By Alane Palmer, ND, CNC
Most women need to make that difficult decision whether to use estrogen or not during the pre-menopause or menopause years. There are traditional prescriptions for estrogen, bio-identical estrogen and herbs that raise estrogen. The question has always been, is it safe? Is it worth taking the risk that some forms of estrogen may increase the risk of certain female cancers?
Estrogen fear started many years ago when estrogen was linked to breast cancer, heart attack and stroke. There was a study done to prove this. The medication used in this study was a non-bio-identical one which contained both estrogen and progesterone.
Bio identical hormone therapy means that the hormone used is identical to the one made by the woman’s ovaries. The other two hormones made by the ovaries are progesterone and testosterone. I had a gynecologist say to me once that I would be saving lives if I gave a progesterone crème to all the women that were taking traditional estrogen. That comment really made me think.
Menopause happens and in some women it can catch them off guard. Life seems good, all is ok and then all of a sudden things change. Women become more sensitive, more anxious, gain weight, start hot flashing daytime and nighttime, and some become depressed and terrible brain foggy. For many when testing is done their hormones are pretty much nonexistent.
I will never forget when my personal doctor did a test for hormone imbalance and all of my hormones were pretty much tanked out. I agreed to use a combination of 100% bio-identical hormones in a crème form. At first I struggled with using the full dose, I kept letting fear get to me. It took about 1 year and feeling a bit better for me to totally trust and use the full dose. I honestly can say when I forget to use it, I do not feel like myself.
For women not wanting to use any form of the actual hormone, there are plenty of herbal formulas that work very well. Black Cohosh and Red Clover both support healthy estrogen levels and Chasteberry supports Progesterone levels.
Either way, all women go through the change and we all may need different supports to help us get through it gracefully and without inhibiting our life quality.
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Medical disclaimer: Our test for hormone imbalance and other tests cannot be used to diagnose, treat or cure any disease. All test results are to be used as educational materials and as a guide to help support your overall health and wellness. Always discuss health concerns with your medical doctor.
“Is Bio-Identical Hormone Therapy Safe?”. EverydayHealth.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 14 July 2016.