Recent discoveries have yeilded amazing new insights into aging, health, and fat loss. We have recently learned that these areas are more closely interrelated than previously suspected, and hormones are the unifying factor.  This realization lies at the heart of the hormonal revolution, and it presents the thrilling prospect of using one grand strategy to attack all three simultaneously - to arrest aging, while achieving super-health, while at the same time permanently eliminating excess bodyfat.

Occupying center stage in this unfolding drama is somatotropin , also known as human growth hormone, the most potent anti-aging force yet discovered and the most powerful fatburnig hormone in the body of both men and women.  Growth hormone is produced by the pituitary gland, under the direction of the hypothalamus.  In addition to being a powerful lipolytic  (fat-burning)1,2,3, and anabolic (mucsle-enhancing)4,5,6, hormone in both men and women, growth hormone bolsters your immune system to fight sickness and disease.7,8  Unfortunately, growth hormone tends to decline as you get older.9,10,11,12,13

 Beginning in 1958, growth hormone injections were used to treat children with a condition known as growth-hormone deficiency syndrome, which results in stunted growth. It was an effective treatment, but there was one problem: the only source of human growth hormone was the brains of cadavers.  It took thousands of dead brains to obtain a few tiny drops of growth hormone.  What is worse, the growth hormone supply became contaminated by the deadly virus that causes Creutzfeld-Jakob or "mad cow" disease.  When, consequently, three children who were taking GH extracts died, it was a no-brainer for the FDA: distribution of growth hormone was banned.  With the cadaver source lost, and with no living people generous enough to donate their brain, growth hormone had to be created from scratch, an impossible task at the time.

In the 1980's the impossible became possible, owing to the advent of genetic engineering.  In 1985 , synthetic growth hormone became the second recombinant DNA drug ever developed (insulin was the first).  Having successfully cloned the growth hormone gene, the stage was set for an experiment that shocked the world.

In July 1990, the New England Journal of Medicine 14 published the results of a study that will be written about in the history books.  It marked the first time that any therapy was proven to reverse aging.  What it meant by proven  is that it passed the gold standard of drug testing: randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, clinical study in human beings. (Although there are many other highly-touted anti-aging supplements and drugs, including the hormones melatonin and DHEA, none have been proven  to affect aging in human beings .)

This landmark study was conducted by an endocrinologist named Daniel Rudman, who was seeking to prove his hypothesis, published five years earlier in the Journal  of   American Geriatrics Society,15 that hormonal decline was the root cause of the physical deterioration associated with aging.  The study consisted of twelve elderly men receiving injections of growth hormone three times per week for six months.  The results were astonishing.

The subjects lost an average of 14% bodyfat and gained 8.8% lean body mass without diet or exercise!16  In addition to the stunning changes in body composition, which included a significant increase in both bone density and muscle mass, the men experienced a improvement in skin tone, texture, and elasticity that made them look much younger.17  But the results went much deeper: not only did the men look  younger, they became  younger internally: their internal organs grew back to youthful size!18

You may be surprised to learn that, as you age, not only do your muscles shrink but so do your internal organs due to a reduction in protein synthesis.19
Between the ages of thirty and seventy-five, the liver, kidneys, brain, and pancreas atrophy by 30%, on average.  As disquieting as this is, it's not worst of it.  More unsettling is the fact that the shrinkage results in diminished functional capacity, including the ability of glands to produce hormones.  (As you can see, this is a mutually-aggravating cycle between organ atrophy and hormonal decline.  However, the "chicken or the egg" question is an academic one here because we know, from the Rudman study and others, that hormonal enchancement can revive flagging organs.)

Aging is associated with functional impairments throughout the body, which herald the general decline of the person.  This explains why getting older is such  a horrid thought for most people.  In addition to reduced hormonal output, the age-related physiological downslide includes a weakening of the immune system and a diminished ability to metabolize sugar and cholesterol and to eliminate toxins from the body.  Fortunately, this downward spiral (or "general meltdown" as my friend Jeff Northcutt calls it) is now known to be a funtion of hormonal decline, and is reversible.

In interviews with reporters, one subject of the Rudman study, a 65 year-old man, reported that his gray hair was turning black.  The wife of another man complained that she was having trouble keeping  up with her newly-energized husband, even though she was fifteen years younger than him.  The medical experts who reviewed the results of Dr. Rudman's study wrote, in language rarely used in the conservative medical journals, that the results were equivalent to approximately 15 years of reverse aging !  Subsequent studies in men and  women have confirmed the dramatic rejuvenative effects of growth hormone.

Hormonal Synergy
Growth hormone declines with age in every animal species that has been tested to date.1 The rate of the drop-off varies with the individual, and is dictated by genetic and environmental/lifestyle factors.  The steeper the drop-off, the faster and more visibly you age.2 Not only does growth hormone decline directly promote aging, but because all hormones are interconnected ( a phenomenon known as hormonal synergy ), the fall in growth hormone, or any other "good" hormone, has a "domino effect" throughout the entire endocrine system.  Conversely, enhancing growth hormone, or any  other "good" hormone, can have a revitalizing effect on other "good" hormones.

Growth Hormone and Testosterone
There is a positive relationship between growth hormone levels and testosterone levels in men.  Testosterone increases growth hormone levels 3,4,5 and growth hormone activates luteinizing hormone,6 which is the hormone responsible for directing the testes to produce testosterone.  Functionally, these two anabolic hormones work together to build and maintain muscle and bone.

To illustrate the functional cooperation between growth hormone and testosterone, in studies of growth retardation testosterone fails to promote growth in the absence of growth hormone.7,8 In addition to being dependent on growth hormone for potentiation of its anabolic properties, testosterone's androgenic  (sexual) action is impaired where growth hormone is deficient.9,10 Thus, it is accurate to say that growth hormone and testosterone are "friendly" or complementary hormones.  You will see shortly how this fact comes into play in the Natural Hormonal Enhancement strategy.

Somatopause vs. Menopause
Like female menopause, the fall in growth hormone is predictable, and the effects profound.  For this reason, it has been given a similar name, "somatopause."
Two differences between growth hormone decline and estrogen decline are rate  and reversibility .  Whereas estrogen drops like a stone, growth hormone desends slowly, taking other hormones, and your youthfulness, with it.  And while the estrogen drop is unavoidable by natural means, growth hormone decline is now more a matter of choice than a fact of human destiny.

Absent hormonal enhancement measures, daily growth hormone production in men and women declines by about 14% per decade, so that by sixty years of age the average person's growth hormone output is less than 50% of what it was at twenty years of age.  By eighty years of age, the pituitary is squeezing-out about 25 micrograms per day, 5% as much as at age twenty - barely enough to grow a fingernail.
The relentless decline in growth hormone and other vital hormones continues further, bridging the gap between old age and the grave.



1. Goldman JK, Bressler R. Growth Hormone Stimulation of Fatty Utilization by Adipose Tissue.
Endocrinology 1967;81;1306.

2. Rabinowitz D, Klassen GA, Zierler KL. Effect of Human Growth Hormone on Muscle and Adiopse Tissue Metabolism in the Forearm of Man. J Clin Invest 1965;44:51.

 3. Snyder D, Underwood LD, Clammons DR. Persistent Lipolytic Effect of Exogenous Growth Hormone During Calorie Restriction. Am J Med 1995;9:129

4. Greenbaum AL, Young FGA. A Comparsion of the Differences in the Total Nitrogen Content of the Muscles of the Rat Resulting from Treatment with Growth Hormone and from Inoaniation. J Endocronol  1953;9:127.            

5. Sonntag W, Hylka V, Meites J. Growth Hormone Restores Protein Synthesis in Skeletal Muscle of
Old Male Rats. J Gerontol 1984;40:689.

6. Russell-Jones DL. The Effects of Growth Hormone on Protein Metabolism in Adult Growth Hormone Deficient Patients. Clin Endocrinol 1993;38:427.

7. Kelley KW, et al.  GH3 Pituitary Adenoma Implants Can Reverse Thymic Aging. Proc Nat Acad Sci 1986;83:5663.

8.  Crist DM, et al. Exogenous Growth Hormone Treatment Alters Body Composition and Increases Natural Killer Cell Activity in Women with Impaired Endogenous Growth Hormone Secretion. Metabolism 1987;36:1115.

9. Corpus E, Harman SM, Blackman MR. Human Growth Hormone and Human Aging. Endocrinol Rev 1993;14:20

10. Finklestein JW, et al. Age-Related Changes in the 24-hour Spontaneous Secretion of Growth Hormone. J Clin Endocrin Metab 1972;35:665.

11. Prinz P, et al. Plasma Growth Hormone During Sleep in Young and Aged Men. J Gerontol 1983;38:519.

12. Ceda G, et al. Diminished Pituitary Response to Growth Hormone Releasing Factor in Aging Male Rats. Endocrinology 1986;118:2109.

13. Sonntag W, et al. Decreased Pulsatile Release of Growth Hormone in Old Male Rats. Endocrinology 1980;107:1875.

14. Rudman D, et al. Effects of Human Growth Hormone in  Men over 60 Years Old. N Engl J Med 1990;323:1.

15.Rudman D.  Growth Hormone, Body Composition, and Aging. J Am Geriat Soc 1985;33:800.

16. Rudman D, et al. Effects of Human Growth Hormone in Men Over 60 Years Old. N Engl J Med 1990;323:1.

17. Id.

18. Id.

19. Richardson A. "The Relationship Between Aging and Protein Synthesis." In: Florini J,ed Handbook of Biochemistry in Aging. Boca Raton,Fl: CRC Press 1981.

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