Is It Low T?

The manliest of hormones fuels your sex drive and puts hair on your chest, but you might be surprised to learn that low T – that dreaded phrase announcing low testosterone – is not a symptom of the aging process.
Your sex drive is waning for any number of reasons, be they mental or physical. You’re low on energy for similar reasons: heart disease, diabetes, obesity and other ailments that afflict men. Studies suggest that low testosterone is a symptom of these more urgent health conditions. But very often low T’s not the culprit.
Are you concerned you’ve got low T? Well, you might be lower than a man would otherwise be at your age, but that’s something you should address with your doctor. He’ll want to screen you for these other, more serious concerns. Treat those first, and your testosterone should follow.
Still, it’s an enormous concern that’s not going away. And for some men, testosterone replacement therapy is a viable option. You can boost testosterone naturally too, with lifestyle choices and natural supplements with tongkat ali if that’s your fancy.

How to Tell If it’s Really Low T

Is low T causing your ED, depression, fatigue and other ailments? The short answer is maybe. These are also symptoms of the often life-threatening issues we’ve already discussed. You won’t know if it’s low T until your doctor confirms it.
Assuming your doctor rules out these usual suspects, you’ll have a better idea if it’s really low T with a special blood test. The normal range for a man’s total testosterone is from 300 to 1,200 nanograms per deciliter, with the former being the low end. Below 300 and it may be low T.
The side effects of low T are well-documented. They include:
erectile dysfunction
fatigue
depression
low energy 
Low T can also lead to loss of bone density that can increase risk of osteoporosis over time. You probably wouldn’t notice this in its early stages either, making it even more important to pay attention to your body as these symptoms arise.

Low T and Your Health

Low T’s all about the blood test. If your reading is below 300 ng/dl, and your doctor confirms it, then yes, it’s low T.
Research continues into low testosterone and its effects on health. We don’t know if it causes these other health issues, yet there’s a clear link between them. In a study of 2,100 men over 45, the odds of having low T were:
2.4 times higher for obese men
2.2 times higher for diabetic men
1.8 times higher for men with high blood pressure
Current evidence suggests that these conditions cause low T – not vice versa. Men with medical problems and low general health may simply get low T among other symptoms.
Diabetes – Up to 50% of diabetic men have low T. Conversely, men with low testosterone are more likely to develop diabetes. The reason? Testosterone helps the body’s tissue absorb more blood sugar in response to insulin, for which men with low T often build a resistance as the body tries to maintain blood sugar levels.
Obesity – Another strong connection. Men with low T are more likely to be obese. The mechanism remains unclear, but possibly because fat cells metabolize testosterone to estrogen. As well, obesity reduces sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG), a protein that carries testosterone in the blood. Low SHBG means low testosterone.
Metabolic syndrome – A collection of symptoms, including abnormal cholesterol and high blood sugar, that increase risk of heart disease and stroke, there’s a similar link between metabolic syndrome and low T as there is with obesity.
Heart disease – Many experts believe testosterone contributes to higher rates of heart disease and high blood pressure at an age that continues to get younger. If this is true, then low T is bad for the heart. However, there’s a confirmed link between low T and insulin, obesity and diabetes – all of which increase cardiovascular risk.

Low T Treatment Options

Testosterone replacement has not shown to help any of the conditions or underlying medical issues associated with low T that we’ve discussed in this article. And in a 2008 Dutch study of 237 men between 60 and 80, oral testosterone supplements provided little benefit other than mild weight loss.
Should you be interested in testosterone replacement, know the risks first. Testosterone therapy can increase red blood cell count and enlarge male breasts (gynecomastia). Men with a history of breast breast cancer should not pursue testosterone therapy; men with prostate cancer may want to avoid it as well.
Don’t do testosterone therapy if you’re not in agreement with your doctor. Along those lines, speak with a specialist before doing the treatment if you have specific medical questions or concerns.

Low T’s all about the blood test. If your reading is below 300 ng/dl, and your doctor confirms it, then yes, it’s low T.

If you’re still interested in testosterone replacement, you’ve generally got three options:
Injections – The least expensive (and most painful) way to supplement, you’ll need to inject testosterone every one to three weeks if you pursue this method. Your testosterone levels may vary widely between doses.
Gels and patches – Place one of these on your skin and it slowly releases testosterone into the bloodstream. Patches are a good option for men who want to conceive because they release hormone at a steady rate and are less likely to cause fluctuating testosterone levels. Gels and patches can cause itching and blisters though, and women and children should not touch the skin on which they’re applied.
Testosterone tablets – These fit on the gums, just above the incisors, and gradually release testosterone as they dissolve. Tablets need to be replaced every 24 hours and can cause side effects including migraines, tender gums and a foul taste in the mouth, although these should get better with time. You can also get testosterone gum tablets if you prefer.

Natural Testosterone Supplements

Men who’d like to increase testosterone naturally should consider a supplement specifically formulated to address andropause – the general decline in both testosterone and growth hormone that typically affects men after 40. These won’t contain any testosterone, rather they’re designed to increase testosterone production naturally, with herbals and amino acids.
The benefits of an HGH releaser designed to reduce symptoms of andropause include:
more energy
less body fat
increased muscle mass
stronger bones
faster metabolism
In other words, the same, albeit milder benefits of prescription testosterone treatments, achieved naturally.
This option isn’t for all men. If you’re looking to do everything by the book and supplement with a patch or testosterone pills, and assuming you don’t have a history of breast or prostate cancer, by all means, try testosterone replacement therapy with a nod from your doctor.
But if you’re among the growing demographic of men who want to supplement for growth hormone and testosterone naturally – without injections or sometimes dangerous pills – a well-established natural supplement like Provacyl may be of interest to you.

5 More Ways to Boost Testosterone

Also keep in mind that your testosterone levels are a product of lifestyle. Healthy habits go a long way here, like a nutrient-rich whole food diet and regular exercise, to top up your testosterone and reduce the chance that Mr Low T will pay a visit to your body any time soon.
Consider this list of 5 ways to increase testosterone courtesy of the folks at Men’s Health that will not only boost hormone levels naturally, they may increase your lifespan too:
Find your abs – The bad six pack: the kind you quaff down on Saturday night with beer and nachos. The good: the six pack you might’ve had as a teenager. Testosterone works inversely with body fat, meaning that 30 extra pounds on a 5’10” man can expedite low T by a decade. Want to rediscover your abs and increase testosterone at the same time? Try their e-book, The 6-Pack Secret.
Hit the gym – While you’re at it, high-tail it to the weight room and build muscle. A Finnish study found that guys who lifted often experienced a 49% increase in total testosterone levels. Just twice a week should make a difference.
Put some fat on your plate – Fat’s not always the enemy. In fact, a study published in the Journal of Sports Medicine found that men who consumed the most fat also had the highest testosterone levels. The trick is to find healthy fats, preferably mono- and polyunsaturated, like the kind in fish and nuts. Peruse this list of healthy fats for more information.
Limit alcohol – Another inverse relationship. A Dutch study found that guys who drank moderate amounts of alcohol lost 7% testosterone over three weeks. Keep it at two drinks per day, and considering the empty calories in beer versus the health benefits of wine, you might want to opt for the latter.
Manage your stress – Ongoing stress can increase cortisol – a hormone that suppresses testosterone and your tissue’s ability to use it. A little cardio can alleviate stress, as might aromatherapy, mindful meditation or a 15 minute walk in nature.

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