Many people use human growth hormone (HGH) because they think that it will help them feel and look younger. However, experts are unanimous that the hope has little foundation. Even worse, these products are often quite harmful.
HGH comes naturally from the pituitary gland and leads to growth in children and teenagers. It also assists in the regulation of body composition, internal fluids, bone and muscle growth, fat and sugar metabolism, as well as the function of the heart.
When made synthetically, though, HGH serves as the active ingredient within several prescription drugs as well as many other products which are widely available through the World Wide Web.
Synthetic HGH first became available for 1985, when the government approved it for certain applications in both adults and children. Within children, though, HGH injections serve the purpose of treating short height of unknown causes, as well as poor growth that comes from several different medical causes, such as:
chronic renal insufficiency
HGH insufficiency or deficiency
children born small for their gestational age
Prader-Willi syndrome, a genetic condition leading to low sex hormone levels, poor muscular tone, and constant hunger
Turner’s syndrome, a genetic condition influencing the development of girls
For adults, the approved applications of HGH include:
muscle wasting that connects to HIV
HGH deficiencies from rare tumors of the pituitary gland or treatment of those tumors short bowel syndrome, which leads to an improper absorption of nutrients because of severe intestinal troubles or the surgical excision of much of the small intestine
However, the most frequent uses for HGH lack approval from the government. Some users take the hormone, as well as other performance enhancers like anabolic steroids, in order to develop muscle and boost overall athletic performance. However, the effect of HGH on athletic performance is not known.
Over time, the HGH levels within the body naturally lower. As a result, some people researching the effects of aging have speculated and asserted that HGH products could lead to a reversal of bodily deterioration as a result of age.
However, these claims lack merit. This is why the use of HGH to combat aging lacks approval from the government.
Even so, some people get HGH in injectable form from physicians who prescribe it from purposes other than for which it has been labeled, through clinics, websites and online pharmacies.
There are others who buy HGH products, or products that purport to boost the natural production of HGH, in spray or pill form.
Companies that advertise these items online or on television infomercials assert that the products reverse the biological clock of the body, build muscle, reduce fat, restore the color and growth of hair, boost the sex life, augment the immune system, normalize blood glucose levels, increase overall energy, and enhance memory, vision and sleep quality.
However, there is no reliable scientific evidence indicating that these supplements come with the same effects as HGH in its prescription form, which is always an injection. In oral form, HGH encounters digestion through the stomach before the body has the chance to absorb it.
Those who do use HGH face the possible potential side effects:
tingling and numbness of the skin
high levels of cholesterol
carpal tunnel syndrome
nerve, joint or muscle pain
swelling from fluid within the tissues of the body
HGH also increases the possible risk of diabetes as well as the development of cancerous tumors.
Getting the drug through illicit means creates additional levels of risk, because you might not know exactly what you are taking. The high cost of HGH means that the drugs have been counterfeited. If you are taking HGH from another source than your doctor, you run the risk of taking something that has not been approved.
If you are starting any sort of regimen, you should consult your physician before starting on the medication. No matter what your initial condition, it is wise to discuss any potential interactions that your medication might have with other items you take, as well as interactions with any other supplements.
There are many other remedies that lead to feelings of youthfulness and increases in muscle tone and fitness with fewer negative outcomes than taking HGH, particularly in its non-prescription forms.
One of these is a regular course of exercise. Research shows that exercise not only produces such natural boosters as dopamine, but it also leads to increased flexibility and improved muscle tone, particularly when accompanied by stretching.
Nutritional changes also lead to feelings of youthfulness and increased energy. Those who stay away from processed foods, staying with more of a natural diet, report an increased sense of energy.
The implication is that improving exercise and nutritional patterns have positive effects on the body without running the risks that come from taking in additional synthetic supplements.