Conventional medicine has always held the belief that aging is inevitable and that the progressive deterioration that occurs in our adult years cannot be altered. There are new studies in science and medicine that identifies aging as a disease. We are entering an era where mainstream medicine will focus on prevention of the diseases associated with aging as well as the symptoms. One of the most important treatments for the disease of aging may be hormone replacement therapy. Hormones decline in everyone as we age. Often times we are convinced this is just the aging process. New ideas on the management of aging can be met with a certain amount of resistance. Unfortunately, physicians do not receive hormone replacement training for the treatment of the natural aging process. Researchers from around the world have now shown hormonal deficiencies associated with aging are the same as you would expect to find in a younger person with a hormonal imbalance.
Over the last 50 years, research in the fields of endocrinology and immunology has increased our knowledge as to how and why we age. The endocrine system regulates our body’s temperature, reproduction, growth, aging and immune system. Communication between the nervous system, the endocrine system and the immune system, makes it possible for us to adapt and survive in our environment. It is through hormones that these systems interact to accomplish this mission. Hormones are molecules that are released into the blood stream and exert biochemical effects on receptor sites. Hormones serve as messengers from the central nervous system, telling our internal organs how to function.
Hormones are also amino acids linked together into long chains called polypeptides. These polypeptides are manufactured in endocrine glands, which include the adrenal glands, the testes, ovaries, pancreas, thyroid, pituitary gland and pineal gland. When there is degeneration and aging of the organs, the levels of hormones diminish. In addition, as we age, the specific receptor sites in the cells tend to change and become insensitive to the hormones. Whatever the cause, any decrease in stimulation of the receptor site will result in a decrease in stimulation of the cell, decrease in cellular repair, decrease in protein synthesis, and inability for the cell to regenerate and then a gradual destruction of the cell. This is how the aging process occurs. Pharmaceutical technology has made it possible to produce bio-identical hormones that in every way match those produced by our body. This field of medicine is simply known as Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy, the science of restoring the balance of the endocrine system back to what we had when we were younger.
Hormones control virtually all of the functions of the body including our reproductive, immune and metabolic systems. Hormones actually determine how we age by controlling our over all physical and mental health. As hormone levels decline, so do physical and mental capabilities. We lose our strength, energy, vitality and experience a decline in our overall health. By restoring hormones to more youthful levels, energy, strength, libido and overall well being is often restored. Not only can we strengthen our endocrine system, we can also enhance our minds.
We can also regain the youthful resilience that enables us to cope gracefully with stressors that challenge us every day. It has been shown that the catabolic changes seen in normal aging, including osteoporosis, muscle atrophy, sleep disorders and decreased sociability are in part caused by a decrease in hormones. Aging in men and women is associated with reduced protein synthesis, decreased lean body mass, decreased bone mass and increased body fat. The body composition changes are accompanied by a progressive decline in the secretion of hormones. Replenishment of these hormones to physiological levels has been shown to improve these age-related changes. Much of the aging process may be the effect of our hormonal system being out of balance. Diseases that have become associated with normal aging, such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer are largely a result of what happens when the correct balance of hormone levels is no longer maintained. By restoring proper hormone balance, many of the diseases associated with the aging process may improve. Hormone Replacement may just be the solution to a healthier, happier life.
Remember, the key is to replenish all hormones back to a more youthful balance, producing a synergistic effect between the hormone system. Which hormones to replenish, how much to replenish and how to adjust the hormones is the art and science of the specialty field of hormone replacement.