I love this and I love cutting the 'fat!' DR. SARA GOTTFRIED has provided very useful information below on understanding steps every woman can start to understand and take in testing their personal hormonal levels. Each woman truly is unique with their own set of stressors that are both internal and external. Now beware, this can still be confusing, but the provided information from Sarah starts to unwind the confusion!
You can’t start improving something until you understand your baseline. Here are some tests I commonly recommend. Once you get the test results, you’ll know a starting point and which “fire” needs to be put out first.
Top Hormone Test Suggestions
1. Blood Panel
Blood tests are most commonly used by conventional physicians, so starting with blood is a good starting bridge for those who rely on insurance dollars, as well as commonality with your doctor.
Ask your doctor to order:
VAP cholesterol [This is extensive and includes subtypes of LDL and HDL plus lipo(a), VLDL
If you’re overweight: leptin, insulin. IGF-1 (growth hormone)
2. DIY: Your doctor will not run the tests or you’d like to pursue on your own.
I recommend the Canary Club or ZRT Labs.
http://www.zrtlab.comComprehensive Female Profile I (Saliva/Blood)
Comprehensive Female Profile II (Saliva/Blood)
Recommended: Advanced Plus Hormone Profile
4. Complete Hormone Profile
If your doctor is the more open-minded type, check this Genova test. It will tell you about your adrenals, both short-and long-term, and inform you of your estrogen metabolism – that is, do you have a modifiable tendency toward breast cancer or not?
5. Let NutrEval Rock Your World
For those of you who really love to measure everything, and want to know where your nutritional deficiencies are...consider your prayers answered: http://www.gdx.net/product/10051. The cost is reasonable for people with insurance who qualify for Genova’s Pay Assured program at $169. Add on Vitamin D for $5.
6. Mercury Rising?
I commonly see women with fatigue, hair loss, weight gain, low sex drive and underperforming thyroids. I encourage them to test for mercury from Mercout.com.
7. Telomeres, My Telomeres
For those soul sisters who delight in quantifying biological age, the best marker is your telomeres, the cute little caps on your chromosomes that keep your chromes from unraveling and are similar to shoelace caps. Get those telomeres tested at Spectracell.com
8. Neuroendocrine Fun and Games
Finally, for women in perimenopause with the usual suspects of more stress/irritability/waning libido & focus, one of my favorite tests is the Neuroendocrine 3 panel (9505) from Neuroscience. This tests looks at the intersection of your hormones with your neurotransmitters. It’s very satisfying, and it generates a personalized amino-acid balancing protocol.
This test is excellent for women trying to get off antidepressants, sleeping pills or anxiety medication.
9. Pathway Fit
The Pathway Fit test gives you a personalized look into your genetic code. It analyzes your metabolism, eating habits, and the way your body responds to exercise. The test, along with a lifestyle questionnaire, tells you how to optimize your diet, workouts and lifestyle for a strong metabolism. Talk about a tailored weight loss plan!
10. Genova - Menopause
The Menopause Plus test by Genova Diagnostics will test your melatonin and cortisol levels, as well as your estrogen and progesterone.
BIG Step – Baby Steps
This may seem like a overwhelming list. Step 1 of an important process: figuring out the root cause of your health issues. Once you know the area that is causing the most harm and start to treat it, you’ll be amazed at how the rest of your body starts to return to balance too.
Blind Spots and How to Proceed
It is highly recommended you work with a partnered functional medicine practicioner, Doctor, DO, etc.
The key here is to measure, manage, and improve your hormonal equilibrium with objective tests – combined with a honest assessment of your values, genetic tendencies, current health, lifestyle and blind spots.
Congratulations on your commitment to optimal “beautiful health.”
THANK YOU to DR. SARA GOTTFRIED, M.D. on your written resource of:
“Top Ten Hormone Tests”