Inflammation and Your Hormones 101

Mike CarragherAge Management, Anti-Aging, chronic inflammation, cortisol, DHEA, Dr. Carragher, Dr. Stocker, Estrogen, HCG, HGH, Hormone Optimization, Human Growth Hormone, inflammation, Progesterone, Testosterone, The Body Well, ThyroidLeave a Comment

When a patient comes into my office with multi-system complaints — for example, they have gastrointestinal distress and poor recovery from exercise, or they have headaches and joint pains — one of the prime suspects is chronic inflammation. “Inflammation” has become a buzzword recently, appearing in articles with trendy titles like “Eat These Top 10 Anti-Inflammatory Foods” or “Take This Supplement for its Anti-Inflammatory Properties.”  But there’s still plenty of confusion about the term “inflammation.” Is it good? Is it bad? Why all this fuss over it? Let’s clear all of that up. Inflammation, simply defined, is a response your body has to any insult or injury. A perfect example: the processes that result from injuring your ankle when you’re jogging. It’s a great morning, you’re feeling good jogging around the block, and suddenly you trip over a bump on the sidewalk and twist your ankle. The area gets red, it heats up, it gets swollen, and it hurts. This is acute inflammation; the injury is followed immediately by your body’s response with special substances that act as chemical mediators to initiate the healing process.  This is a necessary response, and critical so that your body heals. So in this … Read More

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Why Should I Care About DHEA?

Mike CarragherAge Management, Anti-Aging, belly fat, DHEA, Dr. Carragher, Dr. Mike's Tips, Estrogen, fatigue, Hormone Optimization, Libido, loss of energy, low energy, low libido, low sex drive, Progesterone, Testosterone, The Body Well, Visceral Fat, weight gainLeave a Comment

What is DHEA? DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) is the most abundant anabolic steroid (protein-building hormone) in the body, produced mainly by the adrenal glands, but also by the brain, the gonads, and the skin. Despite the fact that we have so much of it in our bodies, it’s often overlooked, and has long been undervalued and misunderstood. We’ve know for a long time that DHEA is a precursor (basically, an ingredient) of other hormones, including testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone. But we’ve only recently discovered that it has its own benefits, and quite a few of them, at that. So what does DHEA do? DHEA is an immune system stimulator, it helps elevate mood, energy, it has anti-cancer properties. It increases insulin sensitivity, which means it allows your body to integrate sugar into its cells more easily and prevents diabetes. It helps increase joint flexibility, strength and muscle mass, as well as a healthy sex drive. In other words, it’s no minor player; it’s a critical hormone! Symptoms of low DHEA are pretty much indicated by the absence of all the above: fluctuating mood, stiffness, low sex drive, and so on. Unfortunately, most people experience drops in DHEA levels beginning at around age … Read More

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The Right Way To Treat Perimenopause

Mike CarragherAge Management, Dr. Carragher, Estrogen, Hormone Optimization, Hot Flashes, Night Sweats, Perimenopause, Progesterone, Sex, stress, The Body Well, weight gainLeave a Comment

What Is Perimenopause? Perimenopause, meaning “around menopause,” refers to the time when a woman’s body is making its natural transition toward permanent infertility (menopause). During perimenopause, women experience a wide variety of symptoms and bodily changes, many of which are painful and frustrating. Hot flashes, weight gain, irregular periods, night sweats, and mood swings can all accompany the widely fluctuating hormone levels during this time in a woman’s life. On top of these symptoms, the normal course of biology can cause psychological stress for women, who often view menopause as a change in identity. Relationships can suffer if a woman’s partner and other family members, friends, or coworkers are unprepared or not willing to be understanding of any resulting shifts in her behavior and mood. Unfortunately, when women seek help during perimenopause, they will more often than not find themselves receiving bad advice and treatment. Why? Because of a misunderstanding, even on the part of most doctors, of what’s going on with a woman’s hormones in the perimenopausal period. The Big Mistake Most doctors tend to treat perimenopause with the same method that they use to treat menopause: by supplementing with estrogen. After all, some of the symptoms are the … Read More

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The Best Treatment For PMS That You’ve Never Heard Of

Mike CarragherAge Management, Anti-Aging, Dr. Carragher, Dr. Mike's Tips, Dr. Stocker, Dr.jill, Estrogen, Hormone Optimization, Progesterone, The Body WellLeave a Comment

What is PMS? Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is the most common complaint of premenopausal women.  PMS involves a variety of physical, mental, and/or behavioral symptoms related to a woman’s menstrual cycle. These symptoms typically occur during in the two weeks before a woman’s period starts, which is known as the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle. They usually become most intense in the 2-3 days prior to the period and then resolve after the first day or two of flow.  The symptoms are nothing to laugh at or make light of. For many women, PMS’s accompanying headaches, bloating, food cravings, breast tenderness, mood swings, cramping, and other symptoms, can be debilitating. Why do women experience PMS in the first place? There can be several reasons, but typically it relates to fluctuating hormone levels prior to menstruation, specifically falling progesterone levels. Progesterone is a hormone secreted in women’s bodies by the ovaries (and to a lesser amount by the adrenal glands). Progesterone levels rise in preparation for the implantation of an embryo at pregnancy.  I often refer to progesterone as the “feel good hormone” because when levels are optimal (i.e. high), women report feeling euphoric, relaxed, and confident. If no embryo implantation … Read More

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I Can’t Get Rid of Fat from My Midsection No Matter How Hard I Try! What’s the Missing Piece?

Mike CarragherAge Management, Anti-Aging, belly fat, DHEA, Dr. Carragher, Dr. Mike's Tips, Dr. Stocker, Dr.jill, Estrogen, fatigue, HCG, HGH, Hormone Optimization, Human Growth Hormone, Image, Melatonin, Progesterone, Testosterone, The Body Well, Thyroid, Uncategorized, Visceral Fat, weight gainLeave a Comment

The spare tire, the muffin top, unlovable handles: you’ve heard all the horrible names for those pudgy pinch-able inches that are often the most stubborn to get rid of. In fact midsection weight-gain is one of the most common complaints I get from patients. Often someone tells me they’re trying harder than ever with their workouts, killing themselves doing abs, and eating a “cleaner” diet, but none of it seems to be working. They’re doing two or three times the work they did in their teens and twenties, with diminishing results. This extra-work-for-less-payoff is a huge clue that belly fat is being caused by an overlooked factor: Hormonal imbalance. Hormones and Aging Some of this is an effect of aging. As we get into our late twenties and early thirties, many of our fat-burning hormone levels — including levels of testosterone, DHEA, growth hormone, and thyroid hormone — start falling. In addition, the hormones we like nice and low, the fat-storing hormones — including insulin and cortisol — start going up. Because people often don’t associate hormone levels with weight gain, they employ all sorts of unsuccessful strategies to solve the problem. They start dieting or doing juice cleanses. They’ll … Read More

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What is Age Management Medicine & Why Should I Care?

Mike CarragherAge Management, Anti-Aging, Antioxidants, belly fat, DHEA, Dr. Carragher, Dr. Mike's Tips, Estrogen, fatigue, HCG, HGH, Hormone Optimization, Human Growth Hormone, Libido, loss of energy, low energy, low libido, low sex drive, Progesterone, Sex, Skin Care, Testosterone, The Body Well, Thyroid, Uncategorized, Visceral FatLeave a Comment

Beginning as early as your late 20s, hormonal changes can have a profound impact on your life and health. These changes affect the rate at which you are aging. Age Management Medicine The field of Age Management Medicine is fairly new to the medical world. Most people just assume it’s “Anti-Aging” Medicine, which has a sort of built-in connotation of vanity or the quest to live forever. There often ends up being an immediate reaction that it’s not “real” medicine, but a luxury reserved for the rich and famous or people who fear death – or simply fear looking old. Clearing Up the Myths: To start, I’d like to dispel the myth that Age Management is simply a “vanity” sort of medical field. A good place to begin is simply by defining Age Management Medicine. Age Management Medicine is a proactive, preventative approach to healthcare. It’s not simply Human Growth Hormone (HGH), testosterone, estrogen, progesterone, thyroid, etc. It is a scientifically-based approach to aging focused on preservation of optimum human function and quality of life, making every effort to slow the process of degeneration of the body that comes with aging. So Age Management Medicine is not about living to … Read More

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The Most Misdiagnosed and Mistreated Hormonal Problem in Women

Mike CarragherAge Management, belly fat, Dr. Carragher, Dr. Mike's Tips, Estrogen, fatigue, Hormone Optimization, loss of energy, low energy, PCOS, Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, Progesterone, Sex, Testosterone, The Body Well, Thyroid, Uncategorized, Visceral Fat, weight gainLeave a Comment

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS):  All Too Often Misunderstood & Mistreated If you have weight loss resistance, menstrual irregularities, excessive unwanted hair growth, loss of hair on head, and/or acne…keep reading…there is a good possibility you have PCOS. Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is a common endocrine (hormonal) disorder resulting in multiple medical problems and serious health risks.  It affects millions of woman, many without their knowledge. It is estimated that between 5-10% of women have PCOS and that 70% of these women are undiagnosed.  In fact, PCOS is the most common endocrine disorder in premenopausal women.  And for postmenopausal women, menopause neither cures nor eliminates PCOS. In fact, PCOS usually worsens at menopause due to weight gain and loss of hormones. PCOS seems to have a strong genetic component, so if a woman in your family has menstrual irregularities, diabetes, or a diagnosis of PCOS, there is a chance you may have it.  It can be passed down from either your mother’s or father’s side of the family. Unfortunately, one of the biggest problems with PCOS is that most physicians either miss the diagnosis altogether, mistreat it, or only partially treat it. Why is PCOS So Confusing to So Many Physicians? Because … Read More

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Which Would You Choose: Living Longer or Living Better?

Mike CarragherAge Management, Anti-Aging, belly fat, DHEA, Dr. Carragher, Dr. Mike's Tips, Estrogen, fatigue, HCG, HGH, Hormone Optimization, Human Growth Hormone, Libido, loss of energy, low energy, low libido, low sex drive, Pregnenolone, Progesterone, Sex, Testosterone, The Body Well, Thyroid, Visceral Fat, weight gainLeave a Comment

The field of Age Management Medicine is fairly new to the medical world.  In fact, many physicians haven’t even heard of it.  Or they just assume it’s “Anti-Aging” Medicine, which has a sort of built-in connotation of vanity or the quest to live forever.  There often ends up being an immediate reaction that it’s not “real” medicine, but a luxury reserved for Beverly Hills housewives and people who fear death – or at least fear looking old. So I’d like to clear up a couple of myths about it. Age Management Medicine, Defined To start, I’d like to dispel the myth that Age Management is simply a “vanity” sort of medical field.  A good place to begin is simply by defining Age Management Medicine. Age Management Medicine is a proactive, preventative approach to healthcare for an aging population.  It is focused on preservation of optimum human function and quality of life, making every effort to modulate the process of aging prior to the onset of degenerative aging.  The basic tenets of Age Management Medicine are patient evaluation through extensive medical history, lifestyle assessment, physical examination and laboratory evaluation to establish personalized, proactive treatment plans consisting of proper diet, exercise, stress … Read More

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