Series: Things that Cause Candida (HRT/Hormone Imbalance) – Part 4 of 6

Hormone Replacement Therapy is used by many women over the age of 47 or so to fight menopausal symptoms such as night sweats, hot flashes, and vaginal dryness.  Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) works by providing extra estrogen to the body to replace the hormones that are now lacking in the body.  For some people, it has been miraculous in how well it helps the body to manage the symptoms of menopause.  However, a lot of women struggling with hormone imbalance will also have to battle candida because too much estrogen in the system will feed candida and cause it to grow. In fact, one of the primary side affects of premarin, a common HRT drug, is yeast infections.

The female body is not just about getting as much estrogen into your body as possible to counteract the affects of getting older, the female body is all about BALANCE of the hormones.   Balance is often not easy to achieve. There are generally 4 categories that women fall in to if their hormones are out of balance.

The first category and most common type of deficiency for women is a progesterone deficiency although estrogen levels are near normal. This type of deficiency occurs in women of all ages.  Too little progesterone makes the amount of estrogen in your system appear to be too much to the body even if the estrogen is at normal levels.  This apparent elevation of estrogen in the body causes the body to create candida.

The second category are people with an estrogen deficiency.  If your progesterone levels are all right a little extra estrogen can be very helpful. The balance here will cause candida growth to be minimal.

The third category are women with excess estrogen. If you have extra estrogen you will want to get off HRT with the help of your doctor. This extra estrogen will cause candida to grow like wildfire and may also be responsible for an increase in the risk of heart attacks, stroke, breast cancer and blood clots.

The fourth category are women with estrogen dominance. This occurs when you do not have enough progesterone to balance the estrogen in your body. So, even though you may have too little estrogen if your progesterone levels are even lower your body will think that you have too much estrogen as it looks at the ratio between the estrogen and progesterone in your body to determine where you are.  Estrogen dominance makes the body think that you have too much estrogen and candida will grow yet again.

Hormone imbalance are described very well at John Lee’s site on Hormone Imbalance.  There is a questionairre on this page that may provide some insight to whether or not you are struggling with a hormone imbalance of some kind.  The only way to really know where your hormones are at is to take a saliva test that analyzes where your estrogen levels are.  Since a woman’s body may cycle through the month (depending on your age), the very best test to get is one that tests saliva every few days over the course of a month.

I did a test like this a couple of years ago and found that I had a condition called PCOS.  I had tons of extra estrogen, virtually no progesterone to balance the estrogen and a lot of testosterone, as well.  It was no wonder that I had difficulty keeping my candida under control.  Understanding that I had PCOS allowed me to make a number of changes (adding progesterone, taking some estrogen reducers, adjusting my diet to reduce the carbs I was eating, and taking supplements like iodine) to get the PCOS under control so I could get rid of the candida for once and for all.

HRT is usually a simple approach – add estrogen and you will feel better. But, our bodies are not that simple.  HRT may actually be making things worse in the long run.  Now-a-days doctors are beginning to recognize that HRT treatment should just be a temporary thing; consider taking HRT for only a couple of months instead of for the rest of your life.

Understanding what your hormones are truly doing may be surprising and will enable you to understand where chronic candida concerns are coming from and give you the knowledge to get your candida under control.

About Leanne

I'm Leanne Felzien - website author I guess I am the one who started this whole thing because of ongoing problems with yeast issues. I finally got fed up with getting the run around from my doctor about my health problems and took control of my own health. I am here to help you through candida cleanses and any other issues related to gastrointestinal health that I can. I am not a doctor, but my experience with fighting digestive problems is something I have gained through personal experience and helping many others through this same battle.
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7 Responses to Series: Things that Cause Candida (HRT/Hormone Imbalance) – Part 4 of 6

  1. Lisa says:

    Thanks so much for publishing this, Leanne! Finally– all the pieces of my candida puzzle are coming together. When I entered my 30s, I struggled with thrush on my tongue while at the same time dealing with what seemed to be estrogen dominance. I had no idea the two were related. I finally had to get off of birth control pills because it seemed to be making it much worse. I was having cardiac symptoms! My OB/GYN put me on oral natural progesterone which really helped. I’m also supplementing with a progesterone cream and taking DIM (four tablets a day). What else would you recommend? The thrush still hasn’t disappeared, although it does seem to decrease at certain points in my cycle.

    • Leanne says:


      The progesterone was a wonderful idea – it is great to correct the hormone imbalance first before you start getting rid of the candida – that way the candida will not return once you are back in balance.

      That white tongue or thrush is most likely due to candida – you can take the saliva test on my site to make sure. However, if you haven’t done a candida cleanse, I would strongly suggest one regardless of how the test turns out. The body would have perceived extra estrogen in the body due to the estrogen dominance and the birth control pill which would have created a lot of candida. I bet you would do really well on FiveLac (as long as you aren’t lactose intolerant) and a soluble fiber. The FiveLac will help with any candida in the system and also replenish beneficial bacteria stores, the fiber will make sure your digestive system is moving well and help to absorb the dead candida and other toxins and get your tongue and any other symptoms right back to normal. :~D

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  4. Loretta says:

    Hi! I am hopeful after reading this article but concerned as well. I was diagnosed with systemic Candida about 1 1/2 years ago. I stayed on Oral Nystatin for 9 months, took strong probiotics, supplements and followed strict diet. My health has been alot better than it was and I’m now trying to conceive child #2. After visiting with my gyno and her running a few tests, she thinks I am low on progesterone which makes sense. I have read a few places that progesterone can feed candida and thats why alot of women have yeast infections while on progesterone. Can you comment and advice on this? I would greatly appreciate your help!

  5. xhqourpa says:

    This is very good. I was shocked to see this info so well constructed, definitely going to post this on facebook so the hubby can see it. Cheers!

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