weight gain and food cravings

Estrogen-containing foods such as alfalfa, chick pea, carrot (or beta carotene) can be taken occasionally but not too often. I would only cut these healthy foods out if my estrogen levels were extremely high and all other measures failed. I still eat chick peas and carrots. :confused:

#37 Negin

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Posted 17 December 2010 - 03:49 PM

SUPPLEMENTS - as Peela says, this depends on our budget, etc.
Omega-3 fatty acids – A good quality such as Carlson’s Fish Oil
Omega-3 helps cells use estrogen properly.

Iodine has been shown to decrease estrogen's ability to adhere to estrogen receptors in the breast (which decreases the risk of breast cancer).
Diets low in iodine can lead to more circulating estrogen levels in the body.
Iodine helps to normalize the impact of estrogens on the breast. Iodine decreases or turns off the estrogen receptor sites in the breast. So when there is a lack of iodine, breasts overreact to estrogen, which then leads to pre-cancer and then full-blown breast cancer.
Many researchers now believe that you may need 100 to 400 times the RDI.
Unfortunately, depletion of iodine in soils, low consumption of iodine-rich sea vegetables and seafood, and iodine blockers have led to an iodine deficiency.
You may need 1 to 4 tablets of Ioderal, a combination of 5 mg of iodine and 7.5 mg of potassium iodide. Additional research finds that vitamin C improves the transport of iodine in the body. I notice a major difference when I don't take Iodoral for a month or so.

Chaste Berry (Vitex) or Chaste Tree Berry
• Does not contain any hormones, but rather, works on the hypothalamus and pituitary glands, stimulating balanced production of estrogen and progesterone – balances and promotes progesterone
• Indicated for a number of menopausal and perimenopausal concerns - It is often used to treat excessive bleeding, fluid retention and breast tenderness.
• May inhibit the secretion of prolactin , which stimulates the growth of mammary glands. Excess prolactin may be a risk factor for breast cancer. Chasteberry's influence on prolactin and two other female hormones, luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone, may also help reduce the menopause-like symptoms of hormonal drugs like tamoxifen
• Is a herb that is high in phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens are forms of estrogen that are much weaker than the body’s estrogens, but that are capable of blocking the stronger, more damaging estrogens (they can fit into the same receptors in breast cells that estrogens can, thus preventing the estrogen’s ability to dock there). Phytoestrogens also expand the length of the menstrual cycle, possibly lowering the lifetime exposure to estrogen.
• Chaste tree berry (vitex) may inhibit the growth of breast cancer cells.
It's very gentle and somewhat slow to show its full effects, so give it a couple of months before deciding if it's helping.
Normalizes hormone secretion and helps balance estrogen and progesterone
40 mg daily
Pregnant and nursing women shouldn't use Chasteberry. There are few drug interactions, but dopamine receptor antagonists can diminish its effectiveness. Rashes are a rare side effect. Because Chasteberry has an effect upon progesterone synthesis, it may not be appropriate for women who have strongly progesterone receptor-positive breast cancer.

InflaThera from ProThera – one capsule twice a day OR Zyflamend – but take more than the suggested dosage

Cakcium d-glucarate
Improves the rate of excretion of estrogen from the body
Glucaric acid can be taken as a supplement and is also a phytochemical found in fruits and vegetables such as apples, broccoli, Brussels sprouts and grapefruit.
Anywhere from 200-2000 mg gives a protective effect – but needs to be taken 2-3 times a day – since its detox effects lasts for about 5 hours
If you want more protection because of past indiscretions, or a family history of cancer, 500 mg twice a day makes sense.
If you want generally eat well, don’t smoke, and are not exposed to a lot of toxins, 200 mg 2-3 times a day may be fine.
Since calcium d-glucarate, or glucarate, is a patented nutrient, any supplement you find on the market with this name on it is the real thing.

Supplements such as Indole 3 Carbinole and Methylsufonylmethane (MSM) can help to metabolize estrogen more efficiently.
Indole 3-carbinol (I3C) is a nutrient from broccoli, cabbage, and other cruciferous veggies that has been found to reduce breast cancer. Make sure to eat more broccoli, but also take 200 mg twice a day of indole 3-carbinol. Just eating more cruciferous veggies could be sufficient if you do this on a regular basis. But if you just eat them once or twice a week, take a supplement until your thermogram is negative and remains so for 6 months. Some say DIM maybe a better choice. Still, the safest form of each of these substances can be found in the vegetables themselves. Eat more broccoli, cabbage, and other cruciferous veggies.
Since there's no long-term safety data on this supplement, pregnant women and nursing mothers should avoid I3C. If you have cancer, you should also talk to your doctor before using I3C. Because the actions of I3C need stomach acid to work, antacids, B2 blockers, and proton pump inhibitors may inactivate I3C. Some sources say that I3C may work with tamoxifen to protect against further breast cancer. But I3C may also compete with tamoxifen and make it less effective. There's no research to prove this, however. But it might be wise to steer clear of I3C during tamoxifen treatment.

Folic Acid – Several large studies have shown that taking supplemental folic acid is protective against breast cancer. Some have taken 5 grams a day – this is a very high and safe amount, not easily found in supplement form. Folazin, an oral rinse product made by ProThera contains 5 grams in each capful and is inexpensive

Medicinal Mushrooms – take 2 capsules twice a day
Look for a formula that combines the immune-boosting and anticancer properties of reishi mushrooms, the blood-sugar balancing and cancer-fighting properties of the maitake mushrooms, and the cholesterol-lowering abilities of the shiitakes—talk about a trifecta.
Fungi Perfecti or Mycophyto Complex
Eating mushrooms and drinking green tea daily dramatically lowers the risk of developing breast cancer.
Australian researchers from the University of Perth compared the diets and lifestyles of more than 2000 women who attended a breast clinic in China. Working with detailed registers of their consumption of a variety of foods, they observed that, all other factors being equal, women who consumed an average of more than 10 g of fresh mushrooms every day had 64% less risk of developing breast cancer than those who did not eat mushrooms. Those who ate 4 g of dried mushrooms saw their risk diminish by 47%. When consumption of green tea was added (more than 1g of tea-leaves infused per day), the protective effect of the two factors combined reached 89%!

Bladderwrack Tincture
In a recent animal study published in the Journal of Nutrition, researchers found that 35 to 70 milligrams of bladderwrack seaweed daily lowered estrogen levels up to 25 percent. Bladderwrack tincture can be found in the nutrition department of your health food stores.

Vitamin D3
May help reduce estrogen levels
High levels of D3 have been linked to lower breast cancer levels.
If you're under 50, take at least 2,000 IU per day.
If you're 50 or over, take at least 5,000 IU per day of vitamin D3.
Always take your vitamin D with a fat-containing meal to ensure absorption.
Your need for vitamin D3 is affected by age, skin color, and the severity of any deficiency

Cod Liver Oil is rich in Vitamin A.
Vitamin A is a precursor for progesterone, so make sure you are getting enough of it. A natural food source like cod liver oil is perfectly safe, whereas the synthetic forms have been linked to toxicity. Furthermore, cod liver oil also has Vitamin D in it, which moderates Vitamin A, helps your body use it better, and also prevents toxicity. You can buy it in pill form so that you never have to taste it! Take a dose that will give you 20,000 IU of Vitamin A daily until you get your body back in balance, and then reduce to 5,000 or 10,000.
But I wonder if I need this if I take Carlson's Fish Oil? :confused:

Be sure you are taking adequate amounts of selenium, iodine, and vitamins A, C and E. Consult your clinician to determine this.
Vitamin E (d-alpha only, not dl-alpha) helps to regulate hormone levels.

Zinc increases progesterone production and curbs copper from being absorbed. Bring on those zinc supplements and make sure that your multivitamin does not contain copper.

Magnesium helps the body break down excess estrogen and ease stress. Load up on almonds, spinach, black beans, and leafy greens. Most need a supplement also – 400-1200 mg daily
The most absorbable forms are magnesium citrate, glycinate taurate, or aspartate, although magnesium bound to Kreb cycle chelates (malate, succinate, fumarate) are also good.
Avoid magnesium carbonate, oxide, sulfate, and gluconate. They are poorly absorbed (and the cheapest and most common forms found in supplements).

#38 Negin

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Posted 17 December 2010 - 03:49 PM

Agnus Castus is great for helping to balance estrogen and progesterone. It acts as an adaptogen, balancing hormone production. It’s helpful for monthly breast pain.

Shatawari is a popular Ayurvedic tonic used by some women to help normalize hormonal imbalances.

Damiana
According to the tropical plant database file on Damiana, adapted from the book "The Healing Power of Rainforest Herbs," Damiana was studied in a 1998 in-vitro clinical trial and found to have anti-estrogenic or neutralizing effects because of its ability to bind to progesterone receptors on breast cancer cells. According to the database, researchers then surmised that the herb had a neutral or anti-estrogenic activity.

Maca is an herb native to Peru that decreases estrogen and increases fertility for both women and men, according to "The Herb Companion." The herb is an adaptogen, which means it corrects imbalances and tonifies the body's hormonal system. The recommended dose for maca is 500 to 1,000 mg, taken three times per day.

Melatonin
Blocks estrogen-receptor sites on breast cancer cells
• Start with 1 mg just before bedtime. Take 2 hours or less before bedtime. If this is not effective, gradually increase dosage. Melatonin dosages vary from individual to individual ~ and most do not need the highest dose. Ease into melatonin in increments. Some take up to 20 and even 40 mg.
• Do not take melatonin every single night – a few nights a week
• Do not take melatonin during the day.
• When you awaken after melatonin-assisted sleep, you should feel refreshed – not tired or groggy. If you do experience grogginess, reduce the dosage.
• If you wake up in the middle of the night, you can take another 1-5 mg.

Rosemary extract is a powerful antioxidant that helps to remove estrogens and may inhibit breast cancer development.

Sulphoraphane from broccoli extract, has been shown to stimulate the body’s production of detoxification enzymes that help eliminate xenoestrogens. It’s also a powerful antioxidant.

#39 Negin

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Posted 17 December 2010 - 03:50 PM

SUPPLEMENTS AND HERBS TO AVOID OR LIMIT
Limit Evening Primrose Oil – EPO contains estrogenic activity and is a popular supplement for PMS sufferers. It offers quick relief for PMS symptoms but long-term use may aggravate the problems.
The following are some of the herbs with estrogenic activities and should be avoided as much as possible:
• Anise
• Hops
• Fennel
• Black Cohosh
• Red Clover
• Don Quai
• Licorice
• Ginseng
• Royal Jelly
• Peony
• Nettle
• Sage
• Fenugreek
• Evening Primrose Oil
• Chamomile

EXERCISE, WEIGHT, AND STRESS
Physical activity reduces estrogen levels. Fat cells manufacture estrogen. Just 30 minutes of aerobic activity (moderate to high intensity exercise) three to five times a week can make a difference. A study showed, however, that those who only did stretching exercises showed no change in their estrogen levels.

Stress causes your adrenal glands to produce more cortisol. Exercise helps lower cortisol levels. Excessive cortisol can lead to cancer by binding to progesterone and blocking its utilization. Low progesterone and high estrogen is an environment that lends itself to breast cancer. This explains the link between stress and breast cancer.
Stress will impact your progesterone levels which may account for the fact that progesterone, unless you are already taking a topical cream, is so universally deficient.
• It’s important to not allow stress to “get” to you and cause anxiety.
• Use prayer and meditation to help you relax and to bring down anxiety
• When very anxious, use a tincture of kava

Try to lose weight if necessary. Many breast cancers are fueled by estrogen, a hormone produced in fat tissue. Experts suspect that the fatter a woman is, the more estrogen she's likely to produce, which could in turn fuel breast cancer.
It's hard to lose weight, but it's not impossible. The potential benefit of preventing cancer is worth it.
Stay within 12 pounds of your ideal body weight. In many studies, obesity has been correlated with a higher risk of breast cancer. Excess body fat produces estrogen which can then be stored in breast tissue and trigger the growth of cancer cells.

#40 Negin

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Posted 17 December 2010 - 03:53 PM

HEALTHY LIVER
Keeping the liver healthy is essential since the liver is the organ that removes estrogens. A weak liver fails to remove estrogens efficiently and may lead to their accumulation.
The most important thing to help with estrogen dominance is making sure your blood sugar is regulated. That helps the liver to detoxify the hormones. Taking specific herbs to help with a liver cleanse is a bonus.
Daily morning exercise helps to activate the liver.
Most medications are damaging to the liver and kidneys. Take them only if they are absolutely necessary.
Eating too much sugar can lead to liver problems – high-fructose corn syrup—common in today’s processed foods and drinks—has been associated with liver scarring or fibrosis.
A persistent roll of fat at the waistline could be a warning sign of a fatty liver.

Go easy on the acetaminophen and all OTC headache meds. Even at recommended doses, just 4 days of using acetaminophen and other OTC headache meds may cause short-term liver damage.
A small amount of acetaminophen (Tylenol) taken occasionally may be safe. Yet your risk of liver failure triples if you take 1,000 tablets of acetaminophen over the course of your lifetime. That sounds like a lot, but it's less than 20 pills per year!

Many naturopaths recommend a 2-week liver detox twice a year to clean out your system. They also suggest asking your naturopathic doctor for a heavy-metal urine or blood test to make sure your body isn’t overloaded with toxins from lifestyle and dietary choices.
Sweat out heavy metals and other toxins in a sauna or steam bath a few times per week. Start with a 10-minute session and increase by 5-minute increments to a maximum of 30-40 minutes.
You can also take a hot bath with up to 2 cups of Epsom salts and 8 ounces of baking soda to help draw impurities out of the body.

Other methods for removing toxins:
• Daily Dry Body Brushing
• Saunas
• Exercise


Begin each morning with hot water and lemon to help tone liver function.

The following foods, herbs, and spices are good for the liver:
Garlic – high in sulfur and good for the liver
Onions – high in sulfur and good for the liver
Egg Yolks – high in sulfur and good for the liver
Daikon radish
Artichoke
Asparagus
Beets
Cruciferous Veggies
Lemons and Limes
Spinach
Leafy Greens
Brussels sprouts
Celery
Dandelion-root tea
Capra Mineral Whey - I love this stuff :)
Powdered Psyllium Husks
Organic Apples
Pears
Berries
Ground cinnamon
Ground ginger
Ground nutmeg

Each day, drink half your body weight in ounces of filtered or purified water – this is important for the liver.

Don’t overdo grapefruit and grapefruit juice – these contain a compound called naringen that can interfere with the liver-cleansing process.

Dandelion root tea provides gentle liver decongestion. Drink one to two cups of this tea daily. Dandelion Root Tea speeds the liver’s breakdown of toxins.

Yellow dock is a time-honored liver purifier and tonic.

Fringe Tree Bark
This herb is recommended to be taken in tea form and helps to regulate liver function. If you are suffering from PMS, you may have high levels of estrogen and other hormones that have not been broken down by the liver. Fringe tree bark can quell anger and irritability and is available in liquid or powdered extract form.

Decongest your liver with lipotropic agents. A good formula should consist of choline, methionine, and/or cysteine.

Milk thistle
is one of the best defenders of liver health
• Helps detox the liver (even in cirrhosis and nonalcoholic liver disease)
• Encourages regular bowel movements
• Reduces toxic accumulation
• Regenerates liver cells
• Enhances glutathione production in the body
• Calms inflammation
• Used to reverse liver damage from exposure to toxic chemicals
Take 250-300 mg up to 3 times daily or 750-900 mg per day – although some say that milk thistle may increase estrogen levels, so personally, I wouldn’t take it every single day.
Milk thistle (silymarin) has long been used in liver disease and helps boost glutathione levels.

#41 Negin

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Posted 17 December 2010 - 03:54 PM

NATURAL AND ORGANIC PROGESTERONE CREAM
Oftentimes, estrogen dominance is due to a lack of progesterone. Balancing out estrogen with progesterone is important. Progesterone is the brake pedal for estrogen.
Consider progesterone cream if your thermogram shows that you have too much estrogen in your breast tissues. Not all progesterone creams are alike. Make sure to get one that is natural, organic, bio-identical and not synthetic. Emerita is a very good one. Karuna may also be good, although I’m not completely sure – worth looking into. Both are available from amazon. Ann Louise Gittleman also has one called ProgestaKey.
Please keep in mind natural does not imply organic. Many of these creams have not only the main ingredients based on phytoestrogens, but also have the toxic xenohormones, parabens and mineral oil too. They are far from organic. So be aware and ask questions about your creams!
Apply ¼ to ½ teaspoon of the progesterone cream directly to your breasts morning and evening. More progesterone is absorbed into breast tissues when it’s applied to them directly, and that’s ultimately where you want most of the progesterone to go. Do not apply it to other areas, even if the instructions tell you to do so. Progesterone receptors are only found in the breasts (and ovaries), so apply directly to the breasts to decrease vascularity. Repeated thermograms prove this is the only correct application method to reduce vascularity and risk. Or to explain this easier, if you cut your thumb and you apply Neosporin to your elbow how effective is that? Apply the cream directly to area that it is needed. It can reduce some signs of menopause when applied indirectly, but when you move it to the breasts you will see a greater decrease in menopause issues and more importantly you are reducing the vascularity in the breasts.
For those who turn up their nose at progesterone creams, do know that that Prempro is very different from progesterone. The former is a synthetic, the latter natural. The effects on the body therefore are much different. Also, many women who took Prempro also took Premarin, which aggravated everything. Beware of synthetic progesterone (progestin), which won’t work the way natural or bio-identical progesterone does. Your body has difficulty breaking down the synthetic form, used in birth control pills and hormone replacement therapy, so this altered form creates a potential for toxic effects. In fact, after progestin was added to HRT, women’s cancer risk increased!
Many do not feel comfortable taking even bio-identical progesterone indefinitely. They may use it for, a year or two, and then find that it is no longer as helpful as it was initially. Progesterone creams can be helpful for a short period of time, but over time the progesterone may build up in the fat layers of the body and is continually released over time from these cells. So, it’s possible that it loses its efficacy over time.

XENOESTROGENS
"Xeno" literally means foreign. Xenoestrogens mean foreign estrogens. They are man-made chemical compounds which mimic the effect of estrogen in the human body. The human body is being bombarded with xenoestrogens. They are in our food supply, personal care products, pharmaceuticals, plastics, household products, pesticides, insecticides, herbicides, birth-control pills, nail polish, dryer sheets, perfume, soaps, paint, carpet, hormone replacement therapy, sunscreens, and so on.
Try to use organic or petro-chemical free products.

Pesticides sprayed on fruits or vegetables are a source of estrogen (xenoestrogens). Soaking them in a water-vinegar mixture (equal parts of each) for 20 to 30 minutes followed by rinsing in clean water can remove much of the pesticides if organically-grown vegetables or fruits are unavailable.

Stay away from BPA, an industrial chemical found in plastic bottles.

Try to avoid parabens - chemicals found in cosmetics that can seep into the skin and are phytoestrogens. Read the ingredients in skincare and beauty products.
Parabens are popular additives because they dramatically extend shelf life. But they are very dangerous substances because they mimic the effects of estrogen and cause long-term damage to cells. They have also been shown in studies to release potentially cancer-causing chemicals. If it says “paraben” on the label, avoid it.

Use glass, ceramics or steel to store/consume foods and liquids.

Avoid wrapping food in plastic wrap.

Use reverse-osmosis filter water or purchase your own filter (drinking and bathing).

Also, diets high in fatty or fried foods create an environment where xenoestrogen builds up, instead of leaving your body.

These should be avoided as much as is possible:
Dry cleaning
The lining of many food cans and juice containers
Heated plastics
Plastic-lined items and Styrofoam
The food preservative found in processed foods - BHS: butylated hydroxyanisole
Non-organic coffee and tea
Baby lotions and powders

Diets high in citrus fruit, cauliflower, broccoli, and insoluble fiber can help cleanse your body of xenoestrogens. Insoluble fiber (bran, lignans and other substances in seeds, vegetables, and whole grains) passes through the GI tract intact, carrying toxins and fecal matter with them.

The best way to avoid xenoestrogens is to reduce consumption of meat, poultry (chicken, duck) and dairy products (whole-milk dairy products). You do not have to worry about eating lots of fruit and vegetables, because the effect of antioxidants and the fiber offsets the effects of any pesticide residues.

#42 Negin

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Posted 17 December 2010 - 03:57 PM

CIRCULATION
Circulation is life, stagnation is death.
We want the breasts to have circulation, but there are many factors that can cause issues with circulation in the breasts.
Breast massage is important in order to familiarize yourself with your breasts, so you will notice any changes. Keep it simple. In the shower is a great time to pay attention to the breasts. Hands and soap are effective, but a great tool is the Clarisonic Body Brush (expensive) – 2 minutes on the face, then switch to the body brush and 2 minutes on the breasts. This body brush is actually more powerful than your unskilled hands. It has a strong vibration to it that can really get things moving.
Dry body brushing before showering is also great. Be gentle, however.
Circulation is key - rebounding, massage, deep breathing – all these help the lymphatic system also. Healthy lymph nodes are essential.
Regular breast massage and "phluffing" (as Peela suggested earlier) of all things- which means kind of doing to your breasts what you might do to a pillow to fluff it up.

Wearing a bra decreases circulation in the breasts. Make sure your bra fits correctly and not too tight. Remove your bra as soon as you get home. Try not to wear an underwire bra. I only wear them when I have to.

Before undergoing any estrogen tests, I would check to see if they test for levels of estrogen in the blood versus in the breasts. There is a difference!
Apparently, blood and saliva tests do not give you an accurate picture of the estrogen levels in your breasts. With breast thermography, they can see directly into the breast and get an accurate reading.
Blood levels show the amount of hormones circulating in your blood. But fatty breast tissues produce estrogen, and even if your blood levels are low, you may have too much estrogen in your breast tissues.
Nonetheless, for those who want to test, other than with thermography, these are some options.
2:16 Estrogen Metabolite Test
For those who wish to further gauge their risk or are known to be at highest risk due to genetic indicators, this test benefits premenopausal women the most.
Your doctor can do a morning urine test to determine your ratio of 2-OHE1 and 16-OHE1. If your ratio is less than desirable, you can alter it and lower cancer risk with diet measures. Eat more cruciferous veggies like broccoli and kale, which can shift the 2:16 ratio, thanks to their stores of an estrogen receptor-modulating compound called indole-3 carbinol. Opt for organic/hormone-free meat, dairy, and eggs, as well as organic veggies, which are free of estrogenic pesticides.
Home Estrogen Test?
There is an in home test from Ideal Health that determines if you need to lower your estrogen levels if the test shows that they are higher than normal levels. This test requires a urine sample that is sent to a medical lab. If it is determined that your estrogen levels are too high, customized supplements will be recommended to help lower estrogen levels.
Not sure about this …
Saliva Test
You can have your hormones tested by a saliva test. It can be fairly pricey.
The saliva test is said to be more accurate than the blood test.
Regardless of age, practically every woman who takes a Salivary Hormone Test has been found to be extremely progesterone deficit.
Just to be on the safe side, at least take an estradiol/progesterone salivary hormone test so your ratio can be assessed. 300:1 is considered desirable, in favor of progesterone. Most individuals are very progesterone deficient and are overweight, have a sluggish metabolism, are depressed, and have problems sleeping. The difference when a physiological dose of progesterone is given, according to your age and stage, can be life-changing.

pH LEVELS
The single most important measurement of your health is your pH.
Our blood pH needs a pH just above 7.0. We call this range alkaline. When our systems are acidic for too long, serious illness can result.
It’s all about balance. When imbalance occurs, we get the signs of disease:
• Low energy
• Fatigue
• Poor Digestion
• Excess Weight
• Foggy Thinking
• Aches and Pains
• as well as major disorders
Did you know that most diseases, particularly cancer, cannot survive in an alkaline pH? They thrive in acid environments. As Peela once said,
I think for a general rule, you could consider all fruit and vegetables alkaline, and all meat, dairy (especially cow’s milk and cheese), and most grains to be acid forming.
Technically speaking, many fruits are slightly acidic.
We are talking the effect on the body, not the actual pH of the fruit. Lemons are extremely alkalizing.
Almonds are the only alkaline nut.
You can use green juices to alkalize
, as well as Capra Mineral Whey. Also, eating fresh and raw as often as possible
TESTING URINE is far more reliable than testing saliva.
For testing urine, let some urine flow before testing as this will give more of an average reading.
Do not put pH test strip in the stream of urine, since it may wash the active chemical substances from the strip. Only two or three drops of urine are required on the pH test strip.
It is also a good idea to test 2-3 times in a day in order to get an average, as first thing in the morning the body has retained fluids over a long period of time and it will engage in different processes to remove acid wastes from the body throughout the day (depending on activity and diet).
If your urinary pH fluctuates between 6.0 to 6.5 in the morning and between 6.5 and 7.0 in the evening, your body is functioning within a healthy range.
The best time to test your pH is about one hour before a meal and two hours after a meal.
Test your pH two days a week.
TO CORRECT PH
Usually, to regain an alkaline environment, 80-90% of the foods eaten should be alkaline, like green vegetables.
Once optimal pH is attained, it can usually be maintained by eating 60-80% of the diet as alkaline forming foods.

BOOKS
The Natural Superwoman by Uzzi Reiss
What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Breast Cancer: How Hormone Balance Can Help Save Your Life by John Lee, et al.
Before the Change by Ann Louise Gittleman
Waking the Warrior Goddess: Dr. Christine Horner’s Program to Protect Against and Fight Breast Cancer
The Breast Cancer Prevention Program by Samuel S. Epstein, MD and David Steinman
Your Life In Your Hands : Understanding, Preventing, and Overcoming Breast Cancer by Jane Plant

#43 Literary Mom

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Posted 19 April 2011 - 05:21 PM

EAT LESS
Avoid food and products high in phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens are fake estrogens that attach to receptors for estrogen in the breasts. Flax and soy products are high in phytoestrogens. Soy is a very cheap emulsifier and is used in most processed foods. Check the ingredients of all the processed foods that you eat. If you have been eating soy products, eliminating them will make a huge difference in your estrogen levels.

Milk and Cheese
Cow’s milk accounts for up to 80% of the estrogens consumed. This may stem from the fact that cows are milked frequently during pregnancy when estrogen levels are their highest. These estrogens end up in the milk supply and can promote growth of fibroid tumors of the uterus and stimulate breast tissue, potentially increasing the risk of certain types of both benign and malignant breast disease. Substitute with a non-dairy milk such as almond or rice milk (read the labels carefully, and make sure to get one without soy). Goat’s milk may be fine. I’m not sure. It’s always said to be very healthy.
Cheese is also a source of exogenous estrogens. Goat’s Cheese may be fine. Again, said to very healthy.

Sugar
Refined sugar raises estrogen levels and negatively affects your health in many other ways as well. Investigate natural sweeteners that won't impact your blood sugar and aren't dangerous like artificial sweeteners.
Less sugar, white flour, and refined foods

Alcohol
Avoid alcohol as much as possible and don't have more than one drink per day. Alcohol will dramatically raise your risk of breast cancer due to the increase of hormones it causes.
Estrogen is metabolized or broken down by the liver. Alcohol consumption can impair liver function which makes it difficult for the liver to properly metabolize estrogen. This can allow higher levels of estrogen to build up in the body.
Ideally, if you suffer from estrogen dominance, completely avoid alcohol.

Less red meat and fowl
Hormones in beef are amongst the biggest culprit when it comes to xenoestrogen in your diet. Eliminating food that was raised using artificial growth hormones and steroids can help lower your xenoestrogen levels considerably.
Eating a meat-free diet is believed to be beneficial. Female vegetarians have lower estrogen levels than meat eaters.

Carbohydrates
Carbohydrate intake (I imagine simple/processed carbohydrates/white flour/refined and processed foods) creates an insulin response, and insulin is a hormone. If you've got too much insulin, it causes a cascade reaction with other hormones, as your body tries desperately to keep things in balance. It increases estrogen and decreases progesterone.

Decrease fats, especially animal fats. Use instead unsaturated fats such as those in cold-pressed vegetable oils.
Limit your daily fat intake to 20 percent of your overall caloric intake.
A high-fat diet produces chemicals in the intestine that bacteria convert to carcinogenic estrogens. These estrogens can then be stored in the fatty tissue of the breast, making cells in this area more susceptible to cancer growth.

Less methyl xanthines such as coffee, tea, chocolate, colas and other foods or beverages that contain caffeine
Coffee contributes to estrogen dominance. The way that it contributes may be by making the body more acid. Once our bodies are too acid, the production processes of all hormones are altered. When a woman’s body is too acid, it produces too much estrogen and not enough progesterone. Dr. Michael Lam of the American Academy of Anti-aging Research reports that in a small study of 500 women, those who consumed 4-5 cups of coffee per day had 70% more estrogen that those who drank less than one cup per day.

Excess copper – found in tea, coffee, cocoa, chocolate, water pipes, and soy – leads to estrogen dominance
You can lower estrogen levels by slashing your copper intake.
Copper keeps estrogen levels high.
How do you know if you have too much copper? Brown spots on your face or skin are a good sign. This means the liver has filtered out so much copper it is depositing the excess amounts in your skin. If your nipples turn from pink to brown, that’s another sign of copper poisoning. Of course, a Tissue Mineral Analysis (TMA) is a good way to know for sure.
Many of us are severely toxic with copper. Birth control is one reason. Copper is a primary component of the Pill since it helps control the ovulation cycle. There are other sources of copper poisoning. Copper pipes also leach the metal into drinking water. If you have a swimming pool, your green algicide is pure copper. And if you love your copper pots, guess what? They’re seasoning your food, too.
Here are the aches and pain of copper toxicity:
Frontal headaches
Depression
Fatigue
Constipation
Emotional volatility
Weight gain and food cravings

Estrogen-containing foods such as alfalfa, chick pea, carrot (or beta carotene) can be taken occasionally but not too often. I would only cut these healthy foods out if my estrogen levels were extremely high and all other measures failed. I still eat chick peas and carrots. :confused:


Wonder why the French have lower rates of breast cancer and they totally eat all of this stuff. Life without cheese, meat, baguettes, wine, coffee...c'est impossible! :willy_nilly:

#44 Negin

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Posted 23 April 2011 - 04:45 AM

Wonder why the French have lower rates of breast cancer and they totally eat all of this stuff. Life without cheese, meat, baguettes, wine, coffee...c'est impossible! :willy_nilly:

I fully agree that the French and Mediterranean diets are very healthy. I wish we ate like that all the time.
But sadly, it's not necessarily true, that breast cancer rates are significantly lower in France. As the world moves more towards fast food and a Western diet, breast cancer rates also increase - as do all cancers and other health problems. Sad, sad, sad.

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