Osteoporosis is a risk for all adults as they age, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center, but for women it can be almost a given due to the vast hormonal changes that occur during perimenopause and menopause. These changes in hormones cause the bones to become thin and brittle, increasing the risk of fractures and bone degenerative conditions.
While some treatments for osteoporosis are available, the better option is to prevent the disease altogether by protecting bone health through the aging process. Hormone replacement therapy can help with this. However, synthetic hormones have serious risks associated with them. One study, the Women's Health Initiative, (the WHI), was actually halted due to the increased risk of cancer, heart attack, and stroke that women faced when using these synthetic hormones. This caused many patients and doctors to demand a safer alternative that would provide the same benefit with less risk. That alternative is bioidentical hormone replacement therapy.
What is Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy?
Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, or BHRT, involves plant-based hormone replacement that can help balance the hormones in the body and prevent the serious side effects associated with traditional synthetic hormones. These hormones have the same biochemical structure as those produced in the human body, but are naturally found in plants instead of using artificial molecules to replace the hormones. Thus, many in the medical community feel they are far less risky than traditional synthetic hormones.
How Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy Improves Bone Health
So if BHRT is a safer alternative to traditional hormone therapy, many women find themselves asking how it will improve their bone health.
Healthy bones require adequate amounts of calcium and the ability to absorb that calcium efficiently. Bone loss often occurs due to low levels of estrogen as well as changes in testosterone levels. Both of these hormones impact the way the bones absorb calcium and thus are crucial to keeping the bones strong. BHRT can help correct improper estrogen and testosterone levels, decreasing the amount of bone loss that occurs. Over time, continued treatment can actually improve bone mineral density according to small-scale studies, making the bones stronger while also slowing age-related degeneration and deterioration.
Bone health is not something to mess around with. People who are concerned about their overall health and hormonal balance need to take measures to protect their bones and prevent osteoporosis before it begins. To determine if you are at risk to bone health problems due to hormones, take the hormone test today for a free evaluation of your hormone health.