The Beauty of Hormonal Balance in Menopause
Relieve Unpleasant Symptoms with BioIdentical Hormones
by Jackie Chirco, D.O.
Menopause is the time when a woman says good-bye to her reproductive years and ushers in a time of hormone imbalances. Many experience unpleasant symptoms such as weight gain, hot flashes, low energy, inflammation, mood changes, brain fog, high blood pressure or vision changes.
Hormones have plenty to do with menopause, but not everyone knows what exactly they are. Simply put, hormones are powerful chemicals that are made in special organs called endocrine glands. For example, the ovaries are special glands which are sex hormone-producing factories. During a woman’s reproductive years, the ovaries are busy producing robust amounts of hormones, which include estrogen and progesterone.
My own menopausal hormonal chaos was so extreme that I was just surviving day-to-day with a multitude of hormone depletion symptoms. The use of bioidentical hormones has played a large role in allowing me to take back my health at age 58.
There are many health benefits of the natural (bioidentical) hormones estrogen, progesterone, and even testosterone, which is also produced by the ovaries and necessary for women’s health.
Balanced estrogen helps maintain a healthy weight, regulate body temperature, control blood pressure and cholesterol and enhance mood, brain functioning and vision. Natural progesterone increases scalp hair, increases a sense of well-being and decreases inflammation. Natural testosterone helps maintain bone strength, muscle mass and memory while decreasing body fat. Each of these, especially testosterone, helps increase libido.
Once a woman hits mid-life, the ovaries begin to “run out of steam” and cannot supply the body with the same robust levels of estrogen, progesterone and testosterone. When this happens, the body shows signs of hormone deprivation, and unpleasant menopausal symptoms arise.
To more gracefully transition into the menopausal years, I suggest the following:
• Eat a healthy diet
• Exercise regularly
• Minimize stress
• Optimize sleep
• Remove toxins from your life
• Get regular physical examinations, pelvic exams and breast exams
• Be sure your gastrointestinal (gut) system is working well
• Have your hormones checked. Include insulin, cortisol, DHEA, thyroid hormones, estrogen, progesterone and testosterone
Discuss the results with your doctor. Bioidentical hormones, when used in the right patient, can not only relieve unpleasant menopausal symptoms but also help put the brakes on the aging process.
Jackie Chirco, D.O. of Hope Integrative Medicine, is an associate of Keri Topouzian, D.O., located at 1900 S. Telegraph, Suite 102, Bloomfield Hills, MI. For more information, call 248-302-0473 or visit AskDrT.com.