Natural hormone replacement, also commonly known as biodentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT), refers to the use of hormones that are identical to the hormones generated from within the body (endogenous) in hormone replacement therapy. Some examples of the hormones used in the replacement therapy include estrone, estradiol, and progesterone.
Natural (biodentic) and synthetic hormones have a distinctly different chemical structure. A natural hormone has a chemical structure that is identical to the hormones naturally produced in the body, whereas a synthetic hormone is just very close.
Advocates of natural hormone replacement argue that using natural hormones is a more effective treatment of menopause symptoms than the use of non-biodentical hormones. However, the legitimacy of these claims is not yet conclusive.
Despite this, if you are suffering from the symptoms of menopause it is worthwhile educating yourself on some of the treatments available as outlined in the following paragraphs.
Why Would I Need Natural Hormone Replacement?
During menopause the production of hormones in a woman's body, such as estrogen, starts to slow. As a result of the change in hormone levels women often experience a variety of menopausal symptoms including aches and pains in the joints, night sweats, forgetfulness, mood swings and hot flashes.
In order to combat these, many women in the menopausal age group use complementary therapies like natural hormone replacement in order to help manage their symptoms. Such treatments are used regularly and safely throughout the United States.
Not every menopause type symptom suffered by middle aged women is necessarily the result of declining hormonal levels. Natural hormonal replacement therapy should not be considered a cure-all for symptoms of menopause.
Read the following paragraphs for a more comprehensive overview of what natural hormone replacement therapy can or can't do for you.
What Are the Risks?
While the use of this therapy is relatively conventional, there has been conjecture over the perceived benefits of natural hormone therapy. The Food and Drug Administration, along with the Mayo Clinic have both released statements declaring there is no expected difference in benefits or risks using bioidentical molecules compared to those using non-biodentical molecules.
Is Natural Hormone Replacement Necessary?
Natural hormones can work wonders, but they aren't necessarily the first place to turn when hormonal imbalance is a problem. The great majority of women can rebalance their hormones without the use of drugs and without natural hormone replacement in any form.
The most commonsense advice for dealing with the symptoms of menopause is to keep the body fit and healthy. Nothing too severe, but a regular exercise and diet routine goes a long way in helping hormone balance. It is also known that stress is a key factor in upsetting hormonal balance and therefore some practical stress reduction techniques should be tried before seeking medical treatment.
Whilst healthy lifestyle solutions are obviously ideal, there are some alternative medicines which have been proven to help the core problem of hormone imbalance. They are also often significantly cheaper than natural hormone replacement.