These days we all seem to hate our hormones. No matter what stage of life we are in - puberty, lactation or menopause and beyond - women seem to be in a constant battle to regain control of these little chemical messengers. Once we make the decision that we have had enough irritating and uncomfortable symptoms, there are many diagnostic tests to go to as a starting point to find relief from a possible hormonal imbalance. Read on to learn about a diagnostic test that involves your hair.
From blood tests to urine tests, to saliva, each of these tests has its pros and cons and can be helpful in determining hormone levels and imbalances at a particular point in time.
So, you can use those tests to get a snapshot of your hormone levels, but what if you really want to know why you have a hormonal imbalance and why you have bothersome symptoms? Fortunately, there is a test you've probably never heard of, and that can provide a ton of insight on that - a hair tissue mineral analysis.
Diagnosis of hormonal imbalance with the hair test
A hair tissue mineral analysis is a non-invasive test that will tell you a lot about what is happening in your body, such as a hormonal imbalance. It involves cutting a small sample of hair from the scalp and sending it to a laboratory to determine what minerals are inside. The laboratory dissolves hair to the point that all the minerals within the hair protein are released. Next, a procedure called ICP-Mass Spectrometry is used to determine exactly which minerals are present.
Why minerals are important in hair
The minerals in your hair will, in most cases, reflect what minerals are being stored in your other tissues (bones, for example). This indicates whether you have been absorbing the nutrients from your food and tells us about your metabolism (fast or slow - and how efficiently your body converts the nutrients in the food you eat into energy).
And because your thyroid gland is responsible for metabolism and your adrenal glands burn through a ton of minerals to make special hormones when you're under stress, hair test results provide a good indication of how well these glands are doing. running.
This test addresses the basics of healthy weight management, healthy stress response, brain function, heart function, and yes, hormonal balance.
How minerals affect hormones
Minerals are like spark plugs for cells. They activate thousands of chemical reactions that produce energy, regulate the response to stress, and ensure healthy immune function. Magnesium, copper, and phosphorus each play a critical role, along with calcium, potassium, sodium, zinc, manganese, and iron. Zinc levels can be associated with progesterone levels, while copper in your tissues can be associated with estrogen.
Just as sufficient levels of minerals are required for all chemical reactions, the ovaries in women and the testes in men depend on these same minerals to activate the production of reproductive hormones. Also, the more stress you have, the greater the production of stress hormones such as cortisol by the adrenal glands.
This uses minerals like sodium, creating an imbalance that also affects reproductive hormonal balance. The same type of situation occurs when you have problems with blood sugar regulation, as with diabetes or pre-diabetes.
The pancreas is forced to make a large amount of insulin, a hormone that regulates glucose in the blood, resulting in the need for additional minerals and a subsequent imbalance of the entire endocrine system (the system of glands that make our hormones).
Within the endocrine system, the activity of each gland affects the others. And, to complicate matters, the strength and efficiency of the endocrine system as a whole will affect the strength and efficiency of other systems, such as the nervous system (mood, anxiety, depression).
In reality, it is a vicious cycle. Less minerals = more stress on the body. Similarly, more stress on the body = greater need for minerals.
The bottom line: minerals affect cellular energy production and cellular energy production affects EVERYTHING IN THE BODY.
Why a hair test and not a blood test
In order to balance and strengthen the body, including hormones, blood tests only tell part of the story. Blood is a transport medium that moves glucose and oxygen into cells to produce energy. It also carries carbon dioxide and waste products away from tissues and cells to be eliminated from the body.
Blood remains outside of cells, while energy is produced within cells. Blood must always be in balance to keep us alive. So, if your blood is deficient in calcium, for example, it will draw calcium from tissues, such as bone, to straighten itself out. The way the body handles this is ingenious, but it's important to understand that tissues could be severely deficient, even when nutrient levels in the blood are normal.
We are all unique, especially when it comes to biochemistry
The diet and supplement recommendations established from the hair test results are based on your unique biochemistry. That's a real bonus when it comes to how quickly you can get your hormones back into a healthy balance.
There are so many health tips available at our fingertips these days. Well-meaning online and TV professionals advise us on what supplements to take and foods to eat to stay healthy. When it comes to hormonal imbalance, herbal remedies and hormone replacement therapy are a couple of options we always hear about.
Most of this can be very good advice, but it may or may not work for you. That is why it is so important to find out what your specific and individual needs are. Why aren't your hormones behaving like they should? What system in your body do you need to strengthen? Each body is unique.
For example, herbs like red clover or vitex or maca can give your best friend great relief from symptoms, but they can bring you terrible discomfort. The truth is, without knowing what's going on inside your body, we really don't know enough to be able to say what will and won't help you.
Address the root of the problem, not the symptoms
Another reason to do a hair tissue mineral analysis to verify a hormonal imbalance is to find out and correct the mineral balance of your body at the cellular level. This is the foundation, so in addition to correcting symptoms of hormonal imbalance, you'll likely see improvement in immunity, overall energy, blood sugar, blood pressure, and even things like memory and function. cerebral.
When we replenish the missing minerals and work to balance the relationship between the different minerals, all symptoms will start to improve.
This test will affect hair coloring. The good news is that all that is needed is at least 1/4 inch of new growth in your natural color before collecting the sample.
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