What is testosterone and why is it important?
Testosterone is a sex hormone which plays an important role in the body. It is essential not only for men but also for women. In males, the need of testosterone levels to be up is much higher as compared to females. As it contributes to the sexual development and health of the males. It is also vital for fat loss and muscle growth and is very important for fertility of men. If the male body does not produce enough testosterone it can lead to adverse outcomes.
Why does the level of testosterone decrease?
Certain diseases or conditions can lead to a drop of testosterone in the body. These can be tumors, morphine medicines, HIV/AIDS, autoimmune conditions etc.
What is the role of testosterone?
Testosterone being an essential sex hormone plays a large number of roles in the body. These include:
- Production of sperm.
- It is important for the libido or sex drive of men.
- It is very important for the bodybuilders and athletes who want to increase their muscle size.
- It gives muscles more strength.
- In teenagers, it results in growth of pubic hair and facial hair at the start of puberty.
- It is also responsible for the voice deepening which occurs at the onset of puberty.
- Testosterone is also important for the growth and development of the testes and penis.
- It also plays an important role in maintaining a normal mood in a person.
- It is also important for the functioning of ovaries.
- It is helpful in strengthening the bones.
What happens if the level of testosterone increases beyond a specific limit?
If the levels of testosterone in the body are abnormally high it can lead to a number of serious issues. These include:
- Enlargement of the prostate.
- Difficulty while urinating.
- High risk of blood clotting.
- Impaired judgement.
- Water retention.
- Swelling of lower extremities.
- Sperm count decreases.
- Shrinking of testicles.
- High levels of testosterone can lead to increased levels of cholesterol.
- High levels of testosterone can lead to increased blood pressure.
- There is a risk of liver issues if testosterone levels increase.
- Many people report acne when their levels of testosterone increase.
- There is an increased risk of heart attack.
Supplements which can help to increase testosterone levels:
The low levels of testosterone can be treated with the help of supplements which have less side effects and work effectively. Some of theSE supplements are also good hormone replacement therapy (HRT) alternatives which include:
1. Vitamin D
Vitamin D is produced by the body naturally when it is exposed to sun. In a study which was conducted in a population of 65 people, it was seen that those who took vitamin D supplement daily saw an increase in their levels of testosterone over those who skipped it.
Ginseng is a herbal supplement which is used as an ingredient in Chinese medicine. Research shows that Ginseng not only helps a person to cope with stress but also helps to improve the sexual performance in men as well as improves the quality of sperms and increases or improves the sperm count.
Proper levels of magnesium in the body lead to a calm behavior, muscle tissue improvement, improves sleep etc. Moreover by taking magnesium supplements the levels of testosterone in the body also increase.
4. D-aspartic acid.
D-aspartic acid is a type of amino acid which is responsible to increase luteinizing hormone and follicle stimulating hormone and such increases lead to more release of testosterone in the body.
Zinc is a very important mineral which is essential for the proper and healthy functioning of the body. Studies have shown that the deficiency of zinc leads to low levels of testosterone in the body. Therefore it is important to take zinc supplements for a long period in order to overcome the deficiency of testosterone.
Studies have suggested that a diet which is rich in protein as compared to carbs is effective for raising the levels of testosterone in the body. It was claimed that those who follow a low protein diet may ultimately damage their Leydig cells which are responsible for the production of testosterone in the testes.
Dehydroepiandrosterone also known as DHEA is a type of hormone found in the human body that can lead to increased levels of testosterone in the body.
Ashwagandha which is a shrub is used in many nutritional supplements due to its medicinal properties. Research showed that use of ashwagandha in men led to an increase in the levels of testosterone by 14.7% more than those in the placebo group.
9. Tribulus Terrestris
Tribulus terrestris is a herb which has been used for a number of years in medicine. Research studies have shown that its use in animals has led to increased levels of testosterone in them while in humans it enhances the libido and sexual function.
Symptoms of having too low levels of testosterone:
The symptoms of testosterone deficiency are as follows:
- Brittle bones.
- Loss of hairs on the body.
- Enlargement of breasts.
- Facial hair loss.
- Reduced sperm count.
- Small testicles.
- Low libido.
- Poor concentration.
- Hot flashes.
Hormone replacement therapy:
In people who suffer from decreased levels of testosterone, hormone replacement therapy (HRT) can be effectively carried out. HRT can be helpful for those who are older and suffer from hormone deficiency. Moreover this therapy leads to improved sexual function and improves mood as well. It is also effective for building muscle mass. This therapy when used with proper diet and with a healthy lifestyle can enhance the quality of life of the individuals. Most of the people who suffer from low levels of testosterone either buy steroids UK or opt for testosterone replacement therapy or TRT. TRT involves giving an injection or a patch or gel which contains testosterone which helps to overcome its deficiency. Although these therapies are common but can lead to a number of side effects.