Reconnect with your most vibrant self
Balance your hormones. Recharge your life.
Hormones are a big deal. They are key chemicals in our bodies that influence our sex drive, response to stress, weight loss, muscle and skin tone, fertility, sleep and other critical systems. This means that maintaining healthy hormone levels is an essential part of experiencing wellness, and that low levels of hormones or hormonal imbalances can degrade quality of life for both women and men.
However, as we enter middle age, most of us find that our hormone levels begin to drop. Women tend to experience this in their 40s and 50s as they reach menopause. In men, hormone producing cells wear out more gradually; their hormone levels dip as much as 60 percent between ages 40 and 70. Stress, poor nutrition and illness can also take a toll, damaging key hormone-producing organs like the thyroid or adrenal glands. Small wonder that many people start to lose their zest for life!
Unraveling the Signs of Hormonal Imbalance
Symptoms of a hormonal imbalance can include:
- Low sex drive
- Hot flashes
- Hair thinning or loss
- Dry skin
- Weight gain
- Weakening of bone and muscle tissue
- Vaginal dryness
- Poor sleep
- Irregular menstrual cycle
Regaining Hormonal Balance Naturally
Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be this way! Hormonal imbalances are treatable using safe, natural methods. These include addressing underlying health conditions, such as thyroid disease or adrenal fatigue, that may be negatively affecting your hormones, and using all-natural bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT). I offer my patients a comprehensive range of hormone imbalance tests and treatment approaches, customized to meet your unique needs.
Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT)
For my patients who are experiencing lower hormone levels as a result of aging, I am pleased to offer a natural approach to hormone replacement therapy. BHRT uses plant-derived hormones that are bioidentical to the hormones your body produces on its own. In other words, your system can’t tell the difference between BHRT hormones and your own. This means you can reap the benefits of higher hormone levels quickly and safely.
Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT)
Testosterone is essential for both male and female bodies—far beyond sexual health. I often find that low testosterone is at the root of symptoms like fatigue, brain fog, and depression; but because it's so widely misunderstood, it often goes unnoticed. That's why I pay close attention to testosterone levels, offering my patients both lifestyle medicine and closely monitored, highly personalized TRT treatment to restore wellness and vitality.
Treating diseases that affect hormone levels
Disease is another major cause of hormonal imbalance, as autoimmune disorders, gut problems, chronic stress and other forms of illness can all impact your hormone levels. I specialize in working with these kinds of chronic, complex health conditions, and can say with confidence that by cleaning up underlying health conditions using primarily nutrition, supplements and lifestyle medicine, we can get your hormones back on track.
Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, like testosterone replacement therapy, can be highly customized to treat a wide range of health conditions and symptoms. BHRT is often a good option for patients experiencing symptoms associated with menopause or andropause, as well as patients facing chronic conditions, like adrenal fatigue and thyroid disorders. BHRT has proven a safe and highly effective treatment option for many of my patients, though it should not be the first line of treatment.
I always encourage my patients to begin with lifestyle modifications, such as exercise, diet, and supplementation before considering testosterone replacement therapy or other forms of BHRT. Once these other avenues have been explored, and once we’ve done accurate diagnostic testing to confirm that a hormonal deficiency could be the culprit of your symptoms, then we can consider BHRT through a safe and comprehensive treatment plan.
Yes, it is safe to take testosterone and other hormones through a professionally prescribed and closely monitored treatment plan, as long as the provider is well trained in the most advanced techniques in bioidentical hormone replacement therapy.
Most of the risks associated with BHRT are associated with poorly managed BHRT, so it is important to choose a qualified provider and to understand that the goal of hormone replacement therapy should always be to achieve normal, balanced hormone levels—not to achieve high levels of any one hormone. Just like a deficiency, that is unhealthy! The minimal risks that do come with BHRT depend on the particular hormone, which is something I always carefully consider and discuss with my patients before prescribing testosterone replacement therapy or any form of BHRT.
The length of time it takes to feel the benefits of BHRT, like testosterone replacement therapy, varies from person to person. Some of my patients report feeling the effects within hours of the initial dose, while others notice changes after a few weeks. This depends on the hormone, how it’s administered, and the root cause of hormone deficiency. Your age, overall health, and the level of your hormone deficiency can also impact this. I can usually give patients a slightly better estimate on this once we’ve had a consultation and developed a treatment plan.
What happens if you take testosterone and then stop and does that apply to all hormone replacements?
Even if BHRT is not working, stopping abruptly is not a good idea. When you stop testosterone replacement therapy or other hormone replacement, your body returns to its pretreatment state, often resulting in the same symptoms you experienced prior to treatment. I always check in with my patients after starting BHRT; if it’s not working, we can almost always correct with just a couple of adjustments. If not, we can wean off gradually and with the support of other treatments and supplements.
Getting started with testosterone replacement therapy and other forms of BHRT should be approached with lots of care and consideration. Many primary care physicians are not familiar with hormone replacement therapy, so it’s crucial that you work with a provider who has had special training in the field. Look for these things in your BHRT specialist:
- They should have thorough training in bioidentical hormone replacement therapy.
- They should use accurate testing, like ZRT saliva testing, to confirm a hormone deficiency, as well as diagnose the cause of deficiency.
- They should recommend, or make sure that you have already tried, all relevant lifestyle modifications for correcting your deficiency before trying BHRT.
- They should personalize BHRT with a treatment plan just for you.
- They should review any potential risks and side effects with you before starting BHRT.
- They should communicate to you that the goal is to balance your hormones, not heighten them.
- They should offer regular monitoring appointments to make sure your BHRT continues safely and effectively.