DHEA – S (Dehydroepiandrosterone) – The anti-aging hormone
DHEA is a hormone produced by the adrenal glands. It regulates metabolism and helps to balance estrogen, progesterone and testosterone. If production of DHEA decreases under stress and is not rectified a hormonal cascade effect could occur resulting with a deficiency of other sex hormones such as estrogen, progesterone and testosterone. It guards against degenerative conditions associated with aging, influences immune function and energy production Protects against the negative effects of cortisol, affects insulin sensitivity, thyroid function and protein synthesis.

Adrenal stress and increased cortisol levels depress DHEA production and DHEA levels decrease with age. DHEA levels in the body peak when a person is in his 20s. After 30, they begin to decrease. By the time a person reaches 40, his body manufactures around half of the hormone DHEA as it used to. By 65, DHEA production decreases to 10-20 percent of the optimum. By 80, the body produces less than 5 percent of the optimum.

A diet lacking in nutrition, following low-calorie or crash diets, stress and emotional disturbances such as depression are some of the factors that can lower your DHEA level. Levels decrease more quickly in women.

It boosts immunity, enhances the activity of monocytes, immune cells that attack cancer cells and viruses; activates natural killer cells, immune cells that attack and destroy viruses and other foreign invaders; and maximizes the anti-cancer function of immune cells known as T lymphocytes.

DHEAS may be elevated with too much supplementation or tumour. The symptoms can range from PCOS to deeper voice, excess facial or body hair (hirsutism) and acne.

If DHEA is low think stress and adrenal fatigue. A low level of DHEAS may also be due to adrenal insufficiency, adrenal dysfunction, Addison disease, or hypopituitarism, a condition that causes low levels of the pituitary hormones that regulate the production and secretion of adrenal hormones.

If production of DHEA decreases under stress the other sex hormones such as estrogen, progesterone and testosterone can decrease also leading to PMS, Menopause, andropause and hypothyroidism.

Low DHEA has been associated with impaired immunity, autoimmunity, cancer, depression, panic disorders, insulin resistance, obesity, Alzheimer’s disease and cardiovascular disease.

Women with breast cancer consistently have lower-than-normal DHEA readings.

DHEA levels in people who have Alzheimer’s are much lower than in people who don’t have the disease. Studies show that even very small doses of the hormone reduce amnesia while improving long-term memory.

DHEA levels were significantly lower in men who died of heart attacks than in men who were healthy.

Symptoms of low DHEA-S
– Autoimmunity
– Metabolic syndrome
– Poor memory
– Fatigue – chronic fatigue syndrome
– Weight gain
– Depression
– Aching joints
– Vaginal atrophy, or inflammation of the vaginal tissues and decreased vaginal lubrication
– Menopausal symptoms

Serum (Blood Draw)

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