It’s an everyday occurrence when someone calls the doc line at the lab and wants to know how they can change the labs to improve their patients’ symptoms. However, it’s important to take a step back and look at what labs can tell us. While it’s true that abnormal lab findings can contribute to symptoms – high thyroid-stimulating hormone reflects hypothyroidism, high testosterone reflects polycystic ovary syndrome, and hyperandrogenism or low cortisol may contribute to fatigue. Yet, in many other conditions, labs reflect the medical condition happening in that patient’s body and not a cause of the problems. Let’s look at a couple of examples of this chicken-and-egg discussion.…

Tags: Cortisol, Estrogen, Testosterone, Menopause


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When Labs Aren’t Everything

In today’s scary world of rapidly spreading COVID-19 infections, most individuals are hesitant to have their health care provider, or worse, a stranger at a blood draw clinic, violate their mandated social space of 6 feet to allow them to stick a needle in their vein and draw blood for testing hormones. It is understandable why during the…

Tags: Blood Spot Testing, Cardiovascular Disease, Covid19, Hormone Testing, Heavy Metals, Vitamin D, Thyroid Health, Research, Menopause, Laboratory Quality


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Convenience of Collecting Dried Blood Spots at Home for Hormone Testing in the Laboratory

One of the most commonly used herbs in the botanical toolbox is Vitex agnus-castus, also known as chaste tree berry. During the Middle Ages the dried berries were used in monasteries as a peppery condiment that was said to help suppress libido. Additionally, in the mid-1900s, Vitex was often given to women for “sexual irritability,” nervousness and melancholia. Perhaps for these reasons the herb…

Tags: Hormone Balance, PMS and PMDD, Menstrual Cycle Mapping, Menopause, Mental Health


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Vitex Agnus-Castus – Botanical Support for Female Hormone Imbalance

Menopause can be a confusing time for many women and their families, and as a society we tend to steer away from having open, honest conversations about this very important transition in a woman’s life. At ZRT, we aim to change that and equip all woman with the tools and resources necessary to maintain optimal health during their menopause transition and after. In this post, ZRT’s Clinical…

Tags: Menopause, Progesterone, Estrogen, Depression, Anxiety, Weight Management, Sleep, Thyroid Health


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Menopause: Your Most Common Questions Answered

In 2002 several large-scale clinical studies were published on the risks of breast cancer in postmenopausal women using conventional FDA-approved hormone therapy. These were the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) and Million Women’s studies of women using FDA-approved estrogens and progestogens in the United States and Great Britain, respectively. Both studies came to the same conclusion – that…

Tags: Progesterone, Estrogen, Menopause, Breast Cancer, Brain Health


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Topical Progesterone, Not Synthetic Progestins or Oral Progesterone, Should Be Considered as a Companion for Estradiol Replacement Therapy

Having just entered my forties, my radar’s perked for solid information coming out of the research community on the perimenopausal transition. What can I do to make this 10 or so years of transition useful and even helpful to the future postmenopausal me? As women, we’re no strangers to functioning in some level of consistent discomfort – whether cycle-related, birth control related, pregnancy or…

Tags: Menopause, Cardiovascular Disease, Estrogen, Progesterone, Hormone Replacement Therapy, Metabolic Health, Cortisol


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A Perimenopausal Game Plan

Sometimes you look back and wonder where all the time went.Let’s see - in my twenties, the younger, sexier me had been to University and embarked on a career in medical research, and I’d been very active in my leisure time – including hiking and skiing every year in the Alps. I was too invested in my career and hobbies to have children and wanted to put that off until the right time.In my…

Tags: Menopause, Estrogen, Testosterone, Androgen, Hormone Replacement Therapy, Sleep, Stress


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The Younger, Sexy Me…...nopause!

In my previous blog I discussed how the psychoactive component of marijuana (cannabis), mainly tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), can have a negative impact on your hormones. In this blog, I will delve into the world of cannabidiol (CBD), which has been making quite a buzz lately as a therapeutic panacea.Although they are derived from the same plant and have quite similar molecular structures, CBD is…

Tags: Endocannabinoid System, Immune System, Anxiety, Depression, Alzheimer's, Menopause, BDNF, Estrogen


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The Effects of Cannabis - Part 2: Cannabidiol

A symbol of femininity for so many women, our hair demands attention. Both deeply personal and superficially public, changes in the looks of our hair can inspire a range of emotions, driving us to willingly partake in its cutting, straightening, curling, bleaching, darkening, or other aggressive chemical treatments. Hair is part of who we are and how we present ourselves to the world. This is why…

Tags: Stress, Menopause, Cortisol, Progesterone, Estrogen, PCOS, Thyroid Health, Vitamin D, Vitamin B12


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Understanding the Connection Between Hormones and Hair Loss

Did you know that ZRT offers clinical case reviews for neurotransmitter testing? If you want to learn more, check out Dr. Kate’s Clinical Cases, a library of presentations, created by Dr. Kate Placzek, to assess patient issues with the aid of neurotransmitter testing. You’ll find case presentations focused on various conditions from anxiety and depression, ADHD, PTSD, insomnia and many others,…

Tags: Breast Cancer, Neurotransmitters, Menopause, Heavy Metals


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A Case Study for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

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