Back in July (#225 “Preventing Post-Menopausal Fractures”) I mentioned the benefits of bioidentical hormone replacement. This week I want to explore the safety of bioidentical hormones, as the recent publicity over hormone replacement therapy side effects may cause some women – and their physicians – to avoid it.
A review of the medical literature on the subject by Dr. Kent Holtorf MD was published in June 2007 in the Townsend Letter. In it Dr. Holtorf explains that natural bioidentical hormones are very different from the synthetic hormones (made from horse urine or synthesized in a lab) and do not have their serious side effects.
While the 2002 WHI study found that synthetic hormones, particularly the synthetic progesterone MPA, increased the risk of heart attack and stroke, natural estrogen and progesterone have the opposite effect of actually reducing the risk of these cardiovascular diseases. Long term use of both estrogen and synthetic progesterone increase the risk of breast cancer. Natural hormones, particularly estriol and progesterone, lower the risk of breast cancer.
Holtorf also comments from his own professional experience that women on the natural hormones feel great and are more satisfied than women on synthetic hormones. Jeffrey Dach, MD explains the importance of balancing hormone levels on his website. He claims that age-related hormone imbalance is at least partially responsible for most of the degenerative diseases of aging: osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, cardiovascular disease, cognitive dysfunction (Alzheimer’s), loss of libido, and depression.
Ideally all of the hormones should be measured and balanced – estrone, estradiol, estriol, progesterone, testosterone and DHEA – not just one or two. It takes all of your hormones, in balance, to keep you healthy. Periodic hormone testing is also important to ensure that your hormones stay in balance. For more information on bioidentical hormones, contact Cindy Johns at 306-463-4565.
For more information on this or other natural health topics, stop in and talk to Stan; for medical advice consult your licensed health practitioner.