Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Salivary Hormone Testing is Superior to Blood Testing

Our hormones play a vital role in keeping our bodies optimally healthy. In delicate balance with one another, they harmonize to keep us functioning the way we should. But within such a balance, deficiencies, fluctuations, and imbalances can wreak havoc. In such situations, hormone testing can provide a clearer picture of what's going on, and tell us specifically what needs to be done.

Traditionally, the most common hormone testing is done via the blood. However, research has shown that blood testing is not as accurate, and does not provide the most complete overall picture. Salivary hormone testing has proven to be more effective. The saliva provides a clearer indication of the amount of free, unbound and active bioavailable hormones – the form of hormones that actually have an effect on the tissues – which are filtered into the saliva. Salivary hormone tests can also tell us, more accurately than ever, how much of an effect topical hormone supplementations (gels, creams, and patches) are having. One significant study found that, when topically applied, such preparations elevated hormone levels in the area's tissue – yet despite the hundredfold increase of hormones, there was no change noted in the blood hormone levels. In order for a blood test to register an increase of hormone levels, there must be extremely high levels of hormones, which has often led to the use of excessive amounts of supplementation. Since saliva better reflects the saturation of topically applied hormones, it's much easier to determine the correct, most beneficial dose.

The hormones in saliva are very stable and can be stored for up to a week without affecting the accuracy of the result. Last but not least, salivary testing is less invasive and more convenient. It's a new dawn for hormone testing, and needle-phobes everywhere can rejoice.


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