According to scientists, the effects of testosterone on men’s bodies is complex and not yet even fully understood. Much depends on how it’s converted within the body into a type of oestrogen.
Men who don’t naturally produce enough testosterone can experience various side effects and symptoms which adversely impact their quality of life. The good news is that there are multiple options for men with low testosterone levels, including being prescribed the hormone as a medication or taking high-quality supplements that can boost levels, such as Centrapeak.
A natural hormone produced in the testicles, testosterone impacts how a man looks and develops sexually. It also stimulates sperm production, impacts the man’s sex drive, and builds muscle and bone mass.
As men get older, their testosterone levels start to drop. According to research carried out by the America Urological Association, approximately 20% of men aged over 60 have low testosterone levels. This goes up to 30% for men in their 70s and 80s.
Low testosterone levels (low T) can be diagnosed by doctors, and the consensus says that when levels fall beneath 300 nanograms per deciliter (ng/dL), it’s considered to be medically low. Levels usually hover between 300 and 1,000 ng/dL, so the following symptoms can emerge if it falls below the lowest in this ratio.
A much lower sex drive
As testosterone is so important in determining a man’s sex drive, having too little will be strongly felt. Some men naturally lose their sex drive as they age, but those with low T will experience this much more drastically.
Testosterone also helps to maintain an erection, so if a man has low levels, he may have problems in this area. In some cases, erectile dysfunction can be treated with testosterone-boosting supplements. However, it’s not always this simple, as there are many reasons that could be contributing to the problem, such as drinking too much alcohol, smoking, being depressed, thyroid issues, high blood pressure or diabetes.
Low semen volumes
Another problem caused by low testosterone levels is the amount of sperm men produce when they ejaculate.
Testosterone levels are closely linked with hair loss. And while male pattern balding is very common as men get older, men with low T can also lose body and facial hair.
Exhaustion and fatigue
Low T in men can leave them feeling very tired, a feeling that can increase extreme fatigue.
Decrease in muscle mass
Studies show that testosterone levels impact muscle mass and, therefore, men with low levels of the hormone may well notice less muscle mass.
Body fat increase
Low T can also increase body fat. In some men, this leads to gynecomastia, which is when breast tissue becomes enlarged due to an imbalance between testosterone and oestrogen.
Mood swings and changes
Men’s mental capacity and mood can also be adversely impacted by low testosterone levels. They may find they feel unfocused, depressed and more irritable.
Low blood count
There is a link between low testosterone levels and an increased risk of anaemia. In one study, a trial group of men were administered testosterone gel and found that their blood counts increased too.
Testosterone has been prescribed as a medication since 1937, although back then, little was understood about its actual impact on the body. Women, of course, experience a swift fall in hormone levels when they go through menopause, but men appear to experience the decline in testosterone levels much more gradually.
Men concerned about symptoms such as those listed above should speak to their healthcare practitioner. Blood tests will reveal whether they are dealing with low T and treatment options weighed up.
Studies into the various effects of testosterone levels on the body are ongoing. This includes consideration of what constitutes true low levels and when men should be administered medication. Other options include losing weight and eating healthily, drinking less alcohol, cutting out smoking and other unhealthy habits ad adding a high-quality supplement to their healthy diet. All of these can help the symptoms of low T, although a doctor should always be consulted.