Feel your very best
Do you need a hormone makeover?
Because hormones affect every cell in your body, it’s not surprising that hormone excesses, deficiencies or imbalances can produce some very unpleasant, debilitating and even dangerous symptoms. For example, hormones affect your cardiovascular system, central nervous system, blood sugar levels, bone density, weight, and skin. Hormones also affect brain function and mood, so hormone imbalances can impair mental sharpness, ability to focus, and short-term memory, causing you to feel as if your brain is in a fog. At the same time, mood swings, irritability, depression, and anxiety may increase, thus creating a dreadful combination! Needless to say, this perfect storm of ‘out of control’ hormones can be pretty rough on your career, relationships, and all other areas of your life. The following questions can help you decide if you might need a hormone makeover.
A makeover for your hormones?
Makeovers are the hallmark of the baby boomers – from our bodies to our homes, our careers, and everything in-between, it seems. Something needs a makeover when it no longer looks like it used to or does not function properly – when it needs to be restored or renovated. That is precisely what happens when it comes to women’s hormones. They do not always function properly, triggering symptoms. These symptoms may include monthly Premenstrual Syndrome, better known as PMS, perimenopausal symptoms occurring in the years before menopause, or full-fledged menopause symptoms. Hormone imbalance certainly is not limited to reproductive hormone imbalances. Many women also have stress hormone imbalances, thyroid hormone insufficiency or blood sugar fluctuations. Problems with any of these hormones can lead to some very significant symptoms, suggesting a hormone makeover might be just what the doctor should order.
What is a hormone makeover?
A hormone makeover addresses and corrects hormones that are too low or too high by testing your hormones and then using the indicated bioidentical hormones, supplements, and proper nutrition. The goal is to balance hormones, thereby eliminating symptoms and preventing diseases associated with excess or deficient levels of hormones.
To experience a hormone makeover women must work with a physician trained in bioidentical hormones and its application called Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy or BHRT for short. A BHRT physician will evaluate your hormones and prescribe a personalized treatment plan that addresses your specific imbalances. BHRT typically consists of prescriptions for bioidentical hormones and supplements, as indicated by your lab results and your specific symptoms, which will correct the underlying hormone imbalances. Your doctor will monitor your progress to make sure you are on appropriate therapy and your symptoms have resolved.
How do you know if you need a hormone makeover?
Here are a few questions that may help you determine your own need for a hormone makeover, have you gained weight, especially around the abdomen or hips? Are you having hot flashes or night sweats? Have your menstrual cycles become irregular or recently stopped? What about hormonal headaches or migraines? How about your skin – has it become very dry or too oily? Has your doctor told you that you have lost bone mass? Are you having trouble remembering what you went to the pantry for or even close friends’ names? Do you have brain fog? Perhaps you have lost interest in physical intimacy or maybe you are having trouble sleeping. In addition to these physical and intellectual symptoms, have you experienced unexplainable depression or weepiness? Have you felt more anxious, easily stressed, or irritable? Have you had a hysterectomy and found that you have not been the same since? If you answer “yes” to any of these, be assured, you do not have to live with these symptoms. Perhaps you need a hormone makeover, in order to regain the quality of life you had before the onset of these symptoms.
Who suffers from hormone imbalances?
All women are prime candidates for hormone imbalance. If you are experiencing some of the previously mentioned symptoms, you are not alone. In fact, there are an estimated 40 million women in the United States in menopause. Additionally, 80% to 90% of all women report PMS symptoms.
When do hormone problems start?
As women approach their thirties, hormones begin to decline, thus triggering symptoms associated with the menstrual cycle. These same early imbalances can cause weight gain, headaches, lack of sex drive, or depression, just to list a few. Unfortunately, it does not get any better as women move into their forties and fifties when new symptoms can add to their dilemma such as hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, foggy thinking, or insomnia. Left unattended, some types of hormone imbalances can result in bone loss, breast cysts, uterine fibroids, and increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
What causes hormone imbalance?
Hormone imbalance stems from several different factors that commonly affect women, including:
- Age related decline of estrogen, progesterone, or testosterone
- Stress triggered changes in adrenal hormones, DHEA, and cortisol
- Significant weight gain or loss
- Nutritional deficiencies and poor diet
- Failure to ovulate or ovarian dysfunction
- Other glandular dysfunctions such as thyroid or blood sugar problems
- Non-bioidentical hormones–HRT or any type of synthetic hormones including birth control
- Xenoestrogens- hormone like synthetic chemicals in the environment or food supply
What are bioidentical hormones?
Bioidentical hormones are derived from plants and are converted into chemical structures that precisely match the human hormones manufactured by the body. The plant derived bioidentical hormones function exactly the same as the hormones the body makes and in fact, the body recognizes them as if they were actually produced by the ovaries. To be clear, there is no difference between the hormones the ovaries make, and the bioidentical hormones used in BHRT. BHRT has a long history of safe and successful use, specifically in Europe where they have been used for over 65 years.
What is HRT and synthetic hormones?
HRT stands for Hormone Replacement Therapy, which does not usually consist of hormones biologically identical to those our bodies produce. Instead, HRT is comprised of synthetic and/or animal-derived hormones. I refer to them as non-bioidentical. Since non-bioidentical hormones differ in molecular structure from those the human body produces, they do not function exactly like endogenous human hormones. Nor do our bodies process them the same way. These non-bioidentical hormones are similar enough to mimic some of the activities of the human hormones they are replacing but only in a clumsy way. While they perform some of the vital functions of endogenous hormones, they can cause problems that human-produced hormones do not. We know these problems are side effects, which vary depending on the type of non-bioidentical hormone.
What can bioidentical hormones do for you?
Bioidentical hormones – estrogen, progesterone, or testosterone have demonstrated many benefits such as:
- Decreases menstrual bleeding and spotting
- Increases metabolism
- Protects against cancer, especially breast cancer
- Helps prevent hardening of the arteries and heart disease
- Improves brain function • Reduces water retention • Reduces irritability and anxiety
- Helps reduce hormonal headaches/migraines
- Reduces carbohydrate cravings
- Helps restore normal sleep patterns
- Regulates the menstrual cycle
- Reduces vaginal dryness
- Slows bone loss
- Protects the heart
- Slows aging
- Uplifts mood
- Lowers LDL/raises HDL
- Adds moisture to the skin • Enables brain function
Note: These results are not demonstrated by synthetic hormones in HRT.
Are they safe?
Women and their physicians should be concerned and informed about the safety of any treatment. This is especially true when it comes to hormones. We all know that synthetic or traditional HRT has been clearly proven to have significant side effects. Not only has research demonstrated bioidentical hormones to be effective for symptoms, published studies also show their safety. In fact, Dr. Kent Holtorf published an article in the January 2009 issue of Postgraduate Medicine. He cited 196 research studies and commented, “Physiological data and clinical outcomes demonstrate that bioidentical hormones are associated with lower risks, including the risk of breast cancer, cardiovascular disease, and are more efficacious than their synthetic and animal derived counterparts. Until evidence is found to the contrary, bioidentical hormones remain the preferred method of hormone replacement therapy.”
If you are interested in a “Hormone Makeover” please call our office today and schedule an appointment with our provider who is certified in Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy.
At the initial appointment we will conduct an exam and evaluation of your medical history, health, and symptoms as they relate to hormone imbalance. We will order your lab work and we draw the blood in the office. The lab is sent to our specialized laboratory that we use and will have results back in 2-3 days compared to 2 weeks with most clinics. We will have you come back in for follow up to discuss lab results and a treatment plan. If any indicated prescriptions are necessary, we will order them, and they can be delivered to your home.
After you start Bio-Identical hormones, you will need follow up care. Plan to repeat your lab work in about 3 months to review your progress and determine if your treatment plan is appropriate or may need some adjustments.
Women who have experienced hormone makeovers repeatedly report, “I feel like me again,” “I can’t believe the difference,” “You have given me my life back,” “My husband thanks you,” and “I feel like I did when I was in my twenties.”
You too can have these same results. Just give us a call and we are more than happy to get you where you need to be. Live Life Now! Don’t wait. Life is too short not to look and feel great.