Toxins have a direct effect on our endocrine system, the hormone production glands. This hormone optimization test is essential for both men and women who are symptomatic or taking preventative measures to fight disease.
What are Hormones?
Hormones are powerful molecules essential for maintaining physical and mental health. We frequently think of estrogen as being a female hormone, and testosterone as being a male hormone. But men AND women make both, plus several more that need to be in balance for optimum health. An imbalance of any one hormone can throw your physical and mental health out of balance, causing aggravating and even serious health problems.
Who should be tested?
Both men and women experience changes in hormone levels with age. Sometimes those changes result in unpleasant symptoms that demand attention. Often, the changes are more subtle – yet there is still an impact on overall health.
Men and women of any age who are having symptoms of hormone imbalances should test for all hormones that may be associated with their symptoms. Men and women over the age of forty may want to do a baseline test. Frequently, imbalances will be detectable for a time period before symptoms gain attention.
Which Hormones Need Testing
The major sex hormones to assess are estradiol, progesterone and testosterone. Estrone and estriol are also important sex hormones to consider testing for hormone optimization. The main adrenal hormones are DHEA and cortisol. These seven hormones will provide crucial information about deficiencies, excesses and daily patterns, which then result in a specifically tailored treatment approach and one far more beneficial than the old “shotgun” approach. Below is a brief description of each of these hormones:
Estrogens: There are three forms made by the body: estrone, estradiol and estriol. Estradiol a proliferative (causes growth) hormone that grows the lining of the uterus. It is also a known cancer-causing hormone: breast and endometrial (uterine) in women and prostate gland in men. It will treat menopausal symptoms like hot flashes, insomnia and memory-loss.
Progesterone: Called the anti-estrogen because it balances estradiol’s proliferative effects. It is considered preventive for breast and prostate cancers as well as osteoporosis. In addition, too little progesterone promotes depression, irritability, increased inflammation, irregular menses, breast tenderness, urinary frequency and prostate gland enlargement (BPH).
Testosterone: An anabolic hormone (builds tissue) that is essential for men and women. The proper level of testosterone is necessary for bone health, muscle strength, stamina, sex drive and performance, heart function and mental focus.
DHEA: An important adrenal gland hormone, which is essential for energy production and blood sugar balance. DHEA is a precursor to other hormones, mainly testosterone.
Cortisol: Your waking day hormone (highest in the morning and lowest at night). It is necessary for energy production, blood sugar metabolism, anti-inflammatory effects and stress response.
Why A Hormone Optimization Test?
One size does not fit all when it comes to hormones! For decades western medicine has prescribed hormone replacement therapy as if everyone needed the same thing and the same amount. Nothing could be further from the truth. Your hormones are like your fingerprints and in order to achieve optimal health, you need to know what your specific imbalances are.
There are several ways to test for hormones (saliva, serum and urine), but the state-of-the-art method is through saliva. This is because only the active portions of hormones are measured and it is these portions that determine how individuals feel.
Estrogen-related cancers are a growing problem, and doctors are still running standard (and outdated) estrogen tests, even though new science has shown that the ratio of good to bad estrogen is key to predicting these types of cancers. Cancers such as breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and uterine cancer have all been linked to the inverse ratio of good to bad estrogen. By running the wrong test, doctors are frequently missing the early signs of estrogen-dominant cancers.
This lab test is a comprehensive hormone panel, including a complete adrenal function panel, assessment of sex hormone levels, and inverse ratio of good to bad estrogen levels. This test will help us understand your hormones so that we can customize an approach to address any imbalances. Some of the common imbalances identified through hormone testing include estrogen dominance, estrogen deficiency, progesterone deficiency, androgen (testosterone and DHEA) excesses or deficiencies, adrenal dysfunction and adrenal fatigue. All these factors add up to superior results and hormone optimization.