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HEALTH CONCERN? BioHealth Health Concerns

Core Systems of Function - Hormone System

IN THIS SECTION
 

Hormones has become quite the buzzword, especially where weight loss and beauty are concerned.

But, hormones are far more important to your health than these concerns represent.

Hormones are chemical messengers that travel through your bloodstream and enter tissues, where they turn on switches to the genetic machinery that regulates everything from reproduction to emotions to your sense of well-being. The body’s system of hormone production is formally known as the ‘endocrine system’.

Hormones can be thought of as the chemical force that animates you physically, mentally, and emotionally. Balanced levels are necessary for the optimal function of numerous physiological process.

This chart demonstrates the importance of a
healthy balance of the hormones Cortisol and DHEA (click for PDF).

 

Some hormones are composed of large proteins and others of fatty substances derived from cholesterol. An extremely important class derived from cholesterol is the family of hormones termed steroids.

Cholesterol is converted to the mother steroid hormone, pregnenolone, which is further converted in the ovaries, testes, and adrenal glands to the other hormones, as directed by signals from the brain. The role of pregnenolone in chronic stress is explored here.

The steroid family is broken down into five major categories:

Estrogen

  • Estrogen is a group of three hormones (estradiol, estriol, estrone).
  • This family of estrogens works in concert with progesterone to nourish and support the growth and regeneration of the female reproductive tissues. But its role is not limited to women. Elevated estrogen in men lowers testosterone and contributes to long-term health risks for conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and some cancers.
  • Signs of insufficient estrogen levels include mood swings, night sweats, vaginal dryness, anxiety, headache, depression, memory loss, sleep disorders, hot flashes, and shortness of breath.
  • Signs of excessive estrogen levels include weight gain, fluid retention, fatigue, loss of sex drive, breast swelling, craving for sweets, endometriosis, and fibrocystic cysts.

Progesterone

  • Often called the “feel good hormone” because of its role in mood enhancement and anti-depressant activity, progesterone is best known for helping to keep estrogen in check.
  • Optimum levels of progesterone lead to feelings of calm, while low levels can result in feelings of irritability and even anger.
  • Progesterone helps to maintain the central nervous system, sense of touch, motor function, bone density and bone strength.

Androgens

  • This group of hormones includes DHEA, testosterone, and androstenedione. They produce male sexual characteristics and are relevant in the bodies of both sexes.
  • DHEA serves as the precursor to male and female sex hormones (androgens and estrogens) and is the modulating agent for the stress hormone cortisol. It could be thought of as a “super-androgen” given its superior importance and order in the conversion process. More about DHEA.

Glucocorticoids

  • The glucocorticoids are comprised of cortisol and cortisone.
  • Cortisol is the main hormone released by the body as a reaction to stress. More about cortisol.
  • Cortisone’s main physiological effect is on carbohydrate metabolism. Other effects include increased glucose release from the liver, increased liver glycogen synthesis, and decreased utilization of glucose by the tissues.

Mineralcorticoids (aldosterone)

  • The primary mineralcorticoid is aldosterone, although a number of other hormones (including progesterone and deoxycorticosterone) have mineralocorticoid function.
  • Aldosterone is part of the complex mechanism used by the body to regulate blood pressure.

Functional lab testing can assess the balance and output of critical hormones.

The resultant lab data can direct a intelligent diagnosis and treatment plan.

Thousands of men and women have benefited from the lab services and therapeutic products available from COREONE providers, whether optimizing general health, fine tuning the menstrual cycle, improving fertility, or managing andropause (male menopause).