Dangers of Taking Hormones for Menopause

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For many years, women around the world were turning to Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) believing that symptoms of menopause were being controlled and nothing more. This type of treatment became so common that HRT was soon the standard treatment option. Unfortunately, women began getting sick, developing cancer and other illnesses. Realizing that these women all had one thing in common, Hormone Replacement Therapy, doctors and researchers started putting the pieces of the puzzle together. The bottom line – HRT is not just dangerous to women’s health but far more dangerous than ever believed.

With HRT being widely used in postmenopausal women as a means of relieving the effects of hot flashes, night sweats, and other acute symptoms, women innocently trusted the therapy. With doctors prescribing HRT, why would women consider there to be any danger? After all, HRT also helped increase bone density, protected against osteoporosis and osteoarthritis, and reduced or eliminated many of the unwanted symptoms that women have to deal with during the change of life. Therefore, why would women not take it?

The truth is that HRT does in fact do all these great things but in addition, you need to be aware of the dangers of taking hormones for menopause. After studies began seeping out to the public, thousands of women abandoned HRT, moving instead in the direction of natural treatment options. If you happen to be a woman who has been on hormone replacement therapy, you need to understand these dangers but even as importantly, the dangers of stopping HRT altogether since you will need something to replace the lost hormones that your body is no longer producing.

Keep in mind that you have many options for natural remedies to include Black Cohosh, vitamins, and herbal supplements. While these alternatives work well, you also need to understand that these are not governed or approved by the FDA. In addition, many women who have turned away from HRT and started using natural therapy say the remedies do not last as long. Therefore, your first line of defense when it comes to squelching menopausal symptoms is to work closely with a qualified doctor. Going one-step further, you want to start eating the right foods, getting 30 minutes of exercise daily, drinking more water, and trying to live a stress free lifestyle.

Okay, so when you hear that there are dangers of taking hormones for menopause what exactly does that entail? Simply put, this means if you take HRT, you are putting yourself at greater risk for things such as heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s, and even blot clots, all of which could be fatal. Because the risks are much greater than originally thought, new statements are being announced all the time and not just in the United States but Europe, Canada, and other countries around the world.

Interestingly, most of these statements advise women that any type of therapy involving estrogen and progestin combined should be avoided at all costs. On rare occasion, some doctors will still prescribe Hormone Replacement Therapy if menopausal symptoms are severe but more and more this is the exception and not the rule. Obviously, as a woman going through menopause and all the unpleasant things that go along with it, your goal is to find some relief but you want to accomplish this in a safe way that will allow you to live a long, healthy life.

One of the scary things about hormone replacement therapy is that as recent as four years ago, HRT sales around the globe reached a staggering 3.8 billion dollars. Although sales dropped by .5 billion dollars in 2002 as the dangers of Hormone Replacement Therapy were announced, we still see way too many women being prescribed this option and not being given other avenues for controlling symptoms of menopause. Another scary aspect of HRT is that in the United Kingdom alone, it is estimated that in the past 10 years, some 20,000 women battled breast cancer due to HRT, with 15,000 of those having taken the combination of estrogen and progestin.

The dangers of taking hormones for menopause go further when it comes to heart disease. As an example, with multiple studies done on this one aspect alone, a few of those studies show that women on HRT have an increased risk of heart disease by as much as 81% just in the first year of therapy alone! If you think about that statement, this means the longer you are on HRT the great the risk. Remember that the risk of Alzheimer’s is also very real, with many people doubling the possibility.

How serious is this? Well, many recent studies show that women taking the combination of estrogen and progestin later in the menopause cycle are much more likely to develop a mild to severe case of dementia. As you can see, the dangers of taking hormones during menopause are extreme and the warnings you hear should be taken seriously. Today, doctors around the world are telling women just like you that older postmenopausal women should never even consider taking the combination hormone replacement therapy. Why double your risk of heart disease, cancer, and Alzheimer’s when you do not have to?

On the other side of the coin, you have the FDA sending out messages that women are confused by all the warnings. What the FDA is saying is that while there are some significant benefits to HRT, this form of therapy also carries serious risks. Therefore, if you need to ease the effects of menopause, you want to choose your hormone therapy carefully. The good news is that because a woman’s body produces less estrogen during and after the menopause years, she loses bone mass and strength. When taking HRT, women have 34% fewer hip fractures and 24% fewer fractures in other parts of the body than women not taking HRT.

The problem with HRT is that the bad outweighs the good. Keep in mind that you can still reduce the symptoms associated with menopause. That means the hot flashes and night sweats, headaches and joint pain, insomnia, heart palpitations, vaginal dryness, and mood swings can be controlled but without putting your life at risk. How? Simply by increasing the amount of calcium and vitamin D, eating more coldwater fish that has phytoestrogens, and taking advantage of natural supplements such as Kava Kava, Dong Quai, and Black Cohosh.
 

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