An increasing number of Australians are now exploring natural hormone replacement options, choosing supplements and alternative solutions over conventional methods like external hormone gels, injections, or patches. This is due in large part to concerns about weighing the potential benefits and long-term health risks associated with pharmaceutical options like HRT. So, the question Australians should ask themselves: is Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) safer and more effective than natural hormone-boosting supplements?
This article will explore the subject of HRT safety, side effects, and delve into whether natural supplements can serve as a safe alternative or complement to conventional HRT.
- OVERVIEW -
Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) has long been a subject of debate among healthcare professionals, with evidence that use can lead to minor health issues like GERD or even more serious conditions like rheumatoid arthritis. This leaves consumers relying on limited choices from qualified doctors.
For some, natural supplements like Ali show promise as HRT alternatives with minimal long-term side effects. Standardised hot-water Tongkat Ali root extract, in particular, is popular for its wide range of hormonal benefits and rigorous clinical testing, making it a safe and sought-after option for aging adults and those dealing with imbalanced hormone levels.
- HRT SIDE EFFECTS -
Several clinical trials in women over 60 found no benefits of Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT). On the contrary, these studies highlighted increased harm associated with its use.
Users faced notable estrogen HRT side effects such as headaches, breast pain or tenderness, unexpected vaginal bleeding or spotting, nausea, mood changes (including low mood or depression), leg cramps, mild rash or itching, diarrhea, and hair loss.
- DO NATURAL SUPPLMENETS OUTPERFORM HRT? -
Bioidentical natural hormone supplements from plants provide a natural alternative to Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT). Tongkat Ali (Malaysian Ginseng) serves as a gradual, effective supplement similar to HRT.
Used to ease perimenopause and menopause symptoms, Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT) through natural supplements offers a safer alternative to those who tolerate more severe pharmaceutical options badly. There is sufficient evidence to suggest that Tongkat Ali, along with other herbs like Ashwagandha, can act as natural forms of BHRT by reducing symptoms like hot flushes and joint pains with littler to no side effects.
- EVALUATION OF NATURAL REMEDIES FOR BALANCING HORMONES -
Recent studies highlight Tongkat Ali as a top natural supplement for overall hormonal balance, increasing testosterone, dopamine, and reducing cortisol in both men and women. In a clinical trial, Tongkat Ali reduced hot flushes and improved hormone and lipid profiles in perimenopausal and menopausal women. The supplement notably decreased symptoms by 65% after 12 weeks and 73% after 24 weeks.
However, on balance, the UK’s NHS warns against remedies like evening primrose oil, black cohosh, ginseng, red clover, and angelica for menopause symptoms due to a lack of conclusive scientific evidence as well as rigorous regulations on purity, dosage, and consistency of herbal options.
- HRT SAFETY: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW -
Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) can be safe with the right kind of professional consultation, monitoring, and dosage, but long-term side effects are still a risk even with initial positive reactions. Concerns about HRT's health risks persist, with studies linking it to issues like blood clots and cancer. Current medical consensus therefore leans towards short-term HRT use for symptomatic relief rather than for preventing long-term issues.
In the US and UK, health coaches, like AJ Brookes, express caution about HRT. He notes that some clients are hastily prescribed HRT without considering underlying conditions, leading to health deterioration. Unreported HRT patients in the US grapple with long-term side effects such as weight gain, vaginal bleeding, mood changes, depression, hair loss, and nausea
- CAN HORMONE REPLACEMENT THERAPY (HRT) LEAD TO CANCER? -
Combined Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) is linked to higher risks of breast, ovarian, and uterine cancer, especially with prolonged or high-dosage use. Studies indicate an increased risk in both breast and ovarian cancer with prolonged HRT use. Individuals looking to reduce cancer risks may consider natural supplements or endocrine alternatives to reduce reliance on HRT for restoring hormonal balance.
- CAN NATURAL HORMONE SUPPLEMENTS LEAD TO CANCER? -
Choosing the right natural supplement comes with lower overall risk, including for cancer. In fact, natural hormone supplements like Tongkat Ali are shown to have anti-cancer properties against lung, breast, cervical, colon, and even leukemia. While Tongkat Ali studies show promise for its potential use as a cancer preventative, more research is needed to establish it as a proven treatment option.
- TONGKAT ALI'S POTENTIAL AGAINST CANCER -
New research is promising, though, highlighting Tongkat Ali (Malaysian Ginseng) as a potential cancer preventative and to reduce symptoms. In breast cancer, it exhibited antiproliferative effects on cancer cells (MCF-7) while sparing normal cells. A 2021 study found DHOK, a Tongkat Ali root-derived compound, showed promise against Colorectal Cancer (CRC). Moreover, Tongkat Ali, specifically through eurycomanone, demonstrated anticancer activity against cervical cancer (HeLa cells), inducing apoptosis by regulating key proteins.
For Australians weighing HRT against natural supplements, a more balanced approach could be to include Tongkat Ali alongside HRT treatment. Taking small doses (100mg to 200mg) three times a week can provide a more holistic approach and allows for space to monitor for potential side effects related to hormonal balance. This tailored approach reflects the evolving health choices in developed countries like Australia, emphasizing personalized decisions on a case-by-case basis.
If you are interested in exploring how standardized hot-water Tongkat Ali root extract can be used as a replacement or complement to HRT, try our dose-optimized capsules, available anywhere in Australia.
Related Article: Tongkat Ali Dosage Guide
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