DHEA – What It Is, Its Benefits And Effects
Dehydroepiandrosterone ( DHEA) is an ingredient found in some natural testosterone boosting products..
In its natural state it is one of the most abundant circulating steroid to be founds in humans, it is naturally produced in the brain, gonads, and the adrenal glands where its main purpose is to help in the biosynthesis of both Testosterone and Estrogen..
When extracted, it can be used in supplement form, its primary use is actually in women who are suffering from adrenal insufficiency, and it has been used ever since 2000 in treatments to correct female infertility.
There has been minimal testing into its effects in helping to reducing cardiovascular disease.. so far the studies have failed to determine any cardiovascular benefits.
There is some short term evidence that treatment with DHEA can help reduce the effects of Lupus but the long term effects are currently unknown.
It is not known if long term treatment with DHEA is actually safe, some research has suggested that DHEA based supplements could actually increase the risk of Breast and Prostate cancers, diabetes and strokes, it is thought to stimulate and enlarge prostate glands, as well as causing possible male hair loss, increased anxiety, sleep problems and in women – unusual hair growth.. studies also show the possibility that it can alter the body’s regulation of blood sugar.
Courtesy Of Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dehydroepiandrosterone
DHEA is produced from cholesterol through two cytochrome P450 enzymes. Cholesterol is converted to pregnenolone by the enzyme P450 scc (side chain cleavage); then another enzyme, CYP17A1, converts pregnenolone to 17α-hydroxypregnenolone and then to DHEA
DHEA is a banned substance ( for use in sports events) under the code of the world anti doping agency, it is however, legal for sale in the US as a dietary supplement, in many other countries such as Canada and Australia, it is only strictly available by prescription..
It is considered that persons aged over 40, should be able to take DHEA in amounts of up to 100mg without too many risks.. a recommended dose in the younger person has not been established.
Effects Of DHEA
DHEA is commonly used in a topical form ( cream or gels) to treat reduced libido and other symptoms of post menopausal women, it is shown to provide an increase in the sex hormone Estrogen.
It can help reduce concentrations of SHBC in overweight older individuals.. 50mg of DHEA given to menopausal women aged between 45-64 over a 6 month period did show an overall increase in estrogen/androgen concentrations –
It has been thought to reduce levels of cortisol, but studies are inconclusive
Often used to help increase fertility, studies have shown that women taking 75mg of DHEA has improved successful cases of IVF –
DHEA and Testosterone
DHEA is found in some testosterone boosting supplements, and there have been numerous studies looking into its effects.. the majority of tests have ( it has to be said) been carried out on women looking into its fertility boosting effects, but there have been a number of trials carried out on adult males
One trial looked at the effects of DHEA on 40 healthy males, they were given 50mg of DHEA twice daily for 12 weeks.. the results were largely disappointing, with no noticeable increases in free or serum testosterone being recorded –
Another study looked at the effects of DHEA supplementation on 30 healthy and young men aged between 19-29 who took regular exercise, a daily dose of 150mg DHEA over 8 weeks failed to provide any increases in testosterone
Numerous other studies and trials have been performed using DHEA on both adult men and women of various age ranges..
The only group that showed regular improvements in testosterone were menopausal and post menopausal women… tests in the young, and in particularly male test subjects of any age were largely inconclusive.
DHEA certainly has its part to play in boosting sex hormones, but the trials and studies all show that it is only really effective in the older woman.. it has its potential for health risks as well, so care does need to be taken when using DHEA as part of daily supplementation…