Growth hormone (GH or hGH) is a small protein that is made by the pituitary gland and secreted into the bloodstream. GH production is controlled by a complex set of hormones produced in the hypothalamus of the brain and in the intestinal tract and pancreas.
The pituitary puts out GH in bursts; levels rise following exercise, trauma, and sleep. Under normal conditions, more GH is produced at night than during the day. This physiology is complex, but at a minimum, it tells us that sporadic blood tests to measure GH levels are meaningless since high and low levels alternate throughout the day. But scientists who carefully measure overall GH production report that it rises during childhood, peaks during puberty, and declines from middle age onward.
GH acts on many tissues throughout the body. In children and adolescents, it stimulates the growth of bone and cartilage. In people of all ages, GH boosts protein production, promotes the utilization of fat, interferes with the action of insulin, and raises blood sugar levels. GH also raises levels of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1).
It is normal for GH levels to decline as a person reaches adulthood, but new research suggests that some adults may have too low a level. Low levels of GH are linked to the poor immune system, poor muscle tone, increase body fat, low energy levels, and cardiovascular changes, cholesterol and memory issues. GH insufficiency is associated with pituitary gland problems, brain injury, autoimmune disorders, and nervous system conditions.
Synthetic human growth hormone was developed in 1985. Growth hormone, also known as somatotropin or somatropin, is a peptide hormone that stimulates growth, cell reproduction and regeneration in humans and other animals. It is a type of mitogen which is specific only to certain kinds of cells. Growth hormone is a 191-amino acid, single-chain polypeptide that is synthesized, stored and secreted by somatotropic cells within the lateral wings of the anterior pituitary gland. Growth hormone is not a steroid as many media outlets suggest. Growth Hormone works as a “repair” hormone. To take full advantage of hGH, balance and correct your other hormones first.
A better term for GH would be healing or repair hormone. Growth hormone is naturally produced by our pituitary gland and is essential for bone and organ growth in our youth. Although hGH is no longer needed for growth after reaching adulthood, hGH is essential for many other vital functions, and the significantly lowered levels seen as we age are correlated with everything from diminished energy, cardiovascular disease, increased body fat, decreased muscle mass, and more.
Growth hormone diminishes rapidly after the age of 30. It is found that growth hormone deficient patients have almost 50% higher rate of death from heart disease than those with more optimal levels. In a 1990 New England Journal of Medicine article, Dr. Rudman reported on his study with the use of human growth hormone in elderly veterans.
“The effects of six months of human growth hormone on lean body mass and adipose tissue reversed the equivalent of changes incurred during 10-20 years of aging. The overall deterioration of the body that comes with growing old is not inevitable…We now realize that some aspects of it can be prevented or reversed.” – Dr. Daniel Rudman, MD – New England Journal of Medicine
In 1999, the National Institute on Aging completed another landmark study that was designed to either refute or substantiate the results of Dr. Rudman and also to extend his study by measuring other parameters. This was a double-blind, placebo-controlled, multi-center trial in both men and women with a large number of patients. This study involved not only growth hormone but also the estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. This study not only confirmed the benefits of growth hormone but also demonstrated that the addition of estrogen/progesterone and testosterone improved the effectiveness of growth hormone.
After 6 months treatment of 0.75 I.U./day here are the percent of patients reporting improvement in different areas.
Physical Signs of HGH Treatment
- Less wrinkles on face (75.5%)
- Less sagging skin on face and neck (67%)
- Firmer muscles (60.7%)
- Less body fat (48%)
- Better skin (thicker) (34.5%)
- Thicker head hair (28.1%)>
Emotional/Mental Improvements of HGH Therapy
- Improved emotional state (71.4%)
- Increased energy (86.8%)
- Improved physical stamina (86.04%)
- Increased ability to stay up late (82.5%)
- Improved resistance to stress ((83.7%)
- Significantly decreased Anxiety (calmer) (73.5%)
- Improved assertiveness (73.1%)
- Improved sense of power (77.8%)
- Improved self-esteem (50%)
- Depression improved or eliminated (82.7%)
- Improved sociability (77.8%)
- Decreased tendency to give sharp verbal retorts (71.0%)
This study and numerous others demonstrate that treatment with growth hormone results in significant improvements in both physical appearance and in emotional and mental well-being. The enhancement in quality-of-life with the use of growth hormone is truly remarkable.
The FDA has approved HGH for adult deficiency after being the most scrutinized pharmaceutical in history. After many years of research and clinical use, growth hormone has proven to have an excellent long and short-term safety profile with almost no side effects.