How Is Low Testosterone Diagnosed What Treatments Are Available
Most healthcare providers will measure their testosterone levels by having a blood test, doing a physical exam and having the patient describe his symptoms. Finally, they may order additional tests to rule out other possible diagnoses.
Testosterone is sometimes prescribed for men with low testosterone. Almost all hormone supplements and testosterone treatments are available in different forms, including lozenges, patches, gels and creams.
Because of the limited knowledge regarding this condition, challenges in having a proper diagnosis, as well as the possible side effects of treatments, HRT should not administer for men without proper testing, retesting and consultation with a healthcare provider to discuss the pros and cons. One may want to consider an endocrinologist who specializes in hormones.
Men And Estrogen: What You Need To Know
Estrogen is known primarily as a female hormone that helps regulate menstrual cycles, yet the hormone plays a bigger role in mens health than most people realize. Men produce small amounts of estrogen as part of their normal functioning male reproductive system, along with the male hormone testosterone. As they age, less testosterone is produced.
Yet questions are beginning to emerge as to what specific part estrogen plays in male development, especially as a man ages. Once largely ignored, estrogen levels in men are now under the microscope as researchers are trying to determine this hormone’s role in men and how it affects the body’s different hormone levels.
A decrease in estrogen, for example, may be a factor in fat accumulation in men as well as women. One endocrinologist at Harvard Medical School reported in a 2013 study that some of the symptoms of testosterone deficiency in males, including a decline in libido, were at least partially caused by lower estrogen production.
Appetite And Weight Gain
You may gain weight during hormonal shifts, such as menopause. But hormone changes donât directly affect your weight. Instead, it likely happens because of other factors, like aging or lifestyle. For example, when youâre feeling blue or irritated, as you can be when your estrogen levels drop, you may want to eat more. It can also impact your bodyâs levels of leptin, a hunger-revving hormone.
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How Are Hormonal Imbalances Treated
Treatment for a hormonal imbalance will depend on whats causing it.
If you have lower-than-normal hormone levels, the main treatment is hormone replacement therapy. Depending on which hormone is deficient, you may take oral medication or injection medication.
For example, if you have low thyroid hormone levels , your provider can prescribe synthetic thyroid hormone pills. If you have growth hormone deficiency, youll likely have to take injections of synthetic growth hormone.
If you have higher-than-normal hormone levels, there are many treatment options depending on the cause. Options include medication, surgery, radiation therapy or a combination of any of these.
For example, if you have a prolactinoma, a benign tumor that causes excess prolactin , your provider may prescribe a medication to shrink the tumor or you may need surgery to remove it.
How Can I Find Out If I Have A Hormone Imbalance
The only way to confirm a hormone imbalance is to test your hormone levels. Both blood tests and saliva tests are proven techniques in assessing a hormone imbalance. i-screen uses blood tests to accurately determine sex hormone and thyroid hormone levels, but prefers saliva testing to assess cortisol levels. This is because cortisol levels follow a diurnal pattern which means tests must be conducted throughout the course of the day this makes blood testing inconvenient.
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Blood Tests Arent Enough
Often, blood tests for hormone irregularities dont provide a very detailed picture of whats actually going on.
How many of you have had blood tests done and been told that your hormones are within normal levels?
Why then do you continue to experience all of these unpleasant symptoms?
The main reason for this is that the labs place a normal value unless there is concern for disease. This value range is huge.
In Nutritional Therapy, on the other hand, a Functional Medicine Approach is used to assess hormone levels.
In this approach we look more at the optimal levels the body needs of them to function. This is contrary to only addressing hormone imbalances when they are severe enough to cause disease.
Why is this method preferred?
Specifically, the optimal levels are far more narrow. Anything outside of these narrow boundaries indicates a hormonal imbalance.
How Do You Treat A Hormone Imbalance
If your hormone imbalance is caused by over-exercising, poor diet or stressful lifestyle then changes to these areas will help.
Ensuring you are eating the right food in the right quantities, especially if you are exercising heavily , is absolutely key to avoiding whats known as RED-S. This is when your body is burning more calories than you are consuming and can lead to womens periods stopping completely.
Learning to manage stress will reduce the amount of the stress hormone cortisol within your body.
If your hormone imbalance is caused by a medical condition such as polycystic ovary syndrome then it is best to speak with your GP and discuss treatment.
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What Are Female Hormones
Estrogen and progesterone are the primary sex hormones in females. Most of the body’s supply of these hormones is produced by the ovaries, although small amounts are supplied by other tissues in the body. While best known for their primary function of regulating the reproductive system, female hormones also play a role in other aspects of women’s health, including cardiac function, metabolism, bone health, skin thickness and elasticity, urinary tract health, emotional health and brain function, among others.
Cortisol and the thyroid hormone can become imbalanced for various reasons and affect both men and women. Ensuring a healthy profile means keeping abreast of your body’s levels. A comprehensive hormone test can provide much needed insight.
The three primary sex hormones in women are estrogen, progesterone and testosterone.
Hormonal Balance And Weight Loss
One of our clients, living with an under active thyroid gland for many years has lost over 40 pounds in 7 months. This is something she was unable to do despite taking medication to improve her thyroid hormone levels.
Because she managed stress levels, supported thyroid hormones, and ate delicious, good quality food every day, she has continued to lose weight at a steady pace while maintaining healthy energy levels and experiencing a heightened mood.
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Low Sex Drive Could Be Low Testosterone
Testosterone is typically thought of as a male hormone, but both men and women have it. Effects of hormonal imbalance in females may include low testosterone levels that may cause low libido. In one study of more than 800 postmenopausal women reporting low sex drive, those who received 150 or 300 micrograms per day of testosterone in the form of a topical patch reported more sexual desire and less distress than women who received a placebo. Women receiving extra testosterone also reported more satisfying sexual experiences compared to women who took a placebo. However, women who took 300 micrograms of testosterone per day had more unwanted hair growth than women who took the placebo. Men can get low testosterone, too. The condition has been referred to as andropause in males.
Finding The Right Treatment
So, whats there to do if you suspect youre suffering from a hormonal imbalance, but you dont have an official diagnosis? Trying to fix the problem on your own is certainly not the right course of action.
The first step you have to take if you want to find a solution to your problem is make an appointment with a health practitioner that specializes in hormone therapy. Talking to your GP can also be of help, but in some cases, symptoms can be overlooked by doctors who dont have special training in the field.
Thats why talking to a specialist is your safest bet. They can perform all the necessary tests and investigations to get to the root of the problem and recommend a proper treatment that can help bring your hormones back into balance.
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Changes In Blood Pressure
Your hormones play a major role in heart health, primarily due to one of your bodys largest hormone-producing glands, the pancreas. The pancreas is responsible for producing insulin, which regulates the amount of glucose in the blood. Without proper regulation of this hormone, your body could end up with too much glucose in the blood, leading to cardiovascular problems like high cholesterol or high blood pressure. High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, has also been linked to thyroid dysfunction, testosterone deficiency, growth hormone excess or deficiency, and more.
The Hormonal Imbalance Quiz
Heres how to take the quiz: As you read through the eight categories, mark down the symptoms that apply to you currently. Total up your symptoms in each category, note how many apply to you and jot down the number in the box next to TOTAL. Once youve gone through each of the categories, take a look at Dr. Brightens results at the end.
I experience bloating or puffiness.
I feel irritable or experience mood swings.
I experience heavy, painful periods.
I have gained weight or have difficulty losing weight, especially around my hips, butt, and thighs.
Ive been told I have fibroids.
My life is crazy stressful.
I feel overwhelmed by stress.
I have extra weight around my midsection.
I have difficulty falling or staying asleep.
My body is tired at night, but my mind is going a mile a minutewired and tired.
I have brain fog or feel like my memory isnt quite what it used to be.
Im losing hair .
Im tired no matter how much I sleep.
Im constipated often and need a stimulant to get a bowel movement.
Im cold and/or have cold hands and feet.
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How To Identify Hormone Imbalances In Your Body
Hormone imbalances affect every person at some point in life, but how exactly do you know when to seek out a medical solution? Much like many health conditions, its always important to pay attention to the signs your body sends you. When it comes to hormones, its no secret that imbalances can impact not only the person with an imbalance but those closest to them as well.
Here at Rejuvime, we believe that living life to a persons fullest potential is so very important. Weve seen first-hand just how transformational Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy can be on ones quality of lifeand the results, quite frankly, pump us up! Seeing men and women whose lives are refreshed and restored after BHRT is just one of the many reasons we believe this therapy to be so effective.
Are you curious about how to identify the symptoms that may make you a candidate for Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy?
Hormone imbalances affect both men and women, each with varying signs and symptoms. In this article, we are going to outline the symptoms to identify to acknowledge if seeking out BHRT is the right step for you.
Have you been feeling down, depression, or moody?
***IF YOU ANSWERED YES TO 3 OR MORE, YOU MAY BE SUFFERING FROM LOW TESTOSTERONE LEVELS***
How Are Hormonal Imbalances Diagnosed
Healthcare providers typically order blood tests to check hormone levels since your endocrine glands release hormones directly into your bloodstream.
Certain hormone levels vary drastically throughout the day, so providers may order other tests to measure your levels, such as a glucose tolerance test or insulin tolerance test.
Your provider will also ask you about your medical history and symptoms and perform a physical exam.
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What Causes Brain Fog
“Brain fog” is a common complaint even though this is not a true medical term. It is a commonly reported symptom with many potential underlying causes. Women in perimenopause and after menopause report more memory complaints and difficulty concentrating than premenopausal women due to a decrease in hormone levels. Declining estrogen levels may be to blame, but other factors may play a role. Perimenopausal and post-menopausal women often have trouble sleeping and experience hot flashes and increased depression. These, in turn, may contribute to brain fog. Thyroid disease is another common cause of brain fog. See your doctor if you are experiencing brain fog so you can find out and treat the root cause. If declining estrogen levels are to blame, hormone therapy may offer some relief and restore hormonal balance.
Reasons Your Doctor Cant Give You A Hormone Imbalance Test
You may wonder why your doctor cant give you a quick test to determine if all your hormones are in balance. Testing hormones is very different from testing cholesterol or iron in your blood because your hormone levels are always changing, day by day, even hour by hour. They change based on where you are in your menstrual cycle, when you last ate, what your other hormones are doing, how stressed you are, and many other factors. Thats why a single hormone check cant really tell you if all your hormones are balanced.
Secondly, asking your doctor to check your hormones is a huge request. The human body produces more than 50 hormones! Hormones include melatonin adrenaline , oxytocin , cortisol , and progesterone , just to name a few.
The best way to discover if specific hormones are out of balance is by telling your doctor which symptoms you are experiencing so they can narrow down what should be checked and when. Your symptoms are your doctors first clues about what could be wrong.
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How To Test For Hormone Imbalance
Instead of self-treating your symptoms with social media-influenced products and diets, you can make informed decisions about diet protocols, supplements, and lifestyle interventions to properly address your concerns.
Hormones are downright complex. Different doctors and healthcare professionals will have their own opinions and preferences with how and what they test and typically are based on a patients specific set of symptoms.
Testing for hormones can be done in several ways, and there are pros and cons to these different types of tests. Here is everything you need to know about how to test for hormone imbalance:
Hormones And Postnatal Migraines
Yet another client could hardly enjoy the time she had with her new baby, struggling with postnatal migraines every day.
Sadly, the medication she had been prescribed made her severely ill, so she was forced to manage these painful episodes for months without resolution.
Supporting her hormonal pathways through diet and supplements gave her relief within a few days! Clearly, postnatal nutrition has an enormous role to play.
As a result, the quality of her life has dramatically improved, just by implementing a targeted nutritional approach. This includes personalized meal planning geared towards the specific goal.
These are just three of the many clients who have benefitted from nutritional counselling with respect to their hormonal imbalances. Certainly, you can do the same.
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Natural Ways To Support Healthy Hormones
While you should always speak to your doctor if you have hormonal imbalance, he might not have to give you any kind of medication to restore the balance. This is particularly true if the imbalance is caused by something like diet or stress. In general, people who have the following criteria are at higher risks of developing hormonal imbalances:
- Being overweight or obese
- Consuming an excessive amount of alcohol
- Being exposed to pesticides and toxins
- Experiencing high stress levels
- Not sleeping enough
Many of these risk factors are easily controlled when you’re mindful of your diet, exercise routine, and daily habits. If you quit smoking, moderate your drinking, or avoid exposure to pesticides, you can help reduce your risk factor for hormonal imbalances and naturally keep them moderated.
Changing the way you eat can go a long way towards improving your hormonal balance. For example, when you exchange carbohydrates for healthy fats, like coconut oil and avocado, you can lower your bodys inflammation and help maintain your hormone at the right levels. Consuming enough proteins will help control the ghrelin hormone that makes you feel hungry. This gives you the feeling of fullness and then, you will stop eating at the appropriate time and maintain a healthy weight.
Check Your Hormone Levels From The Convenience Of Home
If youâre concerned about your hormone levels, you can use the information here on how to know if you have a hormonal imbalanceâplus speaking with a healthcare providerâto help inform your next steps.If youâre interested in hormone testing at home, consider the following tests :
- Womenâs Hormone Test – Lets you learn your levels for 10 key hormones, including estrogen, progesterone, cortisol, and thyroid hormones.
- Thyroid Test – Check the 3 main thyroid hormones , plus thyroid antibodies.
- Womenâs Fertility Test – Test your levels for 5 hormones that help support ovarian function and pregnancy.
- Men’s Health Test – Check your cortisol, DHEA-S, estradiol, and testosterone.
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What Causes Hormonal Imbalance
Your hormones have to work together in balance to help your body thrive. However, hormone ups and downs in women are very common, so if you feel that you have a hormonal imbalance, you are not alone.
Doctors from WebMD say that some of the common causes of an imbalance in hormone production in women are pre-menstrual syndrome, pregnancy, and the menopause. However, other lifestyle factors can cause hormones to fluctuate. Being overweight, not getting enough exercise, or a lack of sleep can all throw your hormones off balance.3
Other reasons for hormone fluctuations are an underactive thyroid that doesnt produce enough thyroxine . Doctors from the Mayo Clinic say that hypothyroidism can leave you feeling lethargic, cause changes in your menstrual system, or make it difficult to lose weight.4
Also, diabetes is a common cause of hormonal imbalances and can affect, not just the insulin hormone, but also other blood sugar-related hormones, sex hormones, and growth hormones.5