The Phenomenal Weight Loss Hormone

April 11, 2014
Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS

Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS

Award-winning nutritionist and New York Times bestselling author.

weight loss hormoneWhy Fat Flushers need a personal Salivary Hormone Test.

Hormones can impact weight loss big time.

While we all know something about estrogen, who knew of the fat flushing benefits of the hormone progesterone?

Plain and simple, progesterone helps burn body fat for fuel.

Estrogen, on the other hand, promotes weight gain—from both actual fat and water retention—especially around your tummy, hips, and thighs. A prevalent condition known as estrogen dominance even changes the way in which your body produces serotonin—the feel-good brain chemical. In turn, a lack of serotonin leads to food cravings and weight gain. What a vicious cycle!

Now, here’s where progesterone enters the picture. This special hormone signals the hypothalamus to increase your core body temperature, thereby increasing your resting metabolic rate. Low levels of progesterone trigger your body to burn 15,000 to 20,000 fewer calories per year and increase water weight.

You may not be producing enough progesterone because…

  1. You are deficient in zinc and vitamin B6, nutrient precursors of progesterone.
  2. You are not ovulating regularly, leaving you without a corpus luteum to create progesterone in the first place.
  3. Your body is converting progesterone into cortisol as a result of stress.

Measuring your progesterone levels is simple…

Since progesterone also helps stabilize blood sugar, builds bones, supports the thyroid, and acts as an antidepressant, assessing and tracking your personal progesterone levels is a “must” on a regular basis. Unlike the traditional blood test, the Salivary Hormone Test accurately measures levels of hormones that are fully active, known as bio-available or free hormones. Wrapped in protein so they can be transported through the blood stream, bound hormones are not fully biologically active. Using a blood test to assess hormones gives you and your health practitioner a distorted picture of your biologically active hormone levels.

I personally check my own hormone levels four times a year in sync with the changes in season. What I like about the Salivary Hormone Test from Uni Key Health Systems, is that it can be done at home without a doctor’s prescription. The test assesses up to six hormones (progesterone, estradiol, estriol, testosterone, DHEA, and cortisol). Testing for all six may be important if you haven’t tested before, but when it comes to stubborn weight loss the really crucial ones are estradiol and progesterone—which ideally should be in a 1:300 ratio.

After you take the Salivary Hormone Test you will receive a personalized letter with my individualized recommendations.

Here’s what several clients had to say about their experience with the Salivary Hormone Test:

Milissa B. said…

“On the suggestion of the Forum members, I had the Salivary Hormone Testing done. I found out through this test why I had years of irregular cycles, premature babies/miscarriages, and horrible PMS. I also discovered I had adrenal fatigue and I am now able to work on correcting these issues.”

Susie said…

“I did the test because I was having terrible mood swings, and really bad PMS. I learned that my estrogen was too high, and I had hardly any progesterone. With the recommendations from Ann Louise, I have been able to significantly improve. My symptoms are less severe than before, and that is only one month after doing the test!”


Now that spring’s officially here, it’s time to shed some light on your body’s hormone levels, which will help determine if the symptoms you’re experiencing—from weight gain and beyond—are associated with a hormonal imbalance.

Related Articles and Podcasts

Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS, is an award-winning New York Times bestselling author of more than thirty books including The Fat Flush Plan series and her latest book, Radical Metabolism. She’s been rewriting the rules of nutrition for more than 40 years and is internationally recognized as a pioneer in the field of diet, detox and women’s health issues. 

For a FREE daily dose of tips and strategies for maintaining healthy weight, conquering insomnia, and much more…check out my Radical Health Tips.

I’d like to meet and greet you on my Facebook groups, so won’t you check us out at the Radical Metabolism RevolutionFat Flush Nation, or my Inner Circle!


  1. Sheila

    I am 67yrs old & was using progesterone natural cream. Stop using a month ago & used natural estrogen, progesterone but breast became tender, hot flashes again, weight gain, so I am stopping it. I was taking it for hair & nails. Also taking amour thyroid but muscle testing shows it is not doing anything even tho blood works shows it is. Would like to wean off armour thyroid & go with natural. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Sheila

    • Leelee

      One primary molecular component in the nails is collagen. For stronger nails, you can attempt to stimulate collagen production in the body. It’s great for skin too. One self-care technique to stimulate collagen is finger tip “rinsing” by doing the MELT Method. There’s a book out on the method plus a website.

    • Team ALG

      The Salivary Hormone Test would be most helpful in your case, Sheila. You may be interested in the Standard Process formula called Thytrophan PMG, which is a natural, glandular thyroid support. Please call UNI KEY at 800.888.4353 if you are interested.

  2. Rita

    Stop drinking alchol. Excersise your arse off and starve.
    Then youll lose weight. It sucks.

    • Elizabeth

      Actually no Rita. I know exactly how to lose weight and gain weight. It’s called food choice. It is not about exercise. Exercise brings so many other benefits that you accrue with regular, consistence exercise but not weight loss.

      I did and am still following mostly an anti-candida diet.

      You lose weight:
      If you cut bad carbs, cut down sugar significantly (which of course is simple carbs), cut down grains (and unfortunately that even includes gluten-free) and increase your quality protein.

      You want to gain weight:
      Do the opposite of what I just wrote above.

      It’s all about gut health.

      And about the last thing you want to do is drink alcohol. Candida’s waste is the same as what you’ll get from drinking, not smart.

      And all of us, if you eat a SAD diet at all, have overgrowth issues.

    • Team ALG

      I would recommend that you read The Fat Flush Plan by our lovely Ann Louise Gittleman. I think you’ll find, after reading this book, that weight loss is attainable and manageable with simple dietary changes and light physical activity. You don’t and SHOULDN’T starve, and over-exercise is never recommended as it depletes vitally important antioxidants. Being healthy doesn’t “suck”, excuse the expression, it is energizing and healing and wonderful!

  3. Rita

    I’m on the estradiol patch for $90.00 month it stopped flashes, but mood swings still prevalent, weight won’t come off. I am basically miserable.

    • Elizabeth

      PS: And big time, if candida is an issue, it messes with your hormones. Look to your gut health.

    • Team ALG

      Many women with similar complaints have found that discontinuing estrogen therapy and adding natural progesterone has resolved their symptoms.

  4. Hélène

    NYS can never get any lab testing without an MD/thru the mail. THAT sucks.

  5. Team ALG

    Helene, Please call UNI KEY at 800.888.4353. They can make arrangements for any of their self tests to be available for NY state residents.

  6. Sophie

    Wow! More and more health problems are turning out to be due to low progesterone/estrogen dominance. Can you speak to why adolescent teens are now also becoming estrogens dominant and what can be done to rebalance their young systems? Thank you!

  7. Ann Louise Gittleman

    Hi Sophie: There are many xenoestrogens from the environment (pesticides, plastics, preservatives from parabens, not to mention “growth” hormones fed to amimals) which target estrogen receptor sites resulting in estrogen dominance. Furthermore, many adolescents don’t ovulate so progesterone is not produced to balance the circulating estrogen. Avoiding the artificial estrogens as much as possible would be helpful by being more vigilant with personal self care products as well as avoiding plastics and eating organic. A salivary hormone test can assess current progesterone levels (as well as estradiol) and if lacking, supplementing with zinc or topical progesterone creme and then monitoring for several months would be my suggetions.

    • Jaime

      Growth hormones are not fed to livestock. This is a giant misconception. They do have diets balanced with specific limiting amino acids- why feed 3 lbs of corn when they only need one with added proteins to met caloric requirements. This is the same thing we do when we eat protein supplements/ meal replacement products. Cattle do get implants – androgens for females, female hormones for males, to extend the period of growth where they put down lean muscle, which is similar to what we are talking about doing with to ourselves in this article. There are no traces of these hormones, other than natural levels of proteins and amino acids in the meat itself. In some dairy cows they get injections of the hormone that induces them to let down milk, which stimulates additional production for steady volume rather than a more tapering amount if they had their calves by their sides.

      Long ago some celebrity misinformed their following about hormones being fed to animals and we now have a mass public that does not understand how this process works. It is spreading misinformation.

      The real reason for the changing hormone levels/ excesses and deficiencies at younger and younger ages is processed foods and the chemical preservatives, along with continuously modified genetics towards that propensity.

      Please to not spread propaganda and slander an industry that is not well understood by the public.

  8. Glenda Ramirez

    I would like to take this test but the cost is to high do you ever have a sale on this. When I talk to my doctor about this I get It is your age. I am 71 and have unbearable hot flashes, I was put on estrogens for a year insurance won’t pay anymore due to my age and he said I didn’t need them they would go away after a while but I could have them well past 80. And I have gained over 50 lbs. and I don’t like it. Glenda

    • Team ALG

      It is likely that the ProgestaKey would help you. You could try it for 1-3 months and see what if your symptoms improve! If not, then consider the hormone test.

  9. Sophie

    Dear Dr. Ann Louise,
    Thank you so much for your guidance for healthy hormone balance in our teen daughters. Clearly in today’s polluted world, hormone disruption can begin in the adolescent years. Gratefully yours, S.

  10. AnthemNutrition

    There has been a big buzz with flat flushers recently and I just wanted to say thanks for clearing up some of the questions I had about them. Very informative, thank you!


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