When-Should-I-Take-The-DUTCH-Hormone-Test

When Should I Take The DUTCH Hormone Test?

You may have heard that the DUTCH hormone test is the best way to assess your adrenal and sex hormones.

The DUTCH hormone test is a great test for both men and women to assess hormones. If your hormones are out of balance, it may cause a wide range of symptoms.

But with hormones changing throughout the month for women you may be wondering when should I take the DUTCH hormone test to get the best results.

  • If you're a guy the answer is easy, you can take the test anytime.
  • But with women, the answer is not always so simple.

This article will guide you on the best time to do the DUTCH hormone test.

The Best Time To Do The DUTCH Hormone Test

DUTCH-Test-and-Typical-28-day-cycle

The recommended time by Precision Analytical who are the makers of the DUTCH test is to collect samples around day 19-22 of your menstrual cycle if you have a regular cycle of approximately 28 days.

This works out to be around one week after ovulation occurs, and if you know when you ovulate this is a good way to check if you are testing at the right time.

The reason we want to test at this time of the month is that progesterone will be at its peak during the luteal phase, and while estrogen levels will be declining from the mid ovulation peak we want to assess the progesterone/ estrogen balance.

When tracking your menstrual cycle the first day of bleeding is day one, at this time of the month estrogen and progesterone are very low.

DUTCH Test With A Longer Menstrual Cycle

DUTCH-Test-and-Abnormal-Menstruation

If you have a longer cycle you want to adjust the timing of the test. For example, if your cycle is consistently around 33 to 35 days then you want to do the DUTCH test around days 26, 27 or 28.

If however, your cycle is very irregular, for example, 28 days one month and then 38 days the next cycle, then assessing when you ovulate may be the best option to get the right time.

If you ovulate on day 20 of your cycle then you would do the DUTCH hormone test on days 26 to 27 of your cycle.

Don’t stress too much about the timing of the test, a lot of women doing this test are doing it because of PMS, infertility, and irregular periods - so as long as we know when your cycle started, and when the next cycle began we will be able to know where in your cycle the test was done.

Using these results we will be able to help you with a treatment plan to get your hormones back in balance.

DUTCH Test With A Short Menstrual Cycle

If you have a shorter cycle of 24 to 25 days in length, you are going to need to test earlier in the cycle. For example, around days 15 or 16.

Once again it may be best to assess if you are ovulating to identify the best time to test.

If you are in doubt about when the best time for you to test then contact your practitioner or Precision Analytical and they can help to guide you.

When you order the DUTCH hormone test through Planet Naturopath I can guide you on the best time to test.

How To Test If You Are Ovulating?

There are several ways to test when you ovulate including:

  • Assessing physical signs and symptoms like cervical mucus and increased libido.
  • Tracking your basal body temperature. There will be a slight drop and then a rise in temperature at ovulation.
  • Use an ovulation predictor test kit, this is a urine test that will show when you have ovulated or not.
  • A digital ovulation test kit like the Mira fertility kit is super convenient, accurate. The only downside is that it is expensive.
  • Maybe Baby ovulation tester is a reusable mini microscope that assesses your saliva to identify ovulation and your most fertile days.

The DUTCH Cycle Mapping Test - Get The Complete Picture

The-DUTCH-Cycle-Mapping-Test-

If you are still not sure when to test, and you feel like your hormones are “all over the place”, or fertility is your main focus then the DUTCH Cycle Mapping test may be the best option for you.

The DUTCH cycle mapping test measures your estrogen and progesterone levels every day of your cycle from day 7 until you get your period.

The DUTCH cycle mapping will show when you ovulate, if your hormones are rising and falling at the right time or if there are any unusual dips or peaks with your hormone levels.

The DUTCH Cycle Mapping test is ideal if you:

  • Are struggling with fertility
  • Have had a partial hysterectomy (still have ovaries)
  • PCOS
  • Have irregular cycles
  • Mid-cycle spotting
  • Hormone-related migraines or headaches
  • PMDD 

How To Collect The DUTCH Hormone Test Samples

The testing process is the same for the sex hormones if you are doing the DUTCH Complete, DUTCH Plus, or DUTCH Cycle Mapping Test.

  • “Collection day” is 6-7 days before your expected menses- e.g. if you have a 28-day cycle you will be collecting urine on days 21-22 of your cycle.
  • You’re given 4 sheets of laboratory paper for your samples.
  • You are instructed to pee on the paper at 4 different times: once around dinner time, once before bed, once when you wake up, and once 2 hours after waking (I brought my pee paper with me to work, it’s the only way if your collection days don’t land on a weekend!).
  • You will be given specific instructions on how much water to drink as to not dilute the urine.
  • You will fill out demographic information and answer questions about your menstrual cycle and corresponding symptoms.
  • Then pack up all of the materials and send them to your lab and you’ll have the results within 3 weeks.

DUTCH Test Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to see a doctor?

No, you can order the DUTCH test directly from Planet Naturopath. 

Do I need a referral?

When you order through Planet Naturopath we will organize the referral for you.

Is the test done at home?

Yes, you collect the samples at home which makes it easy and convenient to do the test

How long for results?

Once the lab receives the samples the results will be ready in 10 business days.

Can the DUTCH test be shipped from Australia, Europe, Asia, Africa, or South America?

Yes, the DUTCH hormone test can be done worldwide, the samples are very stable so they are easily shipped back to the lab and we can help organize the shipping.

How do blood samples compare to urine samples?

Blood testing is the gold standard still but it is not as detailed as the DUTCH test, recent studies show that urine testing for hormones is comparable to blood tests.

DUTCH Complete versus DUTCH Plus - which one should I choose?

For most people the DUTCH Complete test is enough, it is convenient to do as it only requires a urine sample, and it gives an overnight cortisol reading.

The DUTCH Plus requires saliva and urine samples and it does give a more specific cortisol awakening response but the sex hormones and other markers are exactly the same.

About the Author Michael

Michael is head consultant at Planet Naturopath - Functional Medicine and Nutrition Solutions. He is a registered naturopath with the Australian Natural Therapists Association (ANTA) and works with clients from all over the world via video or phone consultations. He is a degree qualified naturopath from the Endeavour College of Natural Medicine in Australia with 18 years of experience. He uses advanced testing methods, nutritional medicine, herbal medicine, and lifestyle advice to help you stay healthy. He is a Kalish Method-trained practitioner that keeps updating his education with Chris Kresser. Michael completed Dr. Terry Wahls practitioner training program, a 12-month program with ongoing training that helps understand the underlying cause and treatment of MS and autoimmune conditions. He keeps up to date with the latest research into health and natural medicine through the Metabolic Fitness Pro course with Dr. Bryan Walsh.

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