“The idea is to die young as late as possible.” –Ashley Montagu
Aging is an irreversible process. One realizes on growing older that the body is no longer permitting him to have the same vigor and richness of youth. Is there a solution to reverse aging? The answer is negative; but it is possible to revitalize one to have the same freshness and motivation and lead a healthy life. Is testosterone therapy the solution you are seeking as an ultimate anti-aging formula? While it may look enticing, understanding the pros and cons is important to understand its benefits.
What is Testosterone?
Testosterene is a hormone mostly found in men’s testicles, while female ovary also produce a small amount of the same. The normal range of testosterone is between 300 ng/dL to about 800 ng/dL. Apart from one’s sex drive, it helps in improving bone density, building muscles, and production of red blood cells.
A drop in testosterone causes:
- weight gain
- loss of muscles
- diminished sperm count
What causes low testosterone (Low T)?
Testosterone levels generally peak during adolescence and as one gets older, it gradually decreases. Apart from normal aging, the testosterone may go down if one is suffering from hypodonadism which is due to inability of the testicles to produce the hormone. This can be treated by testosterone replacement therapy as injections, pellets, patches, or gels.
Side effects of medication, obstructive sleep apnea, thyroid problems, diabetes, chronic diseases like AIDS, kidney problems, liver cirrhosis, high stress and depression may also lead to low testosterone and can improve once the same is treated. Other factors, like injury to the testicles, chemotherapy or radiation treatment for cancer may also adversely affect testosterone production.
How to find out if one has low testosterone?
A blood test is the only way to diagnose a low testosterone level.
Consult a Specialist
A gradual decrease in testosterone as you grow older is acceptable. In case one has lower testosterone compared to his age affecting his health and quality of life, advice from a specialist is advisable. While hormone replacement therapy can help improve the testosterone levels, it is still not clear that it offers benefit to someone who is otherwise healthy.
Risks in Testosterone Therapy
This may cause
- Sleep apnea
- Acne or other skin diseases
- Benign prostatic hyperplasia
- Growth of existing prostate cancer
- Limit sperm production
- Testicle shrinkage
- Deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism
Bodybuilders, athletes, and those seeking to build muscle mass or achieve other benefits from artificial testosterone should be aware of the mental and physical risks involved.
The following tips will help one in improving the testosterone level naturally:
- Good night’s sleep: Lack of sleep often results in lower testosterone levels and therefore having a good night’s sleep is a good option to improve the same.
- Have a normal weight:Overweight, middle-aged men with prediabetes are also likely to have low testosterone levels. Men who maintain a normal weight have a lower risk of developing full-blown diabetes as well as hypogonadism.
- Get enough zinc:Zinc deficiencies is found with men having hypogonadism or lower testosterone levels.Eating foods that are rich in zinc, such as red meat, poultry, beans, nuts, crabs will improve your testosterone levels.
- Control your blood sugar: High sugar level indicates lower level of testosterone, and therefore controlling one’s sugar level will help increase its level.
- Exercise: Research indicates that total testosterone levels increase after exercising and help improves mood and stimulates brain chemicals to help you feel happier and more confident.
When it is beyond your control even after you have adopted all the natural means to curb the symptoms, it is wise to see your doctor without delay.