Testosterone Replacement Therapy can be an option for men who need to recover from side effects related to decreased Testosterone or “Low T.”
Also termed “Hypogonadism,” this deficiency is more common than you think. There is a lot to know about Testosterone, how it is made, why we need it, and what can go wrong when it isn’t at its prime production level. We are talking about it all here, so stay tuned.
What Is Testosterone?
You have heard the name before, you probably learned about it in your teenage years: Testosterone. The male hormone that makes you tough, right? Well, it is a lot more than just that. Testosterone is a hormone that all men (and women) have. It belongs to a group of steroids called Androgens, which are responsible for growth effects in men and women. It is responsible for puberty, a deepening voice, growth and development of penis and testes, bone growth, sexual labido, hair growth, and muscle growth.
Where Is It Made?
For men, Leydig Cells in the testes make Testosterone. Like other systems in the human body, Testosterone is regulated by a feedback loop. What does this mean? It means that if the body senses that there is too much, the brain will send out a signal to shut down production or convert the extra to something else that the body is in need of. This also means that if you are healthy with normal Testosterone levels and also get Testosterone Replacement Therapy, your body will stop producing it on its own.
For women, Testosterone is manufactured in the ovaries and adrenal gland. Since the ovaries are such a huge factor in making Testosterone for women, often, menopause can cause a decrease in this hormone with age as it does with men as they age
Why Do I Need Testosterone?
Individuals who lack proper Testosterone levels can develop a myriad of problems later in life. For teenage boys, if they do not have adequate Testosterone, major developmental milestones are not fully reached. Individuals who produce too much can also have problems as well. Testosterone aids in a slew of processes in the human body and is crucial to our survival. For both males and females, Testosterone is a very important hormone in the body and is needed indefinitely.
What Is Considered a Normal Range of Testosterone?
When you look at normal numbers or ranges for testosterone, they differ between men and women. For men, these numbers can range between 230-1000 ng/dl. Testosterone levels can increase during puberty and usually stop climbing in your twenties. Once you are over the age of 30, your Testosterone levels can start to decline.
What Happens When Testosterone Is Too Low?
If men are experiencing low T, they may be showing some symptoms. These symptoms can look like irritablility, decrease in muscle mass, loss of hair, decrease in sex drive, hot flashes, weak bones, poor concentration, and small testicles or decreased sperm count. As you can imagine, even one of these side effects can cause a heap of trouble all on its own. It’s important to notice any changes and talk to a doctor about our findings. Being proactive about your health and any issues that arise will help you get answers sooner and get you feeling better quicker. It is also important to note that you can have insufficient levels of Testosterone and not show heavy symptoms or any symptoms at all.
What Can Cause Low Testosterone?
There are a few factors that can cause Low T, and they are as follows. Consuming a very minimal amount of calories consistently, consuming a very large amount of calories consistently, drug use, over training, injury, decreased or little sexual activity, stress, aging, depression, obesity, chronic illness, infection, age, and not getting in enough sleep. Aside from these topics, certain foods can also cause Low T. Soy food and soy-based products can lead to a drop in Testosterone. These foods include tofu, miso, and soy milk. Another food group that can have this effect is Mint. Other consumables include Licorice Root, vegetable il, Flax Seed, alcohol and nuts. If you are a frequent consumer of processed foods, these can also have a decreasing effect on this hormone. Pre-packaged snacks, frozen meals, and other food items should be avoided if you are trying to repair your Testosterone Levels.
What Happens When Testosterone Levels Are Too High?
It is possible to have your Testosterone levels be too high.This is not a common occurrence to happen naturally and can also cause some problems in your daily life. A common reason an individual might have high Testosterone levels is that they are on anabolic steroids for performance enhancing reasons. Bodybuilders and athletes use these to boost athletic performance and increase muscle growth and mass. Taking high doses of Testosterone can have negative side effects for these athletes. They might experience oily or acne filled skin, hair growth or hair loss, mood swings, deepening voice in women, or other masculine features, shrinking of testicles, growth of breast tissue in males, connective tissue damage, and increased risk of cardiovascular disease and or heart problems.
Another reason for high T levels (and also less common) is that men might experience a tumor or mass in the testes or adrenal glands. Some signs you might be experiencing high T are: acne, increased appetite, infertility, low sperm count, high blood pressure, liver problems, heart problems, mood swings, difficulty urinating and prostate enlargement, or prostate shrinking or impotence.
What Can I Do If I Have Low Testosterone?
Having low Testosterone is not a life sentence. There are treatments and modalities today that can help to lessen the symptoms and reduce the impact on daily life drastically. You can take an inventory of your self care. Think about what you feed your body, your sleeping habits, your water intake, your sexual activity, and how much you exercise. All of these are factors that can have an effect on your Testosterone levels. Certain foods can aid in healthy Testosterone production. Tuna is one of them. It is easy to make even as a healthier option. You can find pre-made tuna packets at the grocery store that are a variety of flavors such as habanero, garlic, and or lemon pepper, just to name a few. Pair these on some crackers or eat right out of the bag. Salmon or Sardines are also an option if you are not accustomed to the taste of tuna. Egg yolks are next in line and like tuna, are rich in vitamin D. Egg yolks can be eaten for breakfast in scrambled eggs or omelets as an easy start. Zinc has also been shown to help with Testosterone levels. For this reason, seafood like shellfish and Oysters are a great option to keep in your diet.
If you think you might be experiencing low testosterone and want to know if Testosterone Replacement Therapy is right for you, take this free questionnaire. It is a short survey and can be submitted here. The following are what the questions are like. They can be answered in a yes or no format.
- I have a reduced desire for sex that is not ok with me.
- I have Erectile Dysfunction.
- I have a lack of drive and motivation that affects my productivity.
- I lack energy and am always tired.
- Life is less enjoyable than it used to be.
- Fun activities are less fun, or take too much effort.
- I often feel irritable and grumpy.
- I have noticed a loss of tone in my muscles.
- Weight seems to settle stubbornly in certain areas of my body, and remains there despite weight loss.
- My workout results do not match my efforts.
After submitting your free questionnaire, one of our friendly staff members will contact you with information on therapy options if needed.
In certain cases, having low Testosterone is not a bad thing to experience. These cases would be for those individuals who have had or are currently experiencing prostate cancer.
What Can I Do To Keep A Healthy Testosterone Level?
Leading a healthy lifestyle is a great place to start in keeping your body at a healthy level of Testosterone. Think about what you eat in a day. Is it mostly packaged and items that are quick to grab and go? Are you consuming more sugary drinks and candy than you are foods that enrich and energize your body? Engaging in a regular and consistent exercise program will also aid you in keeping healthy Testosterone levels. Exercise can create a short term release of Testosterone which can trigger muscle growth. The more intensity you have and the harder you train, the more Testosterone you get. Endurance exercise can cause the opposite effect for this hormone and can actually cause a decrease in levels. Some other things you can do would include: getting proper amounts of sleep, avoiding drugs or unnecessary medications, manage stress and anxiety, eat enough calories, get in adequate micronutrients and macro nutrients, and have regular safe sexual activity.
Are There Treatment Options for Low Testosterone?
If you have this condition, there are a few things you can do to help. Aside from adjusting your diet, sleeping habits, and exercise schedule, talking to your doctor can be a great next step. You will be asked if you can make an appointment for a physical to be performed along with some lab work. You will also be asked a series of questions about your sexual relationships, and lifestyle, as well as your symptoms and what you are experiencing. If you find out that you could use some beneficial therapy, there are a few pathways to choose from. There are injections, pills, patches, gels and creams—any of these can help increase Testosterone.
Injections— Once you meet with your specialist, you can decide on a series of injections. The first one or two are usually done in office, and then you have the option to make an appointment to come in for the rest, or pick them up and do them in the comfort of your own home. After the injections, Testosterone levels can hit a high and then gradually decline to a low over time. This can cause some mood swings and irritability between shots and should be noted.
Patches— If you choose the patches, you apply a new skin patch every 24 hours. They release small doses of the hormone into your skin.
Gels— The topical gels are used daily. Every day you apply the prescription gel to your shoulders, arms, or thighs. Since this is a medical grade gel, the importance of proper hand washing after application is stressed to prevent others from coming into contact with the gel.
Medication— Capsules can be swallowed that release Testosterone into the bloodstream daily.
Pellets— Small pellet like implants are placed under the skin. They are put around the hips or buttocks area of your body and release Testosterone slowly. These are replaced every 3 to 6 months.
Visit Genesys Men’s Health for Your Testosterone Replacement Therapy Needs
You do not have to be a man over 40 for us to help you with your issues or concerns with Low Testosterone Levels and Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT). We help clients young and old who are experiencing some trouble and are looking for answers. We offer an up to date and aggressive approach to TRT for all ages. At Genesys Men’s Health, we pride ourselves in taking care of each client personally and uniquely to find out the best possible route of action to help them get back to feeling their normal self.
Take our free online assessment here to see if you have TRT needs. We also offer the option to book a free hormone evaluation on our website at www.Genesysmenshealth.com. Our office is located in Sandy, Utah. Come by and meet our friendly staff and schedule an appointment. You can also call us at (801)-671-7456. Contact us today!