This article from EndocrineToday.com is worth sharing with you for two reasons:
1. Many of us, hormonally balanced or not, have undergone at least a partial hysterectomy, and in many cases, full hysterectomy (I had my uterus removed in 2002 for severe bleeding and fibroids, I do still have my ovaries). Even with the ovaries still intact, a partial hysterectomy can greatly affect the function of the ovaries, as they lose at least part of their blood supply, which generally means a significant decrease in hormone production. We need to be aware and take steps to keep active and stay as physically fit as possible (diet, exercise, and hormone optimization so we have the energy to exercise).
2. The Endocrine Society came out with an "official" position statement on bioidentical hormones a couple years ago. Ask any doctor who knows what he/she is talking about in relation to bioidentical hormones, and they will tell you that since hormones affect every system in the body, the physical decline is highly likely to be the result of hormonal imbalance brought on by early menopause. Even I can figure that out, and I am not anywhere close to a doctor.