Is the cause of your joint pain hormonal imbalance?
Have you ever gone to the doctor with a complaint about a symptom just to hear, “that’s common at your age”? HOW FRUSTRATING!
Why should you have to live with pain or discomfort just because you are aging? For many women in their 40’s and 50’s, who complain about joint pain, the most likely diagnosis will be osteoarthritis. We understand that your body goes through wear and tear; especially if you’ve been active in sports, had trauma, injuries, and so on.
In fact, if you have not had deterioration or trauma to the area the most common cause of your joint pain could be inflammation. This I have covered in previous articles.
Today we are concentrating on joint pain due to hormonal imbalances
Joint pain Fatigue Irritability Low sex drive Sleep Disturbances
This are just some of the symptoms of perimenopause and menopause. If you are a women in your 40’s and 50’s , you know exactly what I’m talking about. The hot flashes, skipping menstrual cycles, having cycles twice a month, gaining weight.
I remember when I was going through perimenopause, it went on for several years. Overnight my hair went from wavy to curly, then after over a year it changed back to my natural wavy hair overnight. I would wake up and I could swear that I gained 20lbs overnight, I would cry on the drop of a hat. It was crazy
As women enter perimenopause or are in menopause, the hormone levels could start fluctuating. Especially the levels of estrogen and progesterone can fluctuate and even drop dramatically. And this may go on for years.
Disclaimer: I don’t specialize in hormone balancing and I’m NOT a doctor. The intention of this article is to show you what hormonal tests available, what are their differences so you, as a client/patient can make informed decisions and ask the right questions to your doctor.
Let’s discuss some of your options:
- Blood test – is the most common and the most accepted by mainstream medical community. Generally three key sex hormones get tested: estrogen (primarily estradiol), progesterone and testosterone. The serum test is lacking in some areas, such as Estradiol, estrone, estriol and progesterone are reported as total hormone (protein-bound hormones which are not bio-available hormones). Only testosterone is commonly available as both total and free. Blood test only gives a snapshot of your hormones at a particular point in time. It makes it difficult in monitoring a treatment.
Another thing your serum test can’t show is the sex hormone metabolites, meaning how effective your body is at breaking them down. It helps fine-tune treatment options and some researchers believe there may be a link between the way women’s bodies break down estrogen and their risk of developing breast cancer.
2. Saliva – Convenient, done at the privacy of your own home. Saliva testing does test bio-available hormones, especially beneficial in testing cortisol levels since saliva can be collected several times a day. If you’re using hormone supplements or hormone replacement therapy, saliva tests may not be the best option for you.
The use of exogenous hormones seems to distort saliva test measurements and because of this, patients are instructed to discontinue hormone use for between 12-36 hours, sometimes even several days prior to collection. This may pose a problem for the practitioner who is trying to monitor the hormone therapy, and of course for the patient, since there may be a significant drop of certain hormones and returning of symptoms. Another reason saliva testing may not be the best method of testing sex hormones is that is doesn’t show hormone metabolites, which is important for precise clinical diagnosis and treatment.
3. DUTCH Test (Dried Urine Test for Comprehensive Hormones) – Convenient, done in the privacy of your own home, collected several times a day in 24 hour period. DUTCH test offers an extensive profile of sex and adrenal hormones along with their metabolites, giving a much clearer picture of how the hormones are being used by the body. This allows for more accurate hormone testing and gives a much more complete picture of your adrenal function and overall hormonal health.
Testing for the metabolites will give a clear picture of how your body is processing and dumping excess hormones. This could be xenoestrogens in your food, skin care products, water, household cleaning products, plastics, etc. See a whole list of possible xenoestrogens here.
To check if any of your personal care products have any effect on your hormones check out EWG. Put a brand name of your product or a specific ingredient that sounds questionable and you’ll see something like this:
If you are interested in ordering any of the above tests, click here. Scroll down where you see the tests, click on Sex Hormones – Female, you’ll see the serum tests offered here and below you’ll see the DUTCH test. If you are ordering for the first time use this coupon code.
For saliva testing please contact our office (firstname.lastname@example.org, 818.345.0600) and we’ll have a test kit shipped directly to you and go over the prices and test details.
Besides consulting with your doctor and following their recommendations you may look into making some dietary changes. To support your phase 2 detoxification, increase intake of variety of fruits and vegetables, preferably organic, with a specific emphasis on daily intake of cruciferous vegetables. Supplementation may be required for added support.