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Hormones & Pharmacological Agents

Estrogen

13 years, 1 month ago

1522  0
Posted on Dec 30, 2005, 8 p.m. By Bill Freeman

GENERAL DESCRIPTION: Estrogen is the female sex hormone. The ovaries produce estrogen up until the menopause. Low levels of estrogen have been linked to osteoporosis, arteriosclerosis, declining cognitive function and increased risk for Alzheimer

GENERAL DESCRIPTION:

Estrogen is the female sex hormone. The ovaries produce estrogen up until the menopause. Low levels of estrogen have been linked to osteoporosis, arteriosclerosis, declining cognitive function and increased risk for Alzheimer’s disease.

ROLE FOR ANTI-AGING:

Estrogen’s anti-aging benefits may include decrease in osteoporosis, decrease in heart attacks and strokes, improved memory and cognitive function, reversal of thinning of skin and drying of mucous membranes, and increased lifespan. Research suggests that estrogen has neuroprotective, neurostimulating, and neurotrophic effects. Several studies have suggested that estrogen reduces the risk and slowed the progression of Alzheimer’s disease, but there is no conclusive evidence demonstrating the protective effects of estrogen against Alzheimer’s.

Marks, Batra, and Frishman, the authors of a review published in 2002, do suggest that the hormone’s neuroprotective effects may make it a suitable preventive therapy in women deemed at high risk of developing the neurodegenerative disease. A study reported in 1997 in the Journal of the American Medical Association reported that post-menopausal women using estrogen experience as much as a 50% reduction in osteoporosis, heart attack, stroke, reversal of thinning of the skin and mucous membrane, significant reduction and possibly reversals in Alzheimer ‘s disease and extended lifespan.

DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS:

Bone loss (osteoporosis)

THERAPEUTIC DAILY AMOUNT:

Estrogen should only be supplemented on the advice of a doctor.

MAXIMUM SAFE LEVEL: Not established

SIDE EFFECTS/CONTRAINDICATIONS:

Conflicting information exists as to whether estrogen replacement therapy increases the risk of breast cancer, but some researchers indicate that combined estrogen-progestin therapy may eliminate this risk. Similarly, some studies indicate an increase in the risk of developing endometrial cancer when using estrogen replacement. Again, it seems that coadministration of progestin may decrease this risk.

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