At What Age Should I Start Thinking About Hormone Replacement Therapy?

Corrie MieszczakAge Management, Dr. Carragher, Estrogen, FAQs, Hormone Optimization, Hormone Replacement Therapy, Perimenopause, Progesterone, Sex, TestosteroneLeave a Comment

Many men and women associate hormonal changes and Hormone Replacement Therapy with being in their 50s or even older. However, hormonal changes often begin much earlier. For this reason, it is important for both men and women to pay close attention to their bodies and begin considering Hormone Replacement Therapy at a younger age if symptoms occur. What Age Should Women Consider Hormone Replacement Therapy? On average, women in the United States go through menopause around the age of 51, but hormones typically begin to change many years before menopause is complete. In fact, many women begin to experience symptoms related to hormonal changes as early as their 30s or 40s. Because these changes are commonly associated with older women, younger women experiencing symptoms often feel strange or worry that something is wrong with them. However, these early symptoms are actually common. Perimenopause “Perimenopause” is the term used to describe the period of hormonal changes that occurs before actual menopause. During this time, the amount of estrogen in your body rises and falls unpredictably. Because estrogen is the primary female reproductive hormone produced by the ovaries, this fluctuation can lead to a variety of changes and uncomfortable symptoms. The hormonal … Read More

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The Pros & Cons of Hormone Replacement Therapy for Women

Mike CarragherHormone Replacement Therapy, Hot Flashes, Libido, Perimenopause, SexLeave a Comment

The decision to start hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is a big step for many women. Some wonder about the benefits of HRT, while others worry about possible effects from the treatment. Almost every woman who considers hormone replacement therapy appreciates information on the pros and cons of the therapy. Approximately 80 percent of women who go through menopause experience symptoms and about one-fourth of these women experience severe symptoms of menopause. The symptoms of menopause can be more severe than many women anticipate, and symptoms can last longer than expected too. Night sweats and hot flashes can last for more than seven years in more than half of all women! Doctors often prescribe hormone replacement therapy to treat moderate to severe menopause symptoms. Despite the benefits of HRT, only a small percentage of women in menopause use hormone replacement therapy. Menopause is a time that marks the end of menstrual cycles. It means that a woman can no longer bear children because her ovaries, which produce eggs, no longer produce the hormones estrogen and progesterone, and a woman stops ovulating. Menopause generally begins when a woman is in her late 40s or early 50s. The average age of menopause is … Read More

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The Top 10 Testosterone Myths, Part 2: The Big 5

Mike CarragherAge Management, Dr. Carragher, Dr. Mike's Tips, Sex, Testosterone, The Body Well, UncategorizedLeave a Comment

The Top 10 Testosterone Myths  Part 2: The Big 5 When I tell patients at The Body Well, my Los Angeles clinic, I want them to be on testosterone, I get a lot of what I call “broscience” or “Dr. Carragher, but I heard…” responses. You know, the kind of pop science stuff that travels by word of mouth and is asserted in glossy magazines with lots of certainty but not much research. “You want me to take testosterone? But I heard…” Worse yet, many of these myths are propagated by physicians themselves! To dispel these prominent myths, I’ve collected the top ten in this counterpoint countdown. If you missed Myths 10 through 6, you can click here to check them out! And now, without further adieu, here are the Top 5 testosterone myths! 5 Myth: Taking testosterone causes heart disease. Fact: The overwhelming majority of studies show that supplementing with testosterone is beneficial for your heart. This is a myth that has received a lot of attention because for some reason, the general public hears of one study (usually the most recent) and tends to latch onto it as the credible source. It’s true that there have been some … Read More

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“It Feels Like There Are Knives In My Vagina!”: Women, Sex, and Hormones

Mike CarragherAnti-Aging, Dr. Stocker, Dr.jill, Estrogen, Libido, low libido, low sex drive, Sex, stress, TestosteroneLeave a Comment

It’s not easy to talk about sex in a clear and open way. And it’s especially difficult if you’re a woman, who has been told her entire life not to freely engage in her sexuality, much less express it. Women who see me at The Body Well know my office is a safe space to discuss their bodies, but sex-related symptoms and issues are still challenging for so many women to disclose. Women experience a range of sexual challenges as they age, including not feeling sexy anymore, decreasing sex drive, pain during sex, and vaginal dryness. To make matters worse, women often experience these symptoms for a long time before telling anyone. It’s easy enough to understand why: in addition to cultural shaming, it’s difficult to talk with your partner about what’s getting in the way of pleasurable sex. Pointing out what you perceive to be your flaws to someone you want to be intimate with never feels good. It can lead to feelings of sexual inadequacy, both for the woman bringing it up, who may feel unsexy, and also for her partner who may feel it’s their fault for not being sexually stimulating. But not talking about it can create … Read More

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The Hard Truth for Men: Declining Testosterone Levels Worldwide

Mike CarragherAge Management, Anti-Aging, cardiovascular health, Dr. Carragher, Dr. Stocker, fatigue, Hormone Optimization, Sex, Testosterone, The Body WellLeave a Comment

In the fifteen years since I started practicing Age Management & Hormone Optimization, I’ve noticed a startling change in men’s physiologies: Across the board, testosterone levels are declining at earlier and earlier ages. Instead of men coming in from ages 35-45 with less-than-optimal testosterone levels (or “low T”) they’re coming in their late 20s! And all the symptoms you’d expect to see with low T are there too: lack of energy, lack of sex drive, inability to recover from injury quickly, loss of confidence, generalized feelings of weakness, and more. These levels lead me to three big questions: First: What’s the degree of the problem? Second: What’s the cause of the problem? Third: What should we do? What’s the degree of the problem? My observations as a clinician have been confirmed by multiple studies. One of the more illuminating studies, the Massachusetts Male Aging Study (MMAS), gathered data on 1,500 randomly selected men in the Boston area in three distinct time periods over 17 years (1987-89, 1995-97, and 2002-04). It measured their total testosterone levels as well as their bioavailable testosterone levels (that is, the testosterone that was actually able to be utilized by the body) .  What they found … 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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Five Testosterone-Boosting Foods!

Mike CarragherAge Management, Anti-Aging, Dr. Carragher, Hormone Optimization, loss of energy, low energy, low libido, low sex drive, Sex, Testosterone, The Body Well, UncategorizedLeave a Comment

The 5 Best Foods To Boost Your Testosterone Guest blog by René von Gunten, Nutritional Therapy Practitioner at The Body Well If you want to optimize your testosterone levels, there’s an easy option available to everyone: Make sure your diet is supporting you! Providing your body with the right nutrients and cofactors to support and stimulate testosterone production is simple enough. Here are five easy-to-find foods that can help: 1. Salmon Salmon has a high Vitamin D content, one of the highest of all foods, in fact. Most other fish don’t even come close! Optimal Vitamin D levels are strongly correlated with optimal testosterone levels in several studies. You don’t have to eat salmon every day, but have a single portion regularly, once a week. And be sure to eat wild- or line-caught salmon, not farmed. Salmon in the wild are exposed to sunlight regularly, so D levels are much higher. 2. Oysters Oysters are one of the healthiest foods on the planet. They’re a raw food, an organ meat, and they’re nutrient dense. They also have high mineral content; I call them the multi-mineral of the natural world. One mineral found in abundance in oysters is zinc, which, has been shown in several studies to increase testosterone production. On top of … Read More

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Testosterone 101, Part 4. Testosterone Replacement Therapy: Facts vs Myths

Mike CarragherAge Management, Anti-Aging, belly fat, Dr. Carragher, Dr. Mike's Tips, fatigue, HCG, Hormone Optimization, Libido, loss of energy, low energy, low libido, low sex drive, Sex, Testosterone, The Body Well, Uncategorized, Visceral FatLeave a Comment

When it comes to testosterone, lots of patients arrive at their initial appointment with me bearing a similar story:   They’ve gone to see their primary care doctor, saying they have suspicions that their testosterone is low because of this or that symptom. Maybe it’s dampened libido, or lack of energy. Maybe they just don’t feel like themselves anymore, or they have trouble sleeping deeply. Their doctor runs a a standard testosterone test and comes back with the result: It’s normal.   To Age Management doctors such as myself, “normal” isn’t enough. Just because someone’s numbers are in the normal lab range, that doesn’t mean they have an adequate amount of testosterone. That’s because what’s “normal” is based on the average population, which, unfortunately, in our country, is a largely unhealthy population.   I optimize hormones to ranges that are associated with the best quality of life, consistent with people who feel at their best. These aren’t “normal” people; they’re people who have plenty of energy, healthy libido, clear heads, and who are resistant to disease.  Maybe even more importantly, I optimize levels to those associated with the best health outcomes: meaning the lowest risk of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s … Read More

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