Source: The Telegraph

Agents planned to smuggle doses of oestrogen into his food to make him less aggressive and more like his docile younger sister Paula, who worked as a secretary.

Spies working for the British were close enough to Hitler to have access to his food, said Professor Brian Ford, who discovered the plot.

He explained that oestrogen was chosen because it was tasteless and would have a slow and subtle effect, meaning it would pass Hitler's food testers unnoticed.

Speaking about the scheme, Prof Ford, a science writer and fellow of Cardiff University, said: "There was an Allied plan that they would smuggle oestrogen into Hitler's food and change his sex so he would become more feminine and less aggressive."

"Their research had showed the importance of sex hormones - they were beginning to be used in sex therapy in London."

He went on: "There were agents who would be able to get it into his food - it would have been entirely possible."

(My emphasis)

Was there a sex hormone plan to feminise Hitler? Were there agents who would be able to get oestrogen into Hitler's food?

  • 2
    I so wish that was true, it would have been hilarious. But logically, if you have access to his food, why not just poison him? Small doses of arsenic over a period probably would have got past any food tasters he had too.
    – GordonM
    May 15, 2015 at 6:52
  • 1
    @GordonM, "He explained that oestrogen was chosen because it was tasteless and would have a slow and subtle effect, meaning it would pass Hitler's food testers unnoticed." May 15, 2015 at 9:30
  • 1
    @GordonM : Getting an opposing leader to be in a state where he makes bad decision might been more useful than killing him and having him replaced. Assassinating opposing leaders also sets precedents that political leaders don't want to have set.
    – Christian
    May 15, 2015 at 21:02

1 Answer 1


The professor, Brian Ford, included this claim in his book, Secret Weapons: Death Rays, Doodlebugs and Churchill's Golden Goose. But that book is not a reliable source. I personally know it to have included a hoax copied from Wikipedia, the non-existent "Japanese death squad" "Unit 773". (page)

The actual source of the claim is Stanley Lovell's 1963 book Of Spies and Stratagems. He describes the plot in a jocular tone (quite appropriate to 1963, actually), and it's not clear how seriously it was actually executed, or if he is in fact describing real events.

My favorite attack on Adolf Hitler was a glandular approach. America’s top diagnosticians and gland experts agreed with me that he was definitely close to the male-female line. His poor emotional control, his violent passions, his selection of companions like Röhm, all led me to feel that a push to the female side might do wonders. The hope was that his moustache would fall off and his voice become soprano.

Hitler was a vegetarian. At Berchtesgaden, the vegetable garden that supplied his melodramatic Eagle’s Nest on the rocky peak had to have gardeners. A plan to get an O.S.S. man there, or an anti-Nazi workman, was approved. I supplied female sex hormones and, just for variety’s sake, now and then a carbamate or other quietus medication, all to be injected into der Führer’s carrots, beets or whatever went up to his larder.

Since he survived, I can only assume that the gardener took our money and threw the syringes and medications into the nearest thicket. Either that or Hitler had a big turnover in his “tasters”.

Regardless, we have to conclude that there was in fact such a plot, because the guy in charge says so!

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