2475 Mercer Avenue, Suite 101
West Palm Beach, FL 33401
Get FREE Consultation

What Is The Endocrine System And What Are Hormones

The endocrine system is made up of several types of glands that create and secrete hormones in the human body. Hormones are chemical messengers that transfer information from different organs. Learning about the endocrine system function of hormones is important in order to understand how the body grows and functions.

Types Of Hormones Illustration

The endocrine system hormones and functions are vital. This system needs to be in gentle balance, as it is in charge of running the entire body, physically, emotionally, mentally and sexually. In order for a person to experience optimal health and growth, they must have a well functioning endocrine system. Their hormones must be plentiful and balanced.

As a matter of fact, experts concur that when a person is having a health problem it is best that they get their thyroid checked, for example. If they are having a growth problem, the pituitary gland needs to be checked. Hormones run emotions and can bring about depression, anxiety, irritability and agitation easily if they are out of balance.

The endocrine system and hormones have a huge responsibility for good and managed health. Before beginning any kind of treatment for an illness or health concern, look into getting your hormones tested to see if hormone replacement therapy (HRT) could be the answer. Before invasive surgeries or chemically filled medications that can cause terribly negative side effects, see if hormones are to blame for your health problems.

What Glands And Hormones Make Up The Endocrine System?

The glands in the body each secrete a specific chemical substance into the bloodstream called hormones. The body uses hormones for just about all of its functioning. What are the glands that make up the endocrine system?

  • Hypothalamus
  • Pituitary
  • Adrenals
  • Thyroid
  • Parathyroid
  • Pineal body

The ovaries and the testes are reproductive organs (not to be mistaken with glands), but also play a large role in endocrine system functioning. If the glands of the body are not working well, are injured, removed or diseased, the body will need an alternative way to receive the necessary hormones the gland(s) should be secreting. If the hormones are not being secreted internally, a person will not be optimally healthy in many varying physical, emotional, mental and sexual ways.

The experts say that the pancreas is also a part of the endocrine system. This is an organ that is responsible for digestion and hormone production.

The main hormones of the body and what their functions are can be seen in the following endocrine system hormones chart:

Thyroid hormones T4 and T3 Considered as the most important thyroid hormones (thyroxine, T4). Protect overall health.
Thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) Stimulates the thyroid gland to produce thyroid hormones.
Testosterone Responsible mainly for male secondary sexual characteristics, but women need it too.
Estrogen Responsibly mostly for female secondary sexual characteristics and reproduction, but men need it too.
Progesterone Mainly control menstruation and fertility.
Cortisol Released during stress. Shuts down the body systems that are not needed during crisis situations.
Insulin like growth factor 1 (IGF -1) Plays a huge part in growth.
Growth hormone Stimulates growth of the body including bones and tissues.
Luteinizing hormone (LH) Controls sexual functioning and production of estrogen, progesterone and testosterone. Overall, important for a healthy reproductive system.
Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) Controls sexual functioning and production of estrogen, progesterone and testosterone.
Prolactin Stimulates female milk production.
Adrenocorticotropin hormone (ACTH) Stimulates the adrenal glands to produce steroid hormones.

There are other hormones in the body that can have a great impact on different aspects of health too. The above listed hormones may be ones that are most common. Without proper levels, one’s health can be compromised in very serious ways. When too high or too low, endocrine system hormones diseases can occur.

How Does The Endocrine System Work?

How are endocrine system hormones secreted? The hormones of the body are secreted from the proper glands when they are told to do so by the body. For instance, the hypothalamus will stimulate the pituitary gland and the pituitary gland will send out signals to the testes (in men) or to the ovaries (in women) to secrete the hormone testosterone if it is needed. Some testosterone is also produced in the adrenal glands in both genders as well.

The hypothalamus will send a stimulating hormone to the pituitary gland. The pituitary gland will send a releasing hormone to the testes or the ovaries. The testes or the ovaries will create and emit the proper hormone out into the bloodstream. This is how the endocrine system function of hormones works.

Hormones are produced in a cycle when needed until the glands that signal for them to be created start slowing down with age. As a person grows older, their bodies tire. Their organs, glands and system start to get slower just like a person’s physical motion. As we get older, nothing about us works as quickly or as optimally as it did when we were younger.

Hormone replacement therapy can be seen as tricking the body into thinking that it is actually biologically younger than it is. Instead of the mind and body slowing down due to depleting hormones, the right hormones will be put into the bloodstream by physician prescribed, bio-identical injections. Hormone levels will be raised, balanced and the body will not know a difference. It can run as smoothly as it did when a person was in his or her 20’s.

What Can A Person Do If Their Endocrine System Hormones Are Depleted?

Each person is unique, so if they are experiencing hormonal problems due to the depletion of any specific hormone, they will need to be assessed by a doctor. The physician will need the results of blood work, a physical exam and a medical history to determine which hormone or hormones are depleted and need to be replaced. That doctor will then need to carefully create a very unique and individualized prescription and treatment plan for the endocrine system hormones that are missing.

Subcutaneous injections are then prescribed and taken on a daily basis according to a person’s treatment plan. In a very short time, the hormone that were missing will be added back into the body and balanced. When the endocrine system hormones released are not enough or not being released at all, hormone replacement therapy can help to bring a person back to good health safely and legally.

For more information about endocrine system hormones functions, please reach out to us. Fill out our online contact form to speak one on one with an expert clinical advisor about how depleting hormones can be affecting your health. Learn about the endocrine system hormones and how important they are for the best quality of life.

Medically reviewed by   Reviewers National HRT Staff - Updated on November 21, 2023

Please note that the information provided in this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.


  1. Emedicinehealth
  2. endocrineweb
  3. Hormone Health Network
  4. Organization and Integration of the Endocrine System George P Chrousos, M.D., Sleep Med Clin. 2007 Jun; 2(2): 125–145.