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Thyroid and Menstruation

How Important is Your Estrobolome?


Many women are unaware that gut health plays a crucial role in hormone metabolism. The term “estrobolome” refers to the specific intestinal bacteria responsible for managing estrogen-specific metabolism. Even if a female is on bio-identical hormone therapy, symptoms such as weight gain, low libido, low immunity and mood disorders can occur when the gut microbiome and specific estrogen-related bacteria are in disproportion. Many hormone therapy patients do not see results due to compromised gut health.


Because gut microbiome influences hormone levels, it can also have an impact on menstrual cycles. Females who experience irregular and/or heavy cycles may have an imbalance in their microbiomes known as dysbiosis. Dysbiosis generally describes a microbiome that is out of balance. More specifically, it is the imbalance between the varying strains of bacteria that inhabit the microbiome. Females suffering from recurring UTIs and yeast infections often do so as a result of dysbiosis.


Patients often ask how gut bacteria can actually influence hormones. It is important to remember that all organ systems connect, interact and communicate with each other. Consequently, these interconnected systems greatly affect each other. When analyzing the gut-hormone connection and its effect on estrogen, estrogen excretion and the metabolism pathway should be considered. First, active estrogen is processed and filtered by the liver. Then, the liver deactivates the active estrogen and sends it to the gut. Once the deactivated estrogen reaches the gut, it is excreted in the stool. However, this process is left incomplete when there is an estrobolome imbalance.


There are specific strains of bacteria to look for when analyzing hormone imbalances. The Beta-glucuronidase and Lactobacillus species are two of the most impactful species in the estrobolome. Beta-glucuronidase is an essential enzyme during the metabolization and excretion processes of estrogen. When present in high amounts, it can reactivate estrogen and return it to circulation which keeps the body’s estrogen levels high. Elevated estrogen levels can lead to estrogen dominance and cause many different health issues as well as estrogen-related cancers.

The Lactobacillus species is also vital in maintaining optimal hormonal balance. These bacteria are directly associated with estrogen metabolism. Lactobacillus is commonly seen in over-the-counter probiotics as well as in probiotic-rich foods, such as yogurts. Although this is an essential bacteria that women want to have as a part of their microbiome, it is commonly one of the most overgrown and problematic when out of balance.


If you are on hormone therapy and have not had the improvements that you hoped for, your gut health may be compromised. A comprehensive stool test ordered by a qualified physician who possesses expertise in the interpretation of these test results can help determine if your estrobolome is in optimal condition. If you are interested in learning more about your estrobolome, please call Renaissance Health Centre at 702-258-7860 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Erica Soria today.

Erica Soria, ND

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