Why Treatment Fails for Menstrual Cramps with Natural Progesterone and How to Correct it.
by Elizabeth Smith, MD
Treatment Failures with Menstrual Cramps with Natural Progesterone
The most common treatment failure is that the patient does not avoid estrogens and/or xenoestrogens in his environment. In this case, the symptoms may actually get worse. In rare cases, even though the patient avoids all estrogen and changes her lifestyle there is still a treatment failure. In this case, xenoestrogens stored in the body fat or from an recognized source may be considered. The second most common failure seems to be the inability of the patient to absorb Natural Progesterone through the skin. This problem seems to be occur in less than 10% of the patients. Another obvious reason for treatment failure is the use of progesterone cream that is not formulated correctly. Mineral oil can block absorption of Natural Progesterone. The Natural Progesterone cream can have the inappropriate amount of Natural Progesterone, or contain herbs or preservatives that stimulate estrogen receptors and mimic estrogens.
Not Avoiding Estrogens - A Guarantee of Failure
Essentially, menstrual cramps are the result of a tug of war between estrogen and progesterone. If too much estrogen is present relative to progesterone, menstrual cramp will worsen. According to the Dartmouth University Study, plastic wrap heated in oil in a microwave oven contained 500,000 times the minimum amount of xenoestrogens needed to stimulate breast cancer cells to proliferate. Heating plastic wrap with food is very bad. Heat food in a ceramic bowl, cover it with a plate in the microwave oven. Coffee is a known phytoestrogen that exacerbates menstrual cramps. Since it is a phytoestrogen, decaffeinated coffee may still be able to act as an estrogen. Laundry detergent cannot be fully rinsed out of the clothes and is absorbed through the skin. Change to health food store detergent without the alky phenols that mimic estrogen.
Anything that is put on the skin is absorbed directly into the body. Anything that is eaten is first pass metabolized by the liver. The liver can eliminate 90% of a prescription conjugated estrogen before it gets to the body. In contrast, an estrogen patch goes directly into the body bypassing the liver. Thus, the patch dose is 10 times less than the oral dose. Or put another way anything that is put on the skin is 10 times the oral dose. Most skin creams contain methyl paraben, propyl paraben, or butyl paraben. The parabens are known xenoestrogens, and are now being investigated by the European Union as a contributor to breast cancer. Be very careful about what you put on your skin. Many of the cosmetics also contain these same preservatives as well. Parabens in particular seem to be associated with menstrual cramping. Patients have complained that menstrual cramping can start right after putting the paraben laden skin cream on their skin.
A women who has too much estrogen has estrogen receptors that are desensitized or down regulated to estrogen. Her body tries to compensate for the large estrogen load by becoming less sensitive to estrogen. Then, she tries to use natural progesterone without first getting rid of the estrogens in the environment. Natural progesterone resensitizes her estrogen receptors to normal sensitivity. She begins to get worse. Breasts become more sore. Bloating is worse.
Failure is almost guaranteed when estrogens and xenoestrogens are not cut out of the patient's environment.
In rare cases, the patient may change his lifestyle and take Natural Progesterone and still get worse. In this case, there may be an unrecognized source of estrogen in the form of pesticide/herbicide spraying nearby; or the xenoestrogen may be stored in the body fat. Xenoestrogens may stored in the body for decades. Sauna treatment may be used to get rid of these stored xenoestrogens. A physician that uses sauna treatment may be found at www.aaem.com
Inability of the Particular Patient to Absorb Natural Progesterone through the Skin
Although I lack the hard data, it seems that in less than 1% of patients taking Natural Progesterone, Natural Progesterone is not well through the skin. In this case, the patient notices no difference at all in sleeping, bloating, and breast soreness. Absorption through the skin is easily tested with a $30 progesterone saliva test.
Take Natural Progesterone for 2 months and then test for saliva progesterone. Blood level progesterone will
certainly be zero since the Natural Progesterone is being absorbed through the skin. Order the kit from ZRT laboratories.
You simply spit in the plastic tube provided and send it back through the mail. Lab results are mailed back.
1815 NW 169th Pl. Ste 3090
Beaverton, OR 97006
If you are absorbing Natural Progesterone well, after 2 months your saliva levels should be at least 500-1000. If you are not absorbing Natural Progesterone well then your saliva levels will be less than 100. If you are premenopausal, make sure to take into account your period.
If you are one of those patients that do not absorb Natural Progesterone well through the skin, you may take 100-400 mg/day of Natural Progesterone sublingually (under the tongue), or orally in a pill form. The pills at this dose are a prescription drug and must be prescribed by a doctor.
Maca, a cruciferous Peruvian Herb, also seems to have a progesterone effect and is used by Peruvian M.D.'s. I feel very safe about the herb because it has been used for centuries, or even thousands of years for female problems, and male erection problems. We like Maca from www.Wholeworldbotanicals.com because they use organic Maca without preservatives.
Maca from Wholeworldbotanicals.com
Maca has been anecdotally been successfully used to treat Natural Progesterone failures.
Improperly Formulated Progesterone Cream
You should take anywhere from 20-60 mg/day of Natural Progesterone in an oil or cream depending on the condition you are treating. Many progesterone creams do NOT contain enough progesterone. Some only have "Yam Extract". "Yam Extract" is NOT progesterone and will not have the same effects as progesterone. Natural Progesterone is made most commonly from yams or soy. Other creams may contain mineral oil which blocks the absorption of progesterone. Still others use herbs that have estrogen effects. The most common preservative used in these creams is methyl paraben or propyl paraben. The parabens are xenoestrogens. The parabens are being questioned by the European Union for estrogen activity and a role in causing breast cancer.
I have found that many of my patients with menstrual cramps, but not all, have difficulty in getting rid of chemicals out of their body. So there are two factors:
1). Increased garbage coming into the body in the form of xenoestrogens.
2). Decreased garbage going out of the body in the form of all chemicals, drugs, AND xenoestrogens.
Many of the patients will be "sensitive" to drugs such as caffeine, valium or ibuprofen. A small dose of these drugs will affect them greatly as compared to their "normal" friends. This means that their body cannot get rid of these drugs. This means that they cannot get rid of chemicals AND xenoestrogens. Typically, these patients if given a blood test, the blood test will confirm impaired excretion of drugs. I call this a "clogged toilet" syndrome.
A simple physical test, a Rhomburg test, confirms the "clogged toilet" syndrome. Put your feet together, stand on tip toes, and close your eyes. If you have difficulty keeping your balance compared to a healthy young teen, then this confirms Chemical Injury. Chemical Injury was first fully described by Theron Randolf, MD who chaired University of Chicago Medical School, Allergy Department and can be read in An Alternative Approach to Allergies found in books.
More severely Chemically Injured patients with a more severe "clogged toilet" syndrome also have a hypersensitivity to smell. In other words, these patients have a "sharp" sense of smell and cannot stand perfume or newsprint or cigarette smoke or chemical smells in general. Extremely severe Chemically Injured patients are known as Multiple Chemically Sensitive or Environmentally Ill.
The cause of the "clogged toilet" syndrome is low level constant fear, stress, or anxiety. For instance, if you are 1 foot away from a rattle snake, your anxiety level would be a level 10. However, the next day when you are away from the rattle snake the anxiety level should drop to a level 0. This is the normal response. However, these chemically injured/chemically sensitive/"clogged toilet" syndrome patients always have an anxiety level of 4 or 5 all the time. Low level anxiety causes increased cell membrane rigidity. The increased cell membrane rigidity causes decreased garbage output or a "clogged toilet" syndrome. Also available histamine levels are increased. The increased histamine levels make it easier for allergies to trigger. So, "clogged toilet" syndrome patients have more allergies as well.
Typically, there is a reason for their low level anxiety/fear/stress. Past physical abuse, past sexual abuse, jumping through hoops to perform to be loved and accepted, perfectionism, a long term fight with your parents or siblings, or broken heart issues seem to be common with patients that have a "clogged toilet" syndrome. A professor in Taiwan noted that in the case, of one sided breast cysts, the right breast cyst is related to a fight with a female coworker or female in-law, and the left breast cyst is related to a fight with the mother or female blood relative. Pastor Henry Wright of Pleasant Valley Church in Atlanta, Georgia made the same observation that breast cysts seem to be correlated with female fights and disrupted female relationships.
Initially, I was extremely skeptical, but after talking with many breast cyst patients, I found that getting into a fight with other females and not be able to forgive and still being angry/upset about the person is found in many but not all patients. This is why some women can get away with xenoestrogen intake and some women cannot. Some women have healthy garbage excretion and some women have a "clogged toilet" syndrome.
Menstrual cramp is a real physiologic disease, NOT psychological. However, the way your brain thinks affects your brain chemistry. The brain chemistry affects your body chemistry. In other words, if your "stomach is flip flopping all the time", it is not good for your body.
The experts on unclogging the "clogged toilet" are in Pleasant Valley Church in Atlanta, GA. Pleasant Valley Church is the toilet plunger and your body is the "clogged toilet". Pleasant Valley Church has 2 week seminars for $250 (706) 646-2074. Www.pleasantvalleychurch.net.