What is HGH??
The Elixir of Youth
The human growth hormone (GH) is produced by the pituitary gland which is situated at the base of the brain. GH is dubbed as the elixir of youth because of its ability to reverse the effects of aging in a person.
Function of the Growth Hormone
GH promotes protein synthesis. This means that it helps to build muscles, connective tissues, including collagen and elastin, new skin cells and repair tissues.
During the growing and developing stages, GH is involved in the growth of bones and therefore, our height and built. Growth and development reach a peak at around 16 - 20 years old and from then onwards, our aging phase begins.
Production of GH
In line with the aging phase, production of GH begins to decline as we reach adulthood. By the time we approach 50, blood levels of GH have fallen to a negligible amount.
Effects of Decreased GH Production
Decreased production of GH leads to decreased protein synthesis, the effect of which is aging.
Signs of Aging
Aging is more than skin deep. It goes beyond the wrinkles and lines we see on our faces. As we age, we lose muscle and this is indicated by a reduction of our lean body mass readings and a corresponding lowering of our metabolic rate. As a result, we lose strength and stamina.
Our body’s skin tone is supported by underlying tissues called collagen and elastin, both protein substances. Wrinkles and lines develop when production of collagen and elastin decreases due to lack of GH. Skin, therefore, becomes thinner and loses elasticity. Regeneration of epidermal tissues also slows down.
Other external signs of aging include hair loss and hair thinning, slow recovery from injury and loss of drive.
Increased Metabolic Diseases
Metabolic disorders, such as, obesity, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and diabetes occur through blood sugar imbalances in the body. Blood sugar levels in the body are regulated by two primary hormones, insulin and glucagon. Insulin’s chief function is to keep blood sugar levels from rising too high. Glucagon’s main function is to prevent blood sugar levels from falling too low.
Insulin increases when blood sugar level increases due to excess food intake. Insulin converts this excess into fat, which is stored in body cells. Elevated insulin levels also trigger our liver cells to make cholesterol, leading to elevated blood cholesterol levels.
Glucagon on the other hand, reverses the storage process set by insulin. Glucagon helps the body gets rid of fat by burning it for energy and at the same time, shuts down production of cholesterol.
GH stimulates the production of glucagon and with declined GH levels, glucagon secretion is lowered. The body is therefore unable to cope with increased insulin levels.
Increased Incidence of Heart and Auto-Immune Diseases
Glucagon also works to inhibit “bad” substances known under the collective heading Series 2 Eicosanoids and at the same time , increase the good Series 1 Eicosanoids. Series 2 eicosanoids cause many health defects such as arthritic aches and pains, blood clots, arterial constrictions, heart disease and many other signs of aging, while series 1 eicosanoids decrease pain, improve oxygen flow and decrease incidence of heart disease.
One of the series 1 eicosanoids, PGE, also works to stimulate production of GH. Increasing levels of GH will, in turn, work to