It is a common misconception that testosterone is an exclusively male hormone. While men do produce far more testosterone than women, women also produce it in limited quantities as one of the three sex hormones (estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone). All three are made from cholesterol, present in both men and women.
Testosterone is responsible for muscle growth, sex drive, and aggression. The differences in men and women are largely dependent on the varying amounts of testosterone made by the body. Testosterone is made in the ovaries and adrenal glands in women and in the testicles and adrenal glands in men.
What Is Bioidentical Testosterone
Bioidentical testosterone refers to a plant-based hormone that is scientifically manipulated to be an exact duplicate of the body’s own naturally-produced testosterone. It is typically made from soy and yam oils, which are processed into a testosterone powder and then a transdermal cream, which is later sold at compounding pharmacies.
As the body ages, testosterone is produced in progressively smaller amounts. Consequently, certain functions – such as sex drive and muscle-building capacity – are diminished.
Bioidentical testosterone is sometimes considered a safe form of hormone therapy because it provides a duplicate of the body’s natural testosterone.
Side Effects and Risks of Bioidentical Testosterone Replacement Therapy
In women, acne, strange dreams, and darkened facial hair can indicate that a dose of bioidentical testosterone is too high. Other side effects of bioidentical testosterone can result from an estrogen level that is too low relative to testosterone. If bioidentical testosterone and estrogen are taken separately, it is advisable to start estrogen 4 to 8 weeks before testosterone to decrease the chances of adverse side effects.
Testosterone supplementation can also cause elevated thyroid hormone levels and related symptoms, such as a racing pulse, anxiety, or hyperactivity.
For a more detailed explanation of this topic, please take a moment to read about the side effects of bioidentical testosterone replacement therapy.
Bioidentical Testosterone Products
Bioidentical testosterone can be taken in cream, gel, or spray form, or as an injection. Tablets have been reported ineffective, because stomach acids destroy the testosterone. Injections are available but often painful. Patches are usually made from synthetic testosterone rather than bioidentical testosterone.
Alternatives to Bioidentical Testosterone
Lifestyle changes and natural remedies should be explored as treatment for hormonal imbalance before proceeding to any type of hormone therapy. A balanced diet, regular exercise, and effective stress management can provide tremendous relief from the symptoms of hormonal imbalance, ultimately improving overall health.
Alternative medicines target the source of hormonal imbalance and stimulate the endocrine system to the end of producing the needed hormones naturally. Natural remedies such as herbal supplements, acupuncture, and biofeedback are also proven effective at mitigating symptoms associated with hormonal imbalance
If women need more information about this topic, click on the following link to learn more about alternatives to bioidentical testosterone replacement therapy.