For women who are getting close to menopause or those who are already going through this stage, losing weight or even maintaining a stable weight can start to feel like an insurmountable challenge. Hormones are working against you, and there might not seem like much you can do.
When you turn to us at Regain Functional Medicine + Aesthetics, we can help you understand why balancing your hormone levels with hormone replacement therapy is a crucial requisite for weight loss. But what is hormone replacement therapy?
How Hormones Play a Role in Your Weight Fluctuations
During perimenopause or menopause, the decrease of crucial female sex hormones estrogen and progesterone, combined with the normal aging process, can start to slow down your metabolism. One of the changes many women see as they get into these stages of their reproductive lives is a decrease in muscle mass, which leads to fewer calories burned throughout the day.
The muscle tone lost due to the fluctuation of hormones tends to be replaced by fatty tissue deposits, leading to what many women call “menopause belly.” Because your metabolism continues to slow, even if you stick to a healthy diet and follow an exercise regimen, you might see little, if any, weight loss. That is when you should consider hormone replacement therapy for weight loss.
What Is Hormone Replacement Therapy and Who Is Eligible?
Hormone replacement therapy is a treatment that can help relieve the symptoms of menopause. As you transition into menopause, your ovaries no longer produce the same levels of estrogen and progesterone. Even your testosterone levels may change.
Estrogen plays a role in many body functions, including thickening the uterus for the implantation of a fertilized egg, helping prevent osteoporosis, and much more. Progesterone helps maintain a pregnancy, improves your mood and sleep patterns, and can even regulate blood pressure. Testosterone can help with building muscle mass, improving mood, and increasing libido.
When the level of these hormones decreases, you can experience symptoms like:
- Night sweats
- Hot flashes
- Vaginal dryness
- Low libido
- Trouble sleeping
- Mood swings
- Weight gain
Of the best hormone replacement therapy options for women experiencing these symptoms, perhaps the top choice is bioidentical hormone replacement therapy. Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy uses processed hormones that come from plants and are very similar to the ones your body naturally produces.
Something crucial to remember is that if you still have your uterus, you will need to take progesterone along with estrogen. If you had a hysterectomy, that is not the case. You only need to take estrogen.
You can be an excellent candidate for hormone replacement therapy for weight loss if you are in good overall health, do not smoke, and experience menopause symptoms that interfere with your quality of life. You may not be a great candidate if you have a risk of developing blood clots or cardiovascular disease, have had breast cancer, or have suffered a stroke.
Benefits of Hormone Replacement Therapy
Of course, the most obvious of the benefits of hormone replacement therapy is the chance to break free from all of those menopause symptoms. Hormone replacement therapy can help you maintain your bone health. The risk of developing osteoporosis is much higher for women who go through menopause without getting any type of assistance with hormone levels.
HRT helps you maintain your weight. It can even make it easier to lose weight because you will be able to build muscle mass and prevent your metabolism from severely slowing down.
HRT can also give your mood a boost. Depression can be a serious concern, aggravated by the sleeping problems menopause can cause. By balancing the progesterone, estrogen, and testosterone in your body, HRT helps you feel more like yourself again.
Beginning Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy for Weight Loss
It all starts with a consultation. We offer all our patient forms online, so you can save yourself the time and trouble of filling them out when you get to the office, and we can dive right into your consultation. When you come to our offices, we will ask about your medical history and any medications you take.
We will perform a physical examination and take some blood to get a sense of the exact hormone levels you have. This allows us to put together a treatment plan that offers the best results. Because we will do blood work, please don’t eat before coming to your appointment.
It can help us if you put together a list of the symptoms you have and track how often you have them. During the consultation, we also encourage you to ask any questions you have about the process and what you can expect.
The exact dosage and type of hormone replacement therapy we offer will depend on your age, the severity of the symptoms, and many other factors. For most women, especially those who want to better manage their weight, we will recommend estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone therapy.
Help Yourself Lose Weight and Diminish Menopause Symptoms
If you’ve been gaining weight despite eating healthily and following an exercise routine, your hormone levels may be to blame. Going through perimenopause or menopause can lead to many unpleasant symptoms, not least of which is weight gain.
At Regain Functional Medicine + Aesthetics in Kansas City, KS, we offer bioidentical hormone replacement therapy to get you feeling more like yourself again. You don’t have to live with these symptoms when there’s help available. Contact us to schedule your consultation to begin your hormone replacement therapy journey.