Growth Hormone levels have been found to decline with age in every species so far tested and this decline is a major factor in the aging process. In numerical terms, humans produce on a daily basis some 500mcg of Human Growth Hormone (HGH) at 20 years of age, 200mcg at 40 years, and 25mcg at 80.
HGH deficiency in adults is now recognized as a specific clinical syndrome with characteristic signs and symptoms.
HGH replacement improves body composition and quality of life as soon as 1 month after commencement. Most importantly these changes occur without side-effects. Increased levels of HGH have a positive effect by increasing muscle mass, stimulating fat loss, improving skin texture, improving exercise tolerance, increasing bone density, improving sleep quality and helping mental processes.
There are several possibilities for treating low HGH levels:
It has been known for 25 years that FM patients have an abnormal sleep pattern involving stages 3 and 4 of non-REM sleep. As GH is secreted predominantly during stages 3 and 4 of non-REM sleep, it was originally hypothesized that FM patients may have impaired GH secretion. IGF-1 levels are abnormally low in some fibromyalgia patients.
In an analysis of IGF-1 levels in 500 female FM patients and 152 age matched non-FM subjects the mean IGF-1 level in the FM patients was 137 +/- 58ng/ml versus 216 +/- 86ng/ml in controls. Eighty-five percent of the FM patients had IGF-1 levels below the 50th percentile of the control population and 56% fell below the 20th percentile.
Dr. Brett Jancques, ND reports that all of the obese individuals tested thus far by AAL Reference Laboratories were found to have low growth hormone levels. Testing was accomplished through 24-hour urinary growth hormone measurements. [Townsend Letter, Feb/March 2002, Vol 223/224; pp.74-78]
It has been shown that growth hormone (GH) is adequately produced by the aging pituitary, but its secretion from the pituitary is down-regulated with age. Scientists have found that certain amino acids and vitamins can stimulate the natural release of GH from the pituitary in many people.
Some amino acids have been shown to stimulate GH release, and may be found in preparations designed to increase GH release. Most of these preparations come with the recommendation that they be used just prior to muscle building exercise for maximal effect. These amino acids include L-arginine, L-lysine, L-glutamine, L-ornithine and glycine.
GHB stimulates pituitary growth hormone (GH) release. One methodologically rigorous Japanese study reported nine-fold and sixteen-fold increases in growth hormone 30 and 60 minutes respectively after intravenous administration of 2.5gm of GHB in 6 healthy men between the ages 25-40 [Takahara, 1977]. GH levels were still seven-fold higher after 120 minutes.
The mechanism by which GHB stimulates growth-hormone release is not known. Dopamine activity in the hypothalamus is known to stimulate pituitary release of growth hormone, but GHB inhibits dopamine release at the same time that it stimulates GH release. This suggests that GHB's GH-releasing effect takes place through an entirely different mechanism.
One placebo-controlled and blinded study found that two homeopathic products (the only ones tested) demonstrated a clear improvement in symptoms and increased IGF-1 levels. Since some people respond to one product but not another, it is worth trying one for a month to see if any improvements result. If not, switch products until finding one that works for you.
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