Dr Ellen Grant (WDDTY vol 5 no 5) claims that natural progesterone supplementation is dangerous. Her own references do not support this. Indeed, Dr Gina Schoental, whose animal studies are claimed to show that progesterone "can interfere profoundly" with development, says she has never even worked on progesterone!
Regarding immunosuppression, another study cited by Dr Grant (J of Immunol, 1988; 141: 91) does not actually refer to progesterone, but only to estrogen and testosterone, whereas Immunol Rev, 1983; 75: 117 suggests that progesterone prevents fetal rejection during pregnancy while preserving "normal systemic immunocompetence against tumours. . ."
Claiming that progesterone is a co-carcinogen, Dr Grant cited a study which gave over 1000 times the physiological dose to mice. Yet a 30 year human study found that progesterone deficient women had 10 times the risk of dying from cancer than those with normal progesterone (Am J of Epidm, 1981; 114: 2).
Dr Grant presistently confuses synthetic progestogens with its natural counterpart. However, some progestogens cause abortion, while progesterone is essential to pregnancy.
Emerging research shows the increasing frequency of premature follicle depletion in women (probably due to petrochemicals). Nutrition cannot make a woman ovulate (and make progesterone) once her follicles are used up.
Regarding safety, progesterone creams have been used in America, with FDA approval, for decades.
Finally, Dr Grant insists osteoporosis is due to nutritional deficiences. But this approach cannot increase bone density by up to 22 per cent over three years, as I have shown with progesterone (The Lancet, November 24, 1990). Dr John Lee, California.....
Ellen Grant replies: Dr John Lee fails to understand my work and that of others. Both progesterone and Pill progestogens produce identical changes in endometrial cells, enzymes and blood vessels. Both relate to widespread systemic effects such as headaches and mood changes. Any differences are of degree and individual sensitivity, but not of kind.
Dr Schoental studied estrogens, but cites other references that progesterone can cause cancer and birth defects (Dangerous Properties of Industrial and Consumer Chemicals, 1994: 581), and that that it can change into estrogen. For instance, progesterone skin gel can induce fourfold increases in both progesterone and the estrogen estradiol (Percutaneous Absorption of Steroids, 1980: 262).
About immune system suppression, the study quoted above actually states that immune system function is only "relatively" normal in pregnancy. Progesterone suppresses local immunity, by blocking the helper T-cells and enhancing the production of suppressor cells, so preventing rejection of the "foreign" fetus.
Temporary or permanent ovarian failure is caused by early age exposure of some 97 per cent of women to prescribed hormones, smoking and/or severe nutritional deficiencies. Each separately increase cancer risks. The fact that a 10 fold reduction in migraines can immediately follow withdrawal of prescribed hormones clearly demonstrates that these are much more toxic than background petrochemicals (The Lancet, 1979; i: 581). Removing such causes may restore ovarian function, but progesterone cream cannot, and it is no instant cure all.
A temporary improvement in osteoporosis among some women is not proof of long term safety. Progesterone induces breast proliferation; prescribed hormones have been increasing cancers for decades while the FDA has approved their use. Dr Ellen Grant, London.....