Balanced levels of testosterone and estrogen are important to men’s health and development. Abnormally high levels of estrogen can lead to changes in your mental state, reproductive health, and physique. These symptoms range from subtle to life-threatening. That’s why pinpointing the issue and taking swift action is important. Bioidentical hormones can play an important role in resolving the issue, helping to recalibrate your testosterone to estrogen ratio.
What Causes High Levels of Estrogen?
A wide range of causes can be the culprit behind your high estrogen levels. Anything from stress to recreational drug use can raise your levels. But medication, aging, and obesity are three common risk factors.
As you age, your testosterone levels will naturally decrease and estrogen levels will increase. This doesn’t always cause problems for older men. But if estrogen levels are too high, this can lead to a variety of symptoms — including blood clots.
Certain medications, such as antibiotics, can increase your estrogen levels. Psychoactive prescriptions, like those for schizophrenia and depression, might cause imbalances as well.
For some men, obesity is a risk factor. Aromatase is an enzyme present in fat cells, which turns testosterone into estrogen.
Symptoms of Imbalanced Estrogen
Testosterone is responsible for ensuring the health of a variety of your organ systems. An imbalance of estrogen interferes with this process. You might notice changes to your physical and mental state, but insidious health conditions can develop over time.
The right amount of estrogen is important to sperm production. Too much, on the other hand, can slow this process down and make it difficult to form high-quality sperm, leading to infertility.
Low Sex Drive
Testosterone is responsible for sex drive. If a man’s estrogen levels climb disproportionately, this can affect his libido. Erectile dysfunction is another common byproduct of imbalanced estrogen.
Developed Breast Tissue
High estrogen can increase the amount of fat tissue in a man’s breasts. And while breast cancer is rare in men, high estrogen is a prominent risk factor in those that do develop it.
Loss of Energy
Fatigue is a common indicator of imbalanced hormone levels. Elevated estrogen levels can affect your thyroid, which is responsible for your body’s energy production.
Loss of Muscle Mass
Too much estrogen can cause you to lose chunks of your muscle mass. Conversely, fat tissue can prove stubborn and difficult to lose.
A delayed symptom of high estrogen, clots are clumps of blood that can develop in your veins and arteries. Clots can block arteries bringing blood to your heart and brain, causing heart attacks or strokes.
Why Bioidentical Hormones Help
Hormone therapy helps replenish low levels of testosterone and correct imbalances in estrogen levels. A major advantage of bioidentical hormones is that our bodies recognize them as natural. While they’re made from different sources, bioidentical hormones and our hormones are chemically identical. Side effects will differ from person to person, but some research suggests that you’re less likely to experience side effects with chemically identical hormones.
Struggling with hormonal imbalances? Take our quiz to find out if bioidentical hormone replacement therapy is right for you.