The backbone to health, longevity, and great quality of life is encrypted within our human hormones.
This is why women before their early thirties feel and look healthier and more vibrant in general than older women
After our mid-thirties, however, our natural reserves of hormones start to decline. Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) becomes then a total must if our goal is to feel optimal and to avoid the painful and risky degeneration of bone, muscle and joints. Consequently, the unwanted cardiovascular events; the painful genitourinary problems; and the accelerated ageing that ensues if we don’t replace our lost hormones with a natural alternative that not only works, but that doesn’t pose any major health risk.
The 3 Stages of Menopause
- Perimenopause refers to the few years before menopause when most women’s hormones start to fluctuate, causing weight-gain that’s difficult or impossible to shift, irregular periods, heavy bleeding with clots, hot flashes and night sweats, migraines/headaches, insomnia, mood swings, vaginal dryness, painful intercourse, loss of sex drive, thinning of skin, fatigue, and memory and concentration loss.
- Did you know you can enter perimenopause at any time between ages 32 to 52? If you’re in your thirties and are not feeling well, it can be hormonal, and no, you’re not too young for it! During perimenopause, we start losing precious hormones needed for optimum wellness and health. This hormone loss continues for the rest of our lives.
- Menopause is official after we have completed 12 consecutive months without a period. Some 95% of women reach their menopause between the ages of 44 and 55, with the average being age 50.
- Post-menopause is the stage after these 12 months without cycling.
What Happens to Our Bodies When We Lose Our Natural Hormones
Let’s briefly review the consequences of the natural decline of four of the main female hormones:
- Oestrogen decline– causes neuronal degeneration and increased risk of dementia (Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease) (Depypere et. al, 2016); accelerated ageing; wrinkles; bone loss; muscle loss; insomnia; fatigue; cardiovascular disease; high cholesterol; macular degeneration, and more (Birge 2003).
- Progesterone decline– causes anxiety and mood disorders; bloating; weight-gain; insomnia; pain & inflammation; excessive menstruation; migraines, and more (Strous et. al, 2008).
- Testosterone decline– causes muscle wasting; weight gain; fatigue; thinning and dry hair; sagging cheeks; thin lips; anxiety; memory is not as sharp, and more.
- DHEA decline – causes memory problems and brain cell death associated with Alzheimer’s disease; loss of sense of well-being; low immunity; high cholesterol, and more.
Why I don’t Recommend Hormone Replacement Therapy?
The hormones typically prescribed and promoted as “safe” by conventional medicine are NOT natural, and thus, not safe. Some of them are made in a lab with chemicals –like progestins – and others, like Premarin–oestrogen- made from the urine of pregnant mares.
When these foreign and unnatural hormones go into our body, they give unnatural instructions to the cells, not favouring our human physiology and resulting in altered states of health. The conventional oestrogen or CEE (conjugated equine oestrogen), stimulates a more pronounced oestrogenic signal in some parts of the body like the breast, the uterus, the endometrium and the ovaries, potentially leading to cancer. The combination of Premarin (conjugated equine oestrogens) and the synthetic progestin Medroxyprogesterone Acetate, has been found in a large case-control study to more than double the risk of venous thrombosis (BMJ, 2019).
It is important to note as well that conventional HRT has been shown to raise the risk of heart attack among postmenopausal women (JAMA, 2002). In the 1990’s, the results of a large, government-sponsored study called The Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) –the first large-scale, long-term study conducted of conventional HRT that included 27,347 women ages 50-79 who were followed during active treatment (5.6 years in the oestrogen-plus-progestin trial, 7.2 years in the oestrogen-alone trial) and for an extended period with no treatment, for a total follow-up of 13 years – showed that conventional HRT can significantly increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, and breast cancer.
In the UK, the number of women in their 50s and 60s who take HRT has risen from 5% 10 years ago to approximately 30% now.
Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT) and Its Advantages
Hormones most similar to those found in the human body are referred to as bio-identical. Contrary to Bioidentical hormones are not associated with the risks of conventional HRT but on the contrary, they have been proven to be safe.
These natural hormones are made from diosgenin, a substance found in soy or wild yams.
Bio-identical hormones have been in use for more than 50 years around the world with outstanding results.
The main advantages of BHRT over HRT are the following:
- Relief of symptoms
- Prevention of memory loss and dementia
- Heart health
- Bone production
- Growth & repair (anti-ageing properties)
Want to know more?
At Perfect Balance Clinic, in partnership with Roseway Labs, we use high-quality yam extract in our bio-identical hormone preparations. Roseway Labs are experts in the preparation, compounding, and delivery of bio-identical hormones, following each woman’s (or man’s) individual physiological needs.
Testing assesses one’s individual hormone requirements. Unlike conventional lab works that analyse hormones in serum, I prefer functional diagnostics that analyse your levels of hormones in dry urine. You can collect your samples at the comfort of your own home once you’ll have received the kit and instructions from the lab.
This article was written by our team of specialist therapists at Perfect Balance Clinic. If you would like more specific advice about how our team can help you with this condition or symptoms you may be having, please complete the contact form below and one of the team will get back to you shortly.