Are those extreme PMS symptoms ‘just the way it is’ or something you might not have to live with? Are you suffering from constant headaches? Do you want to lose weight but just can’t seem to shake it? You could be one of the many people who have too much of the female sex hormone oestrogen, a condition known as oestrogen dominance.


While the majority of those affected by oestrogen dominance are women, it can affect men too, resulting in conditions like an enlarged prostrate or the unwanted growth of breast tissue. In women, it’s an underlying factor for conditions like endometriosis and polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). Then there’s the cancer connection. High oestrogen levels left unchecked will increase your risk for sex oestrogen-sensitive cancers like breast, endometrial, ovarian and prostate.


Know the symptoms

Like many conditions, you don’t have to have all the symptoms to be affected by it, but if you go through this list and find yourself nodding your head it would be a good idea to ask your doctor. At Health Renewal, we perform blood tests to get a clear idea of your hormonal profile. There’s no set figure as to the ‘correct’ amount of oestrogen you should have. It’s all about how high it is in relation to your other hormones.

  • PMS
  • Weight gain, especially abdominal fat
  • Cellulite
  • Water retention and bloating
  • Irregular or abnormal menstrual cycles
  • Breast tenderness
  • Hormonal pigmentation (melasma)
  • Hair loss
  • Headaches
  • Mood swings, depression and/or anxiety
  • Poor sleep
  • Fatigue
  • Decreased sex drive
  • Brain fog
  • Acne
  • Male infertility
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Gynecomastia (growth of breast tissue in men)
  • Enlarged prostate


A balancing act

There are lots of factors that can contribute to oestrogen dominance. These include being genetically prone, taking synthetic hormones, poor gut health that sees you reabsorbing more oestrogen metabolites than you excrete and being exposed to xenoetrogens. Pronounced ‘zeno-estrogens’, these are chemicals that mimic real oestrogens and can be found everywhere – from the plastic used to make your water bottle to the parabens in your shampoo.

Effectively treating oestrogen dominance might mean switching to a non-hormonal form of birth control if you’re a woman who takes it or being prescribed bio-identical progesterone to help balance your hormones. You can also help your body rid itself of excess oestrogen via supplementation with oestrogen detoxifying nutraceuticals.

Lastly, never underestimate changing your lifestyle. Getting enough exercise and good quality sleep as well as eating a diet full of foods like cruciferous vegetables and other things that are known to support oestrogen detoxification will make a big difference. Again, your doctor will be able to advise you on what is best and, with the right guidance, you can bring back the balance!

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