What is a natural female Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)? HRT is a treatment that replaces hormones when they are at lower levels in the body. Its primary purpose is to relieve symptoms related to menopause, such as hot flashes, mood swings, night sweats, decreased sex drive, and vaginal dryness.
When it comes to natural HRT options for women, the two safest types are bioidentical and traditional HRT. Bioidentical HRT is derived from plants and consists of hormones that are chemically identical to those produced by our bodies. This can be achieved through supplements or by consuming plants containing compounds that can help alleviate hormone-related symptoms.
Menopausal women often worry about conventional HRT and may lean towards natural alternatives. The safest choices for addressing hormonal imbalances include bioidentical hormone therapy and natural hormone replacement therapy.
BHRT, also known as bioidentical HRT, can address hormonal imbalances using a synthetic estrogen derived from plant estrogen. Bioidentical hormones have the same molecular structure as those naturally produced by the body. Most BHRTs contain plant hormones that mimic estriol, progesterone, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), and melatonin.
There are two types of BHRT: FDA-approved BHRT, which is similar to standard HRT in terms of safety, and custom-compounded BHRT medication, which a pharmacist mixes according to a doctor’s prescription.
Bioidentical HRT is primarily used by women in menopause or perimenopause to address low hormone levels.
This therapy can effectively improve mild to moderate menopause symptoms, including hot flashes, mood swings, memory issues, sleep disturbances, pain during intercourse, and night sweats.
For cancer patients whose estrogen levels have been affected by treatment, BHRT can enhance their quality of life. Research has shown that cancer patients treated with BHRT experience relief from treatment-related symptoms, and their breast cancer recurrence rates are lower than average.
Moreover, BHRT can be customized to match your specific needs. Your healthcare provider will prescribe hormones tailored to your unique requirements and preferences after conducting a thorough health assessment and hormone testing.
BHRT allows your healthcare provider to monitor your progress over time and make necessary adjustments as needed.
Traditional natural hormone replacement therapy involves using plants or supplements that contain compounds capable of relieving hormonal symptoms. These plants and supplements include:
some experts do not believe that BRHTs offer any more benefits or are safer than natural HRTs.
It’s essential to understand that when comparing two natural HRTs, bioidentical hormones differ from traditional HRTs. They are essentially identical to the hormones our bodies naturally produce and are also derived from plant estrogen.
Advocates of bioidentical HRT consider it safer because it matches the hormones produced by the body. However, experts point out that both HRT and bioidentical HRT carry similar risks. Compound bioidentical hormones, also known as compounded hormone therapy, may have additional risks. Nevertheless, there is no reliable evidence to suggest that BHRT is more effective than HRT.
Natural HRT is used to treat hormonal imbalances, perimenopause symptoms, and menopause symptoms.
Endocrine glands produce hormones that instruct organs and tissues on how to function. These hormones regulate crucial body processes, including reproduction and metabolism. Hormonal imbalances occur when you have too little or too much of a particular hormone. Your normal hormonal cycle can change during puberty, pregnancy, breastfeeding, and even menopause.
Symptoms of hormonal imbalance in women include:
Perimenopause is the phase around menopause, marking the natural transition to menopause and the end of reproductive years. Irregular periods are common during perimenopause. Estrogen levels may fluctuate, and menstrual cycles can become shorter or longer. Menopause is officially reached when you’ve gone 12 consecutive months without a period.
Symptoms and changes during menopause may include:
Menopause signifies the end of your menstrual cycle, bringing both emotional and physical symptoms. Conditions affecting ovarian health, such as ovarian and endometrial carcinoma, can intensify menopause symptoms.
Common symptoms during perimenopause, menopause, and postmenopause include:
These symptoms can vary in severity and duration, but they are typical during the menopausal transition.
Every treatment has its advantages and disadvantages. It’s essential to be aware of both the pros and cons associated with BHRT.
BHRT increases lower hormone levels and helps improve symptoms like:
The FDA has approved micronized progesterone for use in combination with estrogen to create HRT. According to NCBI, micronized progesterone and progestogen are recommended for women with an intact uterus as part of combined hormone therapy.
Hormone replacement therapy can also reduce the risks of diabetes, tooth decay, and cataracts.
However, hormone replacement therapy is associated with increased risks of:
While hormone replacement therapy can improve the skin, it may also lead to common side effects such as:
Bioidentical hormones are available in various forms, including patches, pills, creams, and even pellets or implants. It’s a good idea to consult with your doctor to help you choose the best method, and it may be worth trying different options to find what works best for you.
TreatmentOne reassuring aspect of hormone therapy is that doctors closely monitor individuals during this treatment. The doses are adjusted according to your specific needs, and your doctor can adapt them as your hormone requirements change. The International Journal of Pharmaceutical Compounding highlights that bioidentical HRT provides a safer and more natural alternative to synthetic progestin.
You can have confidence in the safety of your treatment because FDA-approved bioidentical hormonal products have undergone rigorous safety testing and have received FDA approval.
Compounded hormonal products have not undergone FDA testing, and there is limited research on their safety and effectiveness. According to a recent report by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, the use of compounded bioidentical HRT is suitable for only a limited number of patients, specifically those who cannot benefit from an FDA-approved hormone therapy product.
For menopausal symptom relief, Bioidentical HRT is the top choice. Enduring Beauty is your trusted source for bioidentical hormone replacement therapy. At Enduring Beauty, our medical team will carefully assess your needs before prescribing bioidentical HRT. Your safety is our foremost concern, and we tailor treatments to address your specific hormone imbalances.