Is there such a thing as hormone balance? It seems to be the buzz word that we hear so often these days for both men and especially women. With birth control, hormone replacement therapy, hysterectomies just to name a few, hormonal manipulations are on the rise. It seems that it’s not a matter of if, but a matter of when things spin out of control. The first place to start is answering some important questions:
How do you know if there is truly a problem? One clue may include hot flashes, infertility, inability to lose weight and many others. These are a result of hormone levels being out of balance, and add to the mix the major effects of stress, so it’s no wonder hormone problems are such a prominent issue today.
Hormones are chemical messengers that balance body function, achieving homeostasis. When people hear hormones, testosterone and estrogens usually come to mind, but hormones are so much more. These little chemical messengers work in tissues all over the body. Hormones bind to receptors and “tell” individual tissues what to do. Therefore there are many different processes that hormones are involved in, and they play a very important role in having normal physiology, resulting in normal health.
Hormonal imbalance is actually the body trying to work things out and return to balance or homeostasis. Remember, the body does not make mistakes. It is alway fighting for you and doing the right thing at the right time. It is our job to look at hormone physiology in a different way, remove what is interfering with normal function, and give the body what it needs to return to normal.
When we think of hormone imbalances, we often think of women, but men suffer from this as well. Declining testosterone levels often cause men hardship when it comes to their health. Often men will just deal with the symptoms that they are experiencing because they either think that because the symptoms are common, then they must be normal, or they are just too embarrassed to admit that they have a problem with their very thing that makes them a man. There is good news: gaining an understanding of what the deficiencies are allow us to determine what the body needs! Once the deficiencies are fed, often the function returns to normal, and the man is back to feeling like himself again.
There are many signs of hormone imbalances that women tend to think are normal as well. Just like their male counterparts, they will ignore or push the symptoms aside because they feel like they are common. These symptoms may be common, but we have to listen to our body and what it is trying to tell us. These symptoms can be a sign that there is something much nastier on the horizon. If these things are not addressed in a timely fashion, they can lead to severe illnesses. Hormones are often a secondary problem. Examples of things that this may lead to are depression, cancer, diabetes, thyroid dysfunction, and adrenal dysregulation. As you can see, it is vital we listen and take appropriate actions in testing and giving the body what it needs to return to normal function.
Increasingly, medical treatments aim at just manipulating the symptoms rather than trying to understand what clues the hormones are trying to tell us. Symptoms are your body’s way of communicating to you that there is something wrong. Your symptoms leave clues, such as PCOS, endometriosis, infertility, weight loss difficulty, energy and sleep struggles, painful cycles, low libido and cancer, just to name a few.
In the traditional medical model, treatments are often found in the form of birth control, hysterectomies, ablations, hormone replacement therapy and others. For both men and women, these do not have to be the only acceptable solutions!
At Peak Health Center, we understand that in order to have a chance to correct hormone levels, proper and complete testing is a necessity. Three major mediums are used when measuring hormone levels: blood, urine and saliva. Depending on the individual case, one or more may be necessary. The next step involves knowing whether there is a hormone production or hormone conversion issue, or potentially a combination of the two. With a full understanding of how the body works, and where the hormone levels are currently at, a strategy can be established in order to help restore normal function, resulting in balance.