Progesterone is another steroid hormone in our bodies. Most people think this is only useful to women, however, unlike prolactin, there are actual benefits to healthy levels of progesterone. It "counters" some of the adverse effects stemming from estrogen. For those of us off cycle, it's also a precursor for testosterone. Also cortisone via the adrenal glands. It's produced from cholesterol where it's first pregnenolone and then progesterone. In fact, many men are prescribed progesterone-increasing drugs to elevate levels into the upper range for a more healthy state.
If it's so great, why don't we cause it to produce even more? Well, out of range levels can cause complications. This hormone is beneficial but only in healthy ranges. Beyond that, it becomes an enemy. So our goal is to keep progesterone in range so that it remains a "friendly" hormone so to speak. Now let's have a quick look at the concerns we will face, as men, in the presence of elevated progesterone levels...
Side Effects Of High Progesterone Levels:
- Erectile Dysfunction
- Lower Libido
- Hair Loss
- Muscle Atrophy
You see how serious high levels are? We need to maintain a healthy level of progesterone for many reasons as outlined above. But I want to cover gynecomastia for a minute because I want you to understand the cause.
Progesterone increases because too many receptors are activated by progestins. Progestins are compounds that act on these receptors, such as Trenbolone and nandrolone or any 19-nor steroid. This is what causes progesterone to increase and why you see the increase when these steroids are introduced. You never need protection with other steroids because others are not progestins. Make sense?
Can you guess what I'm going to say next? That's right. It's worse in the presence of excess estrogen! Especially in the breasts as it acts to promote breast tissue alongside estrogen by increasing 1GF-1 in the breast. Also, progesterone directly stimulates estrogenic activity at the mammary tissues. So here we have a semi-direct influence. High progesterone increases estrogenic activity and results in gynecomastia. But once again I want to reiterate, your first line of defense is controlling estrogen!
Treating elevated progesterone levels can be done via Selective Progesterone Receptor Modulators (SPRM). For example, Asoprisnil; also known as J867. SPRM's are quite aggressive and should only be used in extreme cases and under a doctor's supervision. So I do not recommend them because they could easily cause your levels to plummet, causing other issues. So instead, I recommend that you use an AI to simply put an end to progesterone stimulating estrogenic activity. So even though this has a direct effect, the effect would lesson in the presence of less estrogen.
I highly recommend Aromasin as the AI of choice when running 19-Nor steroids.
Myth: Nolvadex may not be used with 19-Nor. FALSE! Nolva/Tamox is a mixed estrogen receptor agonist/antagonist. Some tissue (not all), upregulation of progesterone receptor can happen; for example in the mucous membrane because it's estro-sensitive. But our concern is the breast. And Nolva blocks the estrogen receptor. Progesterone receptor is then synthesized. Blocked estrogen receptor = down regulated progesterone receptor.
Gynecomastia: Explanation and how to treat it
This is simply the enlargement of breast tissue in males. Your body is basically adopting female characteristics. As mentioned earlier, this is caused by excess estrogen and can be aggravated directly by excess progesterone. There are several proven methods to reverse gynecomastia. Some are more effective than others. I'll mention the most common ones.
Gynecomastia reversing drugs (ordered by effectiveness):
Do you notice a common denominator? They're all Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulators (SERM). But why have I not listed the other popular SERMs such as Clomiphene (clomid) and Toremifene? Well, although the similarities are abundant, these other SERMs do more stimulation at the pituitary (brain), where the SERMs I mentioned are much stronger and effective at the breast tissue. This is why they are to be used in gynecomastia reduction/reversing. I'll discuss dosing for the compounds I've personally used.
Raloxifene: Dose Raloxifene at 60 mg, up to 80mg daily. Do not go up and down with the dose. Start with 60 mg for 6 weeks. If you do not notice much difference, increase to 80 mg and stay at 80 mg until gynecomastia is reversed.
Tamoxifen: Dose at 40 mg every day for 1 week. After that, drop dose to 20 mg and use that every day until gynecomastia is reversed.
About Reversing With letrozole: Yes, it can be done. However, I do not recommend this method. Letrozole is a fairly harsh compound and the protocols I've seen out there are wild. Multiple milligrams of this compound time after time is a surefire way to crush your E2 levels. Then you're left miserable and hating life. Do not use this compound. However, if you are not convinced, please be super cautious with it. The milgram + suggestions are mind boggling to me, I don't care how many people say it works for them. I promise you, most of these folks are not monitoring blood work and this entire deal is a guessing game.
First of all, if you insist on Letro, I would run letro at NO MORE than 100 mcg daily. Yes, that's MICROgrams. Letro took me from 47 ng/dL to 2 ng/dL in 10 days. That's how powerful and difficult to manage this compound is.
Final note regarding gynecomastia reversal... This process takes time. Too many things factor into this so giving you an estimate on how long it takes makes zero sense. Everyone is different and every gynecomastia case is different. Main factors are the level of estrogen present, body fat percentage and the age of your gynecomastia. All that would render an estimate of time to reverse it useless. You must however, have patients. This is not a quick process at all. Not even close. In some cases it can take up to 9 months, heck even longer. But... My experience was that I noticed a big difference around week 6, and was able to completely reverse it before the end of the 3rd month.