For sure, this brings a lot of confusion to a majority of patients. But not everything that is made in the lab means it's synthetic and has the potential to harm your health. There is a natural, safe solution to your hormone-related health problems and it is called bioidentical hormones.
What Are Bioidentical Hormones?
The natural bioidentical hormones are very different from their synthetic versions, often having completely opposite physical and cellular effects. Natural hormones are replicated from plant materials with the exact same chemical structure as what your body produces. They are the same, they are (bio) identical, the body should not know the difference.
What Are Synthetic Hormones?
The most prescribed drug combination hormone replacement therapy for menopausal women is Premarin (conjugated equine estrogens) and Provera (medroxyprogesterone acetate). Premarin, the most popular estrogen replacement therapy (ERT), is derived from pregnant horses and contains mostly estrone and a number of equine (horse) estrogens that are not natural to humans. Many of these foreign estrogens bind very tightly to the human estrogen receptors, making them highly stimulating and carcinogenic.
Benefits Of Using Bioidentical Hormones
Medical studies confirm that women report no negative side effects, along with improved satisfaction and quality of life, when they are changed from synthetic hormones like Provera to progesterone. Natural estrogen and progesterone maintain and augment the cardioprotective effects of estrogen and decrease the risk of heart attack and stroke.
The anti-athrogenic (inhibits plaque formation) effect of progesterone is directly opposite to the effects of synthetic progestins, which is pro-athrogenic (promotes plaque formation). Estrogen and progesterone are superior to estrogen and Provera in the effects on HDL cholesterol. Based on the results from the PEPI Trial and other studies, the President of the American Heart Association stated that, just based on this difference in the effects on HDL, a woman who changes her medication from MPA to natural progesterone would significantly lower her risk for heart disease.
An analysis of 6 epidemiologic studies of estrogen levels in women found that there are higher estriol levels in populations with lower risks for breast cancer. Dr. Follingstad reviewed a study in which estriol was given to postmenopausal women with breast cancer. Thirty-seven percent of the patients demonstrated remission or arrest of the disease. A prospective epidemiological study conducted at Johns Hopkins demonstrated the profound anti-breast cancer action and protective role of natural progesterone against breast cancer.
Negative Effects Associated with Synthetic Hormone Replace Therapy (HRT)
Taking synthetic hormones won't fit to the structure that our cells have recognized. The results may be compromised. The Women's Health Initiative (WHI) study demonstrated that when medroxyprogesterone acetate (MPA) was added to Premarin, there was a substantial increase in the risk of heart attack and stroke. This was an expected outcome with MPA, as it has clearly been shown to not only negate any cardioprotective effects of estrogen, but also to actually promote cardiovascular disease and increase the risk of heart attack and stroke.
Dr. Lignieres from the Necker Hospital Department of Endocrinology and Reproductive Medicine in Paris, France clearly states: "The most commonly used synthetic progestins, norethisterone and medroxyprogesterone acetate, have been associated with metabolic and vascular side effects (e.g., suppression of the vasodilating effect of estrogens) in both experimental and human controlled studies. All comparative studies to date conclude that the side effects of synthetic progestins can be minimized or eliminated through the use of natural progesterone."
New research headed by Birgitta E. Lindblad, MD, of Sundsvall Hospital in Sweden and published in Ophthalmology, the official journal of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, provides evidence that taking synthetic hormones causes cataracts. The eight year prospective study of over 30,000 postmenopausal women compared the cataract status of women who had taken HRT to those who had not used the hormones. The results? The research subjects who were taking or who had ever taken synthetic hormones had significantly higher rates of cataracts so severe they had to be removed.
The large amount of scientific evidence overwhelmingly demonstrates that natural hormones are safer than Premarin and Provera, the study drugs of the WHI. Unfortunately, a majority of women do not know yet that there are safe alternatives to their current HRT. Today, you can safely start your natural hormone treatment and address your negative symptoms.
Natural (Bioidentical) vs. Synthetic HRT
Hormone replacement therapy now linked to cataracts
Hormone Study Confusion