older couple doing yoga outside

Have you noticed as you’ve grown older that your energy has dipped and waistline has expanded? That you’re up at all hours of the night, struggling to get some Zs? You may want to consider bioidentical hormone therapy – BHRT for short.

As you age, you lose hormones. This, in turn, can make you feel sluggish or irritable. You may find that your sex drive has vanished. Maybe you struggle with depression. All these can result from a decline in hormones that were more readily available in your younger years.

Fortunately, hormone therapies can restore you to vitality and be a companion in your anti-aging regimen.

Yet there’s a downside to conventional hormone replacement therapies (HRT), which rely on synthetic hormones. This carries some risks. For instance,

The Women’s Health Initiative conducted a study showing that treatment with synthetic forms of estrogen and progesterone increased the risk of serious health issues including heart attack and stroke. Furthermore, it was found that synthetic hormones actively negate the cardioprotective qualities of the body’s naturally produced hormones. Therefore, not only does HRT promote future disease, it inhibits the body’s natural resiliency to serious health issues and disorders.

middle aged man BHRT, on the other hand, uses hormones identical to the ones your body produces. Not only does it restore your hormones to their proper balance; it promotes cardiovascular health and reduces the cancer risk associated with synthetic hormones.

And don’t just think this is something for menopausal women, though that’s often what springs to mind when you hear “hormone therapy.” Men can experience their own biological changes as they enter their later years.

Testosterone, in particular, declines.

Testosterone production in men decreases, on average, by approximately 2 percent per year and reaching peak declines around middle age. By the time the average man reaches his seventies, he has about one-third of the testosterone he had in his twenties. Worse yet, it has been reported that the levels of testosterone in an average 60-year-old man would yield a diagnosis of hypogonadism in a younger man. Low testosterone can quickly become an issue for aging men, making it vital for men to seek treatment when symptoms initially appear.

Restore balance, however, and the results can be profound: weight loss, more energy, a sharper mind, improved mood. As one comprehensive review of the literature notes,

In hypogonadal men, testosterone replacement was associated with improved mood and well-being, and reduced fatigue and irritability.

Additionally,

There is good evidence for a strong correlation between T levels and cognitive performance such as spatial abilities or mathematical reasoning. Higher bioavailable and free testosterone concentrations have each been associated with better performance in specific aspects of memory and cognitive function, with optimal processing capacity found in men ranging from 35 to 90 years of age.

Other studies have found that restoring testosterone balance not only can contribute to weight loss and improved BMI, but better blood lipid profiles, as well.

“We saw a consistent improvement of the parameters of metabolic syndrome,” [director of scientific affairs for Bayer Schering Pharma Farid] says. The men were not given a special diet or exercise program.

The supplemental testosterone reduced total cholesterol, “bad” LDL cholesterol, triglycerides, and body mass index while improving “good” HDL cholesterol. The men lost their pot bellies, Saad says. “What we see after 12 months is a reduction in two or three trouser sizes, three or four inches off the waist. We see a reduction by one-fourth to one-third of their total cholesterol.”

No adverse effects were reported, he says.

Aging doesn’t have to equate fatigue, weight gain, and memory loss. Contact our West LA integrative clinic to learn more about our BHRT options and find out how Dr. Joe can help you maintain or restore the vitality you desire.


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