Aging and Sex Hormones
First of all, please allow me to clarify something. The use of the word 'SEX' does not refer to the act of sex; it refers to the gender attributes that the hormones bring about in a living organism. In my personal opinion we should refer to them as 'gender hormones' instead.
The truth of the matter is that women need a small amount of 'male' hormones and males require a small amount of 'female' hormones. These needs have nothing to do with sexuality but serve more critical functions such as maintaining bone density, calciun retention, and muscle tone.
As we age, our production of these hormones change, sometimes increasing one while decreasing another. As the delicate balance is lost, the healthful state of our youth begins to slip away. This can be due to the death of certain cells, diet, medications, environment, or the decline in other hormones needed for healthy sex hormone synthesis.
The endocrine system is a complex one, each gland in it depends upon the proper function of the other glands. If one member doesn't do its job properly, the whole system could spin out of control. I prefer to call it the endocrine team rather than system because like a football team, wins and losses are not individual, they apply to the whole team.
As a strong opponent to synthetic hormones, I prefer to encourage the body to produce its own hormone supply and regulate it naturally. Using synthetic hormones over a prolonged period has the effect of causing the body's natural production mechanisms to shut down. There is also the problem of regulation of synthetic hormones. The need for certain hormones rise and fall during the course of the day and a pill, injection or gel has no way of forseeing this.
The best strategy is not to encourage the body to produce more sex hormones, but to encourage it to produce the hormone that signals the production of them. This is Luteinizing Hormone (LH) (see my blog on this).
By encouraging the production of LH, we allow the pituitary gland to order a fresh batch of androgens and estrogens from the gonads, yet allowing the body to regulate its production naturally. With direct replacement of sex hormones, we don't have this kind of control and the patient becomes dependent upon them for the rest of their life. Furthermore, the body's use of hormones that it produces will be more efficient than those from other sources.
One of the best and most cost effective ways to encourage LH production is the herb Tribulus Terrestris. This herb has been used for thousands of years by the Chinese and is a commodity amoung weight lifters who wish to safely increase their levels of testosterone. The saponin protodioscin found in the plant can not only trigger LH production, but can be converted to androgens and estrogens due to the structure of the molecule. Tribulus is easy to acquire at health food stores and weight lifting nutrition outlets. If you cannot find it, don't worry, the internet loaded with vendors who are more than happy to provide you with this product in capsule form.
I don't recommend mixtures with other herbs such as yohimbine or tongkat ali. While these are excellent products for their intended purposes, the mixing of herbs could have the effect of nuetralizing the desired results and cancelling each other out.
Within a week of taking it, you will notice a big difference in the way that you feel. Men, I can personally attest that you will have mornings remeniscent of those when you were a teenager.
Live long, grow young, and be well.