If you are a transgender individual who is considering taking hormones or having surgeries, or know someone who is, this information will greatly help you know what to watch out for to be physically and emotionally ready for the change your body will make.
When you are altering your body, taking hormones, and getting surgery, it’s imperative that you be as physically and mentally healthy as possible. This means eating well, exercising, and having a positive outlook on your situation and learning to love who you truly are.
If you are a male to female individual taking oral estradiol, or a cisgender women taking oral contraceptives, you should be aware that these hormones deplete the body of vitamin B12. Deficiencies in this vitamin, which is rather common since it’s not found in many foods, can cause neurological impairment and anemia if not treated. Short term symptoms can be tiredness and fatigue. I personally love and take Global Healing Center’s B12 blend. I take it once a week, and one bottle lasts a year.
Also while taking hormones, it’s important to be aware that it can cause blood clots. This often happens when one is not physically active, smokes, or has other health conditions. So do yourself a favor and quit the cigarettes, start exercising, and eat foods that will help lower your blood pressure and prevent blood clots.
The thyroid gland, located in the neck, regulate the body’s hormones, and since transgender individuals take drugs that alter their natural hormones, it’s imperative to see an endocrinologist regularly to test hormone and thyroid levels. Underactive thyroid, hypothyroidism, tends to be more common than overactive thyroid, hyperthyroidism. If one has an underactive thyroid, they can feel tired and weak. If overactive, they could be anxious and lose weight. Iodine is beneficial for those who have underactive thyroid. This essential element can be naturally acquired from seaweed. But supplements from seaweed exist if needed.
When getting surgery, nerves will be damaged, and getting sensation back in these areas may not happen for quite awhile. However, not many know that the supplement known as CoQ10 is beneficial at repairing nerves. CoQ10 is not often found in many foods, so taking a higher dose supplement will be beneficial at getting the recommended amount to heal.
And lastly, another issue for male to female transgender individuals is low testosterone after surgery. While it may seem strange for a post-op trans person to take testosterone, it certainly does happen because the body no longer produces testosterone. Low testosterone can cause weakness and fatigue, including diminishing muscle mass and sex drive. Having a small amount of testosterone is important, so if yours is low, natural supplements that I personally use are DHEA and creatine. I take Life Extension’s DEHA Complete twice a week, and Genius Creatine after I workout. Labwork has shown that my testosterone levels have increased.
If you have any other supplements you take for your transition that has helped you, please let me know in the comments. The most important thing above all though is to eat healthy and live a healthy lifestyle. When you are physically healthy, you’ll be able to take on the challenges of transitioning and surgery. When it comes to your mental health, know that talking regularly about what you are feeling is helpful to get you in the right frame of mind that is positive and looking forward to changes.
Let me know how this works for you. Have a great day!
Through my journey of transition, I found what worked best for me and relieved some of the issues I had. I wish I had known them sooner, so I hope this information can help you if you’re just starting out. Remember to listen to your body. If you are deficient in something, your body will tell you, and all you have to do is listen and see what it’s trying to say.
B12, iodine, CoQ10, DHEA, and creatine have all personally helped me as a post-op transgender woman, but may not do much of anything for you. So be sure to follow up with a doctor to see what you really need and proceed from there.