Hormones are chemical messengers produced, stored and released by the glands of the endocrine system, which controls major functions of the human body. While we may be familiar with some of the more well known hormones, such as adrenalin, estrogen or testosterone, there are actually about 50 identified hormones circulating throughout the body, transferring signals and instructions and helping our bodies to run efficiently and smoothly. Hormones manage development, growth, metabolism, behavior, homeostasis, digestion, energy production, stress response, sexual function and reproduction. For proper bodily functions, the endocrine system must work correctly, the blood supply must efficiently transfer hormones to their target cells, receptor sites must effectively signal the cells and the feedback system for determining when hormones are released must be tightly regulated.
Amazingly, we don’t even have to think about all the processes that are happening in our bodies at any given time. When everything is working efficiently and the body’s natural chemistry is balanced and stable, the body is in homeostasis and functioning optimally. Cellular health, chemical reactions, and metabolic processes are all dependent upon homeostasis. When hormonal balance is not maintained, the body cannot function properly and illness and disease ensues. Insufficient or excessive hormone production can cause numerous health problems, including adrenal fatigue, diabetes, obesity and thyroid dysfunction. While the aging process is strongly related to a natural decline in hormone production, lifestyle factors such as inconsistent sleep patterns, poor diet, lack of exercise, and chronic stress can also throw off the body’s natural chemistry, thereby impacting mood, fertility, energy levels, sexual desire and overall health.
How do you know if your hormones are imbalanced? While blood and saliva tests can determine your hormone levels, chances are you may be experiencing some symptoms that often go ignored or unnoticed, as we get used to feeling below par. Symptoms can include fatigue, sluggish metabolism, depression, weight gain, brain fog, insomnia, digestive problems, uncomfortable menopausal symptoms and low sex drive. Symptoms can be thought of as a form of communication that the body uses to tell us it is distressed and out of balance. The best way to determine the root causes of hormonal imbalances is to have your hormone levels tested. Then, in consultation with a healthcare provider, you can determine the best way to proceed to bring your body back to homeostasis and good health. By addressing hormonal imbalance, making a consistent effort to improve diet and digestive health, managing stress and sleep patterns and increasing participation in regular physical activity, true holistic health is within your reach.
Professional Supplement Center offers comprehensive hormone test kits through ZRT Laboratory, a CLIA certified diagnostic laboratory specializing in hormone and wellness testing. Test results are delivered directly to you and may be provided to your healthcare provider at your request. To review the results of the tests, a brief in person or telephone consultation with our registered nurse or registered pharmacist is included with the test kits. Lab requisition and prepaid, U.S. only, shipping label is provided with the test kits.
Adrenal Stress Profile – To assess adrenal function, saliva testing of DHEA and diurnal cortisol levels are measured at four points during the day, which is the accepted industry standard for accessing full adrenal function. Adrenal fatigue and chronic stress weakens immune reserves and leaves us at risk of illness and inflammation.
Female/Male Saliva Profile III – E2, Pg, T, Ds, Cx4 – This early morning saliva test measures estradiol, (E2), progesterone (Pg), testosterone (T), DHEA-S (DS) and morning cortisol to give a clearer picture of adrenal function along with male and female hormones.
Comprehensive Female Profile II – This saliva and blood spot test measures cortisol, estradiol, progesterone, testosterone, DHEA and thyroid hormones. Collection instructions and materials are included. Also available comprehensive Female Profile I.
Hormones: the body’s chemical messengers. http://www.ikonet.com/en/visualdictionary/static/us/hormones
7 Signs Your Hormones Are Out of Balance. https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/diet-is-4-letter-word/201311/7-signs-your-hormones-are-out-balance
5 Natural Ways to Balance Your Hormones. http://www.chopra.com/ccl/5-natural-ways-to-balance-your-hormones