Stubborn Weight Gain? "Estrogen Dominance" May Be The Cause!

Estrogen Dominance is a state where one’s levels of estrogen and progesterone are out of balance, rather than the “actual” lab result levels of the two. The keyword here is “balance.”


A person can be Estrogen Dominant even with low estrogen levels. Possible scenarios are:

1. Elevated estrogen and normal progesterone.

2. Normal estrogen and low progesterone.

3. Low estrogen and even lower progesterone.

4. Elevated progesterone and even higher estrogen.



Attention: Estrogen labs are highly inaccurate! Estrogen tends to accumulate in the tissue rather than in the blood. Actually, during perimenopause (end of the reproductive years), menopause, and post-menopause, tissue estrogen levels may be 50 times higher than blood estrogen levels. Since estrogen labs look at estrogen levels only within the blood, they completely miss tissue estrogen levels.



What is Progesterone?


Progesterone is one of the most protective hormones produced by the human body. While it is known as the hormone supportive of pregnancy, it is produced by both men and women in varying amounts, and has many essential functions besides its protective effects with pregnancy. When it comes to thyroid health, progesterone is essential for the release and conversion of thyroid hormone along the Thyroid Hormone Pathway.

In addition to estrogen and testosterone, progesterone is one of the body's three sex-hormones. Imbalances within these sex-hormones which is commonly referred to as “Estrogen Dominance,” can lead to ...

  • the suppression of thyroid function,

  • development of autoimmune diseases, and

  • metabolic diseases such heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.



Thyroid Dysfunction


Thyroid dysfunction leads to increased estrogen levels and decreased progesterone levels.


Significant amounts of estrogen is produced in a woman’s body at the time of ovulation. Estrogen levels drop back to “normal” after the liver detoxifies it. Thyroid hormone is essential for the detoxification of estrogen. Lack of thyroid hormone can prevent the detoxification of estrogen, causing estrogen levels to rise.


Similarly, a lack of thyroid hormone can prevent the production of adequate progesterone causing a progesterone deficiency and progesterone levels to drop. And the end result is always Estrogen Dominance.


Thyroid Hormone Pathway is the path thyroid hormone must travel to get to the cells.



Estrogen Dominance directly disrupts your Thyroid Hormone Pathway. Disruption happen at multiple levels:

  1. Blocking your thyroid gland from releasing thyroid hormone, directly causing a thyroid hormone deficiency (step 1).

  2. The active T3 thyroid hormone your body needs to thrive. Estrogen Dominance blocks your liver from converting the inactive T4 thyroid hormone into active T3, causing ever growing active thyroid hormone deficiency (step 2).

  3. Estrogen Dominance blocks your metabolism at the cell level and prevent your cells from using desperately needed active T3 thyroid hormone (step 5).


Estrogen Dominance suppresses thyroid function. This creates a feedback loop where the more hypothyroid you become, the more Estrogen Dominant you become… and the more Estrogen Dominant you become, the more hypothyroid you become. Simply put, this vicious cycle creates a perpetual thyroid-suppressive cycle that traps you in a state of thyroid dysfunction. If left untreated, one’s thyroid function worsens over time, while further increasing Estrogen Dominance. This cycle results in numerous autoimmune and metabolic diseases, most serious of which is called Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, and developing a goiter or thyroid nodules.



How To Overcome Estrogen Dominance


Step 1: Increase Progesterone Levels


Increasing one’s progesterone levels can help positively shift the balance back towards progesterone. You accomplish this with Molecular Progesterone Complex.



Step 2: End the Aromatase Estrogen Overproduction


Aromatase is an enzyme that exists within the fat cells and converts androgens like testosterone into estrogen. Normally, this testosterone-stealing and estrogen-producing enzyme isn’t a concern. Thyroid dysfunction causes both an increase in the amount and activity of this enzyme. This condition causes you to both produce even more estrogen faster, which worsens Estrogen Dominance.

Other factors that increase aromatase and aromatase activity include:


  • Age

  • Cortisol

  • Fragrances

  • Low-Carb Dieting

  • Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (PUFAs)

  • Alcohol

  • Prolactin

  • Prostaglandin

  • Removal of the Ovaries

This is also how menopausal women end up having much higher estrogen levels when it’s assumed that their levels are low. They may no longer produce estrogen through ovulation, but they overproduce estrogen nonetheless through this aromatase pathway. The good news is that there are supplements that can block the aromatase enzyme and decrease its production of estrogen. These are commonly referred to as aromatase inhibitors such as High Gamma Thyro-Protect Vitamin E Complex.



Step 3: Stop Storing and Start Detoxifying Your Estrogen


Most individuals with thyroid dysfunction can’t detoxify the estrogen that already exists within their bloodstream and stored within their body. Without adequate thyroid hormone your liver can’t detoxify estrogen. Yet, there are also a number of other factors that put further burden on your liver and prevent you from detoxifying estrogen, including:

  • Estrogen

  • Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (PUFAs)

  • Endotoxin

  • Protein Deficiency

You start with the elimination of dietary PUFAs from your diet (industrially produced vegetable/seed oils such as soybean, canola, corn oils).

Then you must feed the liver with a minimum of 70 to 100 grams of high quality protein daily.

One or two raw carrots daily helps prevent estrogen from being reabsorbed within your digestive tract.

Finally, you further boost thyroid hormone (T3) through diet and/or supplementation with a high quality thyroid hormone supplement, such as Forefront Health Raw Desiccated Thyroid.

Vitamins B1 (thiamine) and B2 (riboflavin) are important for the liver’s detoxification of estrogen, both of which can be found in our Vitamin B Thyroid Complex.



Step 4: De-Activate Estrogen and Block Estrogen Receptors


Ideally, you want to lower estrogen levels with lower activity.

There are many factors that influence your estrogen’s activity, including:

  • Inflammation

  • Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (PUFAs)

  • Number of Estrogen Receptors

Keeping Inflammation low is important as it increases the production of enzymes that prevent estrogen from being detoxified by the liver. And the same polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) mentioned in Step 3 also prevent certain proteins from binding to estrogen that help reduce its activity. So, avoiding dietary PUFAs is important here as well.

In thyroid dysfunction, large numbers of estrogen receptors amplify estrogen’s dangerous effects. By blocking and eliminating estrogen receptors you can further decrease the activity of estrogen. Similarly to their estrogen lowering effects by inhibiting the aromatase enzyme, both progesterone and High Gamma Vitamin E also work by directly blocking estrogen receptors.


This blog post is generated from the "Progesterone User Guide" presented by Forefront Heath.

Please access the pdf version of the guide here.

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