What happens to female hormones on Paleo?

by 3142 · August 02, 2011 at 02:39 AM

How does a high fat, high protein, and/or low carb diet affect these hormones? How does Paleo increase testosterone for men but not women (or does it)? Why is Paleo a good diet for women?

To be frank, the question is a bit muddled in my head but basically: I am a female eating paleo (almost a year now and will do so for life most likely) and I just am curious what hormones have been affected (no, I do not have sufficient funds to go get tested).

Research articles, personal experiences, all-things-nerdy-and-knowledeagble are welcomed.

And go!

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6 Replies

25189 · July 31, 2011 at 07:57 PM

it depends upon what paleo is to you, what your current gut bio-films are adapted too ......and most importantly what is your current hormone backround. Then you can discuss it from there. That is the context one needs when they explore this. And if you cant test you really are flying blind. This is why I am totally behind a quantified self platform or quarterly testing. This way you know exactly what works for you and what needs to be tweeked as the variables change because the one thing i have learned is they constantly change as time changes.

What I began with five yrs ago is radically different than now. What I did for my wife is radically different than we are doing now.


Without out it you are spinning in the mud.

961 · August 01, 2011 at 04:20 AM

I have not been tested for a long time.....All I know is that I was constantly hot. I had hot flashes several times a day and could not sleep at night because of them. I have been eating Paleo for about three months. The hot flashes are gone. Just gone. Amazing for me. I have been in menopause for one year. Age 56

519 · August 01, 2011 at 01:03 AM

I can tell you that testing is needed to see what is going on. You need to know where you stand to even start correction. But I had adrenal fatigue, under-working thyroid, estrogen dominance and cyst, which I still have. I also was not ovulating and I had mind numbing periods.

I started this journey the Weston Price way and have been primal for nearly a year. Personally I have gotten what felt like IBS flare ups and weren't one month before during and after my cycles. An aversion to men, weirdly enough. A cup size bigger in breast and lately indigestion and heartburn that has eased now that I am sleeping in total darkness. Oh yes and much better menstrual cycles and PMS without cravings.

24412 · July 31, 2011 at 11:50 PM

I'm hoping someone who knows more about this than I do can chime in here, but one of the benefits I keep hearing about is "resolving estrogen dominance".

I wish I had an awesome nerdy answer for you, but all I have is my n=1 of no longer suffering from PMS when I manage to stay at 80-90% compliance.

4067 · August 01, 2011 at 06:17 PM

My latest hormone testing was interesting.(paleo for over a year and gluten free and egg free over for 3 years. Soy free for over 10 years) My testosterone was so low it wasn't on the scale. My progesterone was only slightly below normal for the first 15 days of my cycle. Estrogen was normal. (Also on there was super low DHEA and super low cortisol until noon). I have a 28 cycle with really bad cramps and bleeding for the first day. Although I have no 'before' data, I think that my testosterone has gotten lower (lowered drive). Other than that my cycle is the same as it has always been. My doc tried to have my take bioidentical creams of testosterone and progesterone, but they were made with soy lotion and testosterone is sourced from soy = near ambulance trip. Thanks doc and pharmacy who were both informed that I was allergic to soy. Maybe a few more years on paleo will help to better my results.

2817 · August 01, 2011 at 02:47 PM

I've been grain/legume free for about 4 months with occasional, small ingestions of dairy and sugar (i.e. a spoonful of ice cream). My menstrual cycle has been getting consistently shorter each month and I've had some spotting during ovulation, which is totally uncharacteristic for me (I was pretty much 28 days like clockwork, now down to 24 days). I'm seeing a naturopath for some gut stuff and tests showed normal DHEA, Testosterone, Estrone and Estradiol, slightly elevated Estriol and depressed Progesterone. I have no idea what any of this means, but the lab recommends reducing intake of estrogen and progesterone and an increase in Vitamin C and water-soluble fiber.

I've had a history of PMS moodiness but now seem to experience it after my period instead of before. I figure things in my body are just adjusting and recalibrating.

I don't know whether this is coincidental or correlated to my dietary changes but I'm certainly interested in hearing about any other female experiences.

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