Today we are going to talk about hormones. The body is made up of many different hormones that are responsible for key functioning. Hormone levels change and develop over time as we age and grow. They help regulate your body’s processes, like hunger, blood pressure, and sexual desire. When you hear the word ‘hormone’, you might just think of women’s health, but that is a common misconception. Some hormones may be specific to women and others to men but an imbalance or deficiency will have health consequences for both.
Hormones are messengers that travel throughout the body coordinating complex processes like growth, metabolism, and fertility. They can influence the function of the immune system, and even alter behavior. Before birth, they guide the development of the brain and reproductive system. That being said, our hormones are essential to reproduction, and they are fundamental to all the systems of your body. Here are some facts you should know about abnormal hormone levels and what you can do to address them.
1. What are hormones?
So what are hormones? A hormone is a chemical that is made by specialist cells and it is released into the bloodstream to send a message to another part of the body. It is often referred to as a ‘chemical messenger’. As mentioned, hormone levels change and develop over time as you grow and age.
The body secretes and circulates about 50 different hormones. A wide variety of these chemical substances are produced by endocrine cells, most of which are in glands. They then enter the blood system to circulate throughout the body and activate target cells to distant organs to which the body effectively counters whatever challenges occur. Hormones have diverse chemical structures, mainly of three classes:
- Amino acids