An Interview with Jill Davey – Author of ‘The Menopause Cure – Hormonal Health’
I recently spoke with Jill Davey to discuss her book and the reasons why she feels so passionate about helping women navigate their way through ageing and menopause. The menopause is a delicate word which proclaims old age – this, however, depends on which angle you’re scanning life from. Truth be known, it’s a new era, a new beginning! Jill’s advice is to embrace it, not shy away from it.
Hormones are the key to good health, but unfortunately, as we age, they start to decrease. Menopausal symptoms, as Jill explains, can be as minor as headaches or poor skin, but other symptoms can be more serious and frustrating. The good news is there is a mountain of information and help available. Jill has her own first-hand knowledge of pretty much every issue which are all covered in her book ‘The Menopause Cure – Hormonal Health’. It is a fantastic insight into prevention and in some cases reversal of certain age-related illnesses and ailments. Even if you are not encountering initial symptoms, it is a real education on how the body functions, the whys and hows of menopause, and how the body can tune into and find optimal health.
The book is written with Dr Sergey Dzugan who is Chief Scientific Officer of the Dzugan Institute of Restorative Medicine in Florida. He has scientifically developed a natural restorative programme involving bioidentical hormones and specific supplements to slow the ageing process and reduce symptoms in women and men. There is a particular focus on the effects of the menopause.
Where are the products for the hormones sourced?
Bioidentical hormones are not pharmaceutical drugs, they are made from soya, wild yam and other plant extracts that are bioengineered in a laboratory as an exact copy of the human hormone. They are hormone replicas, biologically identical to the hormones produced in our body. They are exactly the same in terms of molecular structure and recognised as such by the body. Therefore, the body knows how to metabolise these hormones in precisely the same way it metabolises endogenous hormones; using them for energy, repair, and regeneration.
What is different from these products and others on the market?
Firstly, supplemental hormones are available in two forms: bioidentical/natural hormones, known as BHRT (Bioidentical Hormone Restorative Therapy), and non-bioidentical, synthetic hormones, known as HRT. The contraceptive pill is also synthetic. A synthetic hormone is a substance that is not found in nature, but rather, it is reinvented from nature; it is chemically altered and then patented. Synthetic hormones cannot be used safely and efficiently by the body, they are alien to the body, producing toxic by-products. Studies illustrate that these products can cause serious health issues, including various cancers, heart attacks and strokes.
I am not sure how many people are aware, but synthetic oestrogens are made from the urine of pregnant mares. Apart from the issue of cruelty to horses, our bodies cannot identify with horse hormones. Horses have a completely different reproductive infrastructure to humans and an altogether different cocktail of oestrogens. The human body is incapable of absorbing or eliminating these hormones solely because they are not natural to humans; the human body doesn’t totally understand them. Scientific studies illustrate these facts and clearly point to the dangers of using synthetic oestrogens.
However, I do advocate bioidentical hormones, not only for women but also for men, specifically because they are natural to the human body. Bioidentical hormones are recognised and used by the human body without difficulty, exclusively because they are all natural – they don’t cause confusion within the body and/or brain infrastructure. They are metabolised in a safe and efficient manner and then used to regenerate, repair, and keep us healthy, vibrant and young. The body eliminates these natural hormones efficiently and easily, leaving no toxic by-products, and therefore, no health issues.
The goal of restorative medicine is to identify what is missing in the body, in the sense of specific essential hormones and nutrients, correcting this deficiency, and encouraging balance to achieve optimal health, stay disease-free, be vibrant, energetic, sexy, powerful, positive and focussed throughout life…this is what is known as positive longevity. Menopause is the first sign something is going wrong in the body – it is a ‘wakeup call’. Restorative medicine can bring women back to life and maintain that all important ‘wow factor’. This can only be done with the use of Bioidentical Hormone Restorative Therapy.
We also shouldn’t forget men, as they too, suffer hormonal decline. Men can experience a variety of symptoms such as; weight gain, low libido, muscle loss, depression, diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol, and many of the symptoms menopausal women suffer, including hot flushes/flashes. This medicine has many proven benefits for men as well as women.
The first step is a blood sample. How do we do this?
In order for the overall assessment, it is necessary to complete a very in-depth health questionnaire. It can take up to an hour to complete. The whole programme is online, including the initial questionnaire which is very convenient for busy people who care about their health. Once the questionnaire has been received, your restorative medicine doctor prescribes a specific list of blood tests, typically consisting of a range of hormones including oestrogens, progesterone, DHEA-S, pregnenolone, cortisol, testosterone, thyroid hormones, and HGH, as well as homocysteine levels, C-reactive protein and many more.
Most private blood laboratories in Europe and America provide quick and easy services for a blood draw. It usually takes 3 to 4 weeks to receive the results. Once you have your blood tests, your doctor will review them together with the health questionnaire. A programme is then specifically designed, tailored to your health needs. This typically consists of bioidentical hormones and nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, herbs, omegas, amino acids, and others. It is important to understand that these supplements are specific to you, to your bodily needs as established by your blood tests. The amount, dosage and timing; meaning, what time the supplements are taken, morning, noon, or night, are the key to achieving optimal health. It is extremely important to seek a qualified restorative or functional doctor – hormones should be discussed with an experienced practitioner; one who understands and knows how to balance them correctly. This is all discussed in my book here.
How soon will we notice a difference?
That all depends on your current health status. I felt a huge difference within three weeks, but my hormonal decline was only beginning. It really depends on what stage you are at with your health and how long the hormonal loss has been going on. My book explains this in detail.
Can you elaborate on the instructions, how to follow the course? I think you mentioned it comes as a cream and in pill form?
The hormone oestrogen is applied as a cream or gel form, known as triest, which is compounded in a specific pharmacy, along with progesterone and testosterone. The creams or gels, applied in the morning are rubbed into the inside of the arm, where the skin is thinner for quicker entry into the bloodstream. Once the hormones are absorbed in the bloodstream the magic starts. The hormones travel through the bloodstream avoiding the stomach, so they are not broken down by digestive acids and enzymes. They are left intact, working more effectively, as none of their benefits are lost.
Physiologically this method is more natural. The other supplements are taken orally. Usually, vitamins are taken in the morning, never at night as they may disturb sleep. Minerals such as magnesium, and herbs like valerian root can be taken at night as they promote sleep, as does the hormone progesterone, which is basically a natural sleeping aid. Progesterone taken at night comes in a troche form and is dissolved between the cheek and gum. This application is highly effective because the lining of the mouth is thin and rich in blood vessels. Your doctor will recommend when each hormone and nutrient should be taken to better optimise your health.
How do we monitor how we are doing once we start on the hormones?
The easy to use programme is completely online. A personal account area is allocated for each individual, this is private and secure for all communications. You can update as many times as you like about specific issues or anything that is troubling you, or that you don’t understand. Your enquiry or questions will be answered within 24 hours, usually 12.
Will the hormone programmes help anti-ageing on the face?
If we are getting younger from the inside, we are definitely going to get younger on the outside. This medicine is an ‘inside-out’ medicine. Your face shows the first signs of ageing but when we restore, rejuvenate, and repair, the organs inside the body communicate and radiate to the outside of the body, bringing back youthful looking skin.
To give you an example, bioidentical oestrogens increase skin thickness and water content, helping the skin to appear more radiant, firm and youthful. DHEA, another very important hormone for overall health, also boosts skin health. Of course, the sooner you start the better.
How long does one course last?
It’s not really a course, it’s a lifetime commitment. Hormones are forever, without them the body cannot function correctly, and hormonal decline never goes away, if we leave it, it will get worse. It is essential to restore them daily. Endogenous, our own hormones or bioidentical hormones are life-giving molecules. They give life, keeping our immune system youthful, strong and fit. The immune system is the protector of our health. It is well known amongst researchers and restorative doctors that one of the major factors of ageing is due to the naturally occurring decline in hormones. Of course, lifestyle habits impact ageing as well. Following a healthy diet, regular exercise, controlling stress levels and avoiding toxins as much as possible is imperative to obtaining and maintaining good health and slowing the ageing process. It’s all in my book which can be purchased here.
Once we start on restorative medicine is there any looking back?
In one word: No. I couldn’t imagine a world without my hormones. Women often say to me, “Jill. I don’t want to get old in the true sense of the word. I don’t want to go through the pain and suffering of disease, be it physical or mental. I know we all die but I don’t want that. When I get old I want to be of sound mind and body, I want to live life to the full.” This is the best path to take, believe me, we just need the right guidance and the right tools.
Use the code NOURISH to receive a 10% discount on all DzLogic products, Koldtec sports towels, and shampoos/conditioners at myoptimalwellbeing.com
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This is for menopausewomen.com advertising, adapted from original interview by Kay Hare