DHEA (also known as dehydroepiandrosterone) is a hormone produced by the adrenal glands. It happens to be the body’s most plentiful hormone and is praised because of its ability to convert to other hormones. Testosterone and estrogen are both produced by DHEA. These two hormones are known help the body function properly.
Why DHEA could work
Estrogen appears in both men and women but is more abundant in women. It helps promote overall bodily health with its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. When a woman has the right amount of estrogen her skin glows and she walks with a little more pep in her step.
Other benefits of estrogen include:
- Tissue repair
- Vision health
- Bone health
When women approach their fifties they begin to enter menopause and estrogen is depleted. This is the moment in which some begin to notice skin starting to sag, thin, become dry, or lose color. As estrogen is diminished levels of testosterone (the masculine hormone) begin to increase and can cause skin to become oily, produce acne, and increase facial hair growth.
Testosterone is prominent in men. It is what allows them to have such a solid stature, an earth shattering voice and high energy levels.
Other benefits of testosterone include:
- Increased aggressiveness
- Sexual drive
- An Adam’s apple
- The ability to burn fat
DHEA and the Industry
Producing these hormones is essential for the body. The amount of DHEA present in the body begins to decrease around age 25 and by age 70 will be 80% nonexistent. Since DHEA is such a crucial hormone it only makes since that feeding the body more of it will have positive effects.
DHEA is promoted to deliver several benefits:
- Reverse aging
- Boost immunity
- Improve memory
- Build muscle
Unfortunately too much of almost anything can be bad for the body including hormones. Hormone levels naturally flux. Some days the body can wake up full of energy and others it just wants to relax. In most cases this depends on hormone levels. Playing with hormones at home has never been advised by any credible source and it is insane that DHEA is sold so openly. Everyone will not react to DHEA in the same manner.
As discussed earlier, DHEA also helps testosterone and estrogen. Different people have different levels of these hormones and the body is not able to control how much of a certain hormone is produced. When the body is effected by illnesses or changes like pregnancy hormones like estrogen can cause the body to go out of wack. Over stimulating your body with sex hormones can result in far more than nagging your significant other, in fact consequences can be serious.
Other side effects include:
- Men developing female breasts
- Painful erections
- Decreased sperm count
- Production of a masculine female fetus
- Women growing excessive facial hair
- Breast reduction in women
- Deepens a woman’s voice
- Increased oil production
- Hair loss
- Mood swings
- Prostate enlargement
- Lower levels of good cholesterol
- Overstimulation of the immune system
- Changes in menstrual cycle
What Scientists Say
Despite the side effects sex hormone DHEA is sold over the counter. It happens to be the only of its kind besides the morning after pill. Products containing DHEA are easily attainable in supplements and creams at a local pharmacy or health food store. There have been many studies done on DHEA but there has not been enough solid research collected to prove its anti-aging claims.
What we know about DHEA:
- DHEA was proven by Cochrane to actually decrease memory.
- There is evidence that DHEA can improve muscle mass in the elderly.
- DHEA is forbidden from the Olympics.
- Most DHEA studies yield inconclusive results.
A new anti-aging ingredient is unleashed to the world and the beauty industry goes nuts. Products filled with a newly discovered fountain of youth fly from the shelves and into millions of bodies. While some may experience great results, others may suffer from adverse reactions but can they really be upset? Your skin is the largest organ on the body and although researching products before you buy them is ideal many don’t. DHEA is currently being bottled with promises to reverse aging effects but there hasn’t been any proof that the ingredient is the cure for fine lines and wrinkles. It actually seems to do more harm than good!