Testosterone is an anabolic hormone that regulates the development of muscles, bones, and sex organs. The hormone is primarily produced in the testicles for men and ovaries and adrenal glands for women. Testosterone comes in much smaller amounts than in men. The production of testosterone increases 30 times more during adolescence and early childhood. The level then drops gradually after early adulthood. Your body will see a 1% decline after you reach 30 years.
Testosterone plays a crucial role in your body, and this is why experts recommend seeing a doctor if you are concerned about low testosterone. It is natural to have low testosterone, but your doctor may advise improving its levels. However, improving testosterone level while normal may not yield any benefits. Here are four benefits of increasing testosterone levels in men.
- Healthy Heart. The primary function of your heart is to pump blood throughout your body, providing muscles and organs with the oxygen needed for peak performance. Testosterone helps in the production of red blood cells through the bone marrow. Studies have linked low testosterone levels to cardiovascular risks. Research also shows that men with heart diseases who undergo testosterone therapy see a slight improvement by increasing their walking distance by 33 percent. A more recent study showed that men whose testosterone levels returned to normal were 24% less likely to have a heart attack and 36% less likely to experience a stroke.
- Stronger Bones and more Muscles. Do you want to build muscles? Testosterone is the hormone responsible for increasing your muscle mass. Leaner body mass controls your weight and increases energy. Increasing testosterone levels in men can decrease fat mass and increase muscle size and strength. However, some men may see a decrease in body mass but no increase in strength. As such, experts recommend combining testosterone therapy with exercise and strength training. Testosterone also plays a significant role in bone mineral density. As a man, bone density decreases with age and testosterone levels. A decrease in bone density increases the risk of osteoporosis, a condition that makes your bones fragile and more likely to break. Increasing the testosterone level leads to stronger bones, enabling them to support your muscles and internal organs. Research on the effect of testosterone on bone density found an increase in spinal and hip bone density.
- Improved Mood and Libido. Men’s testosterone levels naturally rise in response to sexual arousal and activity. Those with high testosterone levels have more significant sexual activity. This is why older men require more testosterone for libido and erectile function. However, this does not mean that erectile dysfunction is primarily due to low testosterone levels. The condition is often caused by other reasons like medications rather than low testosterone levels. Studies show that increasing men’s testosterone levels can benefit their sexual health and performance. Research also shows that there is a maximum level of testosterone before there is no increased response. Men with hypogonadism (when sex glands produce little or no sex hormones) may not improve their libido by increasing testosterone. Low testosterone levels are also lead to poor life quality. Men may notice signs like depression, fatigue, and irritability. However, this only happens to me with hypogonadism. Those whose testosterone levels decrease normally do not show these signs. Increasing testosterone levels for men with hypogonadism improves their mood, well-being and reduces fatigue.
- Maximized Mental Function. Testosterone also plays a significant role in cognitive performance. Studies show that an increase in testosterone levels improves mental function in various areas like mathematical reasoning, verbal memory, and concentration. Testosterone therapy also reduces the risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease in older men. Increasing testosterone levels also leads to improved positive feelings and friendliness. Research also proves that testosterone therapy could potentially be used as an antidepressant treatment for men. Unlike popular belief that testosterone makes men aggressive and angry, these studies show that testosterone maximizes men’s mental functioning.
Testosterone therapy is not necessary if your levels fall within the normal range. Treatment is beneficial for men with low testosterone levels, and experts recommend visiting your doctor for a prescription. A blood test from your doctor will determine your testosterone level and help diagnose any underlying condition. Some proven ways to increase your testosterone levels include regular exercise, a balanced diet, adequate sleep, reduced stress, avoiding excessive alcohol consumption, and avoiding xenoestrogen and estrogen-like products. Diet and lifestyle affect your hormonal health and impact testosterone levels. However, check with your doctor for professional advice on the proper testing and treatment.