DHEA is a naturally produced hormone by the adrenal glands. It regulates many biochemical pathways in the body, including the synthesis of the sex hormones, testosterone, and estrogen. In addition to this, many studies have shown that natural levels of DHEA decline as people enter adulthood, creating many physical and even mental problems. This is where DHEA supplements come into play, as they can help improve the declining levels in the body. Here are some benefits of DHEA supplementation and the right doses for specific conditions.
What is DHEA
DHEA is an acronym for dehydroepiandrosterone, which is, as the name suggests, a hormone that’s produced in the body. The glands just above the kidneys, called the adrenal glands are the only part of the body that can secrete this hormone. Some of DHEA is converted into important sex hormones in both men and women.
To be more exact, it’s converted into testosterone and estrogen. Even though DHEA is produced naturally, the amount that can be secreted decreases as people age, which is why it’s taken in the form of a supplement. The decrease of DHEA is associated with many diseases, and some studies have shown that the DHEA secretion can decrease for up to eighty percent throughout adulthood.
Needless to say, loss of the needed amount of this hormone can cause serious problems in adulthood if not assessed properly. This brings us to why the DHEA supplements are used, and why it can benefit the body in terms of preventing diseases and improving already existing medical conditions.
What are DHEA supplements used for
As we’ve mentioned earlier, as our bodies age, the adrenal glands fail to produce as much of DHEA as they did when an individual is young. This decline in normal DHEA levels can cause some health concerns because this hormone is involved in biochemical pathways that fail to maintain the proper metabolism function of certain parts of the body.
Some of the most common disorders that DHEA supplements are used for are for anti-aging purposes, and immunity boost. In addition to this, these supplements can be used to combat anorexia, type 2 diabetes, and as of recently, even Alzheimer’s disease. One of the main focuses of treating low DHEA levels through supplementation is for improving bone density.
Since many studies have backed up the claim that decreased DHEA levels are associated with an increased risk of fractures due to low density. However, for this specific condition, a longer uptake of DHEA supplements is needed for positive results to show up.
The right dosage is important
One thing should be very clear about DHEA supplement dosage – there is no universal amount. There are a few reasons why this is true. Firstly, not all people are the same in terms of body mass, or preexisting conditions. Secondly, the DHEA supplement dose will vary on the type of condition that’s being aimed for improvement.
In addition to this, calculating the right dosage won’t only apply to the amount you should intake every day, but also to how long you should take the DHEA supplements. For anti-aging purposes of the skin, around 50 mg of DHEA should be taken daily for a full year.
The dose for depression treatment varies between 50-500 mg daily, but it should be taken for up to two months. For treating low bone density, your physician will have to perform tests for measuring bone density to estimate how much of DHEA you should take.
Mental health benefits
Decreased DHEA levels have been associated with numerous physical diseases that we’ve already discussed in full, but what many people aren’t aware of is that in the light of recent studies, a connection was made between low DHEA levels and depression.
This connection was first established in people with severe depression who had very low levels of this hormone in their blood, as opposed to people who didn’t have this disorder who showed normal DHEA levels. Furthermore, studies conducted on the levels of DHEA in women who were close to menopause also showed a correlation between abnormal levels of this hormone and depression.
Because the exact way DHEA impacts depression is not familiar, additional studies are being conducted to show how it can aid people who suffer from depression, and what would the right dosage depend on in this particular case.
DHEA is, without a doubt, an essential hormone that regulates many biochemical processes in the human organism. If the levels decrease as they naturally do in adulthood, many diseases can come from it if not treated properly. DHEA supplements should be considered, and the right dosage supervised by your physician.