Hormones Used with Bioidentical Hormone Therapy
San Francisco Bioidentical Hormone Therapy Doctors, Joseph Cleaver, M.D. and Gina Knudsen, PA-C at Paradigm Wellness Medical Group offer Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy programs to men and women that are suffering from hormonal imbalances and decline. Both men and women experience the effects of unbalanced hormones, with most people experiencing moderate discomfort from it. The imbalance can happen at any time, although it is more closely associated with hypogonadism in men and menopause in women.
Common symptoms for people of both genders include:
- Problems with concentration
- Lower sex drive
- Weight gain
- Loss of muscle tone
In addition, people may experience problems unique to their gender. For men, this may include erectile dysfunction and loss of body hair while women may experience vaginal dryness and painful intercourse. The best thing you can do is take stock of your symptoms and seek treatment from a doctor who specializes in Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT). These hormones are derived from soy and yams, both of which are naturally occurring sources. The ingredients used in Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy can’t be patented because they are created for people individually based on their presenting symptoms and genetic makeup.
Bioidentical hormones closely match the chemical structure of the hormones produced by your body. In contrast, synthetic or chemical hormones are made from artificial sources. While they may offer some relief, there is also a greater likelihood of side effects. Unlike natural hormones that are easily absorbed, your body may see synthetic hormones as a threat and put up natural defenses to protect you from them. If you’re interested in exploring a different and more promising approach, please schedule an appointment with Doctor Cleaver or Gina Knudsen, who are both experienced San Francisco Bioidentical Hormone Therapy specialists.
Types of Bioidentical Hormones
Your Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy specialists Doctor Cleaver or Gina Knudsen may choose to use one or several types of Bioidentical Hormones based on your symptoms and your initial response to the therapy. The most common types of Bioidentical Hormones used in Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy include:
Although the technical name for this hormone is cortisol, some doctors and lay people refer to it as the stress hormone. Your adrenal glands produce and secrete cortisol in response to stress, also known as the fight or flight response. Because many people today live highly stressful lives, they may have unbalanced levels of cortisol present in their bodies. Left unchecked, this can lead to Type II diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and weight gain.
This hormone, which is secreted by the adrenal glands, is the foundation for both male and female sex hormones. These are also known as androgens and estrogens. When DHEA is out of balance, it can also affect the production of estrogen, testosterone, and cortisol. People with unbalanced DHEA often complain of aching of the joints, lowered sex drive, a decreased immune system, fatigue, depression, and loss of muscle mass.
The term estrogen actually describes the functioning of estradiol, estriol, and estrone. Estrogen is primarily a female hormone produced in the ovaries, fat tissue, or adrenal glands. Men also create small amounts of estrogen in their testes. As girls go through puberty, the proper levels of estrogen help to ensure breast development and a healthy uterine lining for future menstruation and pregnancy. Estrogen in male puberty causes deepening of the voice, growth of facial hair, and muscle development.
Without progesterone, your body cannot produce the other hormones it needs. This includes estrogen, testosterone, DHEA, and cortisol. Your body produces progesterone naturally from cholesterol and then turns it into pregnenolone, which in turn helps to produce the other hormones. It is integral for strong brain functioning, regulating blood sugar, having a healthy libido, and regulation the production of thyroid hormones.
This primarily male hormone is also present in smaller amounts in women. Both genders experience the effects of too little testosterone, including weight gain, hair loss, fatigue, depression, and low sex drive. In addition, men with unbalanced testosterone levels may experience unwanted breast growth.
This hormone controls the function of many others, including estrogen and progesterone. During the natural course of aging, you may lose up to 60 percent of the pregnenolone your body needs to sustain energy. It is also responsible for memory and alertness. An unbalanced level of pregnenolone contributes to depression, fatigue, and stress.
The thyroid is a tiny gland in your neck that controls all of the functions of your adrenal system. When your body produces too much or too little thyroid hormone, you may experience weight gain, depression, fatigue, cold sensations, hot flashes, and many other unpleasant symptoms.
Depending on your presenting symptoms, your Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy specialists Doctor Cleaver or Gina Knudsen may order a blood, saliva, or urine test to determine your current hormone levels. With this knowledge, the physician will then decide which Bioidentical Hormones you require for maximum symptom relief.
To learn more about which hormones can be replaced with Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy, contact San Francisco Bioidentical Hormone Therapy Doctors, Joseph Cleaver, M.D. and Gina Knudsen, PA-C at Paradigm Wellness Medical Group today to schedule a consultation!