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Bio Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy

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If you have some of the many symptoms of menopause, you are probably looking forward to relief. There are certain methods of relieving menopause that are known to be a little safer than others.

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You may have heard of Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT), the most widely used medical solution to help people with these symptoms. However, in recent years, some studies have found rather negative side effects of this treatment, and many women are looking for something safer. This new, most widely prescribed therapy is referred to as “bio identical hormone replacement therapy”. It is almost identical to human hormone and the drugs used are natural and come from complete ingredients like yam and soy.

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What are Bio Idential Hormones?

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A bioidentical hormone is not a type of simulation, synthesis or replication, but includes natural plant substances such as soy, whose molecular structure resembles that of human hormones.

Because these substances are bio identical, it basically means that the body recognizes these substances as human hormones and uses them in the same way as the body’s natural hormones.

This hormone replacement therapy, even if it sounds like a new concept, dates back to the 1930s, when hormones were first used to relieve menopausal symptoms, there are numerous literature reviews and medical journals.

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What is Bioidential Hormone Replacement Therapy?

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The function of Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT) is the same as that of other hormone replacement therapy drugs used, namely the stimulation of hormones such as estrogen and progesterone in the woman’s body.

As you age, these hormones decrease, causing the menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes, night sweats and insomnia just to name a few. In order to regulate hormones that are no longer produced by the body as we age, a kind of chemical replacement must be used.

However, many people believe that natural hormone replacement is much safer and less toxic to the body.

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How Does BHRT Work? 

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Hormones in the body act as messengers that transmit chemicals to the blood and in turn affect many things, including appetite, energy, mood, metabolism, weight and even our behavior.

With increasing age, the endogenous endocrine system becomes inefficient and unbalanced, leading to mood disorders, decreased immunity and menopause.

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With BHRT, the hormones are given to the body in the form of tablets, pills, gels or creams.

These bio identical substances, when administered to the body, extract the necessary chemicals, pass them through the liver, which converts them to oestrone and finally releases them into the blood to be used as replacement hormones.

The benefits and effects can last at least six months.

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Risks & Benefits

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The debate over whether bio identical hormone therapy outweighs other forms of hormone replacement therapy that seek to reverse the effects of menopause is still raging.

The decisive factor is whether the risks outweigh the benefits or vice versa.

Hormones in bio identical therapy are chemically identical to the hormones of your body, however, it is not known if estrogen and progesterone derived from this therapy increase the risk of breast cancer.

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Although hormone therapy is a delicate balance, bio identical hormone replacement therapy has its advantages. It is known to cause less bleeding, but like any other female hormone replacement, to what extent differs between patients.

A history of cancer, blood clots and other comorbidities, is usually contraindication for hormone replacement therapy, including bhrt.

Some women tend not to respond to the therapy as they should and testify that hormone therapy is anything but an exact science.

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Bioidentical Hormone Doctors

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To qualify for bio identical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT), you need to look for a hormone specialist to alleviate the symptoms of menopause. The doctor prescribes a special formula after a few tests, which is adjusted to your hormone levels.

It is important that you get enough information about bio identical hormones as many physicians still prescribe synthetic hormones because they are more readily available and also because pharmaceutical industry supports it. Since natural hormones can’t be patented by pharmaceutical companies, their effectiveness remains controversial. You need to find more information to make an informed decision about the best options for you when it comes to helping menopause.

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Research on Bioidentical Hormones

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A recent article published in Maturitas examined thousands of French women using bio identical hormones. The study states that women who have used bio identical hormones are not at high risk for cancer.

In addition, a study published in August 2008 concluded that hormone replacement therapy in postmenopausal women helped to prevent long-term degenerative diseases such as osteoporotic fractures, cardiovascular disease, diabetes mellitus and possibly cognitive impairment.

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The research explores the role of the non-oral route of administration of sex steroids in the clinical management of menopausal symptoms. It shows that non-oral estrogens i.e. cream or gel minimize the effect on the liver. There are potential cardiovascular benefits and more recent indications suggest potential benefits for non-oral estrogen blood pressure monitoring, and with more and more studies suggesting that natural progesterone has a positive effect on the vessels and brain.

This may not be the case for some synthetic progestins, showing differences in the risk of developing breast cancer, according to recent studies, the association of progestogens natural erone with estrogen, unlike the use of other synthetic progestogens, carries less or no risk of breast cancer.

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Synthetic vs Bioidentical Hormones

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Previously, most women receiving hormone replacement therapy were prescribed medications such as Premarin or Prempro. 

Synthetic forms of hormones can do more harm than good, as their molecular structure does not match the hormones naturally produced by the body.

By contrast, bio identical hormones come from soy, wild yam and other plant extracts.

Researches carried out shows that their molecular structure resembles that of the hormones they replace and that they can serve the same purpose.

The safety level of bio-identical replacement therapy is still to be decided. 

There are some contraindications to consider when choosing a bio identical hormone.

In women it may be associated with breast cancer, uterine or ovarian cancer or previous deep vein thrombosis may be a contraindication to treatment with BHRT. As always, exercise and supplements such as  calcium and vitamin D are some great options for your anti-aging stages. Diet, exercise, low stress, yoga, deep sleep and some natural herbs and supplements can reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke and mental deterioration.

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Things you should know about Bioidentical Hormone Replacement

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The identical organic hormones correspond to your own hormones.

They do not disturb your own hormone production.

They leave the body faster than synthetic hormones and are not yet associated with the same health problems and risks in the long run.

At the right dose they do not show the side effects of the standard drugs used for HRT.

They can be customized and adjusted to meet individual hormone needs.

Unlike progesterone, bio-identical hormone does not interfere with the benefits of estrogen in lowering cholesterol and can reduce perimenopausal and menopausal symptoms. 

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