(From Forever Health)
Do you feel like the weight of gravity is setting in? You keep telling yourself, that you’re too young to feel old, but your aching muscles, sore joints, and decreased energy tell you otherwise.
What are some key factors to feeling old?
Oxidative stress from diets high in sugar and processed foods
Inflammation from diets high in hydrogenated oils
Raised cortisol levels from poorly managed stress
Overuse of prescription drugs
Dehydration and large amounts of cold drink consumption
Low thyroid function
While life expectancy for humans has increased, for many individuals the quality of life has decreased. According to the World Health Organization, the United States ranks 37th in the world when it comes to overall health.(1) More Americans are experiencing obesity, heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. Surprisingly, women in other countries do not suffer from symptoms of hormonal imbalance to the extent that American women experience PMS, endometriosis, fibroid tumors and menopausal symptoms.
Why do Americans suffer more from health ailments? A key factor is found within hormonal imbalances. For women, an extremely common hormone imbalance is “estrogen-dominance.”
Severe symptoms of menopause, PMS, heavy menstrual bleeding, and endometriosis, as well as the progression of fibroid tumors and cancer, can all be related to estrogen-dominance.(2,3,4) Estrogen is a primary hormone found in men and women. While it is necessary for cardiovascular health, reproduction, bone development, and cognitive function, an excessive amount of estrogen can cause health problems.
How does estrogen-dominance develop? Obesity can be a major factor in estrogen-dominance, as estrone (a form of estrogen) is stored in fat cells.(5) Another source can be found in compounds known as PCBs, BPAs, and Phthalates.(6) These materials contain xenoestrogens (estrogen-like chemicals) that can be found in plastics, petroleum-based products, and household cleaning supplies. Xenoestrogens can also be found in herbicides, pesticides, and insecticides that are used on our food supply. These compounds can cause significant health ailments, including estrogen-related cancers.(7) The high-fat, western diet that is based on refined, processed foods and saturated animal fats can also contribute to estrogen-dominance.(8)
While obese men store more estrone, they typically aren’t affected with estrogen-dominance. However, men can experience testosterone deficiency as they age, which can lead to increased body fat, low libido, mood imbalances, fatigue, and cardiovascular ailments.(9)
If you have concerns about hormone imbalances, you can check your hormone levels with simple blood tests. A hormone imbalance or deficiency can be safely and effectively treated with bio-identical hormone replacement. Maintaining healthy hormone levels can help restrain significant health problems, including cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, obesity, depression, and menopausal symptoms.(10,11,12)
1. Murray CJ, Frenk J. Ranking 37th – measuring the performance of the U.S. health care system. N Engl J Med. 2010 Jan;362(2):98-99.
2. Ashby J, Tinwell H, Plautz J, et al. Lack of binding to isolated estrogen or androgen receptors, and inactivity in the immature rat uterotrophic assay, of the ultraviolet sunscreen filters Tinosorb M-active and Tinosorb S. Regul Toxicol Pharmacol. 2001;34(3):287–291.
3. Bentrem D, Fox JE, Pearce ST, et al. Distinct molecular conformations of the estrogen receptor alpha complex exploited by environmental estrogens. Cancer Res. 2003;63(21):7490–7496.
4. Kubista E. [Diagnosis and therapy of fibrocystic breast disease]. Zentralbl Gynakol. 1990; 112(17):1091–1096.
5. Turner N. The Hormone Diet: A 3-Step Program to Help You Lose Weight, Gain Strength, and Live Younger Longer. New York, NY: Rodale;2009.
6. Tapiero H, Ba GN et al. Estrogens and environmental estrogens. Biomed Pharmacother. 2002 Feb;56(1):36–44.
7. Fucic A, Gamulin M, Ferenic Z, Katic J, et al. Environmental exposure to xenoestrogens and oestrogen related cancers: reproductive system, breast, lung, kidney, pancreas, and brain. Environ Health. 2012 Jun;11(1):S8.
8. Hall DC. Nutritional influences on estrogen metabolism. Applied Nutritional Science Reports. 2001:1-8.
9. Watt PJ, Hughes RB, et al. A holistic programmatic approach to natural hormone replacement. Fam Community Health. 2003;25(1):53-63.
10. Walsh B and Schiff I. Menopause. In Principles and Practice of Endocrinology and Metabolism. New York : Lippincott, Williams and Williams;2001.
11. Cameron DR , Braunstein GD. Androgen replacement therapy in women. Fertil Steri. 2004;82(2):273-289.
12. Formby B, Wiley TS. Progesterone inhibits growth and induces apoptosis in breast cancer cells: inverse effects on Bcl-2 and p53. Ann Clin Lab Sci. 1998;28(6):360–369.