Hormone Health MD Bioidentical Blog

July 8, 2008

Progesterone in Women

  Progesterone is one of your sex hormones and is made inyour ovaries before menopause. After menopause, some progesterone’s made in your adrenal glands. As we age, we lose our hormones, and progesterone is one of the first to go. In women, progesterone declines first, then estrogen. You could suffer from progesterone loss for 15 years before you lose your period.

   In our 40’s, we usually start to experience progesterone decline. Symptoms of decreased progesterone include anxiety, depression, irritability, mood swings, insomnia, pain and inflammation, osteoporosis, decreased HDL, weight gain, and excessive menstruation. Why do we gain weight with low progesterone? Estrogen is a building up hormone, and if you do not have enough progesterone to balance the estrogen you have, then you will gain weight. Estrogen without progesterone equals gaining about 10 pounds.

   Causes of low progesterone levels are peri-menopause, impaired production, low luteinizing hormone (LH), increased prolactin production, stress, sugar, and saturated fat, deficiency of vitamins A, B6, C, zinc, and decreased thyroid hormone.

    Be aware that progestin is not bioidentical progesterone. I have spoken to doctors and nurses who did not know the important difference. Synthetic non-bioidentical progesterone is called progestin. It is very different from natural bioidentical progesterone since it does not have the same chemical structure nor the same effects as the progesterone that your body makes on its own. Natural bioidentical progesterone is biologically identical to what you produce. Also, progestins do not reproduce the actions of natural progesterone. Progestins are contained in birth control pills, Provera, and Prempro. Don’t be fooled by the similarities in names.  Medroxyprogesterone is a progestin, not progesterone.

   What’s the difference? It could be your life. To start, progestins have many side effects. The side effects of progestins (synthetic progesterone) that do not occur with natural bioidentical progesterone include: increased appetite, weight gain, fluid retention, irritability, depression, headache, decreased energy, bloating, breast tenderness, decreased sexual interest, rash, acne, hair loss, nausea, insomnia, breakthrough bleeding/spotting. Progestins interfere with your bodys own production of progesterone and do not help balance estrogen. They remain in your body longer and can cause spasm of your coronary (heart) arteries. Progestins stop the protective effects estrogen has on your heart, attaches to many of your bodys receptor sitesnot just your progesterone receptors (long-term affects of this are unknown), and may make the symptoms of progesterone loss worse. Progestins increases LDL (bad cholesterol) and decreases HDL (good cholesterol). Progestins counteract many of the positive effects of estrogen on serotonin and may cause depression.

    Here’s the life-threatening part: a recent study has shown that the use of synthetic progesterone or progestinincreases the risk of breast cancer by 800%as compared withthe use of estrogen alone. Another study showed that women taking natural bioidentical progesterone had a 10% lower rate of cancer than the general population. 

     Natural bioidentical progesterone helps balance estrogen, leaves your body quickly, helps you sleep, has a natural calming effect1, lowers high blood pressure, helps your body use and eliminate fats, lowers cholesterol, may protect against breast cancer , increases scalp hair, normalizes libido, helps balance fluids in the cells, and increases the beneficial effects of estrogens on blood vessel dilation in atheroscelerotic plaques (hardening of the arteries), has an anti-proliferative effect (decreases the rate of cancer)on all progesterone receptorsnot just the ones in the uterus, does not change the good effect estrogen has on blood flow, increases metabolic rate, is a natural diuretic and a natural antidepressant.

      Natural bioidentical progesterone offers a safer approach to hormone replacement therapy than synthetic progesterone (progestin). It is very important that you have your levels of progesterone

measured before you begin bioidentical hormone replacement and then on a regular basis to confirm that you are on an optimal dose for you.

   If you have had a complete hysterectomy you still need natural progesterone since it  has the many positive affects on your body discussed above. Progesterone can be prescribed as a pill or a topical cream. A compounding pharmacist would fill your prescription. It is made from an extract of soy beans or yams with an enzyme added to convert the diosgenin in the yam into bioidentical progesterone. Over-the counter progesterone frequently does not contain this enzyme. If one of your main symptoms is insomnia, then choose the pillform which affects the GABA receptors in your brain, having a calming effect which allows you to sleep.

   If you think you have progesterone changes, consult with a doctor who has experience with peri-menopausal hormone changes and bioidentical hormone replacement.

For further informattion contact:

Aref Bhuiya M.D., 5655 Lindero Canyon Rd., Ste. 202, Westlake Village, CA 91362, 818-597-3223.


July 7, 2008

Natural Bioidentical Hormone Estrogen Replacement

   There are several reasons to consider natural bioidentical estrogen replacement when approaching menopause. Relief of menopausal symptoms like hot flashes, night sweats, low libido, vaginal dryness, wrinkling skin, fatigue, and urinary incontinence usually send us to the doctor. But the long term benefits of estrogen are maintenance of  eye health, prevention of memory loss, heart health, bone production (prevention of osteoporosis)and tissue repair.

   What is natural bioidentical hormone replacement? It means using hormones that are biologically the same identical molecule as what your body makes. In other words, the hormones are the same chemical structure as the ones that your body made before menopause. A customized dose of natural bioidentical hormonal therapy is the only way to replace hormones safely. Studies have shown that women who use hormone replacement live longer than those who do

   There are several reasons to consider natural bioidentical hormone replacement therapy when approaching menopause. Relief of menopausal symptoms like hot flashes, night sweats, low libido, vaginal dryness, wrinkling skin, fatigue, and urinary incontinence usually send us to the doctor. But the long term benefits of estrogen are maintenance of  eye health, prevention of memory loss, heart health, bone production (prevention of osteoporosis)and tissue repair.

   Estrogen has 400 functions in your body. It increases your metabolic rate, enhances energy, improves insulin sensitivity, and regulates body temperature. It prevents muscle damage and helps maintain muscle. In the cardiovascular arena, it helps maintain the elasticity of your arteries, dilates your small arteries, increases blood flow, inhibits platelet stickiness, decreases the accumulation of plaque on your arteries, decreases blood pressure, decreases LDL(bad cholesterol) and prevents its oxidation,  acts as a natural calcium channel blocker to keep your arteries open, decreases lipoprotein A ( a risk factor for heart disease), reduces homocysteine (another risk factor for heart disease), increases HDL (good cholesterol) by 10 to 15%, and reduces the overall risk of heart disease by 40 to 50%.

   Estrogen has many benefits for your brain and nervous system. It helps maintain your memory, increases reasoning and new ideas, helps with fine motor skills, enhances the production of nerve-growth factor, improves your mood, increases concentration,  helps prevent Alzheimer’s disease, improves your mood, aids in the formation of neurotransmitters in your brain such as serotonin which decreases depression, irritability, anxiety,and pain sensitivity.

   For eye health, it protects against macular degeneration and helpsprevent cataracts.

   For beauty, it maintains the amount of collagen, increases the water content, thickness, and softness of your skinand decreases wrinkles.

   For bones, it maintains bone density and helps prevent tooth 1oss.

   It increases sexual interest and decreases your risk of colon cancer

   So with decreased estrogen you get thinner skin, more wrinkles/aging skin, decrease in breast size, stress incontinence, oily skin, acne, decreased sex drive, decreased dexterity, increase in insulin resistanceand possible diabetes, vaginal dryness, decreased memory, osteoporosis, urinary tract infections, and increased cholesterol. Sounds like getting old, huh?

   Peri-menopause and menopause occurs in our 40’s and 50’s.  Most women of that age group can expect to live to be a mean age of 83. You may spend 30-40 years without the benefits of estrogen and will experience the resultant decline.

   With a safe and effective way of replacing estrogen with bioidentical hormones, women no longer need to bear the decline of deficiency with aging.

    A few things to remember. Never take any kind of estrogen orally. It increases circulating inflammatory factors that can increase inflammatory disease, increases C-reactive protein which can increase heart disease, and can decrease IGF-1, the active growth hormone in the body. Estrogen should not be taken without progesterone to balance it whether or not you still have your uterus. Estrogen is a building up hormone and needs to be balanced with natural bioidentical progesterone to prevent breast tenderness, weight gain, and an increased thickness of the uterine lining. Estrogen is best administered as a cream or gel by applying it to the skin.

For further informattion contact:

Aref Bhuiya M.D., 5655 Lindero Canyon Rd., Ste. 202, Westlake Village, CA 91362, 818-597-3223.

July 6, 2008

Don’t Feel Like Yourself Anymore? It’s Probably Your Hormones!

Filed under: bioidentical hormones — Dr. Bhuiya's Bioidentical Hormone Blog @ 7:01 am
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      Have you had the feeling you’re not quite yourself anymore? Perhaps if you’re a woman it’s hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, weight gain, loss of sexual interest, irritability or fatigue. It can also be depression, panic attacks, weird dreams, urinary tract infections and urinary leakage, lower back pain, bloating, gas and indigestion.  There may also be memory lapses, aching ankles heels, knees, wrists, shoulders and heels. If you are over 40 years old, you may be experiencing the symptoms of changing hormones and hormone loss.

          As women age, their ovaries are programmed to shut down their function. This occurs over many years called the peri-menopause. First there is a decrease in progesterone and then a decrease in estrogen.  Testosterone, present in small amounts also starts to falter. Thyroid and adrenal function can also decrease.

          Men are not immune to hormone changes, although it happens more gradually. Changes may start to be noticed in the 40’s to 50’s age range. Mental fatigue, inability to concentrate, feeling burned out, depression, loss of initiative, sore joints and muscles, decreased stamina, increasing cholesterol, triglycerides, hypertension, and diabetes may all be associated with decreased testosterone.

          We experience the ravages of aging because we lose our hormones  with age. The goal of anti-aging medicine including hormone, nutrient, and lifestyle therapy is to keep the individual functioning at as close to a middle age level as possible. Men and women are offered little in the way of medical information or preventative treatment for the symptoms of hormonal and nutritional decline. Instead they get a cocktail of sleeping pills, anti-depressants, and pain medication, and  are told to accept that they are “just getting old”.

          Bioidentical hormone therapy, using the same identical molecular structure as the hormones in the human body, can eliminate symptoms and  maintain bone, memory, mobility, and heart health in men and women.

          There is still much confusion in the population concerning  hormone therapy. The “bad press hormone therapy has gotten in past years revolves around a large study called the Women’s Health Initiative which studied women on non-bioidentical  hormones (Premarin made from pregnant horse urine and progestins) which  increase cancer and strokes. Bioidentical hormones  in proper doses are not known to have these effects, alleviate symptoms, and have great benefit.

          Recent studies show that women on bioidentical hormones have a lower incidence of breast cancer than the general population. In addition, they maintain bone density preventing or improving osteoporosis. Women on hormones have a lower incidence of Alzheimer’s disease than those who are not. In addition, the incidence of macular degeneration and cataract formation is lower. Estrogen is the important hormone in women for maintaining heart health. In men, the most important hormone is testosterone, accounting for heart health, bone health, and brain health.

          Twenty-five percent of our population, the Baby Boomers,  are passing into older age. The goal is to keep functioning at a high physiologic level and continuing to make contributions while avoiding the decline of health that  burdens family and society.  What a benefit!

For further informattion contact:

Aref Bhuiya M.D., 5655 Lindero Canyon Rd., Ste. 202, Westlake Village, CA 91362, 818-597-3223.

Hello world!

Filed under: bioidentical hormones — Dr. Bhuiya's Bioidentical Hormone Blog @ 5:27 am
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Welcome to my blog. It’s about informing men and women about bioidentical hormone replacement therapy that can provide optimal health and vitality for your whole lifespan. Currently, the average lifespan of a man is 78 years and 83 years for a woman. You could easily live into your 90’s with a prudent lifestyle. But who wants to live to be 90 if we can’t sleep, have no energy, lose our memory, lose our minds (Alzheimer’s), lose our eyesight, lose our muscles, break weak bones, are depressed, have no sex drive, develop multiple diseases of aging, and wind up in a nursing home?

We now have the means now to change all that. We age because we lose our hormones. By replacing our hormones and nutrients we can avoid the symptoms of hormone loss like hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, and low libido, and stay healthy for the rest of our lives. Estrogen in women and testosterone in men are reponsible for heart health, bone health, brain health, and eye health.

When you feel good, you want to look good. I’ll talk about the latest in non-surgical aesthetic procedures for improving appearance including Botox, fillers, laser skin rejuvenation, photofacial, and skin care. Feel better, look better!

For further informattion contact:

Aref Bhuiya M.D., 5655 Lindero Canyon Rd., Ste. 202, Westlake Village, CA 91362, 818-597-3223.

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