Is Your Metabolism Healthy?

Friday, 01 Jun 2018

“Metabolism” is a word we commonly use but may not quite understand. Scientifically speaking, metabolism involves chemical processes that enable our bodies to break down molecules and synthesize the essential compounds we need to thrive. In plain speaking, metabolism describes how our bodies break down the food we eat for the energy and fuel we need to function every day.

Whether due to age, illness, or other factors such as hormonal imbalance, your metabolism can slow down and cause numerous symptoms that are hard to ignore.

Common Signs of Metabolic Malfunction
In addition to constantly craving sweets, common symptoms of a metabolism in distress include inability to lose weight (despite your best efforts), constant hunger (even right after a meal), dry skin, and brittle fingernails.

You may also experience what is known as metabolic syndrome. Factors contributing to metabolic syndrome include high cholesterol, high blood sugar, and increased blood pressure. Any of these factors in and of themselves are serious, affecting health with conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.

If you are experiencing any of these common signs of a faulty metabolism, it may be time to seek medical care.

Julia Ward, MD established her functional medicine practice in Sugar Land, Balanced Body Image, to offer patients a holistic, healthy way to address metabolic function and other illnesses and health concerns.

At Balanced Body Image, Dr. Ward offers a personalized approach to patient care that recognizes and treats the root causes of most illnesses such as hormonal imbalance, poor choices in diet and exercise, or significant stress. Dr. Ward’s holistic treatments begin with a thorough evaluation and diagnosis followed by a comprehensive plan of care.

Patients diagnosed with metabolic syndrome may be prescribed lifestyle changes such as clean eating, regular exercise, and supplements. With holistic services that consider the entire body and the way all systems work together, Dr. Ward strives to bring better health and vitality to every patient.

If you are concerned about your metabolic health, consider an appointment with Dr. Ward at Balanced Body Image. With careful assessment and holistic therapies, you can achieve better health at any age.

Testosterone Replacement Therapy May Impact Prostate Cancer

Friday, 01 Jun 2018

Prostate cancer is one of the most common types of cancer and the third leading cause of cancer death for American men. It’s a very serious disease, but with early diagnosis and treatment, the outcome for many men is positive.

Knowing the symptoms of prostate cancer and getting regular screenings is crucial for detecting cancer in its earliest stages. First, though, a brief lesson about the prostate gland, how it works, and the role of the male hormone, testosterone.

The prostate is a complex and important gland in male anatomy. In addition to influencing male reproduction, the prostate gland affects urination and bladder control. An enzyme produced in the prostate also combines with testosterone to manufacture an even stronger hormone called dihydrotestosterone (DHT). DHT is responsible for the onset of puberty and adult male characteristics such as body hair and a deepening voice.

The Importance of Testosterone
Testosterone is a chemical messenger that triggers many important bodily functions such as red cell production, bone density, muscle size and strength, and fertility. However, advancing age causes all types of changes, including shifts in body chemistry. Just as women experience menopause and decreasing levels of the female hormone estrogen, men may experience low energy, fatigue, difficulty focusing, and depression due to declining levels of testosterone.

Although men are often embarrassed to seek help and discuss such symptoms, a doctor can determine the cause and present possible treatment considerations. If low testosterone is the diagnosis, hormone replacement therapy is one option for restoring health and vitality. Hormone replacement therapy is not just for women experiencing menopause and the loss of estrogen; men with low testosterone can benefit as well!

Testosterone Replacement and Prostate Cancer
Another reason to consider hormone replacement therapy? Recent research reports that men with low levels who receive testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) have a lower incidence of prostate cancer. In prostate cancer cases diagnosed while receiving TRT, the cancer was often found to be less severe.

Symptoms of Prostate Cancer
Men, do you know the symptoms of prostate cancer? Women should recognize them, too, and remind the men in their lives to be vigilant. Because early stages of prostate cancer often do not produce symptoms, regular screenings, like the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test, are the first line of defense. It is only after prostate cancer has advanced that men may notice symptoms like difficulty urinating (such as slow or weak stream or the need to urinate frequently) or blood in the urine.

There are other illnesses that may cause urinary symptoms such as these, some of which are not as serious as cancer. However, never put off a visit to the doctor if you experience anything new or out of the ordinary. Even illnesses that are not cancer should be treated immediately for the best possible outcome.

Holistic Medicine in Sugar Land, Texas
Julia Ward, MD is medical director of Balanced Body Image, a medical spa in Sugar Land. Dr. Ward provides safe and effective bioidentical hormone replacement therapy for both men and women, and it’s her goal to improve health and prevent premature aging with natural and healthy alternatives, including bioidentical hormones.

Bioidentical hormones come from organic sources, such as plants, and are more readily recognized by your body as a helpful agent. Hormones that are synthetically produced in a lab are not a natural substitute for the chemicals your own body produces.

Find out more about men’s health issues, including low testosterone and bioidentical hormone replacement therapy. Call Balanced Body Image at 281.710.3380 and learn about healthy, productive aging.


Get Your ZZZZZ’s! The Benefits of Restful Sleep

Friday, 01 Jun 2018

Many people understand that sleep deprivation can leave them feeling cranky or even unable to function well at work or school, but missing out on quality sleep on a regular basis can definitely detract from one’s well-being. At Balanced Body Image, Julia Ward, MD counsels her patients on the importance of getting a good night’s sleep. By ensuring that you’re getting plenty of rest, you can actually safeguard your mental and physical health.

Reduce Inflammation
Medical research has demonstrated links between poor sleep and inflammation. Adults who get less than six hours of sleep tend to present with higher levels of inflammation-causing proteins. Inflammation is associated with conditions like arthritis, diabetes, and even heart disease. By getting plenty of sleep, you can reduce inflammation and, ideally, help keep these life-altering conditions at bay.


Improve Concentration
The key to improving cognitive function is getting plenty of rest. Studies have shown that an optimum amount of sleep leads to better memory retention as well as improved concentration. If you aren’t getting good rest, you may find that concentrating on tasks is more difficult. To ensure that you don’t make critical errors during your day, be sure to get eight hours of restful (and that means uninterrupted) sleep each night.

Sunny Mood
When you don’t get enough sleep, you may find it more difficult to regulate your mood and emotions. People who experience frequent bouts of insomnia may find that they’re on an emotional roller coaster with increased negative emotions like anger or anxiety. Those who feel pressured by stress find that sleep helps enhance coping skills.

Improved Weight Control
Did you know that getting adequate sleep could help you maintain a healthy weight? Studies have shown that a lack of sleep could wreak havoc with a particular hormone associated with feelings of fullness. People who don’t get enough sleep produce less of this hormone, so they may feel hungrier than when they are well rested.

Dr. Ward practices holistic medicine in Sugar Land, and it’s her mission to improve the lives of her patients through natural, healthy alternatives. If you’re having difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep, Dr. Ward will get to the root cause of your troubles. Once any medical conditions have been ruled out as the origin of your insomnia, she’ll help you change your lifestyle to include better nutrition and improved good sleep habits.

Convincing yourself that good sleep is important to your body’s ability to restore and regenerate itself each day is key. Visit Dr. Ward at her Sugar Land medical spa and get ready for a good night’s sleep! Call us today for an appointment at 281.710.3380.

Balanced Hormones for Better Health

Friday, 01 Jun 2018

Many health issues can surface due to an imbalance of hormones, and this is especially true for women. Balanced Body Image, a medical spa in Sugar Land, offers medical services that address hormonal imbalance, including bioidentical hormone replacement and pellet therapy. When hormones are balanced, many health benefits can be enjoyed.

 How Do Hormones become Unbalanced?
Hormonal balance isn’t something most of us think about on a daily basis. However, as we go about our lives and run up against its inevitable stresses, we could be at risk for developing a hormonal imbalance. Our hormones are highly effective chemical messengers, but when we deal with chronic stress, we force them to work overtime, and sometimes they simply burn out. The result is that we might have difficulty relaxing, feel tired even after getting sleep, and suffer from wavering moods. And during certain stages of life, menopause, for example, we may be at an even greater risk.

 Some of the symptoms of hormonal imbalance include:

  • Low energy and constant fatigue
  • Inability to lose weight
  • Foggy thinking
  • Low sex drive
  • Decreased bone density and increased risk for osteoporosis
  • Weakened immune system

 Bioidentical Hormone Replacement
Bioidentical hormones are not synthetically produced; rather, they are the product of natural sources (such as plants). Because bioidentical hormones are more organic, they are more similar to the hormones generated by our own bodies. At Balanced Body Image, Dr. Julia Ward offers bioidentical replacement therapy to help her patients achieve improved quality of life.

 Pellet Therapy
Pellet therapy is one way to safely and effectively administer bioidentical hormones. Every three to six months, a pellet is inserted just under the skin where it releases small and consistent doses of a bioidentical hormone. This form of hormone replacement is highly effective in sustaining hormone levels and improving health.

Dr. Ward specializes in holistic and functional medicine for both men and women, meaning that she diagnoses – and treats – the underlying causes of symptoms. Her goal is to improve overall health with natural and healthy alternatives, including bioidentical hormones and nutritional therapy. By identifying the underlying triggers that cause illness and premature aging, Dr. Ward assists her patients in achieving better health and vitality.

Learn how you can feel better, function more optimally, and age with grace. Contact Balanced Body Image at 281.710.3380 today.



Holistic Medicine in Sugar Land offers Bioidentical Hormones

Monday, 20 Mar 2017

Over the course of our lives, we’re exposed to toxins (both environmental and dietary). These toxins contribute to a natural decline of hormones as we grow older. The side effects of hormonal imbalances can mimic those of other more serious health conditions. That is why it is so important to have our hormones evaluated by a highly trained physician as we grow older.


As synthetic hormones have been prescribed by doctors for years, numerous studies have indicated that synthetic hormone therapy may increase the likelihood of various types of cancer and heart disease. Because of the risks associated with synthetic hormones, many people are looking to a more natural approach to treat hormonal imbalances — bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT).


What’s the Difference between Synthetic and Bioidentical Hormones?

Synthetic hormones are produced to treat the most common side effects of hormonal imbalances. Unfortunately, however, synthetic hormones are produced on a one-size-fits all basis. Since everyone has unique and different needs, synthetic hormones are less effective for some people than others.


Bioidentical hormones are derived from natural sources like soy and yams. Their purpose is to replicate the chemical structure of the hormones that our bodies naturally produce. Specialized compounding pharmacies work with prescribing physicians to create a unique bioidentical hormone regimen designed specifically for each patient.


Benefits of Bioidentical Hormone Therapy

  • They’re naturally derived.
  • They can be metabolized properly by our bodies.
  • They can be compounded to treat one individual, unlike synthetic hormones that use a one-size-fits all approach.
  • Studies have indicated that bioidentical hormones are safer than synthetic hormones.


Dr. Julia Ward’s Approach

Julia Ward, MD is a bioidentical hormone doctor in Sugar Land, Texas. At Balanced Body Image, Dr. Ward uses BHRT to help patients who experience symptoms related to hormonal imbalance, including fatigue, depression, headaches and weight gain.



Contact Dr. Ward in her Sugar Land medical spa for optimal health and wellness options – including bioidentical hormones.

Improve Your Health with IV Nutrient Therapy by Holistic Medicine Doctor in Sugar Land

Monday, 20 Mar 2017

In holistic medicine, there are a variety of safe and effective ways to heal the mind and body while also addressing thecause of symptoms.  At Balanced Body Image, your source for holistic medicine in Sugar Land, Dr. Julia Ward believes in healthy aging with a personal touch. A service she offers, IV nutrient therapy, improves health and well-being through vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients.


How does it work?


Intravenous (or IV) therapy is used across the medical field for numerous conditions such as infections, multiple sclerosis (MS), and cancer; however, IV therapy also benefits those seeking to boost their overall health and wellness. IV nutrient therapy means vitamins, minerals, and other naturally-occurring nutrients (such as amino acids) are infused directly into the bloodstream through an IV.


While it can take up to eight hours for oral supplements to be absorbed into your body, IV therapy allows nutrients to be available instantly with immediate access to the bloodstream. The effects are often felt instantly, which is the reasons why IV nutrient therapy is gaining in popularity.


Besides its support of overall wellness, IV nutrient therapy has been shown to benefit many health conditions such as:


  • Asthma
  • Cancer
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Headaches
  • Migraines
  • Infections


At Balanced Body Image, our quiet, comfortable office offers a private and relaxing IV therapy experience. Boost your energy, strengthen your immune system, and restore your body’s natural supply of nutrients.


Call our Sugar Land, Texas medical spa at (281) 710-3380 and find out if IV nutrient therapy is right for you.