Progesterone over Time
Progesterone begins decreasing in our 30’s, earlier and much greater than our drops in estrogen or testosterone. This is why it becomes harder to lose weight, why our hair begins thinning, and why restful sleep is harder to attain.
Women on birth control are surprised to learn that synthetic progesterone causes their bodies to make less of their progesterone, which can cause symptom of estrogen and testosterone excess, including acne, anxiety, depression, and weight gain.
Men who are skinny with unexplained big bellies that don’t respond to diet and exercise are often low in progesterone.
Bioidentical hormone replacement can help address these imbalances.
Effective Ways to Increase Progesterone
- Topical cream
Unlike estrogen, oral progesterone is bioidentical. Progesterone from plants is converted in the lab to a bioidentical form that is the most natural state in the human body. Prometrium is an oral micronized progesterone that is covered by insurance.
Like estrogen, progesterone hormone peaks in the morning and drops throughout the day. Dosing with oral progesterone may be once or twice a day as needed. Often, the night dosing is higher to help with sleep.
Oral progesterone is metabolized and processed by the liver into metabolites that cause sleepiness, which is excellent at night when you’re trying to fall asleep. However, in the morning, women often find that 100 mg of oral progesterone is too sedating and find themselves doing better on a morning dose of topical progesterone at dosing of 25-50 mg. Night time dosing is typically 100-200 mg.
Progesterone can also be used by women who are still menstruating. Younger women with irritability near their time of the month, women with migraines, and women with perimenopause symptoms can use progesterone as needed for 1-2 weeks per month.
Dosing for men is usually 10 mg in the morning. Men describe feeling calmer and less stressed. Sleep is easier and general aches and pains improve.
Interestingly, there is a synergistic effect between progesterone and growth hormone. Growth hormone enhances production of progesterone, which in turn amplifies secretion of growth hormone.