This archived forum used to be called 'Peatarian' (in reference to Ray Peat).

Peat-Friendly Birth Control?

I am on the hunt for some long-term, extremely effective birth control. Definitely no estrogen, obviously. Hormonal birth control has fucked me up in the past, but I would like a solution that offers more protection than the cervical cap... Does anyone know anything about the Mirena IUD? It releases extremely low doses of progestin into the uterine wall so it doesn't really enter the blood stream. I don't really have an understanding of synthetic progesterone-- so if anyone has any insight, I would be much obliged. Or if anyone has any other suggestions of effective, Peat-friendly birth control options... feel free to chime in! Thanks!

asked Apr 5, 2013 by mclaire
recategorized Sep 3, 2013 by

10 Answers

Any kind of IUD is stress and estrogen promoting. body recognizes it as a foreign body and/or injury and it stops the normal cycle making it sure that the pregnancy won't happen while uterus is "injured". As a result you get high estrogen and low progesterone and all the health issues that go with it.

answered Apr 21, 2013 by Nemesis

Condoms and/or pull out. It has worked for millions and will always work, why make it complicated?

answered Sep 2, 2013 by jb4566

Both methods are not safe and not very enjoyable either....

Condoms isn't safe?

No, they're not. According to some statistics, the use of condoms-only has a 18% fail rate while hormonal contraceptive methods only have a 0,5-1% fail rate.

The problem with that study is that it included a huge amount of idiots who don't know how to put it on.

Sex without condoms is disgusting.

That's true. The perfect-use fail rate is much lower.

You have some serious issues, Anon.

This is how you do it Anon?

Sex with condoms is disgusting.

^ This

Thanks for the, um, diversity of tips guys! boyfriend and I used to do the condom/pull-out/rhythm method but there were some issues: 1) I hate condoms, 2) the pull-out method was not optimal for us and 3) I attempted to chart my cycles, but had a very difficult time identifying the signals of ovulation. These methods failed me, unfortunately, and sadly I had the extremely stressful issue of an unwanted pregnancy on my hands. HOWEVER, this is NOT to say that these methods don't work well if done with precision-- clearly I could have done better. Needless to say, I caved and got a copper IUD. And I have to say, I love it. I have had almost no problems with it, and while I sometimes get concerned about the copper, I do supplement with zinc and try and increase my oyster intake to help balance out the copper I may be absorbing. I understand that it is probably not ideal, but for me, I have not seen any real credible scientific research to suggest that it is potentially toxic. Again, not to say that it is a perfect solution but I think as far as non-hormonal birth control, this has got to be one of the best options out there. For me, it was imperative that I find a very reliable form of birth control. Other natural methods are likely just as effective, but the IUD definitely provides me with the peace of mind that I feel like I need to have a healthy sex life with my boyfriend.

It might be wise to keep an eye on your progesterone levels and be ready to supplement if needed.

@MCclaire: IUD in fact is not a NON hormonal birth control since it does a real hormonal change in your body and hence you don't get pregnant. The body signals the mind that there is and injury in the uterus so you don't conceive.Yes, IUD is recognized by the body as an uterine injury!. Peat said this himself, I just cannot remember which interview it was.

"I have not seen any real credible scientific research to suggest that it is potentially toxic." which scientific research have you seen?

You could look into natural family planning, although I'm not sure that would fall under extremely effective birth control.

answered Apr 21, 2013 by Lemonhead

Or become a monk

Not like I haven't considered that.

Do it in the butt.

answered Sep 3, 2013 by Anon

Is this actually Peat-Friendly? Do we have word from the man himself? Seems like it could increase serotonin.

good question Peaton!

In the spirit of our friend Anon; Oral sex =D

answered Sep 3, 2013 by Bryan

Peat said he has known women who have used progest-e with a diaphragm effectively. I don't think Peat thinks any progestins are safe, but I'm not 100% sure.

answered Apr 5, 2013 by Bryan

I have no idea what Peat recommends for birth control. Dr. Katharina Dalton said natural progesterone could be used for birth control in her book Once a Month. Here is the quote, from this link (scroll to the bottom of the page). This site also recommended the copper iud.

CONTRACEPTIONContraception is often a problem for women with PMS. All
contraceptive pills contain progestogens, and as has already been
explained in Chapter 5, the artificial man-made progestogens lower the
blood progesterone level and so increase the severity of PMS. This
means that the Pill should be avoided. Again, it is known that PMS
increases in severity after sterilization (see Chapter 1), so this
rules out another popular method of contraception. The intra-uterine
device, or IUD, is best not used by any woman who has had problems
with pelvic infections or by young girls who have not been pregnant.
Withdrawal as a method of contraception is very unreliable (and bad
for the nerves!). So, apart from progesterone contraception, this
leaves condoms - male or female - the diaphragm (or 'Dutch Cap') and

Nowadays a doctor would advise any woman with a new partner to use a
condom for the first six months, until any risk of HIV or AIDS has

Progesterone ContraceptionProgesterone is as safe a contraceptive as
the intra-uterine device or the progestogen-only pill, if used as

Start on Day 8 of the cycle with a low dose of progesterone, and keep
it up until menstruation or - for PMS sufferers - the day when you
start on the bigger, anti-PMS dose. A daily dose of 100 mg (half a 200
mg suppository) or a 400 mg suppository are equally effective. (Many
women who will use 400 mg of progesterone two to six times daily from
ovulation onwards prefer to take one 400 mg suppository in the
follicular phase rather than having to get 200 mg suppositories as

Progesterone contraception for PMS...

A low dose (100-200 mg) of progesterone from Day 8 of the cycle
Increase to optimum progesterone dosage at ovulation Continue
progesterone until menstruation A study of progesterone contraception
in women with severe PMS showed 15 failures in 253 women who had used
progesterone contraception for an average of 5.82 years. This means a
failure rate of 2.66 per 100 women/years (women/years is a ratio that
encompasses 100 women using a method of contraception for one year, 50
women using it for two, etc.), which compares favourably with the
recognized failure rate of the condom of 14, diaphragm of 12, rhythm
method 24, and intra-uterine device of 2.5 per 100 women/years.

However, some women find that by starting progesterone early they
start bleeding at, or shortly after, ovulation. They should be advised
to lower the dose of daily progesterone from Day 8 to 100 mg daily and
start their usual higher dose of progesterone about two days after
ovulation. If extra bleeding still occurs, then it is best to use a
condom or diaphragm until the normal time of starting their course of
progesterone. Should attacks of diarrhoea occur when using
progesterone, then contraception cannot be guaranteed and alternative
methods are advised.

answered Apr 8, 2013 by NoMilk
Sounds very very doable  for young women.
I take about 100mg of Progest-E a day usually. That's a bottle a month, at a cost of about 25-35 dollars per bottle. Probably comparable to the pill cost wise? I wouldn't know.

Progesterone causes the cervix to close up. I think that's the mechanism Peat is referring to when he says to use it with the diaphragm. But the response I got a while ago from him was the typical one sentence type, and he didn't specifically say that. You might be able to get away with even less progesterone if my hunch is correct, since it would be applied to the cervix itself. I don't know about those other progesterone creams though, I wouldn't put all those additives up there if I was a lady =S

Anyone feel like contacting Peat about this? Cause I don't - I've asked too many questions lately I fear...
Very interesting thread over at the ray peat forum on contraception:

My girlfriend got a stroke from a regular contraceptive (estrogen) pill. After recovery, she tried this IUD, and then she started losing sensations in her fingers -- a sign of small stroke(s). So, she had that removed, too. Now she is using Copper IUD. No stroke issues on this one, but she did gain weight, which makes me believe it is suppressing her thyroid.
My suggestion: don't.

answered Sep 2, 2013 by stevan

How old was she approximately when she had that stroke?

28 years old

yes, suppressing thyroid , increasing estrogen, impaired blood glucose use, et.

I use the Billing's Ovulation Method with my girlfriend and it worked fine so far.

answered Sep 3, 2013 by Dewitt

so far

"So far" is more than 9 months. And it has a very low perfect-use fail rate, so I guess it's safe. According to the pearl index, it's roughly as safe as the combined contraceptive pill.

I recently convinced my girlfriend of using the symptothermal method (morning temp + billings). However she has difficulties identifying changes in mucus consistency. We did catch the rise in temperature during ovulation though.

I think if the couple is super conservative and only has sex during the luteal phase it's probably pretty safe(?). Irregular ovulation or using hormones might make it trickier.

@Bukowski: I didn't like the thermal method. There are too many things that influence the body temperature. But yeah, checking the mucus consistency is a great method. Altough it probably works better with younger women, when the hormonal differences during the menstrual cycle are bigger. She had some trouble in the beginning though. Both with comfortably reaching the cervix and identifying the change in consistency. I had to help her during the first two months.

@Bryan: With this kind of method, you can have sex on all days except 2 days before, during and 2 days after ovulation. So that's 5-6 days per cycle you can't have sex on. And even then, you can still use a barrier method on these days. Irregular ovulation is not a big issue, because it's a symptomatic method and not really based on a regular cycle.

Thanks, we're just in the first month and I hope things will get better with experience.

@Bryan: You dont wanna have sex at the beginning of the luteal phase as Dewitt mentioned above.

It will definitely get easier with experience. And it gets a lot easier once both of you are more relaxed about this stuff. It can be kind of awkward. in the beginning.

So ovulation occurs right at the beginning of the luteal phase right?

Yes, it marks the change from follicular to luteal phase.

No, it occurs one day before the luteal phase. It's day 13 on a standardized menstrual cycle. But fertility stretches from two day before the ovulation to 3 days after the ovulation. So, again on a standardized menstrual cycle, the fertile days should be roughly day 11 to 16.

Dewitt, do you have good literature about Billing's Ovulation Method? It may be in german, too.
The German Wikipedia article says that Billing's pearl index is about 15. That's quite bad. If I would like to convince my girlfriend to stop using the pill, I will need an alternative, which is as save as the pill.

The pearl index isn't that great. I advise you to look at trials and studies on this method. According to those, the fail rate is between 0% and 2,5%. If perfectly used, it's even safer than the IUD method.

Sorry, I can't point you to good literature, as I never read it myself. I use the method based on my own knowledge about biochemistry and physiology.

The vaginal mucus has a special consistency and color couple of days before ovulation.You know that stretchy mucusy thing in the raw eggwhite? something like that :) So, Dewitt, the Billings method in a nut shell is observing when that happens?

Yeah, that's the method in a nutshell :)

When the cycle is not perfect and when there are hormonal imbalances that method could fail. For example, I sometimes ovulate without having that mucus consistency. Although the ovum released in that cycle maybe not be of a high quality I still get the progesterone release form the corpus luteum so pregnancy might be possible. Although it hasn't been possible in my case yet:P
what I noticed is that my sexual desire is higher just before the ovulation, so it would be kind of sad for me not to have sex when I want it the most:)

I usually do it the other way around. Instead of identifying the fertile days, I identify the infertile days. And there's always the position of the cervix as an addition indicator. If my partner has some kind of hormonal imbalances, I simply reverse them with the appropriate medications and draw some blood from her for hormonal analysis. Of course, that method is only possible for people that work/study in the medical field. And if in doubt, just apply some progesterone on the ectocervix to induce almost instant infertility. Oh, and you can also let the mucus dry and watch it under a microscope. If it looks like the leaves of a fern, it indicates the fertility around ovulation.

yes I know about it, there are also small microscopes you can buy only to watch the mucus and hope it to be fern like or not to be, it depends:) So every time you want to have sex first you watch her mucus under a microscope?:D how do you check the position of the cervix?

No, I obviously don't watch her mucus under a microscope every time :D I just wanted to mention that this is a good alternative if the change in consisctency can't be identified.

Basically, you shove your finger in and identify the position by touching the outermost part of the cervix. During ovulation, it is higher up and softer. That method is ingenious because you can easily do it every time during foreplay without her even noticing it.

hahaha,Dewitt you're fabulous:)

Skip any hormone disrupting pills and just get an abortion.

answered Sep 6, 2013 by Westside PUFAs
reshown Sep 19, 2014 by Westside PUFAs