How many of you have heard of the hormone estrogen? You were never taught how a woman’s hormones work and we wonder why breast cancer rates are rising. And now you must rely on a 44-year-old man to tell you how a woman’s body works. There is no such thing as the hormone estrogen. Estrogen is a term for 10 different hormones that are chemically similar. They may be chemically similar, but they have different properties. With how much high estrogen is connected to increased risk of breast cancer it seems we should get to the bottom of this. Pink Ribbons can’t give you prevention but understanding the multiple hormones and proper testing can set your body up for health.
We Need to Understand Estrogen
Women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer will be tested to see if their type of cancer is estrogen positive. If the results say their cancer type is estrogen receptive, they will be put on an aromatase inhibiting drug that blocks their production of all estrogens. It’s non-selective so that means it stops the production and conversion of all the estrogens. Not just the problematic one. If you understand that each estrogen has a unique role then you understand how damaging this can be. One of those estrogens, 2-hydroxy Estrone, is actually cancer protective. That’s just one of them and you have 10!
All of the estrogens play an important role in your body and making a woman who she is. Estrogen is demonized just because one type of estrogen gets out of control which can allow for an environment that allows breast cancer to grow and spread. Demonizing estrogen can have a detrimental effect on a body that relies on multiple estrogens for health.
The other problem is, you should be thinking about how estrogen impacts your health before you are 40 or have had breast cancer. With all the pink ribbons why aren’t we doing more to make sure women are set up for their best hormonal health? A mammogram won’t prevent breast cancer. It helps identify breast cancer but doesn’t stop it! You need to get all of your estrogen hormones tested properly. That starts by knowing there is more than 1.
Have You Had all 10 Estrogens Tested?
Have you had all 10 of those hormones tested? I ask this question all over the country when I speak and in my practice. Unless they are going to a Wellness Way Clinic, they have not had their hormones tested properly.
You may have had 1 or 2 hormones tested but have you had all of them? Sorry, you may have thought you have but, unless you have been to a Wellness Way, you probably haven’t. Here’s what you need to get tested:
- Estradiol (this is the major one tested for)
- 2- methoxyestradiol
Estrogens Are Important to a Woman
Estrogen dictates your life not just your breast cancer risk. It’s better to prevent illness than to treat illness. We don’t treat breast cancer. Why would we treat breast cancer if we could protect you from getting breast cancer by supporting hormonal health? There are 10 hormones that fall into the group of estrogens and the majority of you had no idea! 10! This group of hormones controls if you get cancer, osteoporosis, heart disease. Estrogens even control your moods- whether you are happy or depressed. They play an important part of making up who a woman is!
My wife had horrible health problems and painful periods. The medical community told her she would never have kids. She saw lots of doctors! When I tested these hormones in my wife one of them turned her uterus into pathological disease. When we got it normal her uterus went back to normal. We lowered her risk for breast cancer by supporting her hormones then her health problems subsided, and her periods became normal. But do you want to know the best part? Together we have 4 beautiful daughters that doctors told her wouldn’t be possible. Testing your hormones can change your health and your life. Do you think her doctors tested her hormones properly? No! How many of you are feeling like crap but not given answers?
Test All Estrogens and Test Them Properly
If your doctor has just tested your blood there is no way you can get a true picture of all your hormones. There are 3 ways to test your hormones and to get a full understanding of your hormonal health you need to utilize more than one.
Let me say this again so you can tell your gyno, your nurse practitioner, your doctor and anyone else who just wants to draw your blood to test your hormones- It is virtually impossible to get a full picture of your hormonal health by testing blood alone. The main hormone they can look at through blood testing is estradiol and conveniently this is one they can manipulate through drugs. The funny part is if you haven’t had a urine test to check your hormones you are missing important hormones. There are certain estrogens you can only see in urine. But you can’t test progesterone in a urine test so for a full hormonal picture you will need multiple tests. Most good clinical doctors will run multiple tests to get a full picture.
Now think about it- did you know about the 10 estrogens? Did you get multiple types of testing? Were you treated by a good clinical doctor?
Put Down the Pink Ribbon
While most Americans are wearing pink ribbons, eating fried chicken out of pink buckets, racing to save the tatas and whatever other pink-washed events that are happening, we are missing the conversations that can really lead to saving lives and improved quality of health. When you understand how estrogens work and how to properly test we can do more for prevention. It’s part of a whole-body approach that understands diet, environment and what you do to your body determine whether you are setting it up for health or illness.
When you start supporting a body for healthy hormones and a healthy body your body starts responding with positive outcomes. This can start before that dreaded mammogram that doesn’t do anything to prevent cancer. Pink ribbons don’t do anything to prevent cancer. Put down the ribbon. Now that you know you haven’t been told the whole truth about estrogen and that there is more to the story of hormones and breast cancer you need to take action. Get properly tested to fully understand your hormones, and how to support your for a body that isn’t a great environment for cancer. Don’t treat cancer. Treat your body for health.
Written by Dr. Patrick Flynn
Hear more from Dr. Patrick Flynn in his quick tip on estrogen: