Women’s health encompasses a multitude of factors that are carefully orchestrated by hormones. In turn, hormones can be produced by different glands and tissues, which gives them varied functions. Furthermore, production, transportation, sensitivity, and detoxification can be modulated by various factors; among them, body composition and aging play a determinant role. As the years roll, and that is something we cannot stop, we need to figure out how to modulate our aging process to maintain our female patient’s health. Understanding hormonal metabolism and how to promote hormonal production, transportation, sensitivity, and detoxification, we can connect the dots between the influence of body composition and anti-aging factors that contribute to women’s health.
Women’s health is an extensive, multifactorial mechanism that several lifestyle changes can promote. This article will discuss the importance of body composition, mitochondrial function, and muscle mass and their effect on menopausal women.
Inflamm-aging, mitochondrial dysfunction a women’s health
The concept of inflamm-aging pertains to the mechanism of elevated inflammatory cytokines and oxidative stress response that associates with mitochondrial dysfunction. Interestingly, mitochondrial dysfunction and chronic inflammation interdependent. Besides this, inflamm-aging results in a wide array of reactions involving elevated levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines that promote chronic diseases.
Due to one particular factor, an immune response is caused by circulating cell-free mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA). Furthermore, mtDNA released due to cellular stress binds to cytoplasmatic pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) responsible for the generation of mitochondrial damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs).
Menopause is a breaking point in defining women’s health. This condition relates to hormonal changes consistent with ovarian aging. Indeed, an increase in serum follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) combined with decreased estradiol concentrations promotes a millie where muscle mass and bone density decline.
The hormonal changes that define the menopause stage lead to bone loss, increased bone turnover, and less bone formation. Furthermore, muscle loss has a tight association with mitochondrial function, oxidative capacity, and increased pro-inflammatory cytokines. Therefore the combination of hormonal changes and mitochondrial dysfunction in a pro-inflammatory milieu promotes age-related musculoskeletal issues in women.
But why is this so important? Mobility and structure are critical factors that ensure well-being. On the other hand, altered body composition consistent with excessive body fat coincides with an increased risk of all-cause mortality, disability, and institutionalization.
Estrogen is an integral modulator in skeletal growth and maintenance. Specifically for women’s health, a decrease in estrogen levels leads to increased bone resorption and affects mechanosensitivity. On the other hand, average estrogen production and levels reduce proresorption cytokines.
Another critical factor about mechanosensitivity is the interplay between exercise and estrogen receptor alpha (ER-a) at a cellular level. Furthermore, ER-a is essential for osteogenesis, but the function and number of this receptor seem to stall or decrease during menopause. Therefore, the signal of the mechanical load induced by exercise loses potential, which results in no osteogenic response but reduced bone density.
Bone density and muscle mass are crucial for the structure that is the cornerstone of women’s health. While simple lifestyle changes, like exercise, can promote better bone density and muscle mass growth, overdoing it may be detrimental to these tissues. Therefore, promoting a smooth transition from premenopause to menopause is essential to keep hormonal-mediated osteogenesis. Furthermore, understanding the patient’s clinical history and determining the dietary, activity, and supplementation needed to promote her well-being is step one towards better women’s health.- Ana Paola Rodríguez Arciniega, MS
Chen, Y. C., Lin, W. C., Cheng, T. T., Chen, J. F., Yu, S. F., & Hsu, C. Y. (2020). Lower Central Fat Increase Risk of One-Year Muscle Mass Loss in Menopausal Women. Mediators of inflammation, 2020, 4650318. doi.org/10.1155/2020/4650318
Lang T. F. (2011). The bone-muscle relationship in men and women. Journal of osteoporosis, 2011, 702735. doi.org/10.4061/2011/702735
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