Westlake Physicians Weight Loss Center

Aging in Westlake is difficult enough for women without having to deal with declining hormones. Women in Westlake often complain of a diminished sense of well being, chronic fatigue, and a loss of libido just to mention a few symptoms of hormone imbalance.

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For many women there is a tremendous void in treatment of menopausal symptoms. Hot flashes, mood swings and low or no sex drive are just the tip of the iceberg. Some earlier hormone imbalance symptoms of estrogen deficiency are frequent waking at night. Many others are present, including “mental fogginess.” A woman’s short-term memory retention may be dwindling and her concentration and focus isn’t as good as it used to be. Frequently, women may experience some loss of energy to the point that they actually slide into symptoms of chronic fatigue. In addition, women may experience some mood swings and irritability, and at the extreme may actually develop feelings of depression. With the loss of energy and chronic fatigue, females find themselves unable to exercise as much as in the past, or to recover as quickly when exercising. Women often find themselves increasing weight gain in spite of attempts at exercising. One hormone imbalance symptom that is not frequently discussed is the loss of sex drive and diminished libido. Not only is energy level and sense of well being diminished, but anticipation and enjoyment of sexual activity is waning as well.

Various Menopause Treatment Options

Theoretically,  menopause is not a disease.  Therefore, there is no cure.  Many women opt to forgo any treatment at all, and simply tolerate many of the symptoms associated with this normal transition.  However, for those women whose symptoms are so severe as to interfere with their quality of life, there are many options at their disposal.

Remedies may be implemented by the woman herself for the conditions associated with menopause.  For example,

Hot flashes: Several nonprescription treatments are available, and lifestyle choices can help.

  • Many women feel that regular aerobic exercise can help reduce hot flashes
  • Foods that may trigger hot flashes, such as spicy foods, caffeine, and alcohol, should be avoided.
Heart disease: A low-fat, low-cholesterol diet helps to reduce the risk of heart disease.

Weight gain: Regular exercise is helpful in controlling weight.

Osteoporosis: Adequate calcium intake and weight-bearing exercise are important. Strength training (lifting weights or using exercise bands in resistance training) can strengthen bones.

Certain medications are beneficial in reducing many of the signs and symptoms of menopause.

Hormone Replacement Therapy

  • estrogen or a combination of estrogen and progestin
  • treats hot flashes
  • reduce fracture risk by building bone mass
  • improve cholesterol levels
  • decrease vaginal dryness
  • estrogen and progestin combination associated with increased risk of heart attack, stroke, and breast cancer
  • estrogen alone associated with increased risk of endometrial cancer
  • increased risk of gallstones and blood clots
Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs)
  • normally used for depression and anxiety
  • effective in reducing hot flashes
Clonidine (Catapres)
  • used to lower blood pressure
  • effective in reducing hot flashes
Gabapentin (Neurontin)
  • primarily used for treating seizures
  • used to treat hot flashes
Megestrol (Megace)
  • short-term relief of hot flashes
  • not recommended as first-line drug
Medroxyprogesterone (Depo-Provera)
  • injectable
  • sometimes effective in treating hot flashes
  • may cause weight gain and bone loss
Several medication options are available for the treatment of osteoporosis during menopause.  They include:
  • Aldenodrate (Fosamax)
  • Raloxifene (Evista)
  • Calcitonin (Calcimar or Miacalcin)
There are natural remedies on the market which report to reduce hot flashes.  However, for many, the clinical studies are conflicting and inconclusive.  These include:

Black Cohosh

  • herbal supplement
  • German studies recommend limiting its use to six months or less
  • not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration
  • side effects include nausea, vomiting,  dizziness, visual problems, slow heart beat, and excessive sweating
Plant Estrogens (Phytoestrogens)
  • soy is an example
  • safety of soy in women with breast cancer not established
Other Herbal Preparations - avoid or take under supervision of health care provider
  • dong quai
  • red clover
  • chaste-berry
  • yam cream
  • Chinese medicinal herbs
  • evening primrose oil
There are several treatment options available to help alleviate the symptoms of menopause.  These treatments should be individualized for each patient.  As many of these methods are not without risk, they should be implemented and monitored under the guidance of a physician.

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How to Lose Weight by Eating Fruit

What is the underlying cause of impotence, depression, fatigue, excess body fat and osteoporosis in an estimated four million American men? Low Testosterone.

Natural supplements can be an alternative to creams, gels and patches. Dietary changes are slower but have less side effects.

For men, testosterone and DHEA ( a precursor hormone for testosterone) diminish after the age of 40. Actually the peak age is 17 and then production slowly falls off for the rest of your life. It does not become noticeable until around 40 plus.

Your doctor can perform a simple test to measure your testosterone. Normal levels range from 300 to 1,000 ng/dl.

Talk to him - you may be able to get some changes going using what nature has provided.

Traditionally Asia's most prized herb for hundreds of years is Ginseng root. Most of North America's crop of ginseng is mainly shipped to China. Ginseng is supposed to increase blood flow.

Sarsaparill contains a testosterone-like substance. Most main stream physicians will tell you that it has no effect.

Saw Palmetto at 120-360 mg daily is supposed to reduce the conversion of testosterone to estrogen. (see Low Testosterone)

Diet and Testosterone

Adjust your diet to make sure you get the good stuff. Zinc, Manganese and Niacin (B3) are absolutely essential. Add pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds.

Milk Thistle is a good source of zinc and is very helpful to your liver.

Niacin is found in beef liver and brewer's yeast. If you go the beef liver route be sure it is grass fed beef. Use caution in supplements as Niacin (B3) in amounts over 500 mg may cause liver damage.

Of course, if you already have diabetes, glaucoma, gout, ulcers or any liver disease you must consult your physician before adding additional B3 supplements to your diet.

The FDA and traditionally physicians do not believe that DHEA supplements taken orally do any good. That being said, the suggested way to take DHEA is 2 weeks, discontinue for 2 weeks and then repeat. Taking this supplement daily continually is detrimental.

If you have read about Yohimbe and are tempted - use caution. This herb has been associated with panic attacks, hallucinations, elevated blood pressure, headaches and dizziness. It is also bad for the kidneys.

Flavonoids (whole grains, legumes, fruits, and vegetables) are protective in coronary heart disease, stroke and cancer. Research is being done to determine if one flavonoid, chrysin, found in high concentrations in honey could inhibit the aromatase action that turns testosterone into estrogen. If it does work, that would increase the level of testosterone. If it doesn't work, at least you are doing good things for your heart.

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Treatment for Menopause


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