bioidentical hormone replacement therapy - Ruthie Harper, MDNutrition is only one part of the picture for achieving optimal health. A fully personalized integrative health program includes the evaluation of hormonal needs throughout all stages of life, and especially as we advance in years.

In our 30’s and 40’s, we typically experience a peak in hormones and metabolism, which then begins to decline as we age.  If we do not address these issues, we begin to lose lean body mass and replace it with body fat. Our energy, vitality and mental clarity may begin to suffer. Weight gain, hair loss, fatigue and low libido are just a few examples of the common symptoms of hormonal imbalance. These symptoms should not just be brushed off as a simple “fact of life.” Their biochemical cause should be identified and hormonal imbalances addressed to prevent the effects of aging and the onset of disease.

Laboratory testing is critical to scientifically evaluating your hormone levels, for creating hormonal balance and ensuring safety. Dr. Harper emphasizes the importance of regular laboratory testing and has found that while many patients may be on natural bioidentical hormones , if their hormonal blood levels are not balanced, they will still not experience the full benefits of hormone replacement therapy.   Based on your hormone levels, Dr. Harper will personally tailor a bioidentical hormone regimen designed just for you. The safety and effectiveness of her programs speak for themselves.

Dr. Harper’s innovative and comprehensive solutions to health and hormones will allow you to experience renewed energy, restored youthfulness and a longer, healthier life–just as nature intended. She is one of the most experienced physicians in the United States having utilized bioidentical hormone replacement therapy in her personalized integrative health practice with over 10,000 patients. She specializes in treating perimenopause, menopause and andropause (male menopause).

What are Natural Bioidentical Hormones?A Natural Approach to Balance

Most people have heard of “natural hormones” but remain unclear about what “natural bioidentical hormones” are. The term “natural” refers to the fact that these hormones come from naturally occurring sources such as soy or yams. While this is important, the most important thing is that hormones are bioidentical which means that they are identical to the hormones that you naturally make in your own body.

Natural hormones are an opportunity to replace what your body originally had in its ideal state when your hormone levels were most optimal. These are the hormones that your body is able to recognize and utilize most effectively. Many individuals prefer natural bioidentical hormones because of minimal side effects. It makes sense to replace and balance our hormones with what nature originally gave us for optimal health. Bioidentical hormones are not typically available through traditional pharmaceutical prescriptions because bioidentical hormones are not patentable and dosages cannot be individually tailored to each individual’s hormonal needs. With compounded hormones custom-made in a compounding pharmacy, a personalized regimen is specifically formulated to treat each patient on an individual basis.

Are Bioidentical Hormones Safer, More Effective than Synthetic Hormones?

As women and men approach mid-life, many wonder whether hormone therapy is right for them. Countless studies, including the large Women’s Health Initiative Study in July of 2002, have shown that traditional (synthetic) hormone replacement therapy can increase the likelihood of various types of cancer and heart disease. Many patients are now taking a natural, more balanced approach to hormonal replacement with bioidentical hormone replacement therapy.

Bio-identical hormones are more appealing when dealing with menopause or andropause because they are derived naturally and our bodies can metabolize them properly. In addition, bioidentical hormones are specifically designed to match your individual hormonal needs – unlike synthetic pharmaceutical hormones, which use a one-size-fits-all approach to symptom relief.

There is an overwhelmingly large body of evidence that supports the claim that bio-identical hormone therapy is safer and more effective than synthetic hormone replacement. However, it’s important to remember that no drug, supplement or herb is 100% safe – there is always a chance that you may experience an adverse reaction. That’s why it’s critical for women and men to work with an experienced and trained physician before beginning any hormone therapy regimen.

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