How to Improve Thyroid Symptoms with Progesterone

Thyroid Symptoms Low Progesterone

How to Improve Thyroid Symptoms with Progesterone

Thyroid symptoms are often preceded by or coincide with fluctuating hormone levels.  Estrogen dominance is a term used to describe the situation when your body has too high a level of total estrogen in relation to your amount of progesterone.  The ratio of progesterone is often found to be low in comparison to estrogen levels in most women with Hashimoto’s.

Annoying symptoms are often perceived as being related to the thyroid only; however, low progesterone is usually a contributing factor.

Since many thyroid symptoms are often linked to low progesterone, it’s a good idea to consider the connection.

Common Symptoms of Low Progesterone

  • Acne
  • Anxiety
  • Arthritic-like aches & pains
  • Breast pain or tenderness,/Fibrocystic breasts or breast enlargement
  • Cellulite
  • Decreased memory
  • Foggy brain
  • Low libido
  • Depression
  • Dry, rough and/or scaly skin
  • Endometriosis
  • Fatigue
  • Hair loss
  • Headaches
  • High blood pressure
  • Hot flashes/night sweats
  • Infertility
  • Insomnia
  • Irregular or excessive uterine bleeding, especially with increased clots – which may be caused by nonhormonal problems like fibroids or polyps, etc.
  • Irritability – feelings of aggravation, irritation, frustration (for no reason, but may also be related to sluggish liver function)
  • Miscarriage
  • Mood swings
  • Panic attacks
  • PCOS-like symptoms
  • PMS
  • Thyroid cancer
  • Thyroid nodules
  • Uterine fibroids
  • Vaginal dryness
  • Water retention
  • Weight gain:  hips, thighs & abdomen

Low Progesterone & Thyroid Symptoms Overlap

The thyroid gland has receptors for progesterone.  As these receptors bind with progesterone, thyroid cells respond by producing thyroid hormones.  So, if there isn’t sufficient progesterone available to combine with thyroid progesterone receptors, production of thyroid hormone is often low and results in thyroid symptoms.

Optimize Progesterone Levels and Improve Thyroid Symptoms

We live in an estrogen-dominant world and there is no escaping it.  Hormones, pesticides, chemicals and medications (the birth control pill, for example) wreak havoc on the body because they mimic estrogen – they actually imitate estrogen and its effects and disrupt the endocrine system.

Over time, the disruption of the endocrine system can become a significant issue since these agents get stored in our fat cells, leading to a compromised immune system and other issues.

If you are experiencing low progesterone and thyroid symptoms, the first step to take is improving nutrition and lifestyle habits.  Doing so can help balance a healthy ratio between estrogen and progesterone.

Natural Ways to Improve Thyroid Symptoms by Increasing Progesterone Levels

First of all, the goal is to learn how to maintain proper hormonal balance in your body by improving nutrition and lifestyle habits.

Since hormones act as the chemical messengers of the body to basically instruct the cells on what to do and when to do it, hormone imbalance impairs the cells ability to do their job optimally.

Below are a few tips on how to increase progesterone naturally and improve thyroid symptoms:

  1. Avoid alcohol and soy products (soy is an ingredient in many packaged/processed foods) will help a lot as a first step.  Fermented soy is usually OK unless you have a food sensitivity issue.
  2. Avoid foods and herbs that tend to increase estrogen levels.
    Licorice, lavender, hops, dong quai, black cohosh, blue cohosh, rhodiola rose root, saw palmetto berry, tea tree oil, motherwort leaf and red clover blossom.
    One herb that may actually stimulate the production of progesterone is called chasteberry (vitex).
  3. Increase vitamin C derived from whole food sources instead of ascorbic acid.
    Innate Response is superior and it may be purchased here.
    This study found that 750mg of vitamin C taken every day for 6 months can significantly increase progesterone levels.  It’s also excellent for adrenal support.
  4. Optimize vitamin B6.
    Low levels of vitamin B6 may result in a decrease of progesterone production.  Vitamin B6 is also important for supporting the liver in metabolizing estrogen.  If your liver is sluggish and can’t break-down estrogen efficiently, estrogen levels will rise and this alone sets up an estrogen dominant situation.
    If you don’t have Celiac disease or leaky gut syndrome issues that may compromise absorption issues, you can try increasing foods rich in vitamin B6:  walnuts, grass-fed organic lean red meats, pastured organic poultry, bananas and spinach.
  5. Consume Foods Rich in Magnesium.
    Magnesium has many amazing benefits (anti-inflammatory, calms the body, etc) and it also contributes to healthy hormone balance.  Nuts, seeds, and beans are rich in magnesium, however, if you have Hashimoto’s you may be sensitive to them and they are inflammatory.  Try supplementing with magnesium topical oil along with an oral supplement.  I’ve been using and recommend magnesium citrate as the best form of magnesium to supplement with because it also helps keep things regular.
  6. Self-care to Reduce Stress.
    Your body will use progesterone to make cortisol during times of chronic stress when the adrenal glands can’t keep up with production.  Adrenal fatigue is also a result of chronic stress and is common in Hashimoto’s due to the physiological stress on the body as it copes with 24/7 inflammation.   Consequently, the result will be chronically low progesterone.
  7. Consider Progesterone Cream.
    I’ve used natural progesterone cream for many years and it’s been very helpful.  I don’t use the custom compounded (by prescription only) versions because I found them to be too expensive and to be honest these forms didn’t work as well for me as the over-the-counter brand topical cream I found.  With the prescription versions, I experienced dizziness, low mood and headaches.  I’ve trusted topical progesterone cream going on 20 years now, and love it.  You may buy the same product here.
    It’s available in single-use packets and is high quality, accurately dosed (450 mg USP Progesterone per ounce, 20 mg per 1/4 teaspoon) and free of parabens, mineral oil and petroleum and has never been tested on animals.
  8. Learn How to Use Food to Rebalance Hormones.
    My friend Magdalena is hosting a free workshop June 16th at 9:00 am (PST) and on June 17th at 5:00 pm (PST).  During this free workshop Magdalena will show you:
  • How to make delicious breakfasts, snacks & quick meals that support your hormones
  • Why you are “eating healthy” but still feel tired, sluggish and sick
  • How the gut, liver, and sugar levels control your hormones
  • How food can reverse weight gain, depression and fatigue
  • 30 healing foods for your thyroid, adrenals, menopause, weight issues, hair loss, cellulite, PCOS, hot flashes and more



Most importantly, I hope this post is helpful to you and that learning how to manage your hormones and reduce thyroid symptoms becomes a natural part of your journey.

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