A paradigm shift in the way we approach treatment.
By Dr. Kamran Forghani, MD, Certified in Hormone Restoration
Gone are the intellectual boundaries of medicine that restricted us to looking only at organ systems. Now, anti-aging medicine looks at each molecule and cellular messenger, and the intercellular communication that coordinates function between different organ systems. Today’s medicine is maturing past the concept of a single agent causing a single disease, treated with a single medication. We are developing a greater understanding of the complexities of human beings.
Individualized Hormone Restoration
The human genome project has helped us understand the biochemical individuality of medicine. One size does not fit all.
In the newest and fastest-growing medical subspecialty – anti-aging and regenerative medicine – we look at the cause of the problem instead of treating only the symptoms. Since we now know that approximately 20 percent of disease is inherited and 80 percent is environmental, anti-aging and regenerative medicine emphasizes the importance of maintaining a healthy terrain in the body. Individualized hormone restoration can play an integral role in helping men and women achieve optimal health.
The Hormonal Symphony
This paradigm shift affects how we think about the body’s hormonal symphony. Patients’ hormonal needs are not stagnant; they change throughout their lifetimes. Hormones are affected by age, pregnancies, medications, exercise, foods and even toxins. To be your best self at any age requires that your treatment be tailored to your body. Every treatment plan must be as unique as the patient – even twins require individualized treatment.
Our bodies rely on a harmony of hormones that work in a very precise, controlled fashion to keep us as healthy as possible. When we compare a 25-year-old to a 50-year-old, we see a decrease of up to 50 percent in bioavailable hormones. For far too long, we have been told that our hormones decline as we age, and we have accepted that as our fate.
Endocrine Hormone Deterioration
Endocrine hormones are the chemical messengers produced in one area of the body that travel to other areas to regulate cellular function. The neuroendocrine theory proposes that a major cause of aging is the deterioration of optimal neuroendocrine control, resulting in endocrine hormone deficiency or excess.
By optimizing each endocrine hormone, we can improve stem cell function and maintain the cardiovascular system. Optimization of each hormone also has an anti-inflammatory function in our bodies.
The inflammatory process is essential to life. It is chronic, long-standing inflammation that is associated with many diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, obesity, cardiovascular disease, Parkinson’s, cancer, depression, autoimmune diseases and more.
A 2006 study showed that 88 percent of men with low testosterone died sooner than men with high testosterone. A separate study showed that high testosterone was associated with lower mortality for cardiovascular disease, cancer and all causes. Testosterone deficiency has multiple negative effects, including increased cardiovascular system dysfunction and cognitive dysfunction, with an increased rate of non-Alzheimer’s and Alzheimer’s dementia. There is also a strong association between decreased testosterone levels and type 2 diabetes in men, as well as high cholesterol levels, osteoporosis, arthritis, coronary artery disease and depression.
Symptoms of testosterone deficiency in men may include:
• Irritability syndrome (grumpy old men)
• Reduced libido and erectile function
• Decreased sexual desire
• Decreased morning erections
• Decreased firmness of erections
• Loss of drive and competitive edge
• Stiffness and pain in muscles and joints
• Decreased effectiveness of exercise
• Anxiety and depression
• Women also require optimal testosterone, though they have only about 10 percent of male testosterone levels. Optimal testosterone is needed for a sense of well-being, strength (especially upper-body strength), nipple and clitoral sensitivity, body composition and bone density.
• Symptoms of testosterone deficiency in women are as follows:
• Impaired sexual function
• Loss of libido
• Loss of well-being
• Decrease of muscle mass and strength
• Lowered bone density
• Depression and anxiety
• Lack of self-confidence and imbalanced feeling
• Memory loss; cloudy and unfocused thinking
• Abdominal fat and weight gain
I invite you to our monthly Ageless Living hormone restoration informational sessions to learn more about the importance of individualized anti-aging medicine and hormone restoration. Check the events section on the website for dates and times