Hormones are powerful chemicals that help keep your body functioning normally, your bones strong, your brains acute, and your sex life potent. Hormones are involved in almost every biological process in your body including sexual reproduction, growth, metabolism, weight control, aging, as well as immune function. Hormones, especially estrogen, play a critical role in our bodies that go well beyond alleviating the typical symptoms we all know of: hot flashes and night sweats. Hormones actually affect your brain, your cognitive ability and mental acuity or sharpness, short term memory as well as mood.
The problem with hormones arises when women become peri-menopausal or menopausal and your ovaries either decrease or stop producing sufficient amounts of the hormones estrogen, progesterone, as well as testosterone. The drop in hormones that occurs, particularly estrogen, will have profound effects on memory and mood, ability to maintain your normal weight or lose weight, and your overall sense of well-being.
The Role of Estrogen: The change in estrogen levels that occur, even as early as peri-menopause, causes a disruption in chemicals in our brain called neurotransmitters. These neurotransmitters including serotonin, dopamine and GABA are all diminished when estrogen levels decline. They are also essential for maintaining mood, energy levels, sexual function decreasing stress, and improving upon sleep. Estrogen’s effect on mood is due to its ability to decreased serotonin levels and endorphins when levels are low. When estrogen levels are balanced, under normal hormonal states that we achieve through our program, women experience a dramatic improvement in mood.Estrogen actually protects nerves in your brain and encourages the formation of new communications between nerves. Many women we see have developed symptoms of depression, anxiety, and mood swings due to fluctuating or declining estrogen levels. The good news is, there is hope and treatment is available. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above or below, I strongly urge you to have your hormone levels checked for deficiencies. Once I have your blood work and take a detailed history, we can initiate our program that naturally and effectively alleviates symptoms due to both hormone and brain chemistry imbalance.
Symptoms of Estrogen Deficiency
- Foggy Thinking
- Hot Flashes
- Night Sweats
- Dry Scaling Skin
- Increased number of Fine Lines in Skin
- Short Term Memory Loss
- Depression or Mood Swings
- Vaginal Dryness
- Loss of Libido
- Urine Leakage
- Sleep Problems
- Low Energy
- Weight Gain
Progesterone: Progesterone, like estrogen, has a multitude of effects throughout the body. Many of the effects of progesterone can be attributed to its ability to oppose or counter-balance the action of estrogen. Multiple physical and psychological problems at midlife are often caused by an imbalance between progesterone and estrogen, rather than a specific deficiency.Similar to estrogen’s affect on the brain, the brain is also highly responsive to progesterone. Insomnia, anxiety, and migraines are just a few of the conditions linked to an imbalance of progesterone. Whereas estrogen has an excitatory effect on the brain, progesterone’s effect is calming. Our goal is to establish the optimum natural hormone balance of both estrogen and progesterone. It is possible and can be tailored to meet your individual needs at the lowest dose needed.
Imbalance between progesterone and estrogen symptoms:
- Uterine lining excess tissue buildup
- Breast tissue overgrowth
- Blood sugar level imbalance
- Thyroid hormone dysfunction
- Depression and anxiety
- Abnormal sleep patterns
- Cyclical migraines
- Low libido
Testosterone: Testosterone is a hormone that is not only vital to men, but also women. Testosterone is an important sex hormone in women that not only regulates sex drive (libido), but also helps regulate bone mass, fat distribution, muscle mass and strength as well as energy levels. Like men women produce testosterone, albeit in smaller amounts, in their bodies as well. When levels are low, women experience not only loss of libido, but also weight gain and low energy and depression.
Symptoms of low testosterone:
- Decreased sex drive (poor libido)
- Increased depression
- Inability to concentrate
- Decline in memory and cognitive skills
- Decreased muscle mass and strength
- Loss of body hair
- Sagging Skin
- Abdominal fat (Pot Belly)
- Psychological symptoms such as swinging mood, depression, anxiety, lack of vitality and sleep problems.
Achieving Hormone Balance
You should now be familiar with some symptoms of hormone imbalance that occur during peri-menopause and menopause including changes in mood, irritability and increased mood swings, hot flashes, anxiety, not to mention aging and sagging of the skin and changes in sexual function and response. A non-invasive lab test can help you determine your hormone levels if you are experiencing even 1-3 of the symptoms we discussed. Testing will determine what natural, alternative, or medical therapies should be used to correct the imbalance and disruption in your body’s hormone regulation. For our patients with hormone imbalance, I use bio-identical natural hormones combined with specific dietary changes, anti-oxidants and nutritional supplements. This approach safely and effectively addresses the symptoms of decreased hormone levels as well as nutrition, weight loss and inflammation associated with aging. Once you begin your treatment you will be delighted with the improvement in appetite control and weight loss, heightened libido, mood stabilization, improvement in your skin, and increased energy.