Growth Hormone (hGH)
Growth Hormone or human growth hormone, also known as hGH or somatotropin, is secreted by the pituitary gland into your blood stream where it stays for only a short time before it is metabolized by the liver into somatomedin-C (insulin like growth factor, IGF-1), which stays in the blood a lot longer and is actually the driving force behind all the remarkable properties of hGH. The highest levels are found in the blood during the first 3 to 4 hours hours of sleep at night.
The production of growth hormone peaks during adolescence, reaching around 1.5mg/day, and then gradually drops off after the age of 20 to 25 where it averages around 0.35mg/day and continues to decline by approximately 14% each decade for the rest of your life. By the time you are 60 to 70 years of age you only produce about 15% of the amount produced at your peak. The decline in growth hormone with age is directly associated with many symptoms of aging including wrinkles, grey hair, hair loss, decreased energy, decreased sexual function, loss of muscle mass, increase in body fat, depression, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, and overall lower life expectancy.
Low growth hormone has also been related to elevated cholesterol, elevated apoliprotein, thin skin, lack of collagen, decreased nail and hair growth, poor thermo-regulation, dehydration, emotional instability, poor memory, reduced energy, hypoglycemia, insulin resistance, abnormal metabolic rates, to name a few. Low levels of growth hormone causes aging because it is responsible for growth and regeneration of every cell in our bodies.
There is now ample evidence which demonstrates that by replacing growth hormone levels we can dramatically reverse all of these symptoms. The more closely the scientific evidence is examined the clearer it becomes that everything we associate with aging may be due in part to the decline of growth hormone in our bodies.
Many of the beneficial effects of supplementing growth hormone are listed below:
Growth hormone is considered a very safe hormone to administer when it is administered in regular physiological doses (1-2 units a day) which mimic the bodies own natural secretions and should only be used in cases where current levels are shown to be deficient or suboptimal. Therefore it is only used for growth hormone deficiency syndrome and should be monitored by an experienced physician. Deficiencies start to occur when levels IGF-1 levels fall below 33nmol/L in men and 24nmol/L in women. The aim of therapy is to supply the shortfall and bring the level back into the optimal physiological range which is 39 to 46nmol/L in men and 29 to 40nmol/L in women.
Many traditional medical doctors with no experience in growth hormone supplementation consider it unorthodox and usually criticize the idea out of fear of the unknown, however those in the know are well aware of its benefits and powerful restorative properties and its relative safety when used correctly.
Some side effects have been reported, usually when taking larger pharmacological doses. These include water retention in hands and feet, carpet tunnel syndrome, tingling in fingers and nose, hormone imbalances and enlargement of the hands and feet. These side effects are reversible when doses are reduced. Cortisol levels can also drop by 10-40% when starting on hGH so if your levels are low to begin with it is best to supplement with cortisol also and start on a low dose of hGH to avoid any symptoms of low adrenals.
It is important to monitor your growth hormone levels while supplementing it to ensure the dose you are taking provides you with a optimal physiological level. There are several ways to determine growth hormone levels however most have many drawbacks. A common way is to measure IGF-1 in serum however this is considered unreliable in thyroid disorders, poorly controlled diabetes, liver disease and malnutrition. Research also indicates about 25% of patients on hGH actually experience a decline in IGF-1 levels. Another way to determine growth hormone levels is via a 24hour urine analysis. By closely monitoring your levels you can ensure your dose is appropriate thus maximizing its benefits while minimizing any potential side effects of potentially escalating levels. The dose should be adjusted according based on follow up test results.
Growth Hormone replacement has its drawbacks as it has to be administered as a daily subcutaneous injection. This is the only way growth hormone will work as nasal sprays, tablets and creams often advertised on the internet are not bioavailable therefore do not absorb and thus are ineffective. We have a needle-free injector available for those whom are needle phobic which can help reduce the stress of daily injections. The other most significant draw back is that it is very expensive.
There are many natural products, proteins, amino acids, herbs, etc on the market reported to increase the bodies own production of growth hormone. We have had experience with many of them and found them to produce only slight increases in growth hormone levels which were not significant enough for any therapeutic effects. None of these products have proven to come even close in comparison to taking the real authentic hormone itself.
Recently peptide combinations such as GHRP-6 or Ipamorelin combined with CJC-1295 have shown to significantly improve growth hormone levels and are both available from us on prescription. These are much cheaper than using HGH itself. Click here for more in depth information on increasing Growth hormone levels with these peptides.
Another alternative is to use the peptide IGF-1 as some anti-aging doctors are now recommending instead of HGH. Many of HGH's benefits are due to it being converted into IGF-1 via the liver. IGF-1 is more effective than using growth hormone for growth, anti-diabetic effects (by decreasing serum glucose and insulin levels), it has more potent tropic effects on skin, muscle and hair, and has better nerve repair effects, while on the other hand growth hormone is slightly better for weight loss and they appear to be equal for improving energy levels. IGF-1 is available from us with a prescription. Contact us for details.