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Lyn Hogrefe, Executive Director of Happy Hormone Cottage

Through hormonal replacement therapy at Happy Hormone Cottage (HHC), Lyn Hogrefe, Founder, and Executive Director rejuvenates the lives of  women. Lyn explains that the HHC is there to listen, validate, educate, encourage and empower women to take charge of their journey for their best health naturally. Also, her companion organization, the Women's Health Initiatives Foundation, raises money for health resources especially those that prevent cancer in women. It seems like a gargantuan journey but Lyn's work seems to be lightyears ahead of standards forms of treatment. Through HHC, she is turning back the aging clock on women and supporting innovations which treat and prevent cancer even in its late stages.

Several years ago, the Happy Hormone Cottage started off as one cottage located in Centerville, Ohio. Today, Five Happy Hormone Cottages resides in five different cities. In a Lean In Dayton interview, Lyn discusses HHC’s success and explains why its resources are needed by so many women.

Lean In Dayton: How did your journey begin with Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy?

Lyn Hogrefe: I needed a radical hysterectomy in 2004 at the age of 49, due to the rapid growth of a large fibroid tumor that was causing me significant issues. I actually named this fibroid (non-cancerous) tumor, Bob; and when I had Bob removed during surgery, he weighed two pounds and two ounces! Before surgery, my surgeon asked me if I wanted to keep my ovaries or have them removed. Not understanding that my ovaries were my little hormone factories and hearing horror stories of women developing ovarian cancer, I opted to have them removed. Luckily, my husband Jeff, who was a pharmacist, had worked with aging, hormonal women for years as they came to his pharmacy for relief from their hormonal issues. He also worked with women for years who had had hysterectomies, accompanied by rapid weight gain (averaging about 40 lbs. in the first year); many suffered from exhaustion, excessive sweat, irritability, and complained of a loss of libido. To led to his trip to Houston, Texas to become trained as a compounding pharmacist, well-versed in compounding customized hormone replacement therapy for women.

Jeff accompanied me to my 10-week follow-up doctor's appointment and convinced my ob-gyn to sign off on my bioidentical hormone replacement therapy. The rest is history! I did not gain the typical 40 lbs., nor did I become fatigued, have sleep issues, hot flashes, night sweats, and brain fog or low libido- all signs aging women over the ages of 35 experience as they stop making hormones. I replaced, and continue to replace, my hormones daily to refill my hormone receptors, with the goal of being able to remain healthy for the long haul. That was twelve years ago, and I'm still going strong. Refilling my hormone receptors with bioidentical hormones customized specifically for me was one of the best decisions I ever made. Becoming an advocate for women and opening my Happy Hormone Cottage was another great decision! 

Lean In Dayton: Tell me about your organization, The Women's Health Initiatives Foundation.

Lyn Hogrefe: Our Mission is to promote and support integrative health initiatives which prevent, treat and defeat women's cancers. We raise money for New Hope for Cancer integrative treatment research which is currently in clinical trials but not funded by the $150 Billion Cancer industry. We provide financial support to the New Hope for Cancer program where late-stage cancer patients receive life-saving treatment which is not covered by insurance. We grow awareness of cancer prevention methods and treatment options beyond standard care.

Lean In Dayton: Happy Hormone Cottage has partnered with Suzanne Somers and her Forever Health referral program. Your facility is the only location in an area which has been endorsed by Somers. Why do you feel the services at Happy Hormone Cottage have such huge significance?

Lyn Hogrefe: If you read the plethora of books and studies on natural hormone balance, and become versed in the biochemistry of our bodies, it is clear that we must replace our hormones as we age, (starting around age 35) for a higher quality of life and to prevent disease. What diseases? Heart disease, Dementia, Osteoporosis and Breast Cancer. Yet when we visit our ob-gyns, who are good people with our best interests at heart, we typically hear nothing of this truth. Instead, we are offered drugs to mask our symptoms (antidepressants, sleeping aids, estrogen patches and so on) when the studies clearly show that for our best long-term quality of life, we MUST refill our hormone receptors. In fact, Dr. Prudence Hall, Suzanne Somers' doctor, has a beautiful phrase that I like to quote: "Hormones are to Women, What Water is to Plants." I think this graphically explains the importance of refilling our hormone receptors as we age beyond 35 years old, for our highest quality of life. So when women come to my HHC, are seen and heard; validated-often for the first time ever- and we offer them our strategies for optimal hormone balance in 3 key areas, it is significant. Over the past 7 years, women have had a positive experience, feel better than they have in years and began spreading the word. They told their friends and inner circle, who told their friends and inner circle. Today we have five Happy Hormone Cottages in five cities in the tristate area...

Interviewed by Julene Allen

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Julene Allen