The Lowdown on Bio-Idential Hormone Replacement? Safe? Unsafe? What is it that you need to know!

Many people have inadequate hormone levels despite technically normal blood tests...nothing new there. Some individuals suffering symptoms related to menopause or andropause or inability to lose weight may also benefit from these therapies. Bio-identical hormone replacement therapy can be used to augment hormone levels in a. number of conditions where diminished hormone levels are evident. Hormonal concerns for both men and women, of all ages, have a wide reaching effect throughout the body and they are contributing factors to symptoms that may initially seem unrelated. 

Balancing Hormones

Hormones are chemical messengers that send instructions to the various organ systems in order to regulate vital bodily functions. A high stress lifestyle combined with poor eating habits can wreak havoc on a person's delicately balanced hormonal function. Even healthy men and women with a good diet can end up with hormones unbalanced
 

What is Bio Identical Hormone Replacement?

The therapeutic use of hormones that have a chemical structure identical in every way to the hormones the human body naturally produces. Let me repeat that: The hormones are identical to the ones found naturally in our own bodies. But if the chemical structure is exactly identical to the hormones in our bodies, it cannot be patented to the dismay of pharmaceutical companies. Nevertheless, its the delivery method of the drug itself where pharmacies make their profit, and granted, when you put it together safe and effectively, you deserve credit where its due. Bio-identical hormones used include estradiol, estrone, estriol, progesterone and testosterone.

Let's get into the nitty gritty!

Estrogen

Estrogen Hormone Replacement Therapy can offer

  • Improved Vaginal and Urethral Function
  • Slow the progression of osteoporosis
  • Improve sleep
  • Decrease pain
  • Improve cognitive function
  • Improve Libido
  • Benefits Cardiovascular Health
  • Enhance oVerall wellbeing. 

Potential Risks of Estrogen Therapy

  • Bloating, Fluid Retention, Weight Gain
  • Mood Swings
  • Breast Swelling and Tenderness
  • Headaches
  • Stroke (From Blood Clots)
  • Increase Risk of Breast Cancer

Progesterone

Progesterone Hormone Replacement Therapy can offer you:

  • Protection from endometrial, ovarian and breast cancers.
  • Treatment of irregular menstruation and other low progesterone conditions
  • Improve sleep quality
  • Decrease Anxiety
  • Establish new bone growth
  • For males, low dose progesterone therapy in conjunction with testosterone therapy can maximize the hormone ratios, reducing side effects.

Progesterone therapy adverse reactions may include:

  • Bloating
  • Breakthrough Bleeding 
  • Missed Menstrual Cycles
  • Breast Tenderness and Swelling
  • Fluid Retention
  • Weight Gain
  • Sedation
  • Depression

Testosterone

Testosterone Hormone Replacement Therapy can offer you:

  • Improve Sex Drive
  • Enhances Quality of Erections
  • Improve Fatigue and poor energy level
  • Enhance muscle mass
  • Improve Concentration
  • Increases Bone Density
  • Increase Insulin Sensitivity
  • Irritability
  • Low sense of well-being
  • Mood Improvement

Testosterone Therapy Adverse Reactions may include:

  • Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy may be worsened by Testosterone Therapy
  • Testosterone stimulates prostate cancer to grow
  • May worsen sleep apnea
  • May increase blood clots in veins
  • May worsen congestive heart failure
  • High levels of testosterone may induce aggression. 


Let's clarify something here...everything you take has  benefits and has potential risks, even if those risks are minimal. That's life. You have to consider your family history, your lifestyle and your quality of life.

In my opinion I don't think its warranted to be afraid of taking hormones due to a plausible increased risk of cancer if you suffer from poor sleep, low sex drive, vaginal dryness, urinary incontinence, depression or osteoporosis. You have to be mindful that all those symptoms just listed also have side effects to them. A poor sleep may increase your risk of all cancers. A low sex drive, may cause stress in your marriage, and stress also increases the risk of all cancer. What if you don't exercise or partake in activities anymore because of a risk of a bone fracture, well...again, there is a whole variety of risks that come about from that.

What's most important is that YOU, yes you reading this, YOU have the authority over your body, and what goes in it. You have the right, to be informed about your health, and possible treatments with their associated risks and benefits. That way YOU get to make educated decisions about your health that you feel confident in.