At a certain point in life, many people, both men and women, may begin to feel overwhelmed by fatigue, stress, weight gain, and depression. Getting up in the morning and moving through the day becomes a chore with an ever-growing list of complaints. Some men and women will suffer with these symptoms for years without ever really knowing or understanding where they came from. Such symptoms are oftentimes caused by an imbalance of hormones produced by the endocrine system.
The endocrine system is essentially our hormone command center; a collection of glands that include, pituitary, thyroid, parathyroid, adrenal, pancreas, ovaries (in women), and testicles (in men). Its job is to secrete hormones that regulate metabolism, growth and development, tissue function, sexual function, reproduction, sleep, mood, among other things to maintain a body’s homeostasis or balance.
According to Kent Holtorf, M.D. the biggest contributing factor for women is low thyroid and in men it is due to low testosterone.
Thyroid Disease in Women
TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) is secreted by the pituitary gland, signaling the thyroid to secrete T4, which converts to T3, the active hormone, which influences the activity of all the cells and tissues of your body. T4 can also be converted into reverse T3, which is an inactive hormone and can also block the thyroid receptor. Reverse T3, does the opposite of T3, causing fatigue, difficulty losing weight, and all the other symptoms of hypothyroidism – get a full list of thyroid disease symptoms here.
Hormone Imbalance in Men
Low testosterone in men is not always a direct result of age. There is a possibility that men, as young as 25 to 30 years suffer from low testosterone as a result of environmental toxins. Low testosterone can cause poor motivation, anxiety, weight gain, loss of sex drive and depression.
Fixing the Problem
More often than not men and women suffer in silence. Standard blood tests are designed to only pick up the sickest 2.5% of the population and women are told they are “fine” when in fact they actually have a severely low thyroid. Men suffer needlessly because their testosterone is never checked or the wrong test is ordered. Luckily, hypothyroidism in women and low testosterone in men can both be remedied through hormone therapy. Doctors specializing in hormone balance and anti-aging medicine are able to bring hormones into optimal ranges dramatically increasing a person’s quality of life and sense of well-being.
Watch this video from Dr. Holtorf to learn more about bioidentical hormone replacement therapy.