Are you always happy with your fitness results despite undergoing vigorous physical training and strict diet? When you plan on losing weight, increase physical power or gain muscles, you often go through a very strict fitness regimen. However, most of the times you are left unsatisfied with the results you get after so much of hard work. You start raising questions in your mind like- ‘Was all this hard work really worth it?’, ‘Am I really content with the outcome?’
To get rid of such doubts, you often tend to pave your way towards taking nutritional supplements to kick start your hormones. You might take resort to various hormonal pills, injections, capsules, gels, and creams or even diet supplements. Mostly you initiate such hormonal therapy processes to enhance your sex drive, muscle power, weight loss, anti-aging effects, and other health issues.
However, have you thought of considering the side effects of taking such hormonal supplements? Do you really think they are utterly and completely safe for physical enhancement? If you have not, then now such questions might be intriguing you to know further about it.
Facts about DHEA
One of the most commonly administered hormonal supplements is DHEA or dehydroepiandrosterone. This is a naturally synthesized hormone by the adrenal glands in your body. When you have a natural low production of DHEA in your body, you need to take it from outside sources. Most DHEA supplements are made from soy or wild yam.
You may not know much about this hormone and its function. Thus it is important that you gain proper knowledge about something before using that as your health supplement. DHEA acts as a precursor to sex hormones (estrogen and testosterone) for both men and women. Now, what do you mean by a precursor molecule? Precursors are those substances produced inside the body that are converted into active hormones by your body itself.
The highest rate of DHEA synthesis in your body is observed during the time when you are in your mid-20s. Gradually with the natural process of aging, the production rate of DHEA comes down.
The synthesis rate of your sex hormones (testosterone or estrogen) also goes down as you age. The work of DHEA is to elevate the production of these hormones in your body to get myriad health benefits including:
- Making your immune system strong.
- Increasing your bone density.
- Strengthening your adrenal kidneys.
- Building strong muscles.
- Elevating energy levels in your body.
- Slowing down the natural aging process and other changes associated with it.
- Improving memory functioning and mood.
DHEA supplements as an anti-aging hormone therapy
As you already know that the natural synthesis rate of DHEA declines as you age, a lot of researchers have suggested the external supply of DHEA in those cases. You can take DHEA from outside sources in the form of nutritional supplements, hormonal therapy (injections, tablets or pills) to fight to age. You may have come across several studies conducted on the effects of DHEA on the aging process. Some studies have shown positive results while some with nil results. Then how do you decide whether or not to take DHEA hormonal supplements for anti-aging purposes?
As per the data accumulated by the Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, you will come to know that DHEA actually has no impact on anti-aging treatment. You may know very little about the adverse effects caused by DHEA. Thus, it is essential that you go through a detailed read on the same to judge its efficacy as a potent hormonal supplement.
Possible negative effects associated with DHEA supplements:
- Hair loss
- The growth of facial hair in females
- Stomach upset
- Thickening of skin, along with oily texture and acne
- Changes in the pattern of the menstrual cycle in females
- Excessive blood pressure
- Unwanted changes in the levels of cholesterol
- A problem associated with sleeping cycles (insomnia)
- Congestion in the nasal passage
- Irregular or rapid heartbeat
- Voice deepening in females
Unwanted results such as deepening of the voice and facial hair growth in females may be due to extremely high levels of testosterone secretion. You are suggested not to take DHEA hormonal supplements for a long period of time as per health professionals. It is a safety measure for you to keep away from minimal chances of developing health adversities.
Do DHEA supplements promote weight loss?
You must have heard about a special version of the DHEA supplement in the market, going by the name of 7-keto. It is an extremely popular supplement which you can take for accelerating your metabolism and experience rapid loss of body weight.
This supplement helps you get leaner tissues, which in turn promotes rapid burning of body fat by increasing your body’s basal metabolic rate (BMR). You can easily burn more and more calories taking this supplement, but of course under the supervision of a health expert.
However, there are still some doubtful speculations on the weight loss power of DHEA on your body. You need to consult your doctor before you start taking DHEA supplements for weight loss programs.
Do DHEA supplements improve athletic performance?
You have already learned that DHEA not only has effects on your body fat or aging but also in athletic fitness of your body. If you take DHEA hormonal supplements for building strong muscles or improve your fitness skills, you will surely not be a disappointment.
Testosterone not only acts as a sex hormone but also have impacts on increasing your muscle power and bodybuilding. As DHEA acts as a prohormone for testosterone and estrogen, your levels of physical vigor are bound to elevate. However, you should remember not to take DHEA supplements before entering into any athletic competition. This is because in most of the cases such usage of hormonal supplements for increased physical vigor is not permitted. You may even end up behind the bars for taking pre-steroid enhancers like DHEA.