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Symptoms of Excessive Estrogen

Updated on December 20, 2010

Estrogen is an important hormone that helps regulate reproductive health, maintain healthy skin, hair, and bones, and many other functions. However, excessive levels of estrogen, also known as "estrogen dominance," are associated with many health problems in both women and men, including PMS and other menstrual problems, breast cancer, and many other problems.

Symptoms of Excessive Estrogen in Women

Women are the most common sufferers of estrogen dominance. Symptoms range from mildly annoying to life-threatening.

Obesity is a common cause and symptom of estrogen dominance. Photo by colros.
Obesity is a common cause and symptom of estrogen dominance. Photo by colros.
  • Dry skin
  • Vaginal dryness
  • Tender breasts
  • Low libido
  • Water retention/bloating
  • Mood swings
  • Night sweats
  • Insomnia and restless sleep
  • Memory Loss and "fuzzy thinking"
  • Irritability
  • Early puberty/late menopause
  • Irregular or absent periods (amenorrhea)
  • Unusually heavy or long lasting periods (menorrhagia)
  • Menstrual cramps (dysmenorrhea)
  • PMS
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Cyclical migraine headaches
  • Weight gain
  • Infertility
  • Miscarriage
  • Fibrocystic breasts
  • Uterine fibroids
  • Endometriosis
  • Low thyroid symptoms
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
  • Breast cancer

Estrogen dominance can have a number of causes in women. Several of the most common include:

  • insufficient levels of the hormone progesterone
  • exposure to xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens
  • Hormone Replacement Therapy or birth control pills

However, estrogen dominance can also be caused by some serious medical conditions, so it's important to consult with your doctor if you believe you may have it.

Estrogen dominance is also commonly associated with obesity, because estrogen is produced by fat cells, and alcoholism, because estrogen levels are regulated by the liver, so reduced liver functioning reduces the body's ability to maintain proper hormone balance. In fact, even one glass of alcohol a day can raise estrogen levels.

If you could fit one of these, you might be suffering from estrogen dominance. Scanned by AZAdams.
If you could fit one of these, you might be suffering from estrogen dominance. Scanned by AZAdams.

Symptoms of Excessive Estrogen in Men

Although estrogen dominance is more common in women than men, it sometimes affects men as well. Common symptoms include:

  • Prostate problems
  • Breast development ("man boobs," or gynecomastia)
  • Impotency
  • Weight gain
  • Low sex drive

Estrogen dominance in men is usually caused by xenoestrogens but may be caused by more serious conditions, including pituitary diseases and testicular tumors. As with women, It is also a common side effect of obesity and alcoholism. Consult your physician if you experience any of the above symptoms.


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    • honeybee2u profile image


      8 years ago from PNG

      Thank you Kerryg for this great informative hub. I suffer from uterine fibroid and the Doctor tells me its because of hormone imbalance.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      i like it

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      natral progesterone cream has really helped me..natpro is a great one but there are many out there..

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      20 out of the 28 symptoms fit me. What do i do now... Can i fix this on my own or what??

    • glorybeenow profile image


      10 years ago from Texas

      I wonder what would be a good replacement for estrogen? There has to be something natural that will help replace what estrogen you lose. Possibly something that will not cause any other undesirable symptoms.

    • Tatjana-Mihaela profile image


      11 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA

      Great Hub.

      It is so easy to cause hormonal imbalance, f.E. birth control pills are really problematic.

      Mood swings are most often caused by hormonal imbalance, very often that of thyroid gland. Hormones of sexual glands & thyroid are ALWAYS connected. Thyroid can be affected even if there is not shown in the blood test...

      If you are interested, you can check my Hub about Hyperthyroidism&Hypothyroidism and another one about Homeopathic remedies...I hope you will find there some useful informations which might help you.

      Thumbs up and thanks for writing about that topic.


    • Netters profile image


      11 years ago from Land of Enchantment - NM

      Very interesting, I never heard about this. Thank you.

    • Shirley Anderson profile image

      Shirley Anderson 

      11 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Really, really well done! Thx for writing this.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish MS 

      11 years ago from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation

      This will help a lot of men and women understand the dynamics of the hormone actions and of the environental risk factors. I've never delved into this and am glad you are doing it!

    • Lgali profile image


      11 years ago

      good healthy info

    • kerryg profile imageAUTHOR


      11 years ago from USA

      Thanks, Patty. I'm also working on a hub about xenoestrogens, and several more on other aspects of this problem. I had terrible cramps due (I suspect) to excess prostaglandins up until I gave birth. The cramps are now gone, but I'm getting some nasty headaches and mood swings instead. I'm pretty sure it's related to a hormone imbalance, and I've been reading everything I can find now for months, so it's high time I put all that research to use. :)

    • robie2 profile image

      Roberta Kyle 

      11 years ago from Central New Jersey

      What good, well presented information. Thanks

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish MS 

      11 years ago from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation

      The list of symptoms are long and can be very distruptive to those that suffer this problem. All red coloring in dyes in any objects are also considered environmental estrogens. In fact, some people become ill when they eat from crockery plates containing red dyes.

      I'm sure that many readers will benefit from the good information in this Hub, kerryg. Thumbs up!


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