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Anti-Aging Expert,Dr. Donna Becker, BringsOptimal HealthTo ManyGBy Alissa Reinhardetting older is a part of life. You’ve heard it a million times...there is no magic fountain of youth. But what if there was a way to changehow your body reacts to aging? What if the physical process of aging could be slowed, stopped or even reversed? The knowledge is there, the technology exists, and the care and compassion provided by Donna Becker, D.O. at The Enhancement of Life Center has transformed the lives of countless patients.Dr. Becker has been practicing medicine for over 20 years. At age 47, she began experiencing changes in herself due to menopause. Night sweats and hot flashes began effecting her day-to-day life and comfort. She became very emotional, compromising her interaction with patients as an ER physician. The changes were severe and she immediately sought help.“I was astonished there was no one who could help,” Dr. Becker recounted. “I went to the best physicians in San Antonio and came up empty- handed.”Dr. Becker continued her search for help, traveling all the way to Las Vegas where she was treated by a group of physicians specializing in anti- aging.“It was then that I realized that this whole untreated problem was being utterly ignored,” she explained. “Women were not being treated for low estrogen and misleading headlines tied hormone therapy to cancer. Before I entered medical school, I dreamed of operating a true healing center and I was committed to following that vision.”Dr. Becker eventually left her career as an ER physician and opened The Enhancement of Life Center in San Antonio. She has changed the lives of countless patients with her view that aging is a very treatable disease and bioidentical hormones are the key to a long, productive and comfortable life.“My whole practice is built upon mimicking the hormones we had inside our body when we were young and strong and keeping them at a stable and balanced level. Our hormones decline year after year. This is the natural progression of aging. However, in today’s day and age – we live much longer than we did centuries ago due to good nutrition, a clean environment, dental care...a million different things. We are able to live very long lives, but regardless, our hormones will still decline.”Many of Dr. Becker’s female patients come to her with symptoms of perimenopause, menopause or postmenopause (the transition of menopause36“My whole practice is built upon mimicking the hormones we had inside our body when we were young and strong and keeping them at a stable and balanced level.” ~ Dr. Donna Beckercaused by the declining levels of estrogen and progesterone) The symptoms range from night sweats and hot flashes – similar to what Dr. Becker experienced – to insomnia, memory loss, inability to focus, anxiety and more. With the monitored application of bioidentical hormones, Dr. Becker has helped these women to “feel like themselves again.” Bioidentical hormones act in the body just like the hormones we naturally produce.In recent years, Dr. Becker’s patient base has expanded to almost 50% male. She is very successful in treating andropause (male menopause caused by a gradual drop in testosterone). As men age, testosterone levels decrease, causing irritability, weakness, fatigue, lack of focus, and more. Bioidentical hormones can help alleviate these symptoms.Everyone is different and although not everyone may necessarily need hormone treatment, it’s important to get a comprehensive blood panel done yearly. Dr. Becker begins her journey with every patient by ordering three pages of detailed lab analysis so she can accurately read and understand blood levels.“Many times, I’ve seen patients that have problems with their focus or energy level, and blood work shows that something as simple as an over-the-counter B12 supplement can help,” she explained.For her menopausal patients, Dr. Becker tries to mimic blood levels when the female patient was a younger individual – perhaps in her 30s – the first 10 days after her period stops. In women, estrogen waxes and wanes so that her body can prepare for pregnancy. But in postmenopausal years, a woman doesn’t need to wax and wane. She needs a steady state of hormones, a very precise level, to keep her system functioning normally.“Hormone dosage is different for everyone depending upon liver function, metabolic rate, how they are taking the hormones, etc.,” Dr. Becker continued. “Just like one patient who is diabetic may require a different level of insulin than another diabetic, hormones too should be determined by the individual and his or her body.”After Dr. Becker and the patient agree upon a treatment plan, she again monitors blood work to see if any adjustments are needed. Her approach is thorough and scientific. She is committed towww.GreatNWGuide.comDr. Donna Beckerutilizing the best of traditional medicine, as well as alternative and integrative methods to manage the symptoms of aging.“Lately, I’ve been seeing younger women in their late 30s and early 40s experiencing symptoms of perimenopause,” added Dr. Becker. “The first hormone to leave the body is progesterone. Without progesterone, you can’t sleep well, you may experience anxiety or other mood issues. The answer to these symptoms is not an antidepressant, but it might be bioidentical hormones. However, depression is a real and treatable illness that should be treated by a psychiatrist, not an OBGYN.”As described by Dr. Becker, a healthy level of progesterone promotes restful sleep and a balanced mood. Balanced levels of estrogen are helpful for memory, healthy skin and to reduce hot flashes. Estrogen also is important for brain health, bone health, the amount of collagen in your skin, eyesight and more. And a stable testosterone level assists with muscle strength, focus and clarity. “When your hormones are balanced, you feel like exercising which helps the brain, you make good food choices, and so on,” explained Dr. Becker. “It’s very much a domino effect.”In addition to hormone therapy, Dr. Becker counsels her patients on healthy lifestyle choices including diet and exercise. Studies have shown that a different type of bacteria is found in the colonOptimal Health - Cont. on page 42 2017-2018Feature

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