How to Know if You Have Low Progesterone + 3 Supplements to Support Progesterone Production
Many, many women are suffering from chronically low progesterone. While it's possible to observe your bodily symptoms to help you see if you are low in progesterone, it's much better to test to confirm if you have low progesterone levels.
Symptoms of low progesterone: amenorrhea, an-ovulation, infertility, recurrent miscarriage, migraine headaches, hypothyroidism, autoimmunity, anxiety, depression, low libido, irregular cycles, fibroids, acne, weight gain
Most affordable test: blood serum test (check after you confirm ovulation via egg white-like cervical mucus. Often, I will order this for 1:1 clients to see if they have adequate progesterone levels. If you get this test through a provider (through me, your doctor, another practitioner), your levels should be around 10-20 ng/ML.
Best way to test progesterone is via a DUTCH test, which is a urine analysis. It's more expensive than a blood test, but more accurate. This is more of an investment, and I usually suggest that clients work with me for at least 2 months before we run a DUTCh test, so that they make the best use of their money.
3 Supplements that Support Progesterone Production
It's important to understand that to produce progesterone, a women must be ovulation. While there is a time and a place to use progesterone cream, capsule, or suppository, it's a great first step to focus on supporting ovulation. Strong ovulation will provide the body with progesterone.
In clinical studies, Metformin has been shown to increase progesterone production by (246%) in women specifically with PCOS (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15517078/). Inositol is the safe alternative to Metformin. By taking 750 mg - 3000 mg of inositol (the suggested dosage is dependent upon weight and insulin sensitivity), women can support egg quality and support healthy ovulation. For brands, I suggest starting with Jarrow, as it is affordable and only contains Myo-inositol, which I prefer to a Myo-inositol/d-chiro-inositol blend.
Vitamin B6 is an essential nutrient to support healthy ovulation. Vitamin B6 is necessary for the development of the Corpus Luteum. The Corpus Luteum is within the ovaries and is responsible for the production of all progesterone. Although it's possible to get enough vitamin B6 from food, it can be helpful to supplement, especially if you have a limited variety in your diet. When looking for a vitamin B6, make sure you are looking for pyridoxal 5'-phosphate (PLP). Thorne, Jarrow, Pure Encapsulations, and Standard Process are excellent brands of vitamin B6.
Whole food vitamin C is essential for the production of progesterone. Although I suggest trying to get as much whole food vitamin C through your diet, it's still helpful to consider whole food vitamin C supplementation if you have low progesterone levels. Acerola cherry, alma, and camu-camu are my favorite real food vitamin C supplement sources.
Supplementation can help, but lowering stress, sleeping enough, and nourish your body through metabolically supportive foods are also a considerable piece of the puzzle. Stay tuned for my top suggestions for food that will support progesterone production + acupressure points to help with progesterone production.