As men and women enter their 30's, profound hormonal changes begin to take place in their bodies. If not addressed, these changes can lead to
- Decreased energy and zest for life
- Loss of muscle tone and increased fat
- Circulatory problems and decreased libido
Hormones are the body's chemical messenger system. They tell the various cells of the body what to do -- and when -- by attaching to specific receptor sites on individual cells. Adrenaline, for example, is produced in the adrenal glands and, at times of stress, tells the heart to speed up and blood vessels to narrow. Testosterone and the various estrogens, on the other hand, promote specific sexual characteristics.
Problems occur when the various hormones get out of balance. In previous newsletters, I already talked extensively about the need for both men and women to supplement with natural progesterone to counter the effects of estrogen dominance. For now, we will discuss the need for men and women to also reestablish the proper levels of testosterone and the adrenal hormones in their bodies.
The Testosterone Story
Both men and women need and produce testosterone in their bodies -- although in differing amounts. It is testosterone, in both men and women, that is responsible for:
- Pumping up energy levels
- Driving our desire to attack the day
- Firing the need to succeed
- Bonding us with our mates
- Fueling our sexual desires
- Elevating our levels of sexual satisfaction
- Building muscle and burning off fat
- Facilitating better circulation
Unfortunately, once we reach our thirties, available testosterone levels for both men and women tend to begin diminishing with age. Interestingly enough, in a 1986 clinical study, it was documented that it's not actual testosterone production that decreases as we age; but rather, it's the amount of free circulating testosterone that decreases -- as more and more of it gets bound to albumin and becomes unavailable for the body's use. These changes happen in connection with a natural substance called "sex-hormone-binding-globulin" or "SHBG."
Oral Contraceptives, SHBG & Long-term Sexual Problems
If you are like most women in modern society you have at some point in your life taken birth control, it combines safety with spontaneity – or does it? You may be shocked to learn that in the January 2006 issue of The Journal of Sexual Medicine, Oral Contraceptive's (OC) were linked with sexual health problems – even after discontinuing use!
In this small retrospective study, OC use has been associated with elevated SHBG levels and reduced bioavailable testosterone – again even after discontinuing use. In fact, women that were currently taking OCs at the time of the study had SHBG levels four times higher than those seen in women with no OC exposure. Women who had stopped taking OCs for 6 months were still 2 times higher in SBHG than women with no OC exposure.
Earlier research had shown increases in sex hormone-binding globulin levels with oral contraceptive use to be associated with a concomitant 40% to 60% decrease in free testosterone levels.
Lowered levels of bioavailable or free testosterone are believed to play a major role in women's sexual health and could place women at risk for decreased sexual desire, decreased arousal, decreased lubrication and increased sexual pain. So much for safety and spontaneity.
Fortunately, the use of herbs such as saw palmetto, wild oats, and nettles can reverse this process, increasing free testosterone levels an astounding 105% on average!!
Benefits for Men
SHBG binds not only testosterone, but all of the sex hormones including estradiol (one of the "active" estrogens found in both men and women). Normally, this binding serves as a storage system for excess hormones, but in men there is an additional problem.
SHBG also has an affinity for prostate tissue. In effect, SHBG can serve to bind estrogen to cell membranes in the prostate. This causes an increase in PSA secretion -- a prime factor in future prostate problems, including cancer. The wild oats and nettles found in a men's testosterone balancing formula work together to reverse this binding process, thereby reducing the likelihood of prostate problems.
In addition, saw palmetto has been proven to help the prostate in two additional ways. First, it inhibits the 5-alpha-reductase enzyme, which causes testosterone to be converted into a substance called dihydrotestosterone, which stimulates the growth of prostate tissue. And second, saw palmetto has been proven to exert an anti-inflammatory effect on prostate tissue.
Benefits for Women
Surprisingly, women are far more vulnerable to testosterone level changes than men. The reason is simple: they have so much less to work with. When even a small amount of their available testosterone gets bound to SHBG, the results are profoundly disruptive:
- Loss of energy
- Loss of will to do anything
- Loss of motivation
- Loss of interest in spouse and loss of libido
- Loss of fulfillment from sex
- Loss of muscle and significant increase in body fat -- the prime reason women start to gain so much weight as they move into their 40's.
- A significant increase in the risk of breast cancer -- since bound SHBG is no longer available to lock up excessive estrogens.
Regular use of a women's testosterone balancing formula can help to significantly reverse and/or prevent all of the above conditions.
Testosterone balancing formulas work naturally in both men and women to enhance sexual desire, sensation, and performance. The effect on human sexual appetite is powerful. Both men and women can feel a boost in sexual desire - sometimes after only a few hours. Both men and women experience an increase in frequency of orgasms while taking wild oats & nettles, while many women experience a dramatic 68% increase in multiple orgasms. Men also reported multiple orgasms while taking the wild oats and nettles combination.
The Adrenal Hormones
Also by the time we are 30, most of us have seriously depleted our body's ability to respond to stress. Stress is normal to be sure, but the continual stress of modern living -- from high pressure jobs, fighting traffic, worrying about world events, etc. -- keeps us in a constant state of "heightened response" that eventually wipes out our adrenal reserves. The net result ranges from high blood pressure and impaired immune function to chronic fatigue and digestive problems.
The standard response is to increase consumption of artificial stimulants such as caffeine or nicotine or alcohol -- and even overeating. These "solutions" are, in fact, no solution at all. Although they may temporarily mask the symptoms of adrenal exhaustion by providing an artificial "boost," they serve to further exhaust the adrenals leading to irrevocable harm to the body.
Fortunately, there is a class of herbs known as adaptogens that naturally helps to rebuild adrenal function and restore hormonal balance. Foremost among the adaptogens is ginseng. Ginseng has been shown to:
- Increase stamina
- Revitalize the body
- Increase life span
- Counteract chronic fatigue
- Improve resistance to stress
- Improve sexual function in both men and women
- Enhance immune function
Both the men's and women's formula contain wildcrafted organic ginseng.
The Bottom Line: Balance Hormones
Every single man and women over 30 should seriously consider putting their bodies on an ongoing hormonal balancing program. In addition to using progesterone creme to help balance progesterone and estrogen levels, both men and women should use testosterone balancing herbal formulations for that 30,000 mile TuneUp.
Contains: Ginseng, Tribulus Terrestris, Muira puama, Wild oats, Nettles, Eleutherococcus, Saw palmetto, Sarsaparilla, Catuaba, Damiana, Kola nut, and Ginger.
In addition to all of the benefits that have already been discussed, it is worth mentioning that saw palmetto and muira puama have both been proven to inhibit -- and in some cases even reverse -- male pattern baldness.
Contains: Damiana, Muira puama, Mucuna pruriens (kapikachhu), Siberian ginseng (now usually labeled as Eleuthro root), Saw palmetto, Wild oats, Nettles, Kola nut, Ginger, Wild yam, Licorice, Sarsaparilla, and Puncture Weed.
For women, in addition to all of the other benefits that have been mentioned, some of the herbs in this formula have also been proven to help alleviate the symptoms of PMS and menopause and to inhibit the incidence of breast cancer.
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