Boost Your Metabolism, Lose Weight, and Have Great Energy

Women are being misled about their hormones in midlife.

Too often, you don’t suspect something’s up with your metabolism until you deal with stubborn weight gain in midlife. But the truth is, you could have been experiencing a decline for years without realizing it.

In fact, there are over 60 symptoms of “hormonal poverty” that women can start experiencing as young as 35-40 years old. Unchecked, this hormone deprivation can cause fatigue, hair loss, weight gain, illness, and even a shortened healthspan.

In this essential conversation, Dr. Kyrin Dunston joins me to share crucial information about how to turn hormonal poverty into hormonal prosperity—so you can improve your health, restore your energy, stay healthy, and age powerfully.


00:04:03 – What is hormonal poverty?
00:06:25 – How do hormones cause metabolic chaos in midlife?
00:08:16 – Your seven main metabolic controllers
00:11:55 – Why is it happening earlier and what are the signs?
00:14:36 – When to get your hormones checked
00:19:53 – Shifts you may see in your 30s and which tests to get
00:24:06 – Key things to do to support hormone health
00:29:36 – The role of testosterone for women in midlife

Freebies From Today’s Episode

Get Dr. Kyrin’s FREE REPORT: The Diet Deceptive Dozen: 12 Foods Flying Under Your Radar Keeping You Overweight & Tired At Midlife

Resources Mentioned in this episode

Try my protein calculator

Subscribe to my podcast

Learn more about Dr. Kyrin Dunston and The Midlife Metabolism Institute

Listen to The Hormone Prescription with Dr. Kyrin

Join Her Hormone Club

Take her Hormone Bliss Challenge

Check out her podcast: The Hormone Prescription

Get a hormone panel (Dutch Test) from YourLabWork

Listen to Rethinking Breast Cancer Prevention with Dr. Felice Gersh

Listen to Beating Breast Cancer Statistics with Dr. Jenn Simmons

Listen to Redefining Menopause with Dr. Suzanne Gilberg-Lenz

Read Natural Hormone Balance for Women by Dr. Uzzi Reiss and Martin Zucker

Click Here To Read Transcript

ATHE_Transcript_Ep 591_Dr. Kyrin Dunston
JJ Virgin: [00:00:00] I'm JJ Virgin, PhD dropout, sorry mom, turned four time New York Times best selling author. Yes, I'm a certified nutrition specialist, fitness hall of famer, and I speak at health conferences and trainings around the globe, but I'm driven by my insatiable curiosity and love of science to keep asking questions, digging for answers, and sharing the information I uncover with as many people as I can, and that's why I created the Well Beyond 40 To synthesize and simplify the science of health into actionable strategies to help you thrive.
In each episode, we'll talk about what's working in the world of wellness, from personalized nutrition and healing your metabolism to healthy aging and prescriptive fitness. Join me on the journey to better health so you can love how you look and feel right now and have the energy to play full out.
So when I think about being well beyond [00:01:00] 40, one of the things that is so mission critical for you to be well beyond 40 is to have balanced hormones. I've been very committed to bringing on the best experts onto the show to really help you understand how to balance your hormones, how to test for them, what you can use bioidentically, what the diet and lifestyle treatments are, and we're going to be really digging into that today with a second guest on the show.
She's been here before, and that is Dr. Kyrin Dunston. And what's really amazing about Dr. Kyrin is she's built an incredible program and it was based on what she had to go through. Here she was an OBGYN who was 100 pounds overweight, major adrenal fatigue, just all sorts of issues and not getting the right answers.
So she started digging in. She did a fellowship in anti aging metabolic and functional medicine. And healed herself. [00:02:00] And that has led her down this path now to become what she calls the pioneer of female hormonal justice. She's really out there helping women get out of what she terms hormonal poverty.
And that really is what happens when your hormones go down. It starts off, by the way, around age 35. Man, it's going to impact every area of your life. Your mood, your brain function, your inflammation, everything. And if you're 35 you know what I'm talking about. So this is the episode for you.
Let me tell you a little bit about Dr. Kyrin. She hosts the Hormone Prescription Podcast. She's the founder of the Hormone Club, which is an end to end, all inclusive membership that gives women the access to state of the art natural hormone therapy throughout the U. S. She's a founder of the Midlife Metabolism Institute.
I was joking with her going, yeah, you just took on the most challenging, challenging time for women, metabolism in midlife. And has created some amazing coaching and training programs for women to help them [00:03:00] fix their hormones, fix their metabolism, and fix their health. She's been a TEDx speaker, she's been on CBS, NBC, Reader's Digest, Huffington Post, First for Women, Best Self, and more.
And she's really a ninja in helping you make over your midlife metabolism. So that is what we're going to be digging in today. We're going to talk about what hormone poverty is and how to move into hormone prosperity. I will be right back with Dr. Kyrin Dunston. All right. Well, welcome back, Dr. Kyrin Dunston.
I'm so excited to be talking hormones. Yes. So you have this concept that I think is really interesting because nothing makes me sadder. And it just actually came up. Yesterday, but it comes up nearly every single day where you meet a woman who's gone through menopause and is just suffering and somewhere they've gotten this misinformation about hormones and so they just think they have to white knuckle through the rest of their life when the reality is that after menopause, it should be the best time of your life.
It shouldn't be the time when you've got brain fog [00:04:00] and inflammation and low energy. And you talk about this concept of hormonal poverty. What do you mean by this?
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: There's so many women suffering unnecessarily, I will say, because they think that it's normal because that's what the corporate medicine tells them.
It's normal for your age to feel this way and they suffer from hormonal poverty. So financial poverty is when you don't have the financial resources to meet your living needs and hormonal poverty is when you don't have the hormonal resources to meet your body's needs. Most people don't realize that hormones are the communicators in your body.
They're part of your nervous system, right? And your brain is your mainframe computer that regulates everything. So all your nerves come from that and all your hormones are controlled and originate there. So they tell all your cells how to function and women by design are programmed to go into hormonal poverty, starting around the age of 35 to 40.
Our [00:05:00] ovaries have not enough eggs to keep up the hormonal production. So our hormones are going down. We're going into hormonal poverty. And meanwhile, our cells and all our systems are looking for those hormones in order to know how to function optimally, how to burn fat for fuel optimally, how to heal the eyes, heal the heart, keep everything working and functioning properly.
When we don't have these hormones, we get what I call midlife metabolic mayhem, which is the 60 plus symptoms that women can start experiencing as early as 35 40 that progresses and accelerates into menopause and they think it's normal. Because they look around and all their friends are having the same thing.
They look in the media, all women over 40 have a handful of these symptoms. So they think, oh, it's normal. I just have to put up with it. And unfortunately this myth is perpetuated by mainstream medicine because they don't have the answers on how to fix it.
JJ Virgin: And I love that you have [00:06:00] just doubled down on midlife metabolism, because I think for a lot of practitioners, they're like, okay, I think I'm just going to avoid that here.
And I heard something the other day and I go, I cannot believe, you know, I think you probably heard the research that our metabolism doesn't change till 60, that it doesn't slow down. I'm like, it may not slow down. It goes into total insanity, chaos as these hormones. Can you explain? What, how these hormones impact your metabolism?
Cause when I hear that, I think, oh my gosh, every woman everywhere is just going, hold on, you know, I was just talking to a gal yesterday, I was at the doctor's office getting a gynecological exam. And the nurse was like, I have gained 25 pounds since I went through menopause in like. Six months. What we're also going to talk about is how you don't have to have this happen, but what happens to our metabolism in midlife?
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: Yeah. And it's crazy because you will see research studies all over the place. Some say, oh, there's no change in metabolism. Others say [00:07:00] that there is, but the fact that by the time we're 50, 60% of us are overweight or obese tells you there's a problem. We are gaining weight. What is metabolism? It's the way your body takes energy, which is food.
And turns it into ATP, which is our currency for energy expenditure in our body. And so if you have excess fat, which is fuel, you're not burning it. By definition, your metabolism is slow and then you don't have energy. So you have two symptoms, you are overweight and you are tired. And then by the time we're 60, it's 75% of us are overweight or obese.
And the average weight gain starting at the age of 30 is actually like 3% per year. So what is happening? So I like to think about metabolism kind of like a bow tie. Now women don't wear bow ties, but it's the visual. So on the one side, you have the fuels. It's the food we eat and then our [00:08:00] storage fuel, which is fat.
So those are calories. And then on the other side, you have ATP, which is currency of energy in the body. And then in the middle is the little bow tie connector. And I love that it's here right at the thyroid because that's one of your main metabolic controllers, but you really have seven main metabolic controllers.
It's not just thyroid. You also have insulin, Cortisol, DHEA, estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. And women are foundationally different than men. You know, JJ, when I went to medical school and residency, I was basically taught that women are just smaller men. Right? All the research is mostly done on men, unless it's some drug study on a birth control pill, right?
We're just smaller men and we have this little accessory pack, right? Like that black bag you get up out of the back of your closet once a year to go to that black tie dinner at Christmas. That's your little accessory pack outfit you put on, right? We're, we're just men and we have an accessory pack that [00:09:00] allows us to be reproductive and produce children.
So then we have a period and we have breasts so we can feed our infants. But other than that, we're like men. And what I discovered on my journey from being board certified OBGYN. And thinking I knew everything about women's health, but clearly I didn't, because I weighed 243 pounds, I had chronic fatigue, I had fibromyalgia, depression, anxiety, irritable bowel, gastritis, I looked and felt 20 years older than I was.
Which was very embarrassing because I was supposed to know more about women's health than anyone else. And I clearly learned that's not the truth. And what I discovered on my journey getting fellowship trained in anti aging, metabolic, and functional medicine, and now working with thousands of women, is that we're foundationally different from men from in utero, right? Based on our genetics and based on our hormonal milieu, it determines the way our body develops and our brain. This [00:10:00] metabolism is inherently different. And it's different every day when you're a cycling woman. Foundationally, our hormones are the communicators.
That's the most important aspect of any system, right? So when there's a hurricane in an area, like when there was Katrina, what's the first thing that has to happen to restore functionality to that area? They have to restore communication, right? They got to get the phone lines up. They need to know how many hospital beds do you need, right?
How many people are injured? What kind of supplies do you need? Communication is the most important factor in how well any system functions. It's the same in your body that is a system. So, women, the foundation of our communication is our hormones, and this is what goes off wire by design, right, we're made this way.
You know, 150 years ago it didn't matter because we didn't live into menopause very long, but now our lifespan has increased. So now we're living sometimes a third to a [00:11:00] half of our life in menopause. So it's uncharted territory, and unfortunately, mainstream medicine hasn't caught up with What to do at this stage of life, but your metabolism is going offline because the foundation of your health that is communication based on your hormones has been disrupted.
And so you've got to restore that communication to restore functionality to the system that is your body and get your energy back, lose weight, get your sex drive, your hair, all the things that you want.
JJ Virgin: And it sounds like we should be looking at this way earlier than we are. It sounds like. We need to start thinking about this, and I would assume, because of the level of stress, chronic stress that women are under, that what used to be probably 45 is now 35, and that what we really want to start doing is correcting the imbalance at that point.
Is that one of the reasons this is happening earlier, and what do we need to start becoming aware of, like, what are [00:12:00] the signs, and what can we start to do when we start to see these signs?
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: Yeah, you're so right, JJ. I am a proponent of all women should have complete hormone panels every year from the time, basically, they're teenagers, if they're developing normally, and if they're not, they should have it sooner, but I think it should be part of, like, you go get your car checked and tuned up.
How's the oil? How's the pressure gate, tire pressure, your brake alignment? And you do that periodically to make sure your car is as healthy as possible and safe. I think it's insane that we don't do this stuff. It's insane. For women, because the hormones are a foundation of our health, and you're so right, that the levels of stress that we encounter in this day and age is astronomical, and so it's not just the sex hormones that are programmed to go offline, but your stress hormones, cortisol, DHEA, Also can go offline earlier, and this is why infertility rates are skyrocketing.
Things like PCOS, polycystic [00:13:00] ovarian syndrome, but any type of health dysfunction. The first thing for a woman that needs to be looked at is her hormonal communication system, and that's not happening, right? Someone's 28 and they go to their doctor and they say, I can't sleep. They're not getting any hormonal evaluation.
They're getting a sleeping pill to knock them out. And that's just not the way it should happen. Right. And then the other place that a lot of women have problems that they don't realize is with their insulin. And I like to say that insulin is the loose thread on the end of the knotted ball of yarn that is your crazy hormones.
What you're eating, how you're eating, when you're eating. Most people, even though they're not diabetic, they don't have a family history of diabetes, they're somewhere on that, what I call insulin spectrum. And their insulin has become very labile because they're getting too much sugar in their diet. And so one of the first things we need to do is look at that.
And then most [00:14:00] people have way too much stress in their lives. Or they're stressing about things that they shouldn't be stressing about, which is common. The thing is, these effects in the body are quantifiable. We can look at them. We can measure. Instead of just talking about some nebulous charm, Oh, I've got stress.
How much stress do you have? Why don't we do a test and see what your cortisol levels are doing throughout the day and your DHEA. And let's see how your body is perceiving that stress. Let's look at how much active cortisol you're keeping active and how much inactive, right? That tells us kind of the balance of how much stress does your body perceive it's under.
Does it need a lot of active cortisol in reserves or is it like, Oh, I'm good. I don't have that much stress. I can put it in storage until I need it. So yes, you're absolutely right. It's happening much earlier and it really needs to be addressed. In my opinion, all women should be measured every year for this.
JJ Virgin: Okay, so here's my big question on the measurements, [00:15:00] especially with cycling women. When do you do it since you're really just getting that snapshot of that moment? How do you know when to do it? Right.
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: Great question. So yeah, if you've stopped cycling, you can do the test anytime, but if you are cycling, ideally we say day 19 to 21, but you're right, that is a snapshot and you can have hella crazy numbers if you don't look at the whole cycle.
So really you need to look at the whole cycle to get the proper picture and you need the right test is another thing I'll say. We're so used to, as patients, getting blood drawn for everything, right? We think that is the gold standard for how you check anything in the body as a blood test, and that's just not true when it comes to hormones.
And a lot of people don't get this, and they say, why is that, Kyrin? And I say, well, for instance, the sex hormones and cortisol are all derived from cholesterol. Well, [00:16:00] everybody knows cholesterol comes from animal fat. And animal fat is like oil and your blood is water. So do oil and butter mix? No. So these hormones aren't just winning and having a pool party in your blood.
And you're just like, Oh, I'm going to take some blood and sample and see how much I have. It's very inaccurate. They're actually carried around in little carriers I call FedExtra, and they're not in solution very long in the blood, and so really there are better ways to measure, and in my opinion, the gold standard is a dry urine hormone metabolite testing.
So you want to make sure that you're getting the best test that gives you the most accurate information, and that you also want to look at Aspects of your hormonal health that are important that you're probably not going to hear about or you don't know to look for. And that includes, you want to know your estrogen levels, three different types of estrogen, but you also want to know how is your body disposing of that estrogen?
You know, everybody worries about, [00:17:00] Oh, hormones. I don't want them. They're going to give me breast cancer. You know, which is a kind of a fallacy that was propagated after the Women's Health Initiative study 20 years ago. And if you're listening and that's you, listen up. And. Since then they've gone back and revised it and said, Oh, no, the study was flawed.
That's actually not true.
JJ Virgin: We just forgot to tell anybody.
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: We just forgot to, well, nobody's paying attention cause it's not headline news. And actually, yeah, hormones, they actually use some estrogens to. Prevent and treat breast cancer, but most people that's not headline news. So, you know, I like to say I'm a common sense doctor.
I'm the kind of doctor who's going to tell you in plain English analogies that make sense to you. So if estrogen caused breast cancer. Every man, woman, and child on the face of this earth has estrogen. They don't all have breast cancer. Therefore, estrogen doesn't cause breast cancer, right? But part of it is what your body does or doesn't do with that estrogen to get rid of it.
So you need to have [00:18:00] your detoxification profile done also during your testing.
JJ Virgin: You said some things, I think this is really important to understand because we can only act on the data we get. So if it's bad data, then we are going to not be able to do the right things. With this testing, we talked about that snapshot of doing it day 19 to 21, but then you said, but you should do it throughout.
So are you having someone sample all throughout their cycle, or are you having, like, how was the optimal way to do this? And we'll also put this in the show notes. Is this the Dutch test? Which sort of tests are you the most into.
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: Yeah. I love the Dutch test, the dry urine hormone. And if someone's cycling, you collect every two to three days, they give you a schedule across average 28 day cycle.
And then you get a map of exactly what's happening with your hormones throughout the cycle. That's what I would
JJ Virgin: recommend. This makes so much sense. The biggest challenge I've seen with HRT, and we've had some amazing guests [00:19:00] on the podcast, buddies, you know, like Dr. Felice Gersh just came on and Dr. Jen Simmons and Dr.
Suzanne Gilberg Lenz, who just blew up the whole ridiculousness about estrogen causing breast cancer and really about even going on bioidentical hormones as a breast cancer survivor, et cetera. But one of the things that I've always questioned is, wouldn't it be amazing? And wouldn't it make the most sense to really know where your hormones, where you are best when you are cycling, where things are very best so that as you start to shift, as your hormones start to change, you'll know where they would be best at, which, you know, it's like, this was never talked about when I was in my 20s.
So like, as I started to go through all this, I was like, I have no idea. I'm going to have to just purely do this by feel. So it makes a ton of sense to do that and to really have that awareness. Let's say now you've got someone who's in their 30s and things are starting to shift. And so what are the things that [00:20:00] start to happen first and how would you approach that with them?
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: I think you make a great point. It would be great to know where, what your sweet spot is, but it's okay if you don't have that, ladies, it's okay. And so if someone's starting to notice symptoms of hormonal poverty or what I call midlife metabolic mayhem, those 60 plus symptoms that you can start experiencing, you're 30s, or I've even seen people in their 20s.
You want to start with test don't get. We're so used to, we doctors have trained you in improper information, unfortunately. We've trained you that you're not an expert on your body, that the doctor is. And you need to go to the doctor who's going to basically treat your symptoms with a drug or surgery.
And… Maybe they'll do some minimal testing, but often not. Like with the, I can't sleep situation, that's typically where they just give you something to [00:21:00] sleep. So you've got to start with testing. You've got to have the right test. Done. And you've got to read them the right way. I've been a board certified OBGYN for 30 years now, and these aren't tests that mainstream doctors are made aware of or have access to or know how to access or know how to read.
So you've got to find someone. Who specializes in this to get the right test. And then they've got to read them the right way. Cause I've seen a lot of people who they get a Dutch test, right? You can go online and buy one yourself, but that's not the hard part. The hard part is what do you do with it after you have it?
So like I teach in my Hormone Bliss Challenge, you've got to know how to read it. And in all my programs, I actually teach you how to. Read your own Dutch test because I see people say, Oh, my doctor, I had the Dutch. I took it to my doctor. He said it was normal and I was fine, but I feel miserable, right? I can't sleep.
I have no sex drive. I'm depressed. And I look at it and I'm like, that's [00:22:00] clearly not optimal. And there's a difference between normal and optimal. So you have to learn the difference. But that's where you start. You start testing, not
JJ Virgin: guessing. I love that you're teaching people how to really interpret this.
They're going to know their symptoms the most. One of the books I read early on prior to menopause that was really helpful was this book by Dr. Uzi Reiss. I don't know if you ever read this book, but he really helped you understand what the different symptoms were with each of the hormones as they went low.
And I'm like, Oh, it helped me because in real time, I'm not going to be able to treat towards the labs as much as you're just going to have to adjust, I would assume, as you're going. What are some of the foundational things that can help as someone's going through all of this? What are some of the key things that you are using some of the tools to help people get more hormone balance beyond just the hormones like diet and lifestyle things that you've done?
Because especially, I mean, look what you did for yourself. And what age, by the way, [00:23:00] when you made your big transition to being the, the amazing picture of health that you are now, where were you when you did all that? Because I've only known you as this way.
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: Right. I was in my 40s, my late 40s, when I finally figured it out.
I went through my 40s, it was just getting snowballing and I call it circling the drain worse and worse. I used to wake up every morning and it would be another symptom or another ache or more hair falling out and I just thought this is the end. What am I going to do? And I felt so hopeless and helpless.
I really have a lot of empathy for women out there whose doctors aren't serving them. In fact, they're being gaslighted to some extent and they're being told, Oh, there's nothing wrong. Oh, we don't check hormones. Oh, this is normal for your age. Oh, we don't have an answers. Oh, you just need this antidepressant and this birth control.
It makes me crazy because that's what I did to myself. And that's what my doctor did to me. And then when I learned the truth, I haven't looked back since. I mean, I just transformed everything. [00:24:00] So your question about, is it basically like, where do you start? Is that your question? Yeah.
JJ Virgin: What are some foundational things?
Someone listening right now. The testing. Even the testing is challenging to get. Most doctors you go to won't get to do it. As they're waiting for the test, what are some key things that they can also do to support them on the journey? So I always say
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: there are two prescriptions you need at midlife. One, you need a written prescription.
You may need a written prescription. At some point, if you live long enough as a woman, Your body doesn't have the ability to make enough sex hormones to get you out of hormonal poverty and into hormonal prosperity so that all your cells and systems can prosper and heal and you can prevent disease, prolong your life, most aware of the three consequences.
of hormonal poverty at which I talked about in my TEDx talk. And the final one is a shortened lifespan, which most women are shocked to discover because doctor didn't [00:25:00] discuss it with them, which I think is kind of a travesty. I think we should all have informed consent about, well, you're going to go through menopause and then these are the consequences of it.
And one of them is a shortened lifespan. So you need one, a written prescription from a doctor who knows how to do the right tests, read them the right way, and then. Prescribe for you the right hormones, including estrogens, progesterone, and testosterone, which is very often neglected, even by a lot of in the know doctors, so that you can get out of hormonal poverty into hormonal prosperity, and your cells can see.
and hear the communication of what they're supposed to do so they can function well. And then there's a second prescription that you need that isn't written and that's a life prescription. So that incorporates how are you eating, what are you eating, the activities, exercises you're doing, supplements that you're taking, and other lifestyle things.
That are necessary, right? I got this memo too, all [00:26:00] throughout my training. And I told many patients this before I knew better. Your body detoxifies by itself. You don't need to do anything to help it. Someone literally wrote that in
JJ Virgin: a post yesterday. Your body detoxifies it. I go. Our bodies are not used to getting inundated with like all these xenoestrogens, right?
It's so true.
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: 85, 000 new chemicals introduced into our environment since 1950. The average person has traces of 400 toxic chemicals in her system. First woman uses 19 personal care products before she leaves the house in the morning. With toxic chemicals, our livers are, were never designed to get rid of the sheer magnitude of chemicals that we encounter from our food and our water and our topical products and all the things that we come in contact with, so you need someone to teach you.
How do I stop these things [00:27:00] from getting into my body? How do I identify them? Because manufacturers have gotten savvy that people are becoming aware of the dangers of these toxins. So they're changing their names or changing their chemical structure. So you don't think that there's something in there.
Like one of my favorites is a fragrance in products, which is petroleum byproducts. If you have anything that's scented. Unless they specify it's like natural essential oils. It's petroleum, which is fairly toxic. So you have to learn how do I keep these things from getting in my body? How do I get them out?
You know, I used to have this massage therapist and she said, Oh, I went online and I got this liver detox supplement and I used it for a month. And I feel so good. I'm sure I'm detox. She told me, and you know, I'm not going to tell her, listen, there's so much more that you need to do, but. A lot of people are going, like, to the GNC and asking the high school graduate store [00:28:00] clerk, who's probably very lovely, what do I need to do to detox?
So you need someone who understands how the whole body works. What do I need to get rid of? You need to understand about your mitochondrial function. What are my mitochondria? Well, they make all the ATP, the energy in your body, right? So, you go to work to make money, dollar bills, so you can pay for your rent and pay for food.
That's your financial economy. Well, your body has an economy too, and your hormonal economy goes in to help make mitochondria. Well, you've got to see what's stopping my mitochondria from functioning properly. How do they function? Would it need to function properly? How do I get them working? You name the prescription, you don't need written.
And that's really like in, at my Midlife Metabolism Institute, where I work with people, me and my coaches, and we coach them to help educate them on what are the things you need to do. But I always start like in my challenge, it all starts with insulin. That's that loose thread on that knotted ball [00:29:00] of yarn.
You know,
JJ Virgin: I had a great mentor early on, Dr. Diana Schwartzbein, who says you don't bounce hormones in a vacuum. Like you don't ignore diet and lifestyle and just go over here and go, Oh, I'll give you these things. It doesn't work that way. And it really is someone who understands. And the other thing she said that I was just like, this is such a genius statement, and she said, habits dictate hormones.
So if your habits are creating a lot of stress on your body, guess what that will do? If your habits are creating a lot of blood sugar instability, create insulin resistance. So habits dictate hormones. So you know, that underlying prescription you just talked about is so key, important. I wanna touch on one more thing because you just whipped it out there and I went, oh, important because no one, I literally don't hear other people talking about this but you, and it is the really understanding the role of testosterone.
Because I think women tend to think of estrogen, they think of progesterone, but they think of testosterone as like the guy hormone and it gets overlooked. [00:30:00] So I'd love you to just give a little shout out to testosterone and when what we should be doing with that and why it's important.
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: Sure. Yeah, it's so true.
Most women think, Oh, I don't even need to worry about that. And doctors really echo this. They did a review of the literature in 2019. I think it was where they looked at the research on testosterone in women, but all they really looked into it for was does it help women with sex drive or not? Because we have this really false belief.
That's the only reason a woman has testosterone is because of her sex drive. And I'm like, wait a minute. So in men testosterone does all the things for women it does for men. So it helps with your neurotransmitter balance. It helps support your dopamine. Your dopamine neurotransmitter is your drive neurotransmitter.
It's your get up and go. So if you think of a man at midlife, they say men going through midlife crisis, what do you think of? He's tired. He has no drive. He doesn't want to do anything. He has no sex drive. He's maybe [00:31:00] getting a potbelly, maybe some breasts. So he has all this metabolic derangement because his testosterone has gone down.
It's not only about sex function. He's losing muscle mass. He's gaining fat. His body is starting to look like a woman's. So in a woman, testosterone does all the same things. It helps with our cognitive functioning, our sharpness. It really got JJ, because I had gotten All my hormones balanced and gone on my path.
Everything was ticking along. And then all of a sudden I started a few years later, started having some of the same symptoms creeping back. And I said, Oh, I better test and see what's happening. So I did a test. Come to find out I had using a transdermal topical testosterone cream and I had stopped absorbing it, which is something called tachyphylaxis.
So I switched to testosterone pellets and all of a sudden within a few weeks, it was like the lights came on and that really drove home for me, my [00:32:00] mental clarity, my sharpness, my focus. My memory, my mood, my drive were all improved. Previously I'd stopped being able to maintain the muscle mass that I had at the gym.
Now all of a sudden I'm able to build muscle, which is a huge problem for women, right? We have higher rates of osteoporosis and the biggest contributor to that is loss of muscle mass. Loss of muscle mass is also the biggest contributor to fat gain. And because our metabolic rate goes down when we don't have muscle mass.
Yes, it's important for sex drive, but it's important for all these other things. And then it directly impacts bone architecture as well. So it helps to prevent or treat osteoporosis. So if you are not getting your testosterone properly checked, like with a Dutch test and treated. You are missing one of the most important, I'll just say vital, essential aspects of your hormonal recovery and your hormonal prosperity.[00:33:00]
And just like financial prosperity looks like many different things, right? You've got to have retirement savings. You know, you've got your health spending account, you've got your kids education account, lots of different things. It's not one big pile of money. It's the same in your body, your hormonal prosperity, it's many different things.
Testosterone would be one of the most important.
JJ Virgin: Yay! I wanted to make sure that one got out because you explain that so well and it is so key important and it's funny that what happened to you happened to me when I was using the cream. Did it? Yeah. At first, I will tell you, first, when I started using testosterone cream, I'm like, this is what guys feel like.
Wow. And you know, one of my girlfriends is like, you're making bad decisions.
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: I'm like, well,
JJ Virgin: and then it just stopped working. I was like, okay. So yeah, now I do shots, but it's, it has made a major difference. So thank you for sharing that. And thank you for helping get everyone out of hormonal poverty. I think the biggest thing I'm [00:34:00] seeing out there is just that.
And it's so sad when this happens. And I understand it from the media standpoint, because it's good news is not something that usually gets passed around in the media. Bad news is when you just look at all the things that are shared, but it's really sad that an incorrectly done and cited study would damage and create so much long term suffering, a needless suffering for women.
So I'm just, I am determined to get as much information out there because I Every week I talk to women who are suffering because they are afraid to do this and accelerated aging, depressed, high body fat. When you talked about this all starting to shift at 30 and as we know, we start losing muscle at 40 and all of this stuff is, is like in the words of Marie Forleo, figure outable, all we have to do is start with the testing.
And I also love that you've made this super easy for people to do. So I'm going to put all of this over at. [00:35:00] Hormonal, I don't want to, hormonal prosperity. I'm not putting poverty cause that's the, not the solution. I'm not going to put your name cause we've already done one in your name, but it'll be So a little spelling there. And what we'll put there is you've got a cool guide, your diet deceptive dozen report. By the way, I love all of your, the way you teach everything. Cause it's so pithy. And 12 foods flying under the radar that are keeping you overweight and tired at midlife.
And really, if you're listening, Dr. Kyrin has made it her mission to really help you resolve the whole midlife crazy metabolism stuff. So do not be fooled by what's out there saying, Oh no, everything's fine. It's like, we know. Things go completely crazy. Like you're, I remember just going, God, I just wish that my body had a zipper suit and I would just get out and come back later.
Cause this is just awful. It's just awful. It's just awful. So you don't have to needlessly suffer. So we'll have that report, how to get testing, how to learn more about everything that Dr. Kyrin does, [00:36:00] because I know for a lot of people, you can't get this testing with the doctors that you're working with, so we've got that solved for you so that you can do this and know you're not crazy and know you don't have to suffer.
And honestly, like when you learn this and really can have your hormones optimized, you will get that once you get through menopause, everything's like the best time of life. It should be the best time of your life.
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: You should feel physically better than you have at any other point. I always say, JJ, I just want to share this, that I kind of have a sneaky ulterior motive in helping women get healthy because by the time women reach midlife and beyond, we've got a lot of experience and gifts to offer the world, but we can't do it if we're not optimally healthy and we don't feel good.
I talk to women every day who say… I wanted to start a business doing this to serve people or helping people with that. But I feel terrible. And so my snaky thing is [00:37:00] to help you get healthy. So then you have the energy to do the
JJ Virgin: thing. I will tell you, I went to the Grammys in gosh, it must've been 2019.
And we're at the Grammys and we were up in this suite. It was like one of those spectacular life experiences. And it was the year that JLo, Dolly Parton, Diana Ross, it was like women power Grammys. And Diana Ross was there celebrating her 70th birthday in this big ball gown singing. And Dolly Parton was really the host of the whole show.
And I remember just looking at this going, holy smokes, these women are in their seventies and they are crushing it. And I think that's the society we need to celebrate is celebrate the wisdom of the elders and realize you've, you can be your most powerful, your most vital, your most amazing and fabulous because Diana Ross was, they all were, they were all absolutely fabulous.
In their [00:38:00] fifties, seventies, right? And the youngins that were there didn't hold a candle to that.
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: Yeah, I see Cher and JLo and some people say, Oh, they're celebrities. It's easy for them. No, they have to work at it. I promise you, they do all the things that JJ and I are talking about and it's work.
JJ Virgin: Yeah, I'm pretty sure that that didn't come naturally to JLo.
She works her butt off. Works her butt off. Yeah, she works her butt off. As do you and as do I, and thank you for working your butt off getting this information out in the world. And again, I'm going to put everything at, because that's what you'll get by doing this.
So thank you again for hanging with me all the way from Argentina.
Dr. Kyrin Dunston: Thank you for having me, JJ. It's a pleasure to be here.
JJ Virgin: Be sure to join me next time for more tools, tips, and techniques you can incorporate into everyday life to ensure you look and feel great. And more importantly, that you're [00:39:00] built to last and check me out on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube.
And my website, And make sure to follow my podcast so you don't miss a single episode at See you next time.

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