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Hormone health in women

This month, we are focusing on women’s health, and we are dedicating this newsletter to hormones, since hormone health plays a crucial role in a woman’s life. In our interview with Dr. med. Elke Benedetto-Reisch, Medical Director of Lanserhof Tegernsee, we will talk about the importance of a healthy hormone balance  and its influence on physical and emotional health.

Medical Director, Lanserhof Tegernsee

Dr. Elke Benedetto-Reisch

What are hormones, and what tasks do they perform in our body?

Hormones are biochemical substances that are produced in many different organs and glands in our body, essentially in the reproductive organs, liver, adrenal glands, thyroid gland and even the intestines and the brain. The numerous functions give these noble substances a special importance for our health and well-being. They are essential for life.

In our body, there are various hormone systems, many of which communicate with each other and thus take important control and regulatory functions.

Of course, one of the most important functions is the ability to reproduce. However, there are also essential functions that affect growth, bone metabolism, energy and water balance, skin and connective tissue, not to mention the psyche.

How can hormones influence mood and emotional well-being?

When it comes to hormone imbalances, we need to distinguish between physiological and non-physiological imbalances. Physiologically, hormone production decreases with aging; female sex hormones sometimes begin to drop as early as age 40.

The hormonal system, like many other metabolic systems, can of course also be disturbed by diseases. Nutrient deficiencies, viral diseases, toxic substances such as heavy metals, stress and intestinal diseases are some examples of diseases that can significantly affect hormone balance.

Which hormones are particularly important for women's health?

Apart from the fact that all hormones are important, one should naturally consider the female sex hormones such as estrogens and progestins as particularly important, because their physiological drop alone can cause considerable discomfort, causing hot flashes, sleep disturbances, blood pressure fluctuations and mood swings.

What influence do diet and lifestyle have on hormones?

Diet and lifestyle play a crucial role in maintaining a good hormone system. For example, remember that a large percentage of serotonin, the so-called “happiness hormone”, is produced in the intestine. Serotonin, by the way, is needed for a good night’s sleep, among other things, and sometimes good sleep is particularly important, especially for hormonal brain metabolism. Stress, on the other hand, has been shown to impair hormonal productin, especially that of the adrenal cortex.

How can hormonal changes (e.g., during menopause) be managed?

Hormonal imbalances can be treated very well, whatever the cause. Even if hormone replacement therapy is still often viewed skeptically, when it is well diagnosed, skillfully managed and controlled, much can be done regarding both  symptom prevention and anti-aging, including therapy of many hormone-related health disorders, such as sleep disorders, blood pressure problems, osteoporosis, mood swings and more.

What role does the intestine play in hormone health? How do we treat those affected during their cure at Lanserhof?

The Lanserhof Concept, with intestinal rehabilitation as its basis, serves to improve metabolism in general and thus to regulate hormone balance. Through  specific hormone examinations, we specify in preventive and therapeutic approaches.