When the word “hormones” is uttered, visions of raging menopausal women come to mind for most. Truth be told, hormonal changes affect everyone—both men and women—from birth to death, yet we seem to have a very negative association with that word. Hormones play an important role in our health, in the way we feel as we age and in many areas of life quality such as mood, mental clarity and sleep quality. Hormones serve as powerful chemical messengers to specific cells throughout the body to precisely orchestrate all internal organ functions. The work that hormones do is subtle—yet when they fall out of balance, the effects on our health may be anything but.
Estrogen is a woman’s most important hormone. Without hormone replacement therapy, the loss of estrogen puts her at increased risk for osteoporosis, heart disease, colon cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, tooth loss, impaired vision and diabetes. The longer a woman is without the protection of her own estrogen, the greater the risk for serious health consequences of these conditions. Progesterone helps balance estrogen and protects the breasts and uterus from cancer. It also helps her relax and sleep well at night. Testosterone is a key player in the complex chemistry of human hormones and plays a lead role in the health and well-being of both sexes. It is a very important hormone for women, especially in terms of staying fit, lean and sexually active. This hormone is also important in maintaining a woman’s energy level and mental clarity, regardless of her age. Low testosterone levels in pre- and postmenopausal women can diminish motivation, contribute to low libido and induce fatigue, depression and anxiety. By age 30, a woman has already lost 50% of her testosterone production.
For men, testosterone is his most important hormone. Men lose 1–3% of testosterone production per year starting around age 30. Then, sometime between age 40 and 55, testosterone levels drop dramatically and signal the onset of andropause (the medical term for the male equivalent to menopause). When this happens, a man often finds himself lacking in sexual desire, gaining weight, losing muscle mass and feeling sluggish, depressed and irritable.
Hormone replacement can rejuvenate, regenerate and restore you to how you felt when you were younger. The goal should always be hormonal balance based on science rather than experimentation or guessing. Some therapies merely attempt to replenish estrogen, progesterone and testosterone—but never achieve balance. Choosing the best method of hormone replacement is important in achieving that balance and feeling your best. Types of hormone therapy include pills, injections, patches, creams and bioidentical pellets. What is “bioidentical”? Bioidentical hormones are perfectly matched to the hormones produced in your body. They are plant-based substances that our bodies can metabolize naturally, minimizing side effects. These compounded bioidenticals can be matched to each person’s unique needs.
Suspect your hormones may be “out of whack”? Find a healthcare provider who is an expert in the field of hormone replacement therapy. After lab work is complete, the provider will discuss the results with you and determine how to best address it—without adding a multitude of unnecessary medications and side effects. To protect your body and feel your best, consider receiving hormones that your body recognizes (bioidentical), in the proper dosage (determined by accurate testing and analysis) and delivered into the bloodstream using a method that makes hormones available around the clock—the same way the body delivers hormones. Research shows that subcutaneous pellet insertion is the only method that meets all of these criteria.
Don’t give in to aging. There is no reason to feel like you’re “getting old.” Prevent the symptoms and medical conditions of aging with bioidentical hormone replacement, which can give you the energy, vitality, motivation, mood enhancement and sex drive you used to have. You will truly feel like you have your life back.
Joleen Lake is a board certified family nurse practitioner in Omaha, Nebraska, and is founder of Optima Medical Hormone Replacement. Her advanced education and experience in the antiaging arena enables her to provide superior diagnoses and treatment for patients who want to maintain hormonal balance as they age. Her extensive experience and passion for wellness continues to make her a well sought-after medical provider utilizing bioidentical hormone pellets.