HGH and Brain Health


One of the most powerful and noticeable effects of human growth hormone (HGH) is on the many benefits it brings the brain. It is a known fact that there are many receptors in different parts of the brain for HGH but how in the world can HGH get to those receptors? HGH is such a large protein of 191 amino acids and the brain is protected from substances floating in the blood by a tight network of cells know as the blood brain barrier which means it should be impossible to pass through. If somehow this large molecule is screened through it would show up with a spinal tap in the cerebrospinal fluid which runs from the brain after giving patients injections of human growth hormone. When this was done there was a great surprise to discover there was a tenfold increase in the cerebrospinal fluid of HGH after injecting patients with HGH.


One of the major causes that makes cells degrade with age is the generation of oxygen free-radicals (free-radicals are destructive unstable particles) in all the cells that use oxygen to produce energy. This for example, is a major factor in the cause of neurodegenerative diseases in the brain such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and other neurodegenerative diseases. It is believed that these radicals in turn activate destructive enzymes called proteases that damage and degrade the protein in the cells so that eventually the cells dies. Antioxidants like vitamin C and vitamin E can remove much of these oxygen free radicals and keep the proteases from becoming active. But HGH can act directly on these protease by activating a cellular defense force called protease inhibitors which means that though there still may be some free radicals in the cell the protease inhibitors prevent them from doing their destructive work. Laboratory experiments show that animals were protected from the free radical killing effects of radiation and hyperoxia when given growth hormone (GH). Animals were given a mixture of 98 percent oxygen which at this concentration is toxic and very lethal over time and yet all these animals survived which were given GH. As you age you are releasing less HGH, your immune response is decreasing, and at the same time the amount of oxygen free radicals is increasing. Without GH in the cell the proteases activated by oxygen free radicals are free to tear up the cells proteins. Evidence shows that GH also stops apoptosis, programmed cell death. This is not caused by random events like free radicals from the environment or oxygen free radicals but by the cell’s inner clock telling it that it is time to die. A great deal of apoptosis takes place during aging and fetal development. In fact, the development of living organisms from a single fertilized egg cannot occur without the planned apoptosis death of many of the cells. Organs and the organism can only be formed as the masses of cells are formed by apoptosis of cells just like a sculptor chisels away at a mass of marble. Many scientists believe the same process occurs in our later years with programmed cell death in the brain, heart, bone marrow and else where but with the emergence of death instead of new life. Scientists have shown that when they introduce an apoptosis-associated protease gene into brain cells the cells die but the cells survive when they cause them to make protease inhibitors that block apoptosis. This indicates that taking GHQ can stimulate cells in the brain to make protease inhibitors and thus help stop apoptosis or programmed cell death in the brain.


Our brain reaches its largest size at age 20 when it is about 3 pounds and then begins to shrink until by age ninety it would be 10% less in weight then its largest size at age 20. Some gerontologists believe this shrinkage is due to the loss of 50,000 to 100,000 brain cells a day that occurs as one ages. However, experts in the field of neuroscience like Robert Terry at the University of California in San Diego say this loss is not that brain cells are dying. Rather they are shrinking in a way that is causing the dendritic connections to be lost – that is the branch like projections that spread between the cells in every direction to hook up with other cells. The brain cannot sprout new neurons in the same way that the skin, blood or intestines can grow new cells. However, the same growth factors that heal wounds and re grow skin, muscle, collagen, blood, and other tissue also grow peripheral dendrites and nerves. When the brain is stimulated with growth factors, neurons can re grow dendritic connections including other cells like glial cells which nourish the neurons. Elderly rats who had nerve growth factor injected into their brains were able to swim through a maze in water while the untreated rats of the same age were not able to do so. Also, Marian Diamond, Ph.D., professor of anatomy at the University of California at Berkeley showed that when putting rats into a brain rich environment with ladders, bells, wheels and other rodent goodies it caused new dendrites to sprout to the extent that their cortex increased by 5 percent. In essence she changed the brains of old rats into that of young rats. Also it is known that growth hormone plays a major role in the brains of new borns and young animals stimulating the growth of neurons, the mesage-carrying cells of the nervous system, and the glial cells, which support the neurons, and enlarging the brain and the skull size. Also, tests in rats have shown it increases the cells of the myelin sheath that insulates the central nervous system. It is the destruction of the myelin sheath that causes the symptoms of multiple sclerosis.


Insulin Growth Factor One (IGF-1) which is produced through HGH and is the indicator of the level of HGH has been shown to regenerate nerve tissue damaged by injury or illness. When applied to nerve cells in culture and in animals it repaired peripheral nerves such as the ones that supply the arms and legs and also the nerves of the central nervous and spinal cord system. The progression Lou Gehrig’s disease in mice has been stopped by nerve growth factors which are stimulated by GH which means GH is almost certainly a candidate for this disease in humans. Also, GH is found in the brain cells that control motor activity and this activity is impaired in Parkinson’s patients and has been normalized in dwarfed mice that were given GH therapy. GH also helps motor activity by stimulating the growth of myelin sheath on nerve cells which makes it a potential treatment for multiple sclerosis. Also, some experts believe multi-hormone treatment with GH is a very useful treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. This is because the brain which at age ninety is the size it was when we were three can be restored through GH replacement it’s more natural form and metabolism by adding water to the tissues and removing fat. Sam Baxas, M.D., of Baxamed Clinic in Switzerland has been treating patients with Parkinson’s Alzheimer’s, Lou Gehrig’s disease and other degenerative muscular and nervous diseases for twenty – two years (as of 1997) with cell therapy injections. Seven years ago, Baxas added growth hormone replacement to his regimen for those with deficient GH levels. “The combination has been really explosive. We are healing just about everything-heart disease, chronic fatigue syndrome, multiple sclerosis, muscle wasting diseases, Lou Gehrig’s disease (amyotrophic Lateral sclerosis), Parkinson’s, lupus erythematosus, all the auto immune diseases you get when your immune system goes haywire. We are very successful in treating AIDS patients. We are healing them.” Baxas believes that GH and cell therapy work by rejuvenating the cells of the body and brain and calls them “anti-thanatopsis” which is the Greek word for death. He says, “if you take a petri dish with cells in it that have stopped dividing and put cell therapy or growth hormone in there, the cells start dividing again. With growth hormone and cell therapy, we can slow down and even stop the aging process, even turn it back a little.”


HGH changes the concentrations of certain neurotransmitters (brain chemical messengers). It raises the level of B-endorphin while lowering dopamine. B-endorphin is responsible for the high feeling that comes after intense exercise and has also been called the brains own morphine. Dopamine on the other hand is known to produce feelings of agitation which means less of it should lean to better feelings. This clearly indicates a strong anti depressive effect on the brain. Far more deeper than this is the fact that tests show that children that are emotionally deprived of love fail to grow as a result. This phenomenon is known as psycho social growth failure and it is known that these children have lower growth hormone levels. In other words, loving, touching, holding and nurturing children should stimulate growth hormone levels and cause a greater sense of well being while the opposite should stunt their physical growth. Some patients have even said that they found HGH more effective in relieving depression than Prozac, a famed antidepressant. This most likely one of the main reasons why people when they are older do not have the enthusiasm and passion required to live life to the fullest. We become more wary and less willing to try something new. We feel it takes too much energy and effort and would rather stay home in front on the TV.


According to Jan Berend Deijen and a team of Dutch scientists at the Free University Hospital in Amsterdam growth hormone may be especially important in memory and cognitive performance. They studied male patients who were lacking a number of pituitary hormones including HGH. They found a direct correlation between lower levels of IGF-1 (Insulin Growth Factor One) which is an indication of GHQ production and the ability to process flash information (iconic memory), long term memory, and perceptual-motor skills such as hand-eye coordination. In this research as well as that of others GHQ replacement in GH-deficient adults improves cognition (our ability to think and reason) as well as memory. In fact, in children who were GHQ deficient and were given HGH supplements before the age of five there was the increased head size and higher IQs and better grades at school. Also there has been notable increase in reaction times. Some older people in their late forties have tested their reaction time with young people in their twenties to catching a falling ruler and found that they were twice as fast as these young people in their early twenties

Mike Peterson

Anti-Aging and Metabolic Medicine specialist.
Mike Peterson

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