Bioidentical hormones are extracted from animals or plants. The hormones are then changed to make them molecularly the same or identical to the hormones you find in the body. Bio hormones are sometimes used for hormone replacement therapy. Women who are experiencing premenopausal or menopausal symptoms are typically the candidates for bioidentical hormone therapy. This occurs when they are no longer producing adequate amounts of estrogen and / or progesterone. Bioidentical hormone replacement is similar to conventional hormone replacement. Unfortunately bioidentical hormones are not widely studied in the United States. This is because pharmacy manufactures have little interest in bioidentical hormones because they cannot be patented. The reason for this is the FDA considers them natural and a natural substance cannot have a patent. The pharmacy companies instead turn to synthetic compounds to produce hormones that they can patent. Bio hormones have been studied in Europe and have been found to be safer then synthetic hormones.
There are risk and benefits associated with synthetic hormones and bio hormones. Unfortunately more long term studies need to be done on bioidentical hormones.
Some of the risk associated with synthetic hormones are increased risk of endometrial cancer and a slightly high risk of breast cancer. Some other side effects include increased breast density, slightly increased risk of ovarian cancer, blood clots, gallbladder disease and heart attacks.
With synthetic hormones women may also experience breast pain, nausea, bloating, water retention and negative mood swings. Most of these side effects, but not all are contributed to oral estrogen, not estrogen that is delivered transdermal.
Women who suffer from the following conditions are more likely to experience side effects from synthetic hormones.
Unknown cause of vaginal bleeding
Women who have had breast cancer
Women who have had uterus cancer
Women who have had blood clots
Some of the advantages of bioidentical hormones include all the same benefits as synthetic hormones. Often times bio hormones offer the benefits without some of the unwanted side effects. Bioidentical hormones are now being used by some doctors to eliminate problems that women have as they age and go through different periods of their life. These include the following.
Symptoms of post and premenopausal
Menstrual periods that are not regular
To reduce the risk of heart disease
Insomnia and night sweats
Help with weight loss through burning of fat
Increase sex drive
Improves mental clarity
Helps to increase physical energy
Helps maintain youthful skin
Helps with blood flow
If you decide that you are interested in bioidentical hormones, it is recommended that you find a doctor who is familiar with bioidentical hormones. Not all doctors are familiar with bioidentical hormones and some only use the synthetic form.
A trained hypnotherapist for 13 years, practicing meditation since 1994. A trained yoga and meditation teacher, living on the road traveling the world since 2008.
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More information – Hormone Imbalance
Oprah talks about bioidentical hormones.
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