Seven Steps for a Great Night’s Sleep

Woman sleeping in bed. Woman sleeping isolated on white background.

Sleep hygiene consists of a variety of different practices necessary for normal, quality nighttime sleep and full daytime alertness. Without proper sleep hygiene, you could be harming your body’s natural ability to fall and stay asleep on its own. Additionally, sleepless nights can lead to long term health consequences, such as insomnia.

In order to get a good night’s rest each and every night, it is essential that you follow the Seven Sleep Steps that will leave you feeling refreshed and energized each morning.

  1. Avoid napping during the day.While naps may be tempting, especially on the weekends, they actually disturb the normal pattern of sleep and wakefulness. If you feel yourself wanting to doze off, lace up your tennis shoes and go for a walk. The physical activity and natural vitamin D from the sun will wake you up in no time.
  2. Switch to all-natural soaps and lotions. The various petrochemicals in the products that we use on our skin have detrimental effects on hormone levels, most profoundly with estrogen. An increase in estrogen levels can cause insomnia in both women and men.
  3. Balance your hormones. Sex hormones are powerful sleep agents when levels are optimal.  Progesterone, estrogen and testosterone can all help improve your sleep quality by reducing anxiety, alleviating hot flashes and night sweats, and helping with sleep apnea.
  4. Supplement with adequate levels of desiccated thyroid. You have to have good thyroid activity in your brain in order for it to enter all stages of sleep, including REM. If you are still waking up tired in the mornings, your body may not be entering REM sleep and you may need your thyroid levels adjusted.
  5. Control your portions. Large meals close to bedtime can get in the way of a good night’s sleep. Remember to keep dinner one of your smaller meals of the day, and avoid chocolate afterwards. Chocolate contains caffeine, which can disrupt sleep.
  6. Establish a bedtime routine. Following the same schedule each night prepares your body for what’s to come next: sleep. Just like a child needs a strict bedtime routine, it’s important that adults follow the same advice. Dim the lights, wash your face, brush your teeth, turn off all electronics and turn down the air. You’ll be surprised at how creating a routine can help prepare your body for sleep.
  7. Optimize your bedtime vitamin routine.  Magnesium is a key mineral that helps ease muscle tension, while also promoting nerve health and relaxation.  Because it’s so easily depleted through stress and exercise, you want to make sure you’re supplementing with at least 600 mg of magnesium citrate or glycinate daily.  Additionally, melatonin is the natural sleep hormone that supports a restful night’s sleep without leaving you groggy the next morning.  Melatonin is available at Hotze Pharmacy in a sublingual prescription tablet that dissolves under the tongue, as well as over-the-counter through Hotze Vitamins, and is best taken 30 minutes before bedtime.

The Perfect Skincare Minus The Harmful Chemicals

Okay, let’s be honest. Our appearance matters. No man or woman wants to show signs of aging, uneven skin tone, scarring or acne. The golden question remains however, which skincare products are best to use?

Mainstream media will tell you that your gateway to beauty resides in Olay, Estée Lauder or even Chanel. All of which cost between $20- $400, which is a large range for products that all come with the same promises!

So here’s a little secret that will save you from going out and spending hundreds of dollars trying all the over-the-counter miracle creams: read the label. Many skincare products on the market include a host of chemicals, including parabens, which are synthetic preservatives found in foods, cosmetics and personal care products. The main issue with parabens is that they mimic estrogen and will disrupt your hormone balance.

Men with an increase in estrogen will notice an onset of fat around the midsection and in their breast tissue. Too much estrogen can also decrease sperm count. In women, excess estrogen will throw them into a state of “estrogen dominance,” which can increase the risk of cancers and contribute to unwanted weight gain.

At Hotze Pharmacy, we believe that less is more when it comes to skincare ingredients. That is why we developed a skincare line that is all-natural and free of the harmful chemicals that ultimately speed up the aging process.

The Hotze Skincare RX line includes:

Hotze Powerful AM –A morning thirst-quencher for your skin. This strong combination of vitamins C and E invigorates, repairs damage from toxins and UV rays, and prevents future damage to the skin. Reduce look of lines and wrinkles plus protects and hydrates the skin in one step.

Hotze Powerful PM– A proprietary blend of anti-aging ingredients that work at a cellular level to regenerate healthy, firm skin. This evening moisturizer promises to work hard while you rest, immediately smoothing rough, dry skin.

Hotze Skin Night Repair-A blend of anti-aging ingredients that work at a cellular level to regenerate young, healthy, firm skin, this evening moisturizer promises to work hard while you rest. Your skin will be transformed seemingly overnight.

Hotze Eye Renewal Cream– Boosted with natural moisturizers, anti-oxidants, and caffeine, this renewing eye cream helps firm and smooth the delicate eye area while also decreasing puffiness and dark circles underneath. All eyes will be on you!

Hotze Skin Renewal Cream– Designed for daily use on the face and décolletage, this nutrient-rich lightweight cream tones and tightens the skin, evens out the complexion, and minimizes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Hotze Skin Revitalizer Oil– This rich, intensely hydrating blend of oils is a perfect alternative body moisturizer to the chemical-laden products commercially available on the market. Perfect for the whole family to use.

Each formula has been compounded according to the same stringent quality standards you expect from Hotze,assuring the highest quality of skincare.  Hotze Pharmacy’s purpose is to help individuals balance their hormones naturally, and since skincare is absorbed by the body, ingredients matter.  So ask yourself, is it really working disrupting your balance all for your moisturizer?

If you are interested in trying products from our skincare line, we are here to assist you! Call us today at 281-828-9088.

Get Rid of Your Brain Fog Once and for All

Stress

Do you ever have those moments when you walk into a room and can’t remember why you’re there?  Or you have trouble recalling names and just can’t seem to place where you left your car keys?

A lot of people assume that it’s just a part of getting older, and in a way, they’re right.  You see, as we age, our bodies produce less pregnenolone, which results in the memory being affected.  Many physicians and scientists believe that restoration of pregnenolone to youthful levels is an important step in the treatment of aging and symptoms of aging. Pregnenolone may be one of the most important hormones because it seems to have a balancing effect. It is a precursor to many other hormones and may be able to bring the levels of other hormones up or down as needed.

Known as the “mother of all hormones,” pregnenolone is at the top of the hormone cascade that converts to all other hormones including DHEA, testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone.  This “neurosteroid” is not only produced in the adrenal glands, ovaries, and testes; the central nervous system also makes it.

Pregnenolone has been found to be 100 times more effective for memory enhancement than other steroids or steroid-precursors in lab mice. Pregnenolone has been reported to not only make people smarter but happier and enhance one’s ability to perform on the job while heightening feelings of well-being. It has also been reported to reduce high-stress induced fatigue.

Pregnenolone:

  1. Keeps the brain clear and sharp by blocking GABA, a neurotransmitter that keeps neurons in the brain from firing. As we age, GABA levels increase, making the brain sluggish.
  2. Counters the excitatory effects of the amino acid glutamate, which is present throughout the brain. While critical for normal learning, too much excitation by glutamate over time can damage neurons.  In fact, this overstimulation is thought to be one of the underlying factors in neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease.
  3. Has neuroprotective effects on brain cells. Studies have shown that pregnenolone increases levels of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter required for optimal brain function, which also becomes deficient in patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Acetylcholine is important for thought and memory and is involved in controlling sleep cycles, especially the REM phase of sleep associated with memory.
  4. Stimulates the formation of new brain cells. Studies have shown increases in brain cell growth after pregnenolone treatment. Studies have also shown pregnenolone to be effective in fighting arthritis, elevating mood, healing spinal cord injuries, overcoming dependency on chemicals and treating mental health disorders like phobias and schizophrenia.

So how do you know if you need pregnenolone?  It can be signaled by a history of depression, mental illness or short-term memory issues not resolved by thyroid supplementation.  Alternatively, if you’ve been trying to get your hormones balanced for six months to a year and they’re not quite right, pregnenolone can sometimes be the missing link that pulls it all into balance.

Questions about pregnenolone?  Ask me below!

Why Hormone Quality Matters

According to Hotze Health & Wellness Center, when it comes to hormone imbalance, bioidentical hormones are the optimal solution.  Because of the precise dosing, the quality of these hormones is vitally important.  So, how do you know if the hormones you are taking are high quality? For starters, listen to your body.

Celia got natural relief for her menopausal symptoms using bioidentical hormones. However, when she decided to switch pharmacies in order to save money, her health slowly declined.  The truth is that pharmacy quality standards can vary greatly depending on where you go.  As an example, compounding pharmacies are legally granted up to a 10% variance in the weight from capsule to capsule.  This means that you are not guaranteed your proper dosage when you go to fill your hormone prescription.

At Hotze Pharmacy, we strive for a weight variance of less than 1%, and if it’s more than a 3% variance, we throw it away.  Weight testing is an internal measure that can indicate that the capsule ingredients have been distributed uniformly across the compounded batch.  Beyond that, we also send samples of hormones each week to a 3rd party lab (the same lab used by the Texas State Board of Pharmacy) for potency testing.  This is intended to verify that the correct amount of active ingredient, i.e. estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, etc., is contained within the capsule.  The result?  You can have peace of mind knowing that you’re getting exactly what the doctor ordered.

Watch Celia share with Dr. Hotze how much better she feels now that she switched back to high quality hormones.

 

What You Need to Know to Thrive in Menopause

Stock Photo

You have probably heard that supplementing with bioidentical hormones can alleviate many of the symptoms of menopause, and that you can actually feel like yourself again.  To understand why that is, you need to know about how the hormones work together.

During menopause, estrogen levels can drop 40-60%, progesterone levels can drop to 0%, causing two problems.  First, it creates a deficiency of both hormones, leading to frustrating symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats from lack of estrogen and fluid retention and mood swings that are classic with low progesterone.

Perhaps the greater problem, though, is an imbalance we call estrogen dominance.  While the term can be confusing, it simply means that there is not enough progesterone to balance the estrogen, bringing about its own set of problems.

You see, estrogen and progesterone work together in the body, as each makes the body more responsive to the other. Estrogen makes the target body tissues more sensitive to progesterone and vice versa. They “prime” each other’s receptors.

Estrogen dominance isn’t just limited to menopause.  It can actually happen at any point in a woman’s life, as early as puberty, during high-stress times and after childbirth.

Many of estrogen’s undesirable side effects are prevented by the presence of progesterone.  Progesterone protects cell membranes from estrogen-induced problems, and major health risks of estrogen dominance include increased risk of endometrial cancer, as well as the fact that it may promote breast cancer.  This is why using unopposed estrogen without progesterone is not recommended.

If you think you may be suffering with estrogen dominance, take a look at some common symptoms:

• Acceleration of aging process
• Allergies
• Anxiety
• Breast tenderness
• Decreased libido
• Depression
• Increased fat (especially in abdomen, hips, thighs)
• Fatigue
• Foggy thinking
• Hair loss
• Headaches
• Insomnia
• Irritability
• Memory loss
• Thyroid dysfunction (mimicking hypothyroidism)
• Fluid retention/bloating
• Vaginal dryness
• Night sweats
• Hot flashes

The good news is that reversing estrogen dominance is quite simple.  By replacing the estrogen that’s missing and balancing it with progesterone, you can thrive throughout menopause.

If you have questions about estrogen dominance and your hormones, please contact a Hotze pharmacist any time, (281) 828-9088.

The Life-Changing Benefits of Testosterone

active older man

As a man ages, his testosterone levels decline steadily.  This typically starts in his thirties and continues throughout his life.  Despite the well-documented role of testosterone in cardiovascular and bone density, the benefits of testosterone replacement therapy are often overlooked.  While this includes a healthy libido, there are significant benefits beyond that, which can be life-changing.

Take a look at some of the things testosterone does for men:

  • Improves muscle mass, strength and tone, and increases stamina and endurance.
  • Protects the heart and arteries, decreases risk of heart disease, and lowers blood pressure by dilating the aorta and coronary arteries of the heart. Men with arteriosclerosis generally have low testosterone levels.
  • Helps maintain a healthy metabolism and improve energy.
  • Improves libido.
  • Enhances cognitive function and memory. It is crucial for maintaining mental sharpness and clarity.
  • Plays a role in building strong bones.
  • Increases assertiveness, initiative and sense of well-being. It improves self-confidence and drive.
  • Decreases body fat around the waist.
  • Improves moods, and relieves anxiety and depression.
  • Improves sleep and sleep apnea. Low testosterone causes men to wake up frequently, snore, and feel fatigued after waking.

Not Just for Men

Women produce smaller amounts of testosterone than men even in the prime of life. However, that does not mean that they are spared the effects of a decline in levels of this hormone. The benefits, besides enhancing sexual desire and pleasure, are:  improves the tone of vagina and bladder, decreases body fat, improves muscle strength and bone density, enhances the function of thyroid hormone, relieves anxiety and depression and promotes clearer thinking.

Dosing & Quality

Testosterone comes in both injectable and compounded forms (transdermal cream, sublingual tablets and capsules).  When choosing compounds, it’s vital that quality standards are followed.

At Hotze Pharmacy, for example, we have a machine that tests them individually and gives us a complete report with accuracy, standard deviation, and more. In addition, we regularly send samples of compounds for testing to the same outside laboratory that is used by the Texas State Board of Pharmacy.   This is above and beyond what is required by law.  By testing these samples we validate our ingredients, our processes and procedures, so you can feel confident that you’re getting just what the doctor ordered.

In fact, if you have ever switched to a different pharmacy and noticed that you weren’t feeling quite the same, it could be due to a difference in quality standards.  In addition to those outlined above, this could include additional fillers, lactose and other ingredients that could cause a reaction.  If you think this may have happened to you, our Hotze pharmacists are always available to answer your questions.  Give us a call at (281) 828-9088.

The Top 4 Things I Love About Cortisol

Woman Looking At Pill Bottle

In our fast-paced society, it seems almost impossible not to feel “stressed out” at least some of the time.  While our adrenal glands do their best to pump out enough cortisol, our body’s stress hormone, sometimes they just can’t keep up.  Unfortunately, cortisol gets a bad rap.  If you’ve ever thought, “cortisol is going to make me fat,” then it might be time to give this adrenal champion a second look.

Here are the top 4 things I love about cortisol:

  1. Helps support thyroid function:  Adrenal stress reduces your body’s ability to convert T4 (inactive thyroid hormone) to T3 (active thyroid hormone).  By decreasing stress, it is easier for the thyroid conversion to happen, thereby enhancing your thyroid function.
  2. Enables us to react to stress:  If our adrenal glands are fatigued, it looks a lot like depression since our thyroid won’t function properly.  Consequently, we get anxious and have low moods.
  3. Helps regulate blood sugar:  Cortisol is responsible for metabolizing carbs, protein and fat.  Your body needs cortisol to get energy from fat stores to tissue that needs it.
  4. Has anti-inflammatory properties:  Chronic inflammation can impair your immune system and lead to more serious illness, like heart disease.  In addition to its anti-inflammatory properties, cortisol helps regulate blood pressure.

If you’re worried about bloating or gaining weight on cortisol, you should know that this only happens when you have chronically elevated levels.  It must be balanced with other hormones and dosed to optimal levels, so your provider’s experience with cortisol is important.  Fortunately, the Hotze medical team has been recommending cortisol for decades, so you’re in good hands.

If you have questions about cortisol, contact one of your Hotze pharmacists any time, (281) 828-9088.

Jump Start Your Fat Loss with Detox

drinkingwater

Every day, our bodies are exposed to huge amounts of toxins in our environment. They come several forms including alcohol, pesticides, insecticides, preservatives in our foods, parabens and other chemicals in lotions. If left alone, these toxins will overtake our bodies, leading us to heart disease, cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, degenerative arthritis and other serious health conditions.

Furthermore, these chemicals are hormone disruptors, which cause hormones to fall out of balance. Symptoms of hormonal imbalance from toxins include dizziness, loss of mental acuity, weight gain, joint and muscle aches and pains, and fatigue. Detoxing helps your hormones to be balanced, nutrients to be better absorbed, and even contributes to healthier weight loss, or true fat loss.

Glutathione is the most critical and integral part of your detoxification system. Toxins “stick onto” glutathione and are carried out of the body through waste. This helps you reach peak mental and physical function and protects your body against disease.  Glutathione comes in several forms, including a convenient sublingual tablet.  It quickly dissolves under the tongue, so it’s fast and convenient.

To find out if glutathione is a good choice for you, call one of your Hotze Pharmacists today, (281) 828-9088.

 

Why You Should Change Skincare Products

set of makeup products isolated on white background

Finding a good skincare regimen can be intimidating. When you walk the aisles of your beauty department, there are so many options, each with a different claim about health and beauty. Whatever product you choose, I encourage you select products that are the best – not just for your skin, but also for your overall health. You might not even realize the dangers of some ingredients in the products you use every day.  In case you missed it, check out these ingredients to avoid.

Why you should change your skincare products

Change is hard. It’s even more difficult when you have found the perfect products for your skin. But did you know that most of us are slathering our faces with cosmetics that are filled with chemicals?  Parabens, in particular, are some of the most prevalent chemicals to avoid in cosmetics.

Parabens are added to cosmetic and pharmaceutical products to act as a preservative, but can have dangerous effects on your body and have even been linked to breast cancer.  Parabens mimic estrogen, and therefore can disrupt virtually every system in your body, including your thyroid.

Make sure to check the label when shopping for anything that you think might need to be preserved. You want to avoid products with any of these ingredients:

  • Methylparaben
  • Propylparaben
  • Isopropylparaben
  • Isobutylparaben
  • Butylparaben
  • Sodium Butylparaben

If you’re currently using Hotze Pharmacy’s compounded skincare, you can rest assured.  Our preparations are compounded using only paraben-free ingredients so you can be sure you are getting the finest quality.  If you have any questions about your current regimen and need some guidance, we are at your service.  Give us a call at (281) 828-9088.

Get Healthy and Spend Less

Beth Lee

If you have ever tried to file a claim with an insurance company, you know how frustrating it can be.  Between finding the right form to fill out, where to submit it, who to call if you have questions or what to do if your claim gets denied, the entire insurance process can be very confusing.  And things only seem to be getting worse.

This is why I am here to help. My name is Beth Lee, and I am your Hotze Pharmacy Insurance Advocate. My goal is to make the insurance process as quick and painless as possible for all of our guests!

Here are a few of the ways I can help:

  • Help you understand the terms of your policy or benefits
  • Guide you through the process of filing your insurance claim
  • Locate and provide the correct claim forms for your policy
  • Contact your insurance provider to answer questions about your claim on your behalf

When you are trying to get or stay healthy, the last thing you need is to worry about hassling with your insurance company. So whether you are a brand new guest or have been on our program for years, if you have questions about your insurance claims, please contact me at (281) 828-9088.