What is DHEA and Why is it Important?
DHEA, or by the whole name, Dehydroepiandrosterone, is a hormone produced by the adrenal glands. DHEA is often named the “Mother Hormone”, as it is the precursor of the male and female sex hormones (estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone) and is synthesized from cholesterol.
It is the source that fuels the whole metabolism and is a joy-giving, feel-good hormone. When it's produced in the right quantities, your emotional and physical balance is established and you feel focused, energetic, dynamic, full of life and joy.
The Adrenal Glands- Cortisol, Adrenaline & DHEA
The adrenal glands are also closely related to the kidneys, placed just right above them. They are responsible for the body’s response to stress and are an evolutionary survival mechanism. They produce cortisol, adrenaline, and DHEA. In response to stressful situations (physical, emotional, mental, etc.) the adrenal glands will respond with one of the three hormones, to cope with it.
For short term stress (minutes), the adrenal glands will secrete adrenalin, for medium term stress (hours) cortisol, and for long term stress (days) DHEA.
The problem occurs when your body is not adapting well to prolonged stress and pulls out an inappropriate response by producing too much cortisol and less DHEA. Sometimes, after the stressful situation ceases, the body can’t come back to its normal hormonal production and remains to this high cortisol and low DHEA mode.
The consequences are dramatic for the whole body. Some of its most vital functions are disturbed: the immune system is down (risk of infections, allergies, autoimmune diseases), the blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels are high, thyroid is troubled (low metabolism, body temperature, energy levels), weight gain, depression, insomnia, low sex drive, infertility, menstrual problems, cognitive functions are impaired (memory and learning), etc. As a result, your health becomes a wreck!
The adrenal glands of an average adult usually produce about 25 mg of DHEA daily. DHEA production peak around our twenties and diminishes as we age all the way down to only 20%. Men produce more DHEA than women. It is one of the biochemical biomarkers that determines the chronological age.
Warning Signs of Low DHEA
DHEA is directly linked to your lifestyle, nutrition, emotional health and stress levels, metabolism, activity level, hormonal balance. DHEA levels indicate the health of the adrenal glands.
It is a known fact that DHEA levels decrease after the age of 30 and that women see a fast lowering of this hormone.
People who suffer from hormonal imbalances, HIV/AIDS, Alzheimer’s disease, heart problems, depression, diabetes, inflammations, low immune function, osteoporosis.
Other factors that decrease DHEA levels are the intake of corticosteroids, birth control pills, and psychiatric medication.
Typical Symptoms of Low DHEA can include:
- Extreme fatigue
- Lethargy, even if you’ve slept 8 hours
- Mood changes
- Decrease in muscle mass
- Loss of in bone mineral density
- Aching joints
- Lack of sexual drive
- Low libido
- Lack of vaginal lubrication/dryness
- Pain during intercourse
- Low immunity
- Weight gain and obesity
- Hormonal imbalances
Testing For Low DHEA
First if all, consult with your doctor and do a DHEA blood, urine or saliva test. There are specific normal level ranges depending on age and sex.
If your physician determines, based on your test results, that you have low levels of DHEA, he may ask you to take additional tests to determine the root cause. Under their supervision, you may then wish to treat your low DHEA using a natural, holistic approach.
How to Restore DHEA Levels Naturally
The good news is that the abnormal cortisol and DHEA levels produced by chronic stress can be balanced with natural DHEA supplements, elimination of stress, healthy nutrition, and other stress-reducing methods.
- Meditation - has been proven to reduce stress, calm the emotions and mind, improve health, and reduce the cortisol levels.
- Yoga – yoga postures regulate the adrenal function and restore the hormonal balance: Sukhasana, Sarvangasana, Viparita Karani, Setu Bandhasana, Shavasana, Supta Baddha Konasana, Balasana.
- Breathing exercises – conscious breathing exercises, such as Belly Breathing, help reduce stress.
- Aerobic exercises – they minimize mental or emotional stress, induce a state of dynamism, energy, joy in your body and mind, normalize hormonal levels.
- Anti-inflammatory Herbs – inflammation is our body’s response to infection, injuries, autoimmune reaction, or allergy and is designed to heal and repair the tissues. Inflammation can be addressed with diet, herbal and nutritional supplements. Herbs like turmeric, ginger, rosemary, sage, cloves, cinnamon, thyme, chamomile, etc.
- Adaptogen Herbs – help your body to relieve stress and balance hormones: Ashwagandha, ginseng, astragalus, licorice.
- Anti-inflammatory Foods – dark leafy greens (kale, spinach, broccoli), blueberries, matcha tea, red grapes, garlic, celery, pineapple, coconut oil, etc.
- Magnesium – there are natural forms of magnesium that are easy to absorb and assimilate in the body, such as magnesium oil.
- Vitamin C – with antioxidant and anti-cortisol properties, can be taken from fruits, foods and herbs, such as pineapple, sesame, lemon, parsley, etc.
- Zinc - is a mineral that helps in over 300 enzymatic processes in the body, including steroid hormone production (DHEA).
Fully Restoring DHEA Levels With Natural Supplements
DHEA supplements are one of the most effective ways to reverse many of the health problems caused by the low levels of DHEA. We've carefully researched and formulated our own DHEA supplements to provide our customers with both potent doses and high-quality ingredients.
Natural DHEA supplements will help regulate adrenal glands function, stimulate metabolism and energy production, balance hormones levels, support the immune system, restore a healthy sexual life, and improve your mood.