Peptide Therapy Helps to Promote Cellular HealingApr 30, 2021 ● By Carrie Jackson
thriveMD, in Schaumburg, has a longstanding reputation for providing innovative and holistic therapies. Their focus on health optimization and functional medicine means that they individualize a proactive healthcare regimen for each patient. Carla Brook, NP-C, is a functional medicine practitioner and family nurse practitioner with more than 25 years of experience in family practice. She says that peptide therapy, a therapy that uses specific amino acids to support regeneration, can play a key role helping a variety of conditions. “Peptide therapy is a safe therapy that potentially enhances the function of the entire body, allowing it to heal itself optimally,” Brook explains.
Peptides are short strings of amino acids, the building blocks of proteins, which control many of the fundamental processes in the body. Peptide therapy uses specific combinations of these amino acids that communicate with different parts of the body and aid in cellular repair. “Because peptides are smaller than proteins, they may be easier for the body to absorb and can more easily penetrate the skin and intestines, which helps them enter the bloodstream more quickly. Peptide therapy makes changes on a cellular level and helps the body optimize its own healing,” says Brook.
While peptide use has been around since the 1970s, interest and innovation of the therapy has grown rapidly in recent years. People may be familiar with some commonly used peptides such as collagen for skin health and creatine for enhancing athletic performance. But there are currently more than 7,000 naturally occurring peptides that have been identified as therapies for a variety of conditions. “Peptide therapy can help with leaky gut, muscle and tendon injuries, sexual dysfunction, Alzheimer’s disease, hair regrowth, reducing inflammation, irritable bowel syndrome, neuromuscular repair, immune system boost, intracellular infections and even some cancers,” says Brook. It is thought to increase cognitive function, promote wound healing and strengthen the immune system.
One of the biggest advantages of peptide therapy is that there are typically few to no side effects. “Peptide therapy is generally considered a safe, natural and effective therapy for anyone. Since peptide supplements mimic the peptides already in food, the body already knows how to process them,” says Brook.
Peptides are also relatively easy to administer. Most are taken orally and are easily digested. They also come in a topical form to stimulate hair growth, for example, or as an injection into a joint as a therapy for pain or inflammation. They are typically made in a compounding pharmacy, either derived from food or synthetically, and the patient can take the proper dose home. Most peptide therapies are taken one at a time, but in some cases, it is possible to combine them for varying effects and conditions.
Because there are so many possible combinations, it is easy to customize a dose for a very specific condition. “Certain peptides improve the integrity of gut mucus, which helps to eliminate leaky gut. Others stimulate the production of melanin, a skin pigment, which may improve the skin’s protection against sun damage. HGH peptides interact with the hypothalamus and pituitary glands to help stimulate growth hormones. Collagen can help improve skin elasticity and quality,” says Brook. Still others are used as therapies for erectile and other sexual dysfunction, promoting tissue and muscle repair, lowering high blood pressure, killing harmful microbes, preventing the formation of blood clots and acting as antioxidants.
Brook stresses that peptide therapy is one
important step to take on the path to overall health, but it works best with
other healing modalities and lifestyle modifications. “Peptide therapy helps
initiate cellular repair so the body is able to heal itself more effectively.
But it is also important to address the root cause of what was causing the
disease or distress in the first place. I encourage patients to examine their
diet, emotional wellness, activity levels, social interactions and generally
take an inventory of their overall wellness. Health optimization also includes
hormone regulation, healthy weight management, supplements and other holistic
therapies. By taking an active approach, they can regain their optimal health,”
Carrie Jackson is an Evanston-based writer and frequent contributor to Natural Awakenings magazine. Connect at CarrieJacksonWrites.com.