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What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Premenopause: Balance Your Hormones and Your Life From Thirty to Fifty Paperback – January 1, 1999
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Are you a woman between 35 and 50 experiencing PMS, migraine headaches, sudden weight gain, fatigue, irritability, tender or lumpy breasts, memory loss, fibroids, or cold hands and feet? If so, you may be experiencing symptoms of premenopause. Even if you're a decade or more away from menopause, your hormones may already be out of balance, usually caused by an excess of estrogen and a deficiency of progesterone, say the authors of What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Premenopause. John Lee, M.D., is a well-known advocate of the benefits of natural progesterone and the author of What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Menopause. Jesse Hanley, M.D., adds sensitivity to the emotional and spiritual aspects of premenopause. The authors recommend natural progesterone cream to balance your hormones, eliminate premenopausal symptoms, and make you feel better. They also discuss the dangers of xenohormones--substances not found in nature that have hormonal effects--frequently found in pesticides, solvents, plastics, and hormone-treated meat. The book presents common symptoms of premenopause with suggested natural treatments (progesterone cream, diet, vitamins, and herbs) and substances to avoid, plus additional chapters on diet and exercise. Many case studies help to bring the information into perspective. If you are premenopausal (or close to someone who is), this is a valuable resource. --Joan Price
Top customer reviews
At 44 years old, I've been struggling with health issues for the past 6 or 7 years - fatigue, joint pain, weight-gain, bloating, insomnia, digestive problems (colitis and constipation), increased sensitivity to synthetic fragrances and chemicals, skin conditions (keratosis pilaris and tinea versacolor), painful lumpy breasts, brain fog, and irritability. During this time I've been diagnosed with depression, anxiety, gastritis, adrenal fatigue, insulin-resistance, and specific food intolerances. Prescription pharmaceuticals helped numb some of the symptoms early on but had worse side-effects so I weaned myself off them 3 years ago. For the past 3 years I've been following naturopathic advice and avoiding foods I've become intolerant to, increased some vitamins, cleaned up my food intake, and reduced stress in my environment. Cleaning up my diet eliminated the tinea versacolor, and many of the other symptoms have reduced a little bit but they've still stuck around. In the past 6 months I also started experiencing menorrhagia (very heavy bleeding at menstruation) with intense pain.
This book has been life-changing. I actually found it in a thrift store a couple of years ago, bought it "in advance" of menopause (thinking I won't hit menopause for another 10 years or so), but I finally pulled it off my bookshelf and read it 3 months ago to see if it could help with the menorrhagia.
I'm sooooo glad I read it. First, it validates that menopause is not just a short-time period change experienced in ones early 50s. It shows how our hormones begin fluctuating much earlier than that, in our 30s and 40s, and how that affects many aspects of our health, including every single symptom I've been experiencing since my mid-to-late 30s.
Second, the book offers comprehensive suggestions for finding balance that include diet, vitamins, movement, stress-reduction, increasing one's joy, etc. And it explains why and how prescription "hormones" don't fix the problems for which they're prescribed, but rather make matters worse.
I love that the authors have written this book to provide information and encouragement, not to sell a specific product. They list, in the book and on their website, many companies that sell natural progesterone creams in the doses recommended. They also give specific recommendations for how much, how often, and for how long to use it.
Following their recommendations, I'm now on my 3rd month of using a natural progesterone cream. I've actually tried 2 different brands so far and prefer the current one I'm using just for ease of measuring and for price. I've also started including a B-12 vitamin per the book's specific recommendations for my situation. I have had 2 menstrual periods since I started the progesterone cream. The first one was just as bad as the previous 4 months. The second was half as bad - the bleeding was less and the pain was much less. Even my PMS irritability was noticeably reduced. I'm looking forward to seeing how much easier my next period will be.
Another change I've noticed, and I believe it's from the progesterone cream, is that my keratosis pilaris has almost completely disappeared! I had stopped wearing tank tops and short-sleeves in public because the little bumps on my upper arms were embarrassing. Now they're almost all gone and my upper arms are smooth again! I've also noticed that I am not as bloated and my belly is flatter than it's been for awhile. The scale says I haven't lost any weight, but my belly looks and feels flatter and my jeans are fitting better.
I'm also sleeping better. I used to wake up hungry every night around 2 or 3 a.m. (after about 4 hours sleep). I still do occasionally, but it's gotten much better. That's helping me to have more consistent energy throughout the day.
Given that I've experienced such noticeable positive effects in just 3 months of following this book's recommendations, I'm looking forward to continued improvements! I am amazed and disappointed that none of my health care providers even mentioned hormonal imbalances or premenopause throughout the several years I asked for help. I lied - my naturopathic doctor did mention that I appeared to have estrogen dominance, but her approach was to address diet first as that can have a big impact on hormones.
One mildly unpleasant effect I noticed when I started using the progesterone cream - and the authors make this information clear - is that during the first two weeks I experienced mild headaches. The authors clearly point out that, in the beginning, using progesterone cream can increase the symptoms of estrogen dominance as the body adjusts to the proper balance of hormones. My headaches did stop after the first couple of weeks and were never bad enough to need medication.
The book covers many different scenarios - ovarian cysts, infertility, cancer risks, etc. I read through the book in two days initially, captivated by the information and "aha" moments I had. Then I read through again and made copious notes from the sections that pertain to my specific symptoms and situation. I am about to re-read both my notes and the pertinent chapters soon as it's time for me to adjust my dose of progesterone cream and to see what other holistic changes I can make to improve my health, feelings of wellbeing, and enjoyment of my life.
I found a lot of information that no doctor was telling me, and I have been to several in the last year. Some doctors make you think you are making things up, it is really frustrating! For me the progesterone was a miracle and I am feeling almost like my old self again.