Carrying extra pounds, anxious, exhausted or “just that time of life”!

 

Well I have lost count of the amount of times my lovely female clients have been told, “Well you are approaching that time of life”. Whaaat?? So are we supposed to put up with weight gain and feeling exhausted just because we’ve got to that ‘golden age’? No! Our bodies just need the right support, both nutritionally and hormonally during this special time that the periods begin to cease.

Why is it that during your 30’s you felt great- tired, but great, and then since hitting your forties you’ve gone downhill?

Hormones!

We have lots of them, all going around our bodies and controlling different functions, but hey, if they’re out of balance, you’ll soon know about it.

A few stiff joints here and there, feeling shattered on most days, experiencing temperature changes, hair getting drier, skin getting thinner (and drier), sex drive disappearing… am I describing you?

The hormones need healthy blood and great nutrition to develop – how do we get these? Well the blood receives nutrients from the digestive tract, but if this area is compromised in any way then nutritional imbalances start to occur. We need key ‘ingredients’ to create healthy hormones:

Essential fatty acids – apart from needing these in the diet, we need a fantastically healthy liver and gall bladder to process them.

Vitamin C – although easy to obtain from the diet, it is equally easy to lose from the body. Our bodies are constantly using it to mop up toxins – it is known as an ‘anti-oxidant’.

Magnesium – Unless you are lightly steaming your greens and consuming pre-soaked nuts and seeds, there may just not be enough coming into your diet for your requirements. It is easy to hit the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA), but this is only the bare minimum the body needs in order to survive. The amount that is needed for optimal functioning is quite high. This mineral is also easily lost through daily activities such as perspiring.

Other nutrients that create the hormones are selenium, zinc and the B vitamins.

So what is the menopause exactly?

It is a natural decline in the production of hormones. Notice I say ‘natural’. This isn’t a disease or condition, it is what Mother Nature has designed for the years when there isn’t the need to create a baby. The symptoms that many women seem to experience are not natural. These are signs of hormonal imbalance. Restoration of optimal hormone levels are crucial to improve the quality of life – pregnenolone, DHEA, cortisol, progesterone, testosterone (yes women have it) must be restored to youthful levels.

What happens to the hormones?

The sex hormones, as they’re known, are Oestrogen, Progesterone, and Testosterone and they are the principal hormones secreted by ovaries. The level of progesterone decreases first, as a result of the decline in ovarian function. Again this is a normal process for the ovaries to decline, as Mother Nature wants healthy young mums. This can begin as early as the third decade of life and is followed by a decline in oestrogen and finally in testosterone, so by the age of 50 there’s a 30% decrease in oestrogen.  Between the ages of 35 to 50, there’s a 75% decrease in progesterone and this continues to decrease.

Why is this such as big deal?

You know those extra love handles you’re carrying? Hormone imbalance.

You know the bulge from underneath your bra strap? Hormone imbalance.

Where has that capable woman gone? You know you were able to organise and juggle a million balls, but now you can’t think straight, feel anxious and overwhelmed. Hormone imbalance.

 In fact, hormones are responsible for a lot!

Let’s take progesterone for example. It protects the body from oestrogen dominance conditions such as breast cancer, fibroids, and cysts. It makes the veins more elastic so helps in cardio-vascular health and blood pressure issues. It helps the body to clear excess water as it is a natural diuretic. It calms down the nervous system, so can help in anxiety, depression and sleep issues. It boosts the action of the thyroid, which supports metabolism and weight loss. It promotes bone formation and inhibits bone resorption – that means, if you have been diagnosed with osteoporosis, or are on the way to getting it, get a ‘functional’ test of your progesterone! Progesterone enhances mineral deposition = healthy bones!

And one of the best benefits of progesterone is it helps the body to use fat, rather than store it.

What about oestrogen?

Well, there are three types of oestrogen that the body uses in various amounts. They help to regulate body temperature, help maintain memory and aid bone density. They aid in the formation of neurotransmitters which help to raise mood. In fact, as the ovaries stop producing as much oestrogen, it is common for women to report that they feel depressed, anxious or irritable. I often hear from my clients that they no longer feel confident in their own ability, and will often have to pull over the car if they’re approaching a bridge, tunnel or heavy traffic.

Do women even have testosterone?

Yes, yes, yes! This hormone is the key to improving sex drive. It improves well-being and sexual interest, prevents loss of bone in spine and hip and decreases LDL (bad cholesterol).

Enough said!

The use of Bio Identical Hormones are the preferred method of Hormonal Restorative Therapy (HRT) and this is a much better way of describing than Hormone Replacement Therapy, so let’s restore YOUR hormones to youthful levels.

So what is involved?

Please fill out your personal details here. Please order a test kit here and this will be sent to your house. You will be required to take this to a phlebotomy centre. This may be your local doctor, nurse, clinic or hospital – anywhere that will agree to draw your blood. If you are local (Wilmslow, Cheshire) then arrange for a blood draw with me. Several phials of blood are filled and then either posted immediately in the supplied envelope, or the samples refrigerated until able to post. The samples should arrive within 5 days of the blood draw (clinic open Tuesday-Friday only). The Test Kit contains a Consultation form which needs to be returned with the samples

How long does it take to receive the results?

Your testing kit will be sent out by first class post and once you have had your blood drawn, it should also be returned to the lab by first class post. The results will be received within 7 days and you will be contacted via email with the results attached.  We suggest booking a 30 minute appointment to go through results and next steps.

What is tested for?

Sex hormones: Progesterone, iE2 (oestrogen), Testosterone.

Energy hormones (adrenal glands): Cortisol, DHEA.

Metabolism hormones (thyroid gland): Free T3, Free T4, TSH, Total T4, Antithyroid Peroxidase antibody (TPO Ab), Antithyroglobulin Antibody (TG Ab)

Nutrients: Vitamin D, B12, Folate

Remember these results are looking at the FUNCTION of the hormones, so they will be different levels to the results you may have had with your GP. We don’t want someone to be just ‘normal’, we want them to be OPTIMAL ie functioning to the highest ability.

What do these mean and why are they tested?

The sex hormones are useful to know in cases of heavy periods, intermittent periods, to find out of you are ‘on the change’ and lack of sex drive (libido). Often the ratio is incorrect between progesterone, oestrogen and testosterone so women seem to carry a spare tyre around their middle, have mood swings, feel irritable or anxious, angry or tearful.

Take our test to find out if you might need functional hormone testing.

The energy hormones are cortisol and DHEA and they help to maintain brain function and mood balance. DHEA in particular helps to improve insulin sensitivity and for me, this was the biggest challenge- the sugar cravings. Read about my story here.

The metabolism hormones relate to the thyroid gland. Symptoms that there may be an imbalance here are Fatigue, Feeling cold, Poor memory, Constipation, Weight gain, Shortness of breath, Abnormal sensations, Heavy periods, Hoarse voice, Poor hearing. Signs that there may be an imbalance here are Dry course skin, Cool extremities, Myxedema, Hair loss, Slow pulse, Limb swelling, Delayed relaxation of tendon reflexes, Carpel tunnel syndrome, Abdominal swelling (ascites).

If the results show a need for Hormone Restorative Therapy then suggestions will be made on the report for Bio-identical hormones, as well as supportive nutrients. The hormones come in various forms:

Capsules – DHEA, Pregnenalone, Melatonin.

Tablets – Hydrcortisone, Armour thyroid (dessicated T3 and T4).

Creams/ micronised gels – Testosterone, Progesterone, Biest (a combination of two estrogens; estriol and estradiol), Triest (a combination of three estrogens; estriol, estradiol and estrone).

How long does it take to receive the results?

Your testing kit will be sent out by first class post and once you have had your blood drawn, it should also be returned to the lab by first class post. The results will be received within 7 days and you will be contacted via email with the results attached.  We suggest booking a 30 minute appointment to go through results and next steps.

I thought only a doctor could prescribe Bio-Identical Hormones?

Absolutely! You will be overseen by Dr Martin James Kinsella MBChB, BDS, BACD of Re-enhance.com who is registered with the General Medical Council.

So, if you’re wondering if you’re going through the Menopause or are feeling exhausted, gaining weight, lacking in drive (both sex drive and ambition), feeling the cold/heat, experiencing niggles, feeling anxious or just not feeling 100% then order your kit here and let’s find some answers. I look forward to working with you!

 

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