This little known hormone may determine your longevity
Aging is mostly a subtle process, and so is the lack of hormones, until the female menopause, which is more dramatic of course. Research has begun to show that the hormone DHEA produced by the adrenal gland is more linked to age related diseases than we thought. Here are a few facts.
1. The signs of DHEA lack are subtle, but they are there. Ask yourself. Are you on your game? Are Did you realize that your adrenal gland production of a hormone called DHEA is about 10% the level at 70 as it was at 30, and in fact it declines steadily during that age range for most women.
2. DHEA levels may be related to the middle age gains in both fat and weight. So perhaps you should rethink low level supplementation.
3. DHEA has many functions, muscle gains is just one. You weren't thinking about muscling up, you were thinking about being trim. But why would we need Dihydroepiandosterone (DHEA) The experts keep saying that women loose DHEA production as they age. This is one of those so called pleiotrophic hormones...I like to think of it as a "mommy" type of hormone...mommies are all things to all people, and these hormones are maybe not 'all' things, but lots of things to lots of cells and lots of cell functions.
4. Subtle changes in bone health are related to DHEA. Anyway, the point is that the DHEA hormone has been lined to age related conditions like osteoporisis, immune weakening, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, depression, and perhaps cognitive function as well. Most animals apparently, according to Drs Daneshmand and DeCherney go through drops in their DHEA the way women do (what, do these pets of progress just not live long enough), and not only that but it's a higher order molecule: only humans and high order primates secrete this stuff from their adrenal gland in significant amounts.
5. Balance is important, too much DHEA is not healthy either. DHEA is elevated in many common conditions like PCOS, and responsible for some of the male hormone type side effects seen in PCOS, it is not technically a 'male hormone.' It cannot bind to the male (androgen) hormone receptors, but has to be converted to Androstenedione, which then has to be converted to testosterone, which in turn would have to be converted to Dihydrotestosterone to then bind to androgen or male hormone receptors in our our skin and cause pimples or chin hair or bind to our muscles to pump them up.
6. What happens in the ovary, happens in the adrenal gland. The ovary somehow pays attention to the adrenal gland, and so forth. So when women transition into menopause, their adrenal gland does the pause as well, and begins to dip in this intriguing high order primate hormone. Physicians term this the adrenopause. So some of your fatigue, your lack of resistance, and your lack of energy, may in fact be due to that higher order primate hormone (DHEA) drop. And it may very well be that the secret of living well, and living long could be tied to the drop in DHEA that you experience.
Get with your gyno, may be time to test. But once you test deficient it's not clear how much DHEAS you would need nor where you would get it as it is a hormone that would have to be compounded for you to get.