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March 15, 2011

Better Living Through Hormone Replacement Therapy

Hormone replacement therapy and couple with low libido

Hormone Replacement Therapy and Quality of Life

Is your energy level low?  Are you gaining weight despite being consistent with your eating and exercise program?  Do you seem less sharp mentally?  Have you seen a decline in your libido?  Do others tell you that you’re moody?  Are you indecisive and less confident? Do you seem anxious or depressed without good reason?  Are you losing muscle mass or bone density? If so, you may be in need of hormone replacement therapy.

If you’re middle-aged and are experiencing any of the above it is very likely that at least some of your hormone levels are low making you a candidate to receive hormone replacement therapy. Hormone replacement therapy can improve quality of life and reduce risk of disease.

What are Hormones?

Hormonal balance or health is essential for overall well-being.  Hormones regulate many of our bodily functions and facilitate communication between organ-systems.  In short, hormones enable our bodies to function more efficiently.

Unfortunately, by age 40 many adults have significantly lower hormone levels.  Many of our essential hormones begin to decline beginning in our early 30s at a rate of 1% to 3% per year.  You can live and survive with low hormone levels, but it is not really possible to thrive and enjoy the highest quality of life possible with low hormone levels.

What are the Principal Hormones?

Human Growth Hormone (HGH):  HGH is produced in the pituitary gland and stimulates tissue growth and healing, improves skin hydration, promotes bone and muscle strength, and regulates energy and metabolism.

Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA):  DHEA is produced in the adrenal glands and is the most abundant hormone in the body and is best thought of as a “utility player” to the other hormones.  It protects against stress, cardiovascular disease, and osteoporosis.  It also increases libido, energy, immunity, and memory.

ThyroidThyroid hormone is produce in the thyroid gland and regulates metabolic rate.

TestosteroneTestosterone is produced in the testes in men and in ovaries and adrenal glands in women.  As the “hormone of desire” testosterone enhances libido, erectile function, and energy levels.  It helps to build muscle and bone, too.

Estrogen:  Estrogen is produced in the ovaries, fatty tissues and adrenal glands.  It enhances libido, skin tone, emotional well-being, sleep, cognition, and mood.  Estrogen protects against cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, and Alzheimer’s disease.

ProgesteroneProgesterone is produced in the ovaries in women, testes in men, and adrenals in both.  Progesterone is the “feel good” hormone as it enhances mood and well-being, and brain function.  It stimulates bone production and protects against endometrial and breast cancers.

Cortisol:  Cortisol is produced in the adrenals and is one of the few hormones that can increase with age and is called the “stress” hormone.  In times of stress, cortisol influences metabolism, blood pressure, and glucose utilization.

Insulin Insulin is produced in the pancreas and also tends to rise with age.  Insulin regulates carbohydrate and fat metabolism.  Insulin is low in type 1 diabetics, but is too high initially in type 2 diabetics.

Because cortisol and insulin tend to increase with age, the goal is to lower those levels as we age through better nutrition, exercise, and stress management.

Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy?

First, see a physician knowledgeable in hormone replacement therapy. See our directory or visit WorldHealth.net.

It only makes sense to restore hormone levels with replacement hormones that are identical in chemical structure and function, or bioidentical hormones.  The goal of hormone replacement therapy is to restore levels of the principal hormones to youthful levels seen in adults in their mid 20s to mid 30s.

You can live with low levels of hormones, but you will live better with optimal hormone levels.

See related articles “Anti Aging Hormones”, “Suffering From Low Testosterone Levels?”, “How to Overcome Estrogen Deficiency Symptoms“, and “Hormone Replacement Therapy Alternatives….and Their Side Effects”

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Dr. Joe Jacko

Dr. Joe is board certified in internal medicine and sports medicine with additional training in hormone replacement therapy and regenerative medicine. He has trained or practiced at leading institutions including the Hughston Clinic, Cooper Clinic, Steadman-Hawkins Clinic of the Carolinas, and Cenegenics. He currently practices in Columbus, Ohio at Grandview Primary Care. Read more about Dr. Joe Jacko

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