Mayur Deshpande
  Personal trainer in Mumbai
Nutritional Supplements Library Dhea

Nutritional Supplements Library

DHEA (Dehydroepiandrosterone)


What is DHEA?

DHEA (Dehydroepiandrosterone )is a natural steroid hormone produced from cholesterol by the adrenal glands, the gonads, adipose tissue and the brain. DHEA is the precursor of, androstenedione, testosterone and estrogen. DHEA is a prohormone for the sex steroids.It is the most abundant hormone in the human body. DHEA is produced from cholesterol through two cytochrome P450 enzymes. Cholesterol is converted to pregnenolone by the enzyme P450 scc (side chain cleavage) and then another enzyme CYP17A1 converts pregnenolone to 17a-Hydroxypregnenolone and then to DHEA. In humans DHEA is the dominant steroid hormone and precursor of all sex steroids. Production of DHEA begins around 6 years of age, increasing in quantity until peaking in early adulthood, around the age of 25, and declines afterwards to approximately 10% of peak levels by age 80


What is effective dosage for DHEA?

Recommended DHEA doses range from 50 to 100mg per day. Most DHEA products contain either 50mg or 100mg of DHEA, and you shouldn't take more than 100mg per day.Dosages of DHEA for men and women differ: men seem to be able to tolerate higher doses. Men have been shown to tolerate doses up 50 to 100 milligrams per day, while in women, the maximum recommended dose is 25 milligrams per day. However, because it is a hormone its use should be monitor by doctor.


What is the supplement source of DHEA?

The source material for DHEA powder is derived from wild yams, which are grown commercially. Plant sterols (a class of plant hormones) are extracted from the wild yams. The most common sterol is diosgenin, which has a molecular structure very similar to DHEA. In the laboratory, the diosgenin extract is converted to DHEA by clipping away a few side chains by means of chemical reactions. However, it is recommended that only pharmaceutical-grade supplements be used


Is it legal to use it?

The FDA (in America) banned the sale of DHEA as a therapeutic drug in 1996 until its safety and value could be reviewed. DHEA products on the market as dietary supplements are regulated under a 1994 law, the dietary supplement health and education act (DSHEA).Although it is legal to buy but it is banned by international Olympic committee.


What are the benefits of DHEA supplement?

• DHEA has been shown to help people lose weight, burn fat and build muscle, and increase sex drive.
• It promotes muscle strength, also help to recover faster from heavy and intense workout.
• "It can also help increase metabolism" - this claim also comes from the manufacturers. Again, there's little evidence to prove this
• It can lead to increase in libido and sex drive since DHEA does stimulate increase in levels of sex hormones
• IIt can help improve your overall sense of well-being


What are the side effects of DHEA supplement?

DHEA is an androgen, and is two steps from testosterone. DHEA converts into Androstenedione and Androstenediol, and it can also convert into estrogen. Although it lacks long term research to document its side effects, this doesn't mean it has none.
• Like any and all androgenic steroid, DHEA can cause hair loss, especially in men. DHEA tends to increases levels of DHT (Dihydrotestosterone), along with testosterone, and DHT is a main cause in hair loss.
• DHEA use can lead to acne problems, as most of you probably know that testosterone can cause acne problem among others.
• DHEA can convert to estrogen and this can lead to unwanted "feminine" characteristics in men.
• Long term use of DHEA can increase risk for breast cancer, ovary cancer, and prostate cancer
• DHEA can lead to prostate enlargement in males.
• DHEA can lead to menstrual irregularities in women. It can also accelerate facial hair growth, and deepen voice.
• Other DHEA side effects may include irritability, and restlessness, Palpitations and other arrhythmias, Menstrual Irregularity.
Cautions-
• as DHEAS and DHEA are converted to sex steroids; their use is contraindicated in patients with any cancer that is estrogen or testosterone dependent. Do not use DHEA if you have a preexisting medical condition, are under forty years old, are on hormone therapy, or are sensitive to hormone therapy. Women need to exercise extreme caution when using DHEA, as research studies report that DHEA has a weak androgenic effect and may induce growth of body and facial hair. Not for use by children, young adults, or pregnant or lactating women.