Bio-identical hormones have the same chemical structure as hormones that are made by the human body.
The key to natural or bio-identical versus synthetic is the molecular structure of the hormone. In order for a replacement hormone to fully replicate the function of hormones which were naturally produced by the human body, the chemical structure must match the original exactly.
Researchers have long held there are significant differences between hormones which are natural to humans (bio-identical) and synthetic (including horse) preparations. Structural differences that exist between synthetic or animal and human hormones can be responsible for side effects that are experienced when non-bio-identical hormones are used for replacement therapy. It is the structure of the hormone, not the source, which is key. The term “bio-identical” does not indicate the source of the hormone, but rather indicates the chemical structure of the replacement hormone is identical to hormones naturally found in the human body. Bio-identical hormones are chemically processed from precursors found in yams or soy plants, yet they are identical to hormones produced by the human body, hence the term “bio-identical plant-derived hormone.” These hormones are able to follow normal metabolic pathways so that essential active metabolites are formed in response to hormone replacement therapy. Synthetic “patented,” “conventional,” “artificial,” or “horse” hormones have been chemically altered, and are not identical in structure or activity to the naturally-occurring hormones they are intended to replace.
The difference in chemical structure is obvious:
In a survey of 1,009 women ages 40 and older, 83% said they would prefer to use hormones that are similar to their own body’s hormones. Bio-identical hormones include estrone (E1), estradiol (E2), estriol (E3), progesterone, testosterone, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), and pregnenolone.
Goals of Natural HRT
Alleviate symptoms caused by the natural decrease in production of hormones in the body
Give the protective benefits which were originally provided by naturally occurring hormones
Re-establish hormonal balance
If you have questions about bio-identical hormone replacement therapy, we invite you to reach out to us. Our pharmacists are specially trained in the area of hormone replacement therapy and are glad to answer any of your questions. Call us today 877-258-3477.
Source: Natural Hormone Replacement Therapy, Patricia L. Storey, R.Ph.