Over the past 30 to 40 years, books and articles have covered the subject of hormone replacement therapy (HRT). However, even with all of this attention on HRT, many women (and practitioners for that matter) are still confused or uninformed about their choices of hormonal therapy.
The scariest part of this is that they are often unaware of—or do not understand—the possible side effects and long-term risks of HRT, especially estrogen and progesterone replacement.
In this article, we’ll take a look at both estrogen and progesterone and what they do in your body, then discuss conventional HRT for estrogen and progesterone, their inherent dangers and the natural, safe and effective alternatives that abound. (more…)
The words bioidentical hormone have become synonymous with safer hormones because they are made of natural substances that are biochemically identical to a woman’s natural hormones. Although they are natural, they are still hormones and taken in too large a quantity can still stimulate cancer growth. The best approach to balance a women’s hormonal system is to balance the other systems of the body first, then if hormone replacement is needed, it will be in such small amounts that it will not trigger cancer cell formation. (more…)
It’s been a long, bewildering decade for menopausal women. First, hormone replacement therapy (HRT) was presented as the miracle cure for the difficult symptoms associated with menopause: hot flashes, night sweats, lapses in concentration or memory, vaginal dryness, thinning hair, skin changes, moodiness, etc. For years women flocked to HRT for relief from these symptoms, and in many cases the treatments worked in the short run.
In the latter 1990’s a number of studies yielded controversial results: not only is HRT unhelpful in the long run, but prolonged exposure to estrogens can cause cancer. Estrogen overload has also been linked to heart disease and stroke, as well as a number of other health problems. (more…)
A landmark investigation which found that hormone treatment for the menopause boosts the risk of breast cancer is riddled with flaws, a new study published on Monday alleges.
The so-called Million Women Study (MWS) unleashed headlines when it was first published in 2003. (more…)
Migraines, irritability, depression, sleeplessness, and weight gain are powerful messages saying time is running out. They are the early signs of an aging process that will lead to pain, drugs, degenerative disease and loss of function. At the end of this road is either early death or a nursing home. One of the key events that starts us careening down this road is hormonal decline. Once we enter hormonal decline, life is never the same again, but it doesn’t have to be this way. Bioidentical hormone replacementcan restore you to the person you were when you were in your prime.
Why your doctor doesn’t prescribe bioidentical hormones (more…)
Menopause: Hormones and Other Therapies
Sorting Out The Options
What is menopause?
- Menopause is the time in a woman’s life when menstruation stops. Menopause is usually a gradual process. The ovaries begin to produce lower amounts of hormones. The reduced amounts of hormones cause menstrual periods to become irregular and eventually to stop completely. This process of irregular menses and fluctuating hormone levels can take several months to 5 years and is often called “perimenopause” or “transition.”
- Most women go through menopause between ages 45 and 60. In the U.S. the average age for menstrual periods to stop completely is 51. There may be a genetic link for the age of onset. Smoking lowers the age at which menopause begins.
- Menopause can also occur when the ovaries are surgically removed.
- The hormonal changes often cause other symptoms.
What are the symptoms? (more…)
Estrogen Treatment ‘Failure’: Hyperexcretion of Estrogen
If your patient doesn’t experience the usual relief of “low estrogen” symptoms when given the same amount of estrogen-including BHRT that works for the large majority of women – and especially if there’s no change with an increased dose – her body may be “hyperexcreting” estrogens into the urine and stool, retaining too little to achieve symptom relief. Estrogen hyperexcretion can be confirmed (or not) with a finding of higher than anticipated estrogens in a 24-hour urine specimen, while serum estrogens remain low normal or low. In most (but all) instances, there is a history of prior Premarin or other nonbioidentical hormone use.
A safety review published in the journal Menopause has confirmed that black cohosh, a natural plant alternative to conventional hormone replacement therapy (HRT), is safe and will not cause liver damage. Some recent reports have questioned the dietary supplement’s safety, but the new study confirms that menopausal women can safely use black cohosh to help alleviate hot flashes, night sweats, and other menopause symptoms. (more…)