Dr. John Lee, a modern women’s healthcare advocate, recommended use of progesterone cream in menopausal and pre-menopausal women to alleviate symptoms and in place of conventional hormone replacement therapy. His studies are still the benchmark for menopausal care.
To best reproduce the natural physiologic release of hormones by the body, the Transdermal Delivery System was developed. Progesterone is combined with other natural ingredients and applied to the thin skinned areas of the body where it can be easily absorbed. Transfer agents can be used but they are not easily or effectively absorbed – they are not recommended because by chemistry they disrupt or interfere with the progesterone absorption process.
Dr. Lee further suggested that progesterone and other hormone levels be measured to develop a personal baseline. Hormones can be measured at home, with just a swab of saliva. The levels should be monitored until you find the right one for you. Keep a record of your findings, along with how you’re feeling, because often a doctor only reads the lab test results when, in reality, it’s how you actually feel which determines a course of treatment. The dose of progesterone that your body most likely produced in your twenties and thirties is about 20-24mg.
Progesterone can be taken orally, but usually less than 20% can be effectively utilized by the body. It must be absorbed by the intestines, pass into the portal vein system and go through the liver, where it is metabolized and excreted in bile. Thus a much higher dose is needed, probably between 100-400 mg per day. When a dose that big is consumed it results in a surge of progesterone that peaks in one or two hours, followed by a rapid decline and low levels for the rest of the day, which is not effective. Levels of progesterone peak even faster when sublingual drops or suppositories are used. The blood progesterone level spikes upward within 20 minutes because it is absorbed quickly through the membranes. Again, within an hour and a half levels fall drastically. Most importantly, the above two methods do not reflect the (natural) way progesterone is actually delivered in the body.
The level of progesterone in the saliva is maintained for eight or more hours when the Transdermal method of delivery is used. Optimal results are seen if the cream is applied twice a day. The pump on the container administers a consistent amount of progesterone cream. The product is never exposed to the environment until it is on your skin, so it remains pure.
Progesterone creams delivered transdermally are found to provide the following major benefits:
- Protection against endometriosis
- Acts as a natural antidepressant
- Restores sex drive
- Protects against bone loss and osteoporosis
- May help prevent breast cancer
- Helps use fat for energy
The following benefits may also be available:
- Facilitates thyroid hormone action
- Protects against fibrocystic breasts
- Normalizes blood sugar levels
- Normalizes zinc and copper levels
- Improves sleep patterns
- Normalizes blood clotting
- Restores proper oxygen cell levels
- Acts as a natural diuretic
- Reduces post partum depression
Transdermal means through the skin absorption and is thought to be the most effective delivery method for progesterone cream formulations.