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HORMONES

Hormones are chemicals released by cells that affect cells in other areas of the body. Only a small amount of a hormone is required to alter cell metabolism. hormones are chemical messenger that transports a signal from one cell to another. All multicellular organisms produce hormones; plant hormones are also called phytohormones. Hormones in animals are often transported in the blood. Cells respond to a hormone when they express a specific receptor for that hormone. The hormone binds to the receptor protein, resulting in the activation of a signal transduction mechanism that ultimately leads to cell type-specific responses.

Hormones carry messages from glands to cells to maintain chemical levels in the bloodstream that achieve homeostasis. "Hormone" comes from a word that means, "to spur on." This reflects how the presence of hormones acts as a catalyst for other chemical changes at the cellular level necessary for growth, development, and energy.As members of the endocrine system, glands manufacture hormones. Hormones circulate freely in the bloodstream, waiting to be recognized by a target cell, their intended destination. The target cell has a receptor that can only be activated by a specific type of hormone. Once activated, the cell knows to start a certain function within its walls. Genes might get activated, or energy production resumed. As special categories, autocrine hormones act on the cells of the secreting gland, while paracrine hormones act on nearby, but unrelated, cells.

  • Growth and development
  • Metabolism - how your body gets energy from the foods you eat
  • Sexual function
  • Reproduction
  • Mood

There are two types of hormones known as steroids and peptides. In general, steroids are sex hormones related to sexual maturation and fertility. Steroids are made from cholesterol either by the placenta when we're in the womb, or by our adrenal gland or gonads (testes or ovaries) after birth. Cortisol, an example of a steroid hormone, breaks down damaged tissue so it can be replaced. Steroids determine physical development from puberty on to old age, as well as fertility cycles. If we are not synthesizing the correct steroidal hormones, we can sometimes supplement them pharmaceutically as with estrogen and progesterone.

Peptides regulate other functions such as sleep and sugar concentration. They are made from long strings of amino acids, so sometimes they are referred to as "protein" hormones. Growth hormone, for example, helps us burn fat and build up muscles. Another peptide hormone, insulin, starts the process to convert sugar into cellular energy.

Hormones so perfectly and efficiently manage homeostasis due to negative feedback cycles. Our goal is to keep the concentration of a certain chemical, such as testosterone, at a constant level for a certain period of time, the way that a thermostat works. Using negative feedback, a change in conditions causes a response that returns the conditions to their original state. When a room's temperature drops, the thermostat responds by turning the heat on. The room returns to the ideal temperature, and the heater turns off, keeping the conditions relatively constant.

Endocrine hormone molecules are secreted (released) directly into the bloodstream, while exocrine hormones (or ectohormones) are secreted directly into a duct, and from the duct they either flow into the bloodstream or they flow from cell to cell by diffusion in a process known as paracrine signalling. Hormones work as your body's chemical messengers. They travel in your bloodstream to tissues or organs. They work slowly, over time, and affect many different processes, including:

Endocrine glands, which are special groups of cells, make hormones. The major endocrine glands are the pituitary, pineal, thymus, thyroid, adrenal glands and pancreas. In addition, men produce hormones in their testes and women produce them in their ovaries.

Hormones are powerful. It takes only a tiny amount to cause big changes in cells or even your whole body. That is why too much or too little of a certain hormone can be serious. Laboratory tests can measure the hormone levels in your blood, urine or saliva. Your health care provider may perform these tests if you have symptoms of a hormone disorder. Home pregnancy tests are similar - they test for pregnancy hormones in your urine.

 

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HORMONE TYPES

DHEA
DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) is an adrenal hormone that is the precursor for steroid hormones such as testosterone and estrogen. DHEA declines precipitously with advancing age in both men and women. In 1981, the Life Extension Foundation introduced DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) to its members through an article that described the multiple benefits that this hormone might produce. However, the general public did not learn about DHEA supplements until 1996, when the benefits of DHEA were touted by the news media and in several popular books. DHEA became credible to the medical establishment when the New York Academy of Sciences published a book entitled DHEA and Aging. This book provided scientific validation for the many life extending effects of DHEA.

HGH - Human Growth Hormone
Human Growth Hormone is the largest protein produced by the pituitary gland made up of 191 amino acids. Proteins are made of building blocks known as amino acids. HGH is genetically engineered of the same 191 amino acids. It’s the same genetic engineering they use for insulin. They cloned the 191 amino acids and put them together in the same exact sequence of the DNA for that of HGH. It’s 100% identical, physically, chemically and biologically to the one made by the pituitary gland.
Learn more about "HGH - Human Growth Hormone"

Testosterone
The hormonal stimulus for sex drive in both men and women is testosterone, which declines with advancing age in both sexes. Testosterone also plays an important role in maintaining muscle mass and strength and bone density. The hormone is often administered to aging men and women as a topical cream, but oral testosterone supplements and injectable forms are also available. Learn more about "Testosterone"

Estrogen and Progesterone
The "female" steroid hormones estrogen and progesterone play important roles in maintaining bone density and strength, sexual function, mental function and, in women, in countering the effects of the menopause. Recent studies indicate that estrogen may be an effective treatment for age-associated memory problems.* Both estrogen and progesterone are available in a variety of forms -- natural or synthetic, oral or topical. There is considerable interest in the use of plant-derived phytoestrogens, which have weak (but safe) estrogenic activity as a possible replacement for drug forms of estrogen. One product, Natural Estrogen, has been specially designed for this purpose.

Melatonin
Melatonin is a hormone produced by the pineal gland, which is located beneath the brain. Melatonin is a highly potent antioxidant, which has been described as the pacemaker of the aging clock in humans. It is released every night as part of our time-dependent biorhythms to help induce sleep and recuperation from fatigue. Published studies indicate the importance of maintaining youthful levels of melatonin to help protect against age-related degenerative diseases.

Pregnenolone
Pregnenolone is known as the "mother hormone" because it is the precursor of a number of hormones including DHEA, testosterone and estrogen. Studies have demonstrated that the neurosteroid Pregnenolone has a stimulatory effect on memory.


 

         
 
 

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