This article is for men and those who love them.
Have you – or your man – experienced the following symptoms? Low sex drive? Lack of enthusiasm for life or no sense of purpose? Hair loss? An increase in irritability and periods of depression? Fatigue? Significant loss of muscle mass or an increase in body fat, especially around the belly?
Each of these issues are problematic in and of itself. But if you’re experiencing a few of them, plus an inability to ‘perform’, it is probably due to low testosterone. In fact, it is almost certain that low testosterone is the cause – researchers have found that 1 in 4 men over the age of 30 are experiencing low T.
Now, think about that: 1 in 4. That means that, out of every 4 men you know, one of them will not only suffer the symptoms previously listed but will also experience difficulty in achieving and maintaining an erection. Perhaps you don’t want to think of EVERY man in your life that way but if you get past the subject matter, it sounds like an epidemic. A recent study showed a 22 percent drop in testosterone levels since the 1980’s in the US. And men aged 20 and under are increasingly reporting symptoms of low T.
What is Testosterone Anyway?
Testosterone is an androgenic sex hormone produced by the testicles. Testosterone is the key player in men’s sexual and reproductive development. It regulates the building of muscle mass, hair growth, maintenance of bone density, and red blood cell production. It also impacts mental and emotional health. Culturally, we associate testosterone with the ideal of ‘manhood’. The Rock, The Marlboro Man, and any character drawn by Tom of Finland? Their classic, muscular physiques and cool, calm, smoldering dispositions suggest the masculine ideal fueled by healthy levels of testosterone.
Although commonly associated with aging, there are other causes of low T, including diet and lifestyle choices. Overuse of alcohol has been linked to low T, as has over consumption of grains and soy products. Environmental toxins, medications, smoking and substance abuse can decrease testosterone. Chronic stress can cause levels to plummet. A website called ‘Your Brain On Porn’ suggests that overuse of pornography can negatively impact testosterone levels. Unfortunately, no studies have been done to date but you can find studies that suggest frequent and repeated ejactulation can reduce testosterone levels.
It’s Not ALL About Sex
But it’s not all about sex – low T can be a matter of life or death. Men who have low testosterone are more likely to develop Metabolic Syndrome. Metabolic Syndrome is a condition that includes the presence of abnormal cholesterol levels, high blood pressure, waistline obesity, and high blood sugar. No one is sure if low T causes Metabolic Syndrome or if Metabolic Syndrome causes Low T. But testosterone replacement therapy results in weight loss, improvement of blood sugar levels and decreased development of related health issues.
Low T is also linked to shorter lifespan – men with low T die sooner than men with normal levels of testosterone. They are more likely to develop osteoporosis, and experience heart attacks and strokes. Men with low T also struggle with infertility, insomnia, and depression.
So what is the answer?
Well, typical testosterone therapy comes in the form of a patch or gel. But using supplemental testosterone can trick the body into producing less and leaving you dependent on a prescription. Testosterone gel has been known to transfer from person to person, causing poisoning in women and children. Thankfully, there are non prescription ways to help your body increase testosterone. Herbs, eating healthy fats, heavy weight training, and intermittent fasting are all ways to increase testosterone levels naturally.
Horny goat weed has been popular for decades with those who want to raise testosterone levels. DHEA is found in healthy fats such as avocado, olive oil, and purified omega-3 oils from fish and is one of the best ways to combat low T. Eurycoma longifolia, also known as Malaysian ginseng, is gaining popularity as an herb to balance hormone levels in men. If you’d like to avoid the pharmaceutical route, look for these supplements or a formulation that contains them.
There is absolutely no reason to suffer the effects of low T. You can see your doctor to have your levels tested or use at at home test kit to gauge where you are at. Whichever route you choose, having the right level of testosterone means good health, long life, and great sex.