Women usually have a chocolate craving just before their period. This is because these women have magnesium deficiency, and chocolate is one of of foods with a very high magnesium content. Thus, taking a good chelated magnesium of 400 to 600 mg per day or higher usually will stop the chocolate craving. Now, the question is why does the chocolate craving occur just before their period. And why do they have a magnesium deficiency? Obviously, the magnesium deficiency is linked to the hormones in some way.
Xenoestrogens in synergy with your own estradiol (an estrogen) causes a magnesium deficiency. Xenoestrogens are chemicals or herbs that look like estrogen to the body. Furthermore, xenoestrogens are strange or weird estrogens that do estrogen like things to the body, but are not estrogen proper. So just before your period your own hormones in concert with xenoestrogens cause PMS and a magnesium deficiency. Also, chocolate contains theobromine. Theobromine is a bitter alkaloid from the chocolate plant. Theobromine is also found in guarana berry, tea plants and the cola (kola) nut. Theobromine is similar in structure to theophylline and caffeine. Theobromine however contains no bromine and should not be confused with bromine. Cocoa powder can contain as much as 2% to 10% of theobromine. Theobromine looks like an estrogen to the body. A study conducted in Utah between published in 1993 demonstrated a correlation between increased risk of prostate cancer in all the men and theobromine. Formby, PhD showed that estrogen added to prostate cancer cells made them proliferate. We know that a excess estrogen causes uterine cancer or endometrial cancer. The endometrial lining is sensitive to estrogen. We also know that embryologically the prostate gland and the uterus is the same. Thus, it is logical to assume that the prostate gland and the uterus will respond similarly to the same hormone estrogen.
Fetus exposure to theobromine is correlated with hypospadias and testicular cancer. Hypospadias is a birth defect of the urethra in the male. The urethra of the male opens up on the bottom of the penis instead of the tip of the penis.
Theobromine has been used for alpha-binding estrogen receptor assays for test tube conditions .
Thus, not only is chocolate high magnesium, but chocolate is also a source of xenoestrogens to your body, and is actually causing a magnesium deficiency. Thus, chocolate makes the magnesium deficiency worse.
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Xenoestrogens are chemicals or herbs that fit into the estrogen receptor in your body. Xenoestrogens make your body think that they are kind of like estrogen. See the Frontline PBS video on poisoned waters in our video library here. The video explores why male fish in the river are starting to look like female fish. The medical doctor from John Hopkins University explains that our modern lifestyle has chemicals and herbs that are filled with hormone disruptors. This explains why American women will have a one out of eight incidence of breast cancer. You can also check the website www.breastcancerfund.org.
At Tufts medical school in Boston in 1987, Soto and Sonnenchein found that their "inert" plastic test tubes had a chemical that caused breast cancer cells to grow and proliferate. They were playing with breast cancer cells sensitive to estrogen. When exposed to estrogen the breast cancer cells would grow. However, when the breast cancer cells were kept from estrogen the breast cancer cells would stop growing.
In their experimentation, the test tube producer changed the formulation of the test tube. The producer of the plastic test tubes used p-nonylphenol, an alkylphenol, to make the test tubes last longer and less breakable. Manufacturers of PVC routinely use nonylphenol in poly styrene and polyvinyl chloride to make PVC more durable. The new plastic test tubes made the estrogen sensitive breast cancer cells multiply rapidly. They concluded that the nonylphenol acted like estrogen.
Xenoestrogens can also be natural and organic. For instance, sunflower seeds contain coumestrol. Sunflower seeds were fed to mother rats that caused permanent reproductive problems in the rat pups. The female rat pups did not ovulate after maturing. The male rat pups had strange mounting behavior and less ejaculations. Immature rats given coumestrol had premature estrous cycles.
The Greeks used pomegranate as a contraceptive. Modern laboratory research confirms strong estrogen activity. Giant fennel was used in the ancient world to prevent pregnancy and precipitate miscarriage. Giant fennel was in such demand that it was wiped out as a species in Europe.
Why is this important? The answer is that you may be taking a estrogen from natural or synthetic sources that you are not aware off and this is causing the magnesium deficiency. The magnesium deficiency is triggering a chocolate craving just before your period. This in turn is triggering you eating chocolate, and the theobromine caffeine in the chocolate is further worsening your magnesium deficiency. Your magnesium deficiency is not caused by taking too little magnesium as many health food stores insist. Your magnesium deficiency is caused by your exposure to xenoestrogens.
A magnesium deficiency makes all your muscles tighten up or tense up. Thus, your leg muscles may tense up resulting in a "Charlie Horse." Your neck muscles may taken up resulting in a sore neck and shoulders. Your intestines may tense up resulting in constipation. Your uterus may tense up resulting in menstrual cramps. The muscular wall that sheathes your arteries may constrict and tense up and make the arteries smaller. Blood flow is restricted to your hands and feet which makes them cold. Again, the magnesium deficiency is not due to an insufficient intake of magnesium. The magnesium deficiency is caused by xenoestrogens.
Thus, I suggest to avoid all xenoestrogens and take some progesterone and magnesium, and within two to three months, the magnesium deficiency will go away. After that, you do not need to take magnesium anymore.
Magnesium oxide only has absorption rate of 4%. However, a chelated magnesium may have absorption rate of 40%. The chelated magnesium is simply an amino acid wrapped around a magnesium so that the body can absorb it easily. Magnesium oxide on the other hand, is cheap and not well absorbed by the body. I recommend my patients use magnesium glysinate 400 mg to 600 mg per day. If you take too much magnesium then you will get diarrhea. You can continue to increase the dose of magnesium slowly and you will get used to the higher does and not trigger diarrhea.
Xenoestrogens are mostly coming from things and you put on the skin. This is counterintuitive. I had difficulty believing this in the beginning. Anything that you put on the skin is 10 times the oral dose in potency compared to what you eat. This is because anything you put on the skin is directly absorbed into the body and the liver cannot break it down immediately. In contrast, anything you put in the mouth and eat is 90% first pass metabolized by the liver. Therefore, counterintuitively anything you put in the mouth is less potent than what you put on the skin.
In the drugstore, nicotine patches and estrogen patches can be bought that deliver nicotine and estrogen into the body. The drug companies are utilizing this principle in biology that things are absorbed into the body through the skin.
Therefore, anything you put on the skin is absorbed directly into the body. This includes shampoos, lotions, toothpaste, conditioners, laundry detergent, dishwashing detergent by hand, soaps, makeup, lipstick, chapstick, mascara, spermicides, and deodorant. When I first realized this I was extremely skeptical. However, my patients tell me that even mascara can make them bloat, cause breast tenderness, and cause PMS. The first time the patient told me this, I thought she was crazy. However, by the time the third unrelated patient told me the same thing that mascara made her bloat, I realized that my patients are giving me important insight into this estrogen dominance phenomena. Estrogen dominance is simply too much estrogen. Estrogen dominance is caused by the xenoestrogens acting in concert with your own estradiol that you produce. Hormones can be active at parts per billion. This is equivalent to spitting into the Olympic sized pool. The concentration of your spit would be on the order of parts per billion.
I advise my patients to avoid xenoestrogens religiously. I have an avoidance list of xenoestrogens to avoid. I also have a list of safe products to use. If you buy any of our products you will get this list of xenoestrogens to avoid and the safe products to use. This list has been compiled from my experience of 25,000 patients from 1999 to 2015. I looked through thousand lotions and I could not find one that I was happy with. I looked through 500 shampoos, and I found three that did not have any xenoestrogens or herbs that acted like estrogen. In 2011, I did not know that it was so difficult to find products that were xenoestrogen free. I simply gave my patients a list of chemicals and herbs to avoid. However, I still had a number of treatment failures because my patients were using products that still contained xenoestrogens. They were not able to be careful enough to screen through all the ingredients in their products. It was much easier to give them a list of safe products to use. The most common cause a failure is that my patients are using products that they think are safe but are really not.
Progesterone can be used to counter the effect of small amounts of weak xenoestrogens. Progesterone can balance out weak xenoestrogens. However, if progesterone is used with strong large amounts of xenoestrogens, progesterone will make your symptoms worse. There are four possibilities:
1. Progesterone balances out small amounts of weak xenoestrogens. You get better.
2. Progesterone is taken with large amounts of strong xenoestrogens. You get worse.
3. Progesterone is taken with strong xenoestrogens. The progesterone " works" for the first two months and then "doesn't work."
4. Progesterone is taken with herbs that block progesterone. Some herbs or chemicals go into the progesterone receptor and block progesterone from going into the receptor. Then, the progesterone does "nothing."
The reason why you get worse is that when you have a large xenoestrogens load your body shuts down the estrogen receptors to protect itself. When you have a large chronic xenoestrogen load you become less sensitive to estrogen. When you take progesterone, the estrogen receptors wake-up. You regain your original sensitivity to estrogen. You become more sensitive to estrogen. Now, your estrogen dominance is worse. And it seems like progesterone is making you worse. But, that is not really what is happening. What is happening is that you have regained your original sensitivity to estrogen and the Estrogen Dominance is worse.
What can I liken it to? I can liken it to going to a noisy party. Initially, the noisy party is loud. But after a while the party is not so loud anymore. This is because your ears in order to protect themselves shut down. The party seems less loud, but the noise level is the same. Now, you take progesterone. Your ears wake-up. And the party is loud again. Naturally, you blame progesterone. However, you are blaming the wrong thing. The progesterone is waking up your ears and the parties loud again. So the root cause is actually the loudness of the party, not the progesterone.
What is a solution? The answer is to go to a very quiet place and then take the progesterone.
But we're not talking about noise, we are talking about xenoestrogens exposure. The solution is to eliminate xenoestrogens for one to three months, and then take progesterone. Since many of these chemicals and herbs have oil soluble components are xenoestrogens, it will take one to three months for the body to eliminate these xenoestrogens. Furthermore, if you are losing fat, and the fat is melting away, the fat will also release xenoestrogens are stored in it. So, your detox to release xenoestrogens may actually be longer than 1-3 months.
I recommend that my patients eliminate xenoestrogens, take progesterone, and take a good magnesium supplement that is chelated. This usually helps a chocolate craving.
1. Slattery, Martha L.; West, Dee W. (1993). "Smoking, alcohol, coffee, tea, caffeine, and theobromine risk: risk of prostate cancer in Utah (United States)". Cancer causes control 4(6): pages 559-63.
2. Giannadrea F (February 2009). "Correlation analysis of cocoaconsumption data with worldwide incidence rates of testicular cancer and hypospadias". Int J Environ Res Public Health 6 (2):568-78.