Using Human Growth Hormone HGH. Tristate Men and Women want to know if it’s dangerous or anti-aging.


By Bio-identical hormone specialist Anthony Ortiz RPH CCN

One the surface, if you listen to any media outlet, human growth hormone or HGH is the pariah of medicine. You hear of it exclusively in terms of pro athletes using and abusing it with or without the steroid, testosterone. The athletes who decide to use it, do it for the simply reason, it works. I’m not endorsing the use of either HGH or testosterone but I do want to set the record straight on any positive or negative data collected.

The pituitary gland at the base of your brain makes HGH. The body uses it primarily as a cellular activator for growth. In fact, the FDA approved indication for HGH is in children with growth disorders and adults with a deficiency. In addition HIV patients with muscle wasting are candidates for the prescription. As we approach middle age, the production of the hormone decreases. Throughout the life cycle, HGH is secreted throughout the day and surge two hours prior to sleep when cortisol levels are at their lowest. Like most hormones, it’s released in pulse secretions every 4 to 6 hours. Factors like exercise and getting enough sleep are natural ways to increase HGH release. Being a hormone that is anabolic (building), HGH does the following:

  • Builds bone by stimulating IGF1 (effect on osteoblasts)
  • Reduces livers requirement for glucose
  • Causes lipolysis (breakdown of fat)
  • Increases muscle mass and protein development

Many anti-aging specialists like the American Academy of Anti-Aging Specialists look at HGH’s unique ability to make your liver dump fat and sugar while keeping protein stores from being used as energy. A perfect fat loss method! It does this thru its action on IGF-1 or insulin growth factor-1. IGF-1 and insulin feed your cells in different ways. When the body’s levels of IGF-1 are low, the body relies on insulin to distribute glucose to the cells. When insulin is used as the main supplier of energy, fat storing takes place over time. Insulin secreted from the pancreas tells the liver to store energy as carbohydrates and fat. Losing fat is clear about but why is it important in keeping your protein stores up?

Proteins are small molecules that act like the locomotion of cells and are involved in every cell of the body. Enzymes, which are made up from proteins and are catalysts for cells. They sit on cells outer wall and act like a signaling agent directing glucose to enter the well. Hormones cannot work without proteins. Without sufficient protein stores, time begins to rob cells of their energy, elasticity and ultimately the death of the cell. HGH creates the opportunity for body to maintain good protein levels. With all we know about HGH, there have not been any double blind studies on the safety or efficacy of HGH. In 2007, an observational Stamford study using HGH in elderly men demonstrated a decrease in fat and an increase in muscle without a control arm. Side effects from using HGH are a few, mostly joint swelling, pain and an increase in diabetes. A huge negative to HGH is the cost factor. Averaging over $500.00 per month, the treatment is very cost prohibitive.

For patients going to anti-aging doctors and looking to optimize their levels of human growth hormone, measuring IGF-1 can be used as marker since levels don’t change much throughout the day. These doctors will dose your HGH according to your weight and age. They should also take into account the patients health status and family history.

By Anthony Ortiz, RPH CCN

Anthony is the owner/pharmacist and clinical nutritionist of Atlas Drug and Nutrition. Located in North Bergen, NJ, Atlas Drug specializes in womens health related issues.

To learn more or if you need to contact me, e-mail me at or call 888-449-5990.