Bioidentical Hormones for Women
The average age of menopause in the United States is around 51—but that doesn’t mean most women wait that long before experiencing symptoms related to hormone imbalance. In fact, many women begin to experience hormone imbalance as early as age 35, during their perimenopausal years. These symptoms may change in the postmenopausal years after menopause, but they are likely to continue. The good news is that there is relief: bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) for women has been shown to help ease the symptoms of this hormone transition, balance female hormones to youthful levels, and even help prevent certain chronic diseases like heart disease.
Causes of Female Hormone Imbalance
Menopause marks the end of menstrual cycles and is declared when 12 months has passed since a woman has had her last menstruation. Many women assume that the production of hormone ceases at menopause, but often it takes years for the production to completely stop. Although it ends fertility, affected individuals can stay healthy, vital, and sexual.
A number of lifestyle and environmental factors can hasten decline in female hormone levels, including:
- Eating unhealthy foods and physical inactivity. Both of these unhealthy lifestyle habits can significantly affect hormone levels. The obesity epidemic is closely associated with early perimenopause.
- Chronic stress. Prolonged periods of stress can lead to cortisol imbalance and eventually adrenal fatigue in many women. This in turn leads to decreased progesterone levels and less effective thyroid hormone.
- Exposure to artificial hormones called xenohormones in the environment. Examples of xenohormones are exposure to plastics or pesticide from vegetables, causing excessive estrogen levels in women.
Bioidentical Hormones for Menopausal Symptoms
Bioidentical hormones are created to identically resemble the natural hormones secreted by the ovaries and other endocrine organs. Unlike conventional hormone therapy that uses synthetic hormones or those derived from animals, bioidentical hormones are biochemically the same as those produced by a woman’s body.
During a woman’s reproductive years, her ovaries produce major hormones, including estradiol, progesterone, and testosterone.
- Estradiol is the predominant estrogen during a female’s reproductive years; it is necessary for most reproductive and sexual function, and it has wide-ranging effects on other organs.
- Progesterone plays one of the most important reproductive functions. It causes the endometrium (lining of the uterus) to secrete special proteins to prepare the uterus to receive and nourish an implanted fertilized egg. If implantation does not occur, during a normal menstrual cycle, the levels of estrogen and progesterone drop, which causes the endometrium to break down and menstruation.
- Testosterone is also present in a woman’s body but in smaller amounts than in men. It functions to maintain sex drive, keep bones healthy, manage pain levels, and preserve cognitive health.
An imbalance in these critical hormones can lead to unpleasant symptoms such as:
- Changes in menstrual cycle
- Decreased libido
- Depression and mood swings
- Frequent urination or urinary incontinence
- Hot flashes
- Insomnia or problems sleeping
- Skin, hair, and other tissue changes
- Urinary tract infections
- Vaginal atrophy
- Vaginal dryness and pain with intercourse
- Increased risk of heart disease
Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy can help women suffering from menopausal symptoms by restoring the balance of female hormone levels. They are available in a number of forms, including pills, gels, creams, patches, and vaginal rings.
Benefits of Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy for Women
Hundreds of research studies have examined the effects of BHRT on women with hormone imbalance and found a number of benefits, including:
- Decreases risk of heart disease
- Decreases urinary tract infections
- Easy to administer through patches, injections, creams, pills, or pellets inserted under the skin.
- Eliminates hot flashes
- Eliminates night sweats
- Enhances exercise performance
- Improves bone strength and bone density
- Improves cholesterol profile
- Improves concentration
- Improves frequency and intensity of orgasms
- Improves memory
- Improves mood
- Improves muscle tone
- Improves sex drive
- Improves sleep
- Increases energy levels
- Increases muscle mass and strength
- Prevents chronic disease and illness
- Reduces overall body fat
- Results in wrinkle reduction with younger, tighter skin
- Reverses vaginal atrophy, along with its associated dryness, itching and pain with intercourse
- AND MUCH MORE!
Suzanne Somers: Speaking Out on Bioidentical Hormones for Women
Thanks to its long list of benefits, BHRT has attracted attention from a number of high-profile celebrities, including Suzanne Somers. In her book I’m Too Young for This! The Natural Hormone Solution to Enjoy Perimenopause, Somer’s examines BHRT in depth and offers detailed information on the studies supporting its use.
If you are planning to undergo hormone replacement therapy, you should know there are several important differences between bioidentical hormone replacement and traditional hormone replacement therapy. Bioidentical hormones are exact molecular duplicates of the hormones that are naturally produced inside the body. In contrast, traditional HRT uses analogues, or hormones that are biologically active but not exact duplicates. Often referred to as “synthetic” hormones, traditional HRT makes use of other hormones that are derived from the urine of a pregnant mare. Bioidentical hormones are indistinguishable from your own natural hormones.
While the individual ingredients likely used by compounding pharmacies are FDA-approved, some of the actual finished products are not. Prescription pharmaceuticals such as the conventional hormone preparations are strictly regulated by the FDA and guaranteed to be the same strength each time; whereas, compounding pharmacy versions of bioidentical hormones can have slightly different dosages from batch to batch.
Bioidentical hormones are typically administered in a more precise way that is tailored to each patient’s needs. A properly designed bioidentical hormone replacement program begins with an accurate assessment of the levels of all the patient’s hormones, including the three forms of estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, DHEA, cortisol, and others in order to establish a baseline data. Based on these test results, a qualified BHRT doctor will prescribe exact doses of bioidentical hormones to rebalance and replenish low hormone levels.
Your Solution: Female Hormone Imbalance Treatment with Natural Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy for Women
Hormones work together synergistically, meaning that levels of one hormone affect other hormones. You can picture hormones as dominoes where one domino can have an effect on the other. The idea behind natural bioidentical hormone replacement therapy is to carefully assess for any hormone imbalances through blood tests and saliva testing, then design a comprehensive, personalized program to balance and correct all of your hormone levels, restoring your hormone levels to those of your 20s. It’s important to understand, however, that bioidentical hormones are not a magic cure-all. If given at inappropriate levels, they can have side effects, just as any medication.
Why Choose Genemedics Health Institute for Natural Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy for Women?
Genemedics Health Institute is one of the nation’s leading centers for natural bioidentical hormone replacement therapy. Led by nationally renowned Dr. George Shanlikian, M.D., our team of highly qualified and experienced physicians has spent hundreds of hours in training and worked with a large volume of patients to treat the many symptoms of hormone imbalance. Our programs focus more on holistic patient approach – we do not only bring hormone levels to normal, but help our patients achieve optimum health while preventing other diseases. In addition to your bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, we will design an exercise and nutrition program and even prescribe a personalized supplement regimen to make sure your body has all the essential nutrients it needs to function optimally. When it comes to your health, you can feel comfortable you’re placing your trust in the best!
If you have more questions about bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, call the qualified doctors at Genemedics Health Institute for a consultation.