While most women naturally lose their hormones as early as late 20’s and early 30’s, these hormones continue to decline until the onset of Menopause around age 52 when it becomes a raging emergency to seek help to relieve those nasty hot flashes and drenching night sweats. This is rightfully called Menopause. However, other factors such as stress, lack of nutrition, poor sleeping habits, lack of exercise, smoking, and excessive alcohol intake can also cause hormones to decline while still relatively young. Some other women may experience premature menopause induced by surgical removal of their ovaries.
As early as late 20’s or early 30’s, many women may experience declining female hormones especially progesterone. Sleep becomes a bit restless and superficial, a little bit of irritability may be occasional outbursts of anger with kids or husband especially before the periods. This is called Pre-menopause. If treated at this stage, life can become once more enjoyable as well as prepared for eventual menopause.
Peri-menopause is the next well- defined phase when these symptoms become more sustained and severe. If left untreated life can become more miserable. This phase can last from anywhere 10-15 years. Most women usually notice significant changes in their menstrual cycles during this time. Some women may experience increased PMS symptoms, irregular periods, Headaches, severe mood swings, shorter or longer periods, and lighter or heavier periods. While every woman’s experience of peri-menopause is different, other common symptoms may include fatigue, mental fogginess, increased abdominal fat, bloating, water retention, migraines, dysmenorrhea, acne, food cravings, mood swings, infertility, and irregular menstrual periods.
Natural menopause is a condition that every healthy woman will experience as she reaches middle age, typically between the ages of 35-59. A woman is considered to have reached menopause when a full year has passed since her last menstrual period. It is a natural, gradual process that occurs when a woman’s ovaries produce less estrogen, progesterone and testosterone, and her lifetime supply of eggs becomes depleted. Women going through menopause often experience a combination of symptoms, which include hot flashes, night sweats, irritability, mood swings, sudden tears, loss of libido, vaginal dryness, heart palpitations, fatigue, anxiety, urinary urgency, inability to sleep through the night, clammy skin, depression, and weight gain.
Bio-identical hormone replacement therapy can benefit women going through hormone decline at any age. Some of the benefits of bio-identical hormones (BHRT) may include some of the following.
Healthier Moods can be achieved when sex hormones such as progesterone and estrogen become balanced. Sex hormones affect brain chemistry by promoting neurotransmitters that send signals of calmness and contentment. When hormones decline, women can experience increased anxiety, irritability, depression, and anger. Regaining balance can improve emotional health and wellbeing.
Stronger Bones may also be the result of balanced hormones. Estrogen allows the bones to absorb important nutrients that keep them strong, and when it declines, the bones may not be able to take in enough calcium. This can cause bones to become brittle and porous, which can lead to osteoporosis.
Weight Loss is another possible result of balancing hormones. Progesterone is a natural diuretic, and when it is deficient, women may feel bloated and retain water. An estrogen deficiency can cause the body to hold onto body fat because adipose tissue contains estrogen. Reestablishing the balance between estrogen and progesterone can lead to weight loss.
Regulated Body Temperature occurs when hormones are able to signal the hypothalamus in a balanced way. The hypothalamus is the body’s temperature control center, and hormones are responsible for signaling it to regulate temperature. When hormones decline, body temperature may fluctuate to produce hot flashes and night sweats.
Improved Sleep is another benefit to bio-identical hormone therapy. The hypothalamus also sets the body’s cycles, and when hormones are out of whack, the body’s cycles may not be set correctly. Regulating hormones can help the hypothalamus to set sleep cycles, and women will be able to fall and stay asleep more easily.
A More Youthful Appearance can occur with balanced estrogen levels because it is responsible for giving women a feminine and youthful appearance. Estrogen allows the skin to form collagen, which keeps the skin youthful and elastic, and it keeps hair and nails lustrous and the breasts full. A lack of estrogen can cause women going through hormone decline to have wrinkling skin, sagging breasts, and dull hair and nails.
Improved Sexual Function is another plus to bio-identical hormone therapy. Many women with hormone decline complain about vaginal dryness, low libido, and inability to climax. Hormone supplementation can help women to desire and enjoy sexual activity more fully.
What about the risk of Cancer?
There has been confusion regarding increased risk of breast cancer, heart attack, blood clots, and stroke with use of hormones. This confusion was caused by the release of WHI trial results to the public, a study done in 2002 on 16,000 post-menopausal women to evaluate effects of hormones on cardiovascular, cancer, osteoporosis and Alzheimer risk in postmenopausal women.
This was actually an expected outcome for this particular medication, which combines synthetic hormones: estrogen, an oral horse estrogen, and a synthetic progestin. The undesirable effects observed in these studies were related to:
- Unnatural and synthetic “hormones” Premarin, the most popular estrogen replacement therapy is derived from pregnant horses and contains mostly estrone and a number of equine ( horse) estrogens not natural to humans. Provera is a synthetic progesterone called progestins.
- Oral administration of estrogen (passage through the liver) which increases clotting factors and inflammatory protein (CRP), effects that aren’t observed with trans-dermal (skin) administration.
The natural combinations have been shown to decrease the risks of stroke and heart attack by 50% (Premarin and Provera increase it) and reduce the risk of breast cancer by 80% (Premarin and Provera increase it). The natural hormones also reduce the risk of osteoporosis by 50%, reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s by 80%. Reduce the risk of osteoarthritis by 40%, and reduce the risks of colon cancer by 40%.
One of the largest studies to date comparing the risk of breast cancer with the use of natural bioidentical hormones and synthetic hormones replacement therapy demonstrates that the natural hormones have significantly less associated risk of breast cancer. This study published in a 2007 issue of Breast Cancer Research reported the association between various forms of HRT and the incidence of breast cancer in over 80,000 postmenopausal women who were followed for over 8 postmenopausal years. This study found that, compared to women who never used any hormones replacement therapy, women who used estrogen only (different preparations analyzed together) had an increased risk of breast cancer that was 1.29 times those who never used estrogen, If a synthetic progestin was used in combination with estrogen, there was a significant increase in the risk of breast cancer compared to those on the estrogen only that was 1.69 times the risk of those who never used estrogen.
If, however, a woman used natural progesterone in combination with estrogen, the increased risk of breast cancer was eliminated, having no increased risk of breast cancer as compared to those who never used estrogen. In addition, estriol-containing products were found to have a further protective effect against breast cancers, resulting in a lower risk of breast cancer than even those who never used any hormone replacement.
This study adds to the mass of previous medical literature that demonstrates the superior safety of bio-identical hormones replacement as compared to synthetic hormones.
A combination of the natural estrogens, estriol and estradiol have been shown to actually protect against breast cancer and result in a reduction in breast cancer risk. When this is added to natural progesterone’s powerful breast cancer risk reduction, one would expect a significant reduction in breast cancer in women on natural hormone replacement than in women on no therapy.
We believe our approach is more physiological and mimics nature and it will not only relieve symptoms of menopause, but very likely, also improve over-all health in menopausal women. Depending on a woman’s personal and family medical history, the doctors at Angel Longevity Center in the Los Angeles and Ventura area may recommend estrogen, progesterone or testosterone for your menopausal nightmare.
We not only relieve you from your poor quality of life but also assess your risks for developing cardiovascular conditions or cancer in the future. The laboratory evaluation of hormones is very thorough and may include a blood test, saliva or a 24 hours urine test for comprehensive hormone profile. Once we balance your hormones, as a final thorough check, we will require you to do a 24 hours urine test to evaluate your particular risk for breast cancer. Dr. Mathur will determine if any nutritional supplementation or detoxification is required to modulate the metabolism of the hormones in your body by looking at 2:16 alpha hydroxyestrone ratio and estrogen quotient as well as other metabolites. There are many factors that interfere with hormone receptors and change the way a particular hormone is broken down in the body. This is properly assessed so as to lower your risk of breast cancer even if you came in with high risk. So getting your hormones balanced actually reduces your risk by balancing even the breakdown products (metabolites) of these hormones effectively.
The “hormone balance for life” program balances your hormones for real.
Dr. Anju Mathur at Angel Longevity Center Patient Testimonials
“I started bio-identical hormone replacement therapy in January for hot flashes, night sweats, and “the jitters”. 4 months later, I have no hot flashes, no night sweats and I am more calm and happy, with a relaxed peaceful energy! Thank you Dr. Mathur.” –Nancy, San Fernando Valley Los Angeles California
“I have been on this bio-identical hormone therapy for 3 months and I have noticed that I have more endurance. I last longer during the day. I can now walk further each day. I am looking forward to continued improvement.” – Dorothy (83 yrs. old) Los Angeles
“I have had severe pains in my lower back, groin, leg, knee and ankle, which were getting progressively worse for over a year. After 2 weeks on the bio-identical hormones prescribed by Dr. Mathur the pains ceased 100%. If someone had told me that would happen I wouldn’t have believed it. Its now over a month since I started and pain has not come back.” – Kathy, San Fernando Valley
“Although you can’t make your biological clock run backwards, bio-identical hormone replacement therapy can handle some of the effects of the aging process so you can have more energy and feel younger.” – Burleigh San Fernando Valley CA
“I started a treatment here several months ago. When I came I had headaches 3-4 every week, pain and cysts in my breast and so many gray hair and cellulite. Now my headaches are 90% better. I have less gray hair and less cellulite and the horrible cysts in the breast are gone. The treatment with natural bio-identical hormones gave me a younger body. My process to be a 40 years old woman was terrible to confront because of all the changes in the body. Now I am a happy 40-year-old young lady. Thanks Doctor and thanks to your staff.” – Claudia, Los Angeles CA
“I am Rigoberta Adams. I started with the Bio-identical Hormone program one month ago. I am usually a very stressful person. I saw my Doctor (Dr. Mathur), one month later when I tell her I feel much better. I am doing the same stressful things, my schedule is very tight, but now I feel more calm but with a lot more energy she is surprised but happy. I am much better with this hormone program.” – Rigoberta A., San Fernando Valley
“I’ve been doing the bioidentical hormone treatment for approximately 11/2 months. I wasn’t sure I’d stick with it because I had a lot of pills to take, not my favorite thing to do-at all. But I managed it remarkably well taking them and have amazing results. I feel way better than I have in years. Pains have gone away. Hot flashes have pretty much gone. I have more energy and have confronted things I put off for a long time. Looking forward to improvement more. Best thing that’s happened to me in along time. Thanks” – Carole S., Los Angeles California
“I have been coming with Dr. Mathur for a few months now and I already feel better, have more energy and sleep better. I am looking forward to the next improvements that I anticipate with this program. Dr. Mathur is great! “ – Y. P., SFV