True Root Causes of Dis-Ease in the Body: Estrogen Dominance
October 30, 2015 | 18 Comments | SAFM Team
Oh, great questions are coming in! Please keep them coming. In response, I am sharing some additional tips and specifics below which might be helpful.
These dynamics are core tenets that you want to be not just aware of but savvy about catching early. Then you can help your clients and patients to resolve them fully using functional medicine know-how. Wildly satisfied clients build wildly successful practices!
- An excellent resource for helping clients to choose non-toxic personal hygiene products is from the Environmental Working Group (EWG). In particular, they offer a database called Skin Deep which includes thousands of products and some targeted best-choice lists as well. http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/
- If you want to learn more about xenoestrogens (aka “estrogen mimickers” or “endocrine disruptors”) in our environment, you might enjoy this clinical statement from the The Endocrine Society.
- Here is a good, high-level article you could use with your clients about the most common and most potent endocrine disruptors .
- Body fat makes estrogen. This means an obese woman, even post-menopausal, is highly unlikely to have truly low estrogen levels. She may still have hot flashes due to rapid fluctuations in estrogen – which can still happen even when the overall baseline level of estrogen is moderately high. Many other lifestyles can contribute to hot flashes e.g. alcohol, caffeine, low cortisol (due to sustained stress). It’s important to remember, however, that even very thin women can struggle with estrogen dominance, usually due to poor detoxification or hormone imbalance (usually due to very low progesterone).
- Here is the hormone cascade diagram I promised you. I share this with clients very often and use it to help them to understand clearly the downstream hormonal effects of prolonged (especially unrelenting) stress. It is an excellent prelude to helping a client understand the empowerment and opportunity they have in choosing their reactions to their life situations.
- One of my favorite brands of chastetree berry is Gaia Vitex Berry. You may learn more about what clinical research has shown regarding vitex here. About 1000mg/day is a typical dose, ideally divided.
- Yes, it would be quite common for people with MTHFR genetic variants (called “SNPs”) to struggle with estrogen detoxification. The addition of COMT SNPs compounds this challenge greatly and makes estrogen dominance more likely.
- Here is a simple handout about cruciferous vegetables – which you are welcome to use with your own clients .
- A couple of you are looking for a more clinical article about how the body naturally detoxifies estrogens (more clinical one here). As I shared in the video, promoting in particular the Phase 2 liver detoxification processes called sulfation and glucuronidation is key. Yes, other detoxification processes are involved in processing downstream metabolites of hormones.
- You may find a wealth of information about DIM here. 200mg/day is a typical dose, ideally divided. Sometimes DIM is paired in a supplement with calcium d-glucarate, a substance which deactivates an enzyme in the GI tract called beta glucuronidase (BG). Certain bacteria in the gut produce large amounts of BG, and this enzyme prevents excess estrogen from being fully removed from the body in the detoxification process. We need small amounts of BG to fully digest many phytonutrients in plant foods. Too much, however, can cause estrogen to be cleaved from its detoxification escort, marooned in the gut, and then reabsorbed back into the blood supply – effectively rendering the body unable to fully get rid of excess estrogen. Another great example of how disease usually does indeed begin in the gut.
- Here is a great summary article on the estrogen-balancing benefits of flaxseed. This one references many clinical studies but is also written in a way that should be quite accessible to your clients.
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