Growth hormone (GH) or Human Growth Hormone (HGH) or other name somatotropin is a growth stimulating hormone in all living beings. It is made of 191 amino acids, single chain polypeptide growth hormone is secreted by anterior lobe of pituitary gland. Growth hormone promotes growth of muscles, bones and other tissues by triggering the secretion of growth factors from the liver and muscle.
Role of growth hormone
Growth hormone is a small protein hormone released by pituitary gland, into the blood that travels and triggers the liver to produce insulin like growth factor (IGF), that promotes growth in children by multiplying long bones, and increase the length of the bones, thereby increasing the height of the child. Apart from increasing height in children and adolescents, growth hormone brings about many changes in the body.
- Promotes the proper functioning of immune system (responsible for fighting various infections and protecting body).
- Increases muscle mass and regulates bone multiplication of the whole body.
- Promotes metabolism of proteins, fats and carbohydrates.
- Increases protein synthesis and promotes proper usage of proteins helpful in growth of body.
- Increases the ability of the body to breakdown fat cells and helps in proper usage of fat.
- Helps in carbohydrates metabolism
- Stimulates growth of all internal organs of the body, except brain.
- helps increase retention of calcium
- promotes cartilage growth
- Controls blood and glucose levels
- Helps bone and tissue growth.
It is very clear growth hormone is very essential for good growth and has a major role to play in the overall bodily functions and that its main function is to increase height in children till they reach certain age. But the production of growth hormone slows down with the increase in age of a person.
Growth Hormone Deficiency (GHD)
Deficiency of growth hormone is commonly caused is children. The reason for this is poor functioning of pituitary glands or may be presence of tumour at the location of pituitary gland, leading to child not growing according to the height and weight standards. Doctor’s should be consulted if your child is shorter than the required height.
Causes of growth hormone deficiency (GDH)
Lack of growth hormone causes deficiency go Growth Hormone. Some children are born with this deficiency, such a condition is called congenital growth hormone deficiency. Some acquire this deficiency during childhood or during adulthood, this condition is called acquired growth hormone deficiency.
Some of the main causes of growth hormone deficiency
- Growth hormone deficiency may be caused by presence of tumour in the brain
- Head Injuries which are serious can also cause GDH
- Tumour in pituitary glands are reason for GDH
- insufficient blood supply can be the cause for GDH
- Radiation therapies given on brain can cause GDH
- Infections also lead to GDH
- Children with cleft lips and cleft palates have under developed pituitary glands, the leads to GDH
Symptoms of growth hormone deficiency
- Lack of stamina
- Lack of bone strength
- Delayed puberty
- Short height
- Poor concentration and memory
- Slow or delayed tooth development
- Dry and thin skin
- Loss of muscle in arms and legs
- Difficulty building muscle
- Heart Problems
- Loss of sleep
- Increased body fat and reduces muscle mass in adults
- Disturbance in plasma lipid profile in adults
- Increased Levels of bad cholesterol
- Low energy levels
- Insulin resistance
- Raised levels of triglyceride
- Easily at risk for osteoporosis
If you are suffering from low growth hormone also known as human growth hormone (HGH) every cell of your body is affected, as growth hormone helps build muscle, repair tissue, promotes bone density and overall body composition. If you are showing any of the above mentioned symptoms of growth hormone deficiency. You can restore your growth hormone levels by applying attention to get it back in the following ways.
Remedies to keep check on growth hormone levels-
- Intense exercise regime- Increase your frequency of aerobic exercise, weight lifting, it is known to boost growth hormone levels as exercise makes pituitary gland active, making it to release growth hormone.
- Increase protein intake- proteins or amino acid stacks taken in combined form makes the pituitary glands (produces growth hormone in the body) more active making it to release more growth hormone important for proper functioning of the body.
- Repair damaged bones- Low levels of growth hormone leads to frequent fractures, breakage of bones and ruptures of bones, because GH is essential for regulating bone metabolism and boosting mineral production. Growth hormone supplements can reduce bone damage.
- Skin Aging- if you are deficient in growth hormone levels your skin tends to sag or lose it nutrients making it look dull and aged. Increasing GH by taking supplements can reverse your skin aging, and make you look younger.
Diagnosing Growth Hormone Deficiency
Growth hormone deficiency can affect both children and adults, but it can be easily treated, if diagnosed properly and at the right time.
Doctor will order for certain tests to check for the cause of growth hormone deficiency and give treatment accordingly.
Here are some of the tests conducted no matter what the age:
- Physical Exam of the patient
- Checking weight, height, proportion of the body
- Blood test to measure growth hormone levels
- Blood to measure hormone levels released by pituitary glands
- Blood test to measure binding protein levels (IGF-1 and IGFBP-3) to check problems caused by pituitary gland to release growth hormone.
- MRI of brain
- X-rays to check for bone growth problems
- DXA (dual energy x-ray) scan to check bone density
Once the tests are conducted the doctor will be able to understand the underlying problem for growth hormone deficiency and start with the treatment.
Dealing with growth hormone deficiency is not difficult, because it can be easily tackled by using HGH oral supplements which can boost your growth hormone. These supplements are safe and increases your growth hormone production naturally without any harmful side effects.