Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) is a hormone secreted by the adrenal gland and to a lesser extent by the brain and skin. DHEA and DHEA-S (the sulfated form of DHEA) decline in the mid-to-late 20s and by age 70 you make 25-30% of the hormone that you produced in your 20s. DHEA is a precursor of other sex hormones – estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone.
Studies have shown that some of the functions of DHEA are to:
- Decrease cholesterol (many studies show decreased LDL)
- Prevent blood clots
- Decrease formation of fatty deposits (both in the brain and vascular system)
- Increase bone growth preventing osteoporosis
- Promote weight loss (many studies show fat loss without proteins loss)
- Improve body mass index