T Nation

Insulin, How It Works?

Insulin resistance is when the cells become less responsive to insulin and more is needed to overcome the problem. This is a change in how your cells are working. Higher levels of insulin lead to more insulin resistance. Low T is associated with insulin resistance and often, TRT reduces insulin resistance. And additional to the supplements suggested above, add 100mg Ubiquinol, a form of CoQ10 and 5000 iu vit-D3.

You need to make an effort to reduce your insulin resistance. If you do not, the consequences are a big problem. You need to do this. You cannot be passive and just let doctors deal with the wreckage.

You need to get a male hormone panel and post the results here. Read the stickies.


Im female, shuld I order the some blood test?
I have posted here a many times, I have some
hormonal issue that anybody can figure out
working out hard 6 days
watching what i eat…

just trying to understand the body lol

Sorry, second time I screwed up on that ;(

Same labs, you might want to check T anyways. Add progesterone and you need to do labs day 18-21.

Do you have any recent lab work?

As I think I explained before, as women age, progesterone drops just like DHEA drops for both sexes. This leaves women estrogen dominant and many negative things are attributed to that. Insert my rant that all women should probably be using OTC 2% progesterone cream in their later 30’s.

Can you direct me to a recent tread that I should look at?

[quote]florida2001 wrote:

[quote]florida2001 wrote:

I just submited a few of my previouse posts.
Im on metformin 1250mg, synthroi 150mcg and cytomel 12.5
Eating 1200-1300 cal (130-150 g protein, 30-35g fat)
workout 6 days… i was able put some mass but holding fat… cant lose any.
cardio 3-4 days 20-40 min

In the thread were we visited before, I missed this on your 18th day of your cycle:

Progesterone 0.5 refer. range folicular phase <1.0, luthelal 2.6-21.5

At 32YO, the expected decrease in progesterone should be low during your http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luteal_phase

Low progesterone and your health E2 levels cause estrogen dominance and that can lead to weight gain as another contributor your issues. Suggest OTC progesterone cream [2%], google “kal progesterone cream”. Some other OTC products do not work as well, so I recommend KAL.

thank u,
how progesteron cream should be taken? I mean shuld I
take it a whole cycle or only first half of the cycle?
also how long and how much

thk you I appreciate ur help

You can take weeks, 2,3,4

Note that progesterone is the substrate for production of cortisol. Low progesterone might undermine that. Progesterone is made in the ovaries [and testes], as well as the adrenals. Progesterone is very important for brain function and recovery from trauma. So is vitamin D-3. Studies show that progesterone+Vit_D3 is greater than the sum of the parts. The root of this understanding that women survive and recover better than men from brain injury. Unfortunate, there is not much known, that I have found, about whatever would be optimal for males. For cycling females, their levels are all over the map and there are no simple answers there.

Everyone is different in terms of how well they absorb, how fast they metabolize and how much they need. So you will be on your own and labs can be helpful. Apply 1/2 teaspoon to one forearm and then wipe arm against arm all along inner arms. You can apply to breasts and see if that improves any issues with breast tenderness. You can also apply to belly or inner thighs.

There are signs to go by. Progesterone can reduce or eliminate breast tenderness [a sure sign of estrogen dominance], PMS, painful periods etc.

Estrogen dominance also can contribute or cause endothelial dysfunction, the root cause of arterial disease. Also causes enlargement of the uterus and fibroids. I have seen cases, women I have worked with, where progesterone has normalized the side of the uterus and in one case, fibroids shrunk then were spontaneously expelled. In that case, an otherwise vibrant woman in her 30’s had her doctors telling her that she had to have a hysterectomy. Also a case where a women heading into menopause had her cycle start back up. She tried a different brand [not KAL], and started to hot flash. So there is a big issue about how well a cream is absorbed.

Speaking of absorption: We know that most, seems like all, men who have hypothyroid problems, typically subclinical, cannot absorb testosterone creams or gels. This inability to absorb transdermal testosterone might translate into women not absorbing progesterone transdermally. So you can watch for that on labs. We really do not have enough data to know one way or another if effective thyroid meds can reverse this. Note that progesterone and pregnenolone have very poor oral bio-availability. 100mg/day capsules can be ineffective. This is one of the reasons that progesterone like chemicals, progestins, have been created. This also creates a situation where a novel drug can be created and patented, then development and drug trials are expensive. Doctors have been told that these drugs do the same thing as progesterone. True to some extent, and fatally wrong in other ways. Progestins seem to protect breast tissue from estrogens, but not endothelial tissue. That is why the womens health initiative showed increased deaths from heart attacks. When the shit hit the fan, the drug industry blamed HRT [false] and deflected the blame, and the press obediently spread the lies. None of that should have been a surprise. There have been warnings about such things for Oral Birth Control [OBS] since the 1960’s. All steroid hormones are transported to the cell nuclei where they affect the gene expression of your DNA. Throw synthetic chemicals in there and the results can be unexpected. Steroid hormones can increase gene expression, or reduce gene expression. And any one steroid hormone can have multiple effects for multiple genes. We simply do not understand that much about what is happening. So we have highly effective and absorbable progestins, that can cause heart attacks, strokes, blood clots etc. There is no way to predict which women will have such events and which will not. But there probably is an increased problem with arterial problems with all women, that is hidden inside the effects of aging.

Thyroid meds: You body temperature can be a good guide to your thyroid hormone status. If you can’t get to 98.6 mid afternoon, you are under-medicated. Use an oral thermometer when you have not been eating, drinking, talking, working out…

Any iodine in your diet from vitamins or iodized salt? Iodine is stored in breast tissue and there is data suggesting that low iodine increases breast cancer risks. Why is iodine there? Prime reason may be to provide iodine to babies. Because of this, women store more iodine than males. Most iodine is stored in the thyroid gland. Adults can store 1.0-1.5 GRAMS of iodine. When taking thyroid meds and if TSH is repressed, what are the issues with iodine in the thyroid gland? I do not think that this is understood. There are other roles for iodine in the body other than the thyroid. However, these are not understood.

If total cholesterol gets below 180, you have a problem, starts to be a concern at 160. Low cholesterol undermines steroid hormone production. Monitor DHEA-S.

Focus on the cell wall permeability, nutrients that I suggested. There is good info at LEF.org

KSman thank you for all your information, really apreciate your help. I forgot another thing that is probaby related to what you said. Im now in 23 day of cycle and my breast are so sensitive, fuller and hurt. So should I assume is progesterone fault or in other words estrogen domin?

lI measured my temperature today in the afternoon and it was 98.6 exactly, so i hope Im on right thyroid dosage. I also will start progesterone cream to see if it helps. As you wrote 2,3,4 week progesterone. I will definitely check my hormone level.

You can find KAL on amazon and elsewhere, perhaps some local health food shops but that might take a while to locate, and in CA, would carry bogus warnings.

Progesterone will fix that breast ache. You definitely are E dominant and progesterone will create a lot of benefits.

may i ask u what is your proffesion? You have all the knowledge about hormonal issues. just wondering.

just btw I have ordered cream already :slight_smile: is it ok to take it through all cycle except first of week right?

Yes, all through cycle, you want to prevent the tissue changes that cause the breast pain. I think that once that gets setup, its too late to resolve that cycle. You may find that you will want to use more or less at different times as you learn to read your body’s response. It will take around two cycles to affect how your uterus sets up, in terms of bleeding and cramps. Progesterone can help balance swings in your emotions as well.

Notes: Progesterone is the substrate for cortisol, progesterone–>cortisol. A few women convert freely and progesterone at night may “wake them up”. But many women find that progesterone helps them sleep. So find your own way. A male partner might not appreciate large skin to skin transfers.

I am an old Engineer who reads too much. When I met my first and only TRT doc, an age management specialist, he said after a while that I knew way more about these things than almost all doctors. That was 6.5 years ago. Helping guys and researching their conditions has built up my experience. “Endocrinology is my Hobby”

I helped my wife go through some perimenopausal issues and saw what worked and what did not. I soon saw that I knew what to do and that a hospital specialist did not. My wife [19 years younger] is now doing very well. I have helped two other local women and a few via the WWW. An interesting lesson is that men are deviations from the female blueprint. With men, testosterone balances E, with women it is progesterone. When progesterone drop in women or T drops in men, you get some of the same problems from a cardiovascular point of view.

Thank you,
yeah u r right… many of the doc cant put things together.
I have been interested in endocrinology for a long time
and everything u said makes sense. I jave changed
many doct in the past and looking back Im amazed how many of them
are ignorant.

I have gotten the cream already. will keep u inform
how things are working. Another think… what do u think about
my calorie intake 1200-1350 cal 130 g protein 35 g fat average
im pretty amazed that in this i was able to put up muscle
Acording peple i know i gained weight ehhh I know
im lifting more but the fat is covering up everything lol

I am quite clueless about calorie and diet issues. I never seem to need to be concerned, I do not gain weight. That really annoys my wife.

But I am concerned when I see extreme diets, or lower intake + exercise. We see guys here to damage their hormone systems doing that. And extreme low fat diets can do the same. Low cholesterol is dangerous and statin drugs create major problems for some as well.

When you go after less food, what you do eat needs to be richer in nutrients:

  • vitamins with 5,000iu vit-D3
  • trace elements, including iodine from salt, explicit iodine supplements and/or vitamins
  • amino acids
  • healthy oils and EFA’s [olive oil, fish oil caps, flax seed or flax seed oil, nuts]
  • anti-oxidants

I started progesterone cream on 23day of my cycle…now Im in 30 day…I usually have period between 28-30 days. Could progesterone cream cause delay of my period ? Shuld I stop progester before my period starts or wait until I get it and than skip one week?

thank you

It can normalize a cycle if it has been shorter. But for you, hard to guess. Yes, it can delay your period as it is the drop in progesterone that triggers that. If you are using progesterone and stop taking it later in your cycle, your period can come earlier or there might be some break-through bleeding. You will find out how all of this plays out for you. You can start taking it now. Some women take it only during the later part of their cycle to reduce cramps etc. However, that misses the benefit of having a thinner endometrium to shed. And for some, they really need to thin out the endometrium as it may be thickened from low levels of progesterone and estrogen dominance. Again, with ultra sound, my wife’s uterus was at the size of 10 weeks pregnancy. That was found during a ultrasound looking for the signs of discomfort that were presumed to be ovarian cysts. Note that progesterone also can resolve that too.

If you have a state of estrogen dominance that is contributing to your body fat or inability to reduce that, progesterone might be helpful in that regard.

Most cycling women stop when their period starts. If you do not, I guess that one could have a longer indicative period, but that is my technical guess. It might be better to get the bloody thing over with… -pardon my male humour.

One week off seems reasonable. If you get good results, you can then try two weeks off and decide what works best from there. Remember that it seems to take 2 cycles to get the result of an introduction and perhaps that long for a change. After all of my experience is second hand.

If you are noticing a drop in libido, try taking less or introducing after ovulating so your testosterone rise is not inhibited. Why would that occur? Because progesterone is a negative feedback signal for your HPOA; not at potent as estrogens. Yes your progesterone levels when you were younger may have been greater that you will achieve with progesterone cream. But the same triggers to make that progesterone also triggered E&T.

And as I pointed out, some women apply progesterone cream to their breasts to deal with breast aches/pains. To what degree that improves things over systemic delivery is not really known. But over a number of cycles, you can try it one way or another and see if there is any benefit for you.


I have done some hormone blood test, could you please evaluate it? Just to reminde, Im female 33, the test were done on my 19 DAY of my cycle. Im on 150mcg synthroid and 12.5mg cytomel also 1250mg Metformin. I also started PROGESTERONE cream on my 1st day of cycle.

TSH 0.006 normal range 0.450-4.5
Thyroxine T4 10.2 normal range 4.5-12
T3Uptake 35 normal range 24-39
Free T4 3.6 normal range 1.2-4.9

Testosterone serum 33 ng/dl normal 8-48

LH 9.2 mIU/ml
follicular phase 2.4-12.6
ovulation 4.7-21.5
luteal phase 1.0-7.7
postmenopausal 7.7-58.5

FSH serum 7.1 mIU/ml
follicular phase 3.5-12.5
ovulation 4.7-21.5
luteal phase 1.7-7.7

ESTRADIOL 183.3 pg/ml
follicular 12.5-166
ovulation 85.8-498
luteal 43.8-211

follicular 0.2-1.5
luteal 1.7-27.0
ovulation 0.8-3

Progesterone should be highest when you did the lab work. The range is 1.7-27. You are at 1/3rd of the upper limit. So there is plenty of room to increase progesterone by supplementing.

With the progesterone cream: Any observations so far concerning mood, sleeping or your prior concerns. You could ramp up progesterone starting at time of ovulation.

What are your body temperatures like? I created a new sticky: “thyroid basics”

TSH=0, so your hypothalamus thinks that you gave enough thyroid medication. Your fT4=3.6 might be a little bit high, but that would be expected to be favourable for weight loss.

Your testosterone looks good/strong and makes sense with your high normal LH and FSH.