In spite of several advantages of salivary hormone assessment, one important piece of information you miss out on when you do this rather than blood assays, is the SHBG result. Sex hormone binding globulin is a protein produced in the liver that, as the name suggests, binds our sex hormones rendering them inactive and therefore buffering us against their full potency.  They bind the sex hormones to different degrees – the androgens most potently and oestradiol to a lesser extent but curiously it’s higher oestrogen  that represents the major hormonal driver of increased SHBG production (including synthetic oestrogens).  Its levels are also influenced by various dietary, lifestyle, anthropometric & hormonal factors and SHBG receptors are expressed on various tissues (endometrial, prostatic, placental, breast, liver & epididymis).  All up we now understand that SHBG’s actions in the body go beyond that of just buffering us against excessive testosterone & oestrogen and that we can also have excessive levels, exposing some patients to inadequate androgens in particular, which has links to osteoporosis, hair loss and changes in sexual activity.  Blood SHBG is being touted as possibly the most important overall marker of hormonal health and future health risk….want to learn more including the ideal reference ranges for men and women?…check out the latest Premium Audio recording  Let’s talk about sex…binding globulin