Hormones are messengers that carry signals to all parts of the body to help it regulate almost all of its functions. Some of the functions that hormones help to regulate include reproduction, metabolism, digestion, respiration, urination, defecation, and mental functions. While hormones most commonly decline due to aging, a sedentary lifestyle, poor diet, smoking, drinking, stress, and environmental factors can also cause hormones to decline. A reduction in hormone production can cause many issues to arise and may cause many age related diseases.

Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy uses hormones that are identical in molecular structure and function to the hormones produced in the human body to supplement the body’s hormonal deficiencies. Bio-identical hormones are usually compounded from soy or yams, and they can be dosed according to individual needs. Both men and women can benefit from bio-identical hormone replacement therapy, and they can enjoy the benefits of having balanced hormones without the negative side effects.

Bioidentical Hormone

Men usually suffer from hormonal decline around the mid to late forties or fifties, and during this time, the testicles begin to produce less testosterone. Other androgens, which are male hormones, may also decrease, such as DHEA and Melatonin. This decrease in hormone production can cause the phase known as andropause, which can bring about a series of uncomfortable changes. Some of the symptoms of male hormone decline may include:
  • Low Libido
  • Erectile Dysfunction
  • Low Energy
  • Lack of Motivation
  • Muscle Atrophy
  • Metabolic Syndrome
  • Hair Loss
  • Increased Abdominal Fat
Perimenopause and Menopause are the times when most women experience hormonal imbalances; however, some women experience them during the reproductive years as well. During the reproductive years, women may have increased PMS symptoms, irregular periods, or Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome. Perimenopause and menopause bring about another slew of symptoms, which can include:
  • Infertility
  • Weight Gain
  • Acne
  • Migraines
  • Hot Flashes or Night Sweats
  • Vaginal Dryness
  • Low Libido
  • Mood Changes
  • Insomnia
Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy can help to balance hormones for men and women, and it can reduce the symptoms that arise due to hormonal imbalances. Dr. Gershenbaum has helped many men and women to improve their quality of life and live healthier, happier lives through his expert anti-aging and bioidentical hormone programs.

FAQ

In general, your body’s natural hormones begin to decline after your mid-20s and hormone imbalance symptoms are frequently present by your mid-30s. Men and women often start replacing hormones between the age of 35 and 40. If you are experiencing symptoms of hormone imbalance, it is best not to wait.
Accordion Bioidentical hormones are an exact replica of the hormones that are naturally produced by the body. The difference between bioidentical hormones and synthetic hormones is that, although both are created in labs, synthetic hormones are not identical to the hormones naturally created in your body and bioidentical hormones match your body’s hormones molecule by molecule.Depending on what your symptoms are and which hormone(s) your body needs, your physician may choose to prescribe bioidentical hormones such as estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, thyroid hormones, DHEA, melatonin or others as needed.Description
The difference between bioidentical hormones and synthetic hormones is dual fold. Unlike bioidentical hormones, synthetic hormones may be patented by pharmaceutical companies; therefore dosage varies only by milligrams dictated by your doctor, while the molecular structure of the prescribed hormone is the same for every single person on that drug. Additionally, synthetic hormones are not created structurally the same as human endogenous hormones, which often leads uncomfortable side effects. While synthetic hormones can mimic the effects of endogenous hormones on certain biological pathways, they rarely offer the same effectiveness at a deeper, molecular level. Bioidentical hormones mimic the affinity of human endogenous hormones; therefore they are effective on more biological pathways, at all levels. Because bioidentical hormones are an exact structural replica of endogenous hormones side effects are rarely observed, and in the event you do experience side effects, talk with your doctor – the dosage may simply need to be adjusted. The added benefit of bioidentical hormones is that each dose is tailored specifically for your needs, not simply what doses the pharmaceutical company offers (as is the case with synthetic hormones.)
Hormones affect a multitude of pathways in the body. Women may experience fluctuations in their hormone levels throughout the lifespan. Imbalances can occur due lifestyle and environmental factors, as well as expected changes, such as pregnancy, perimenopause, menopause and post-menopause. Imbalances of hormones, including estrogen, progesterone and testosterone can lead to many uncomfortable experiences, like night sweats, hot flashes, mood swings, depression and anxiety. The most common decline seen in menopausal and post-menopausal women is estrogen. When estrogen levels become unbalanced, women may experience symptoms such as low libido and bone loss. The bone loss that women experience due to declining estrogen levels can lead to osteoporosis and increase the likelihood of bone fractures. Adjustments to a woman’s hormone levels through BHRT and lifestyle changes can reduce or eliminate these discomforts and improve overall health and well-being.
As men age, production of the hormone testosterone begins to decline and they experience symptoms of low testosterone. Testosterone is the hormone that is responsible for maintaining mental focus, energy, metabolism, muscle mass, fat levels, and sex drive. By balancing a man’s hormones with bioidentical hormone therapy, men can restore their vitality and reduce the symptoms of andropause.
Most patients begin feeling better within a few months of beginning the program, but some results may take a bit longer to achieve. You may begin to feel a difference within a matter of weeks, especially when it comes to sleep patterns and energy levels. Every patient has a different experience, but the end result is the same – a healthier, balanced life. Changes like these take time to evolve. Remember, it took some time for you to lose balance of your hormones, so it will take your body some time to recover. Consistency and compliance every step of the way will improve your results.
Many people are under the misconception that bioidentical hormones are not FDA-approved. This is simply not the case. The hormones derived from plant sources, such as soy and yams, which are approved by the FDA, however the methods of delivery and custom doses are not. Bioidentical hormones may be delivered in the form of creams, patches, pills, gels, pellets of vaginal rings. Bioidentical hormones are designed in a lab and shipped to a compounding pharmacy where they are custom designed to fit the needs of each patient. Synthetic hormones are created in specific, patented doses and delivery methods (not customized), therefore regulation is possible.
Yes, estrogen and testosterone work in a perfect balance to fuel your sex drive. Too much or too little of either these hormones can cause a decrease in sex drive or cause performance issues. In some cases, increased levels of cortisol, classically secreted due to chronic stress, can negatively impact the sex hormones and impair your libido.
Hormones are like stop-lights. When they are balanced the light is green and you will get the optimum results from your nutrition and fitness programs. When they are imbalanced the light is red making it, in many cases, difficult to lose and easy to gain weight. Hormones are chemical messengers that cause the body to make changes affecting weight gain or weight loss. Changes in hormone levels are also dependant on the lifestyle we lead and can affect our mood, metabolism, and energy levels. For example, when males become less active there is often a gradual decline in testosterone. This hormone is known to boost metabolism and has the benefit of helping lower fat levels. Thus, when testosterone is balanced a man’s ideal weight is easier to achieve.
Pellet therapy is a sustainable delivery method for bioidentical hormone therapy. Every three to six months a pellet made of bioidentical hormones is inserted just under the patient’s skin usually on the upper part of your buttocks. The pellets, which contain customized levels of estradiol or testosterone, react to the needs of the body, so they actually dissolve releasing the bioidentical hormones as needed.
Bioidentical hormone therapy has a few potential side effects which are classically linked to dosage – as your hormone levels improve, your dosage may need to be changed. If you notice side effects, contact your physician.
  • Men and women have reported increased aggressiveness, acne or irritability during the initial phases of testosterone hormone therapy, but these issues are generally resolved as levels become balanced.
  • Some women have reported breast tenderness, spotting, cramping and bloating. These symptoms may be experienced initially with estrogen hormone treatment, but resolve as hormone levels become balanced.
  • Occasionally, hormone therapy patients will complain of itching or redness at the injection or insertion site, bit these symptoms diminish as the body adjusts to treatment.
No, bioidentical hormones do not cause cancer. This false impression began in 1991, when the very controversial Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) was halted due to increased incidence of chronic disease among subjects. This study used the synthetic hormone, Prempro, and subjects of the study were and average age of 63 years. Meta-analyses following this study, including some as recent as November 2011, have shown that most of the subjects had pre-existing conditions that lead to the development of disease during the study and that hormones actually reduce the risk of cancer and other chronic diseases in women.
The optimal age for treatment varies per person. Some people may be affected at a younger age than others by adverse health conditions that may impact hormone balance. However, on average, men and women may begin to experience age-related hormone imbalances around the age of 40. Symptoms of andropause, perimenopause and menopause, which classically occur around middle-age often prompt many individuals to seek treatment through hormone balance. Many individuals may find it beneficial to have their hormones tested in their 20s or 30s to establish an optimal baseline. Once you have determined your baseline, you can take steps to ensure your hormones stay balanced and continue routine testing to monitor hormone levels. In the event of an imbalance at any point in your lifespan, your physician may refer to your baseline and develop a treatment plant to restore levels to that optimal baseline easily.
No. It is advisable and strongly encouraged that individuals who have a history of cancer be evaluated by a BLMD doctor. Your physician can analyze and interpret your hormone levels to better determine cancer risk and strategically devise a plan to assist in disease prevention through bioidentical hormone therapy, nutrition and fitness.
This question is best answered by the doctor you are seeking to work with. Each doctor has a preference when handling cancer patients, current or in remission. Cancer patients may use bioidentical hormones, however, the use of certain hormones will not be ideal for cancer patients; therefore the doctor needs to be made aware of your condition before you become a patient.
No, estrogen therapy does not increase risk of disease, including heart attack and breast cancer. This false impression began in 1991, when the very controversial Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) was halted due to increased incidence of chronic disease among subjects. This study used the synthetic hormone, Prempro, and subjects of the study were and average age of 63 years. Meta-analyses following this study, including some as recent as November 2011, have shown that most of the subjects had pre-existing conditions that lead to the development of disease during the study and that hormones actually reduce the risk of cancer and other chronic diseases in women.

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