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Hormone Balance & Clues to Imbalance

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 Posted 8/26/2013 10:35:19 AM
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Hormone balance is an important base for age-related health problems. It would be nice if I could blood test once a year, make adjustments, then be done, but the bouncy hormones women experience during menopause make this tricky. Not everyone can afford to test often.

I would love to have a list of symptoms and possible hormone triggers. For example, inflammation is common with low DHEA. If I suspect DHEA, I could get a cheap DHEA-S test (covered by insurance) and increase my dose, instead of suffering for months until my next hormone panel.

This year I suddenly felt stressed out by everything most of the time. Stress is a difficult problem because everyone says all you need is exercise and stress management, even if you're already doing it. Only the best doctor is going to pay any attention to this symptom. After hormone testing, the LEF advice line said my high serum testosterone and low free testosterone could raise my cortisol. This was an important clue that I missed for months. Fixing it fixed the problem.

I need a big sign: "When it doubt it's your hormones!" If you spot a hormonal clue, it may save you a lot of time, suffering and money, even if you need a full hormone panel. $300 testing hormones may save you $600 in supplements and time experimenting with them.

It's easier to go straight to supplements. You don't have to get expensive tests or deal with skeptical doctors who don't understand bio-HRT. But sometimes bigger improvements come from hormones. My spouse has mild pre-diabetes. Is that her liver getting old or hormones?

Stephen Cherniske (author of The Metabolic Plan) calls this symptom stomping. Both Western medicine and supplement users do this. We jump to apply a medicine or a supplement for each problem, rarely taking time to consider causes or look for clues.

The more we recognize hormonal clues, the faster we can address new health issues. Are there hormonal triggers that encourage rising blood sugar? Irritability? Joint pain?  Fatigue? Other conditions? Does anyone know of a good reference for hormone related symptoms?

What have you experienced that turned out to be hormones?

Be well,
Elaine


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 Posted 8/26/2013 10:57:08 AM
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Check out Thierry Hertoghe's work. 
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 Posted 8/26/2013 11:18:14 AM
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A lot of symptoms have a myriad of possible causes.  For example, fatigue can be caused by insomnia, sleep apnea, depression, hypoglycemia, hypotension, anemia, drug side effects, menopause, boredom, caffeine withdrawal, cancer, cardiovascular disease, etc.  A physician should look at the big picture:  blood tests results that include chemistry and hormones, patient's reported symptoms, physical findings and medical history.  Hormonal aberrations are one part of the picture, and are not always a cause, but are often an effect of another process.  They may, however, be one step closer to the cause of the symptom than another treatment. 

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