NEED FOR NATURAL HORMONE REPLACEMENT THERAPY (HRT)
You must be wondering with all of the hype about hormones, “Why do we need HRT in the first place?” In this article I address this concern with some straightforward information about natural HRT…
Hormonal imbalance is a term that has become popular to describe an incorrect relationship that exists between levels of progesterone and estrogen.
Progesterone is a needed hormone for both menopausal women and andropausal men for many reasons. It’s a steroid hormone made by the ovary at ovulation, and in smaller amounts by the adrenal glands. Progesterone is manufactured in the body from the steroid hormone pregnenolone, and is a precursor to most of the other steroid hormones, including cortisol, androstenedione, the estrogens and testosterone. When levels of progesterone are low, it needs to be replaced. Its most important role is to balance or oppose the effects of estrogen.
Unopposed estrogen creates a strong risk for breast cancer and reproductive cancers. Estrogen levels drop at menopause but only 40-60%, which is just enough to stop the menstrual cycle. Progesterone levels may drop to near zero in some women. Because progesterone is the precursor to so many other steroid hormones, its use can greatly enhance overall hormone balance after menopause. Progesterone also stimulates bone building and thus helps protect against osteoporosis.
During the 10 to 15 years before menopause, many women regularly have cycles where they make enough estrogen to create menstruation, but they don\’t make any progesterone. This sets the stage for estrogen dominance. By using natural progesterone during these months, symptoms of PMS can be helped.
We also know that PMS can occur despite normal progesterone levels when stress is present. Stress overtaxes the adrenals. It increases cortisol production; cortisol blocks (or competes for) progesterone receptors. Additional progesterone is required in this case to overcome this blockade, and additional stress management is important, such as proper nutrition, exercise, and lifestyle. Similar scenarios apply to men as well.
Other major factors that stresses our bodies and subsequently our hormones, are environmental chemicals in our food, water and air–heavy metals, herbicides, pesticides, plastics and many other poisons—that mimic estrogen once they enter our body. In just one example of this type of poisoning, it has been reported on several news programs (CBS, The Discovery Channel and others) that the common tin can is inadvertently supplying us with unwanted estrogen-like hormones. This is a result of a chemical reaction over a period of time between the tin and the plastic inner lining of the can. Unwanted cumulative chemical additions, such as this, are believed to have dire consequences within our bodies.
It’s clear that our bodies can get overloaded with estrogen without even trying. The other bad news is that our overloaded bodies may not have the ability to breakdown estrogen. The liver generally removes excess estrogen. Diseases of the liver like cirrhosis or decreased enzyme activity can lead to increased estrogen levels. Vitamin B6 and magnesium are necessary for the liver to neutralize estrogen. Increased sugar intake will also excrete magnesium and interfere with its ability to breakdown estrogen. Estrogen supplementation by prescription is clearly not needed, and will increase estrogen levels unless it is properly balanced with natural progesterone.
With all of these factors, it’s easy to conclude most women and men are on estrogen overload.
Symptoms of Estrogen Overload
When estrogen overload symptoms occur, doctors usually offer either synthetic HRT or birth control pills. What is needed instead is natural progesterone for both hormonal balance and relief of symptoms, in both women and men, such as:
- Decreased libido
- Fibrocystic breasts
- Food and sugar cravings
- Uterine fibroids
- Irregular or excessive uterine bleeding
- Weight gain
- Increased blood clotting
- Thyroid dysfunction
When dysfunctions are extremely painful or debilitating, women are told that their health is more important than their reproductive organs, and that a hysterectomy would be the best thing. In most cases, women can choose natural HRT to solve these problems. Natural HRT can take care of the risks of:
- Ovarian cancer
- Breast cancer
An imbalance occurs in nearly every instance where physicians prescribe synthetic hormones. This is because traditional HRT adds to the already existing high levels of estrogen in our bodies. By adding synthetic hormones, traditional HRT, which directly interfere with the normal function of our endocrine system, our body is fooled. It thinks the estrogens are real estrogens. Our bodies act as if there is estrogen excess in the system, resulting in an increased hormonal imbalance.
At Oasis Advanced Wellness a simple saliva hormonal level test kit can be purchased and used in the comfort of your home. With these results and your symptoms, you can determine your need for natural HRT.
You can find out more about the solutions in my eBook, Balancing Your Hormones Without Drugs…You Can Feel Good Again.
Loretta Lanphier, ND, CN, HHP is a Doctor of Naturopath, Clinical Nutritionist and Holistic Health Practitioner in the Houston, TX area and CEO/President of Oasis Advanced Wellness. A teacher, educator and author, she counsels Oasis Advanced Wellness clients on the aspects of getting the body healthy and keeping the body healthy. As a cancer survivor, she is able to relate extensively, both as a patient and a practitioner, to clients suffering from disease. Dr. Lanphier has been privileged to share her cancer survival story with hundreds of people during seminars and lectures. Her passionate style of truth and straight-forwardnessin an easy-to-understand format is very refreshing to even the most discerning of audiences. Dr. Lanphier is the author of two books and many articles on health conditions written from a natural/alternative medicine viewpoint. Dr. Lanphier is dedicated to helping people create lasting changes in their health and enhancing well-being through whole body nutritional balancing including physician strength supplementation. Dr. Lanphier is Editor and contributor to the worldwide newsletter Alternative Health & Healing.