It's actually somewhat costly to talk about human growth hormone when you're an online venture. Mentioning it here will no doubt cost me time and bother in future mailings of the Longevity Meme newsletters; everyone suffers when the self-proclaimed "anti-aging" marketplace outdoes itself in the promotion and branding of an aspect of medicine or biotechnology. It becomes next to impossible to find reputable information or sensible, informed discussion of the subject, and soon enough all talk of the matter finds its way into spam filters thanks to shady online mass marketing.
Here's an article that is at least moderately well informed:
The synthetic hormone may not be all that effective for adults, either. It's true that the body's natural growth hormone plays an important role, promoting tissue repair, strengthening bones, and stimulating the immune system. Those who tout its powers point out that levels of growth hormone in the body decline with age, and they claim that replacing the hormone with the synthetic version will slow the aging process. But Olshansky says few studies support that claim, and some seem to counter it. In a 2003 study, mice with superhigh levels of growth hormone had significantly shorter lifespans than normal mice.
Growth hormone, once you cut through the irresponsible marketing, is nothing more than another fairly outmoded workhorse therapy for very specific conditions. The anti-aging marketplace could just as easily have worked itself up into a frothing mania over an osteoporosis drug, or something to mitigate menopausal symptoms - the brand snowballs in size and the money treads science underfoot for these people. But we get along just fine and well in our use of other marketplaces with equally outrageous and disreputable margins, such as the automotive repair or parts industries. As I point out at the Longevity Meme:
You'll hear much light and noise from all sides, so let's just cut to the chase: people should be free to do whatever they like to their own bodies, provided they take responsibility for the consequences. Growth hormone therapies appear to be helpful for some people under some circumstances, but the level of scientific backing for general use that I'd be comfortable with is not there (unlike for, say, calorie restriction). Like many present day therapies, in this era prior to widely available personalized medicine, it's pulling the big red lever and hoping for the best. Results and side effects vary widely, and there are many voices out there making money from hyped, false claims. But none of that is grounds for governmental restriction of choice.
Caveat emptor and educating yourself when the decision matters is a much better philosophy than relying on disinterested and unmotivated regulators to watch out for you.
You'll find an ongoing discussion of growth hormone in the Immortality Institute forums if you'd like to investigate the issue further.