Modern biotechnology has given us the ability to totally synthesize this remarkable hormone. Because of its size, complexity and stereoscopic configuration it cannot be taken orally, it must be injected. Twenty years ago hGH was being used by weight lifters in massive doses from cadaver sources. This was not without risk.
Today's sources are pharmaceutically pure and completely safe. And, the doses we use today are in the very small physiological range.
The hypothalamus is the primitive site of the brain that sends either stimulating or inhibiting hormones to the pituitary. Growth hormone stimulating hormone (GHRH) tells the pituitary gland to secrete more growth hormone. On the other side, Growth Hormone Inhibiting Hormone (GHIH = Somatostatin) tells the pituitary gland to stop producing more hGH.
Once the pituitary receives the positive stimulating signal it then secretes hGH which in turn stimulates the liver to produce IGF-1 (Insulin-like Growth Factor-1). This is the substance that is most commonly measured as a surrogate marker for hGH output. Low IGF-1 = low hGH.
Once the IGF-1 levels are high enough, a feedback message is sent back to the pituitary and the hypothalamus to modulate further hGH secretion. This is accomplished by secreting more Somatostatin which then slows down hGH production.
As we age, hGH output begins to fall off, whether by sluggishness of pituitary secretion or because of true hGH decline. The outcome is the same: declining levels of hGH give rise to a plethora of symptoms which we know as the telltale signs of aging:
In the seminal Rudman study published in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM; 323:1-6 1990) 21 men from ages 61-81 with plasma IGF-1 levels less than 350 iu per liter were divided into two groups: 12 test subjects and 9 controls subjects. A six month base period of data collection preceded the six month test (hGH injection) period.
The study showed an increase in lean muscle mass, a decrease in adipose fat tissue, and an increase in vertebral bone height. All test subjects had measurable increases in their IGF-1 blood values. The control group showed none of the above benefits.
To quote: "The effects of six months of human growth hormone on lean body mass and adipose-tissue mass were equivalent in magnitude to the changes incurred during the 10 to 20 years of aging. In other words, regression of aging by 10-20 years."
Later Chien and Terry's large group of over 1000 clinically treated individuals showed that lower dose, higher frequency administration (twice daily) is associated with virtually no side effects and substantial benefits:
Other studies since then have shown additional benefits:
Although recombinant hGH is the gold standard because it is controllable, powerful and able to confer the greatest rewards, it is, on the other hand, not for everyone.
HGH is injectable and, therefore, not for those with needle phobia. It is expensive and, therefore, limited to those can afford to pay. This is not reimbursable on insurance plans. And, hGH is not recommended for travel across international borders because of refrigeration problems and because of increased scrutiny from border agents.
There is an alternative
or, in some cases, an adjunct: oral Secretropin.
Secretropin stimulates the GHRH
hormone, allowing your body to make its own hGH. Therefore, Secretropin is a logical way to
introduce growth hormone augmenting therapies into your anti aging
plan with minimal risk. Sermorelin/GHRP-6 is another powerful option for those who don't need hGH but just need to augment their own natural production.
Human growth hormone is one of the most powerful tools we now have to prevent and repair the effects of aging. But hGH is never the total program—it is always part of a comprehensive and integrated approach, and only used for those with a dificiency of Human Growth Hormone.
Dr. Bronner offers his patients both therapes when indicated: Recombinant Growth Hormone (hGH) replacement therapy, Sermorelin, GHRP-6 and oral Secretotropin. In many instances, they are quite complimentary for many of our more active clients. The results are remarkable.