Why Your Testosterone Levels Are Dropping and What to Do about It
Did you know that by age 80, your testosterone levels will only be about 20 percent of what they were when you were younger? As you age, testosterone decreases. Both men and women produce this hormone. Men, however, need it in larger amounts to function optimally.
How Testosterone Affects Men
As a man, every system in your body needs testosterone to work properly. This hormone regulates your metabolism, body composition, sex drive, bone mass, and strength. It also has a major impact on your fertility.
Even the slightest decrease in T levels can affect your mood – and your overall appearance. You may begin to gain weight, especially in the abdominal area, feel depressed, and have trouble building muscle.
Until recently, it was believed that testosterone levels decrease with age. While that is true, it doesn’t mean it will happen for sure. According to the latest research, testosterone decline is likely the result of poor health and poor lifestyle, not aging. This means that healthy men should find it easier to maintain and even boost their T levels, no matter their age.
When your testosterone levels are high, your body functions at its peak. Elevated T production equals stronger bones, increased lean mass, fast metabolism, and high libido. Furthermore, this hormone protects against cardiovascular disease and promotes brain health.
Most studies indicate that T levels decrease by about 30 percent between the ages 25 and 75. If you’re under 45 or so, it should be fairly easy to restore your testosterone through diet and exercise. Men who don’t respond to lifestyle changes or suffer from diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease), and other conditions that affect testosterone production may benefit from hormone replacement therapy.
So, what’s the best way to boost your T levels through lifestyle changes? Even though there’s no one-size-fits-all solution, the following strategies can help:
Start Lifting Weights
Exercise and testosterone production are strongly connected. Strength training is particularly beneficial. Since it promotes muscle growth and burns fat, it can naturally boost your T levels. The more muscle you have, the more testosterone your body produces.
Certain exercises, such as deadlifts, squats, bench presses, and pull-ups, engage nearly every muscle. On top of that, they raise your heart and increase your metabolism, leading to fat loss. These factors result in higher testosterone levels and better overall health.
Dropping a few pounds will not improve your health but also raise your T levels. Obese men produce less testosterone and are more likely to experience erectile dysfunction. Plus, they’re at higher risk for heart disease, stroke, diabetes, insulin resistance, and hypertension.
Even the slightest weight loss could dramatically increase testosterone production. Clean eating and exercise can go a long way toward leanness. Forget about crash diets and make lasting lifestyle changes. Most patients need help and guidance from their providers to effectively loose and maintain a healthy weight. Cut back on sugar and trans fats, load up on protein, and swap simple carbs for complex carbs.
Try Hormone Replacement Therapy
Sometimes, low testosterone is due to factors that you cannot control like genes or stress. Certain health conditions, such as thyroid disease, pituitary gland problems, infections, and testicular cancer, have a negative impact on hormone production. Medications and some over the counter supplements can affect your T levels too.
In this case, hormone replacement therapy (HRT) can help. This form of treatment can be delivered in various ways, such as pellets that are inserted under the skin, cream, troche, and injection.
HRT is safe for most men, except for those with prostate cancer or a high risk of developing this disease. It can work wonders for men over 35, leading to a higher libido, fat loss, improved mood, and greater strength. To fully reap its benefits, stay active and watch your diet.
Now that you know your options, consult a medical professional. Get your T levels checked and then choose a treatment accordingly with the help of your provider.