Testosterone, a vital primary sex hormone in men it is produced by the testicles. In humans, testosterone plays a key role in the development of male reproductive tissues such as testes and prostate, as well as promoting secondary sexual characteristics such as increased muscle and bone mass, and the growth of body hair. Testosterone production typically decreases with age. According to the American Urological Association, about 40 percent of males ages 45 and older have low testosterone.
A man’s Testosterone levels are highest in his late 30s, after which they then decrease by 1-2% each year. Testosterone is present at much lower amounts in women.
While testosterone levels vary depending on age, sex, and fitness, here are some general guidelines:
So what do we know about the symptoms of low testosterone? and how does this affect ability in athletes?
Testosterone plays a key role in the development and the maintenance of both muscle mass and strength. Optimal levels of this hormone are necessary to create and preserve bone density; without enough testosterone, bones can become weak and more likely to fracture or break. It's also necessary for keeping your muscles in an anabolic state (muscle-building) rather than a catabolic (muscle-breakdown) one; when testosterone levels are too low and cortisol levels too high, your body compensates by breaking muscle down to use the proteins it contains for energy.
Testosterone also contributes to the body’s maintenance of energy levels, so this hormone can increase your energy during workouts and help improve your endurance. In addition to this testosterone contributes to effective brain activity, including learning and memory skills, which is important for athletes who need to learn new plays and routines. So, if your testosterone levels are low, you might not be performing at your peak.
Common Myth: 'to increase your testosterone you need to train more' Truth: Adequate sleep and recovery are most important to optimise testosterone levels.
7 Symptoms of low testosterone:
Testosterone aids in achieving and maintaining an erection. It tells brain receptors to produce nitric oxide, which is a molecule that helps trigger a series of chemical reactions necessary for an erection to occur.
When testosterone levels are too low, you may have difficulty achieving an erection before sex or having spontaneous erections, such as during sleep.
However, research is inconclusive on whether testosterone replacement therapy can successfully treat erectile dysfunction. In a 2016 review of studies that looked at the benefit of testosterone in men with erection difficulties,
Other health conditions can often cause erectile difficulties. These include: diabetes, thyroid disorders, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, depression, stress, anxiety etc. Smoking and alcohol use can also contribute.
3. Hot Flashes: Experiencing hot flashes can be a sign of low testosterone. This can feel like a sudden sensation of warmth. You may also experience heavy sweating, reddening of the skin, and night sweats.
4. Hair Loss: Testosterone plays a role in several body functions, including hair production. Balding is a natural part of growing older for many men, and while it can be hereditary, those with low testosterone may lose body and facial hair as well.
5. Fatigue: Males with low testosterone may report extreme fatigue and decreased energy. You may have low testosterone if you’re consistently tired despite getting plenty of sleep or if you find it harder to get motivated to exercise.
6. Decreased Muscle: Males with low testosterone may notice a decrease in muscle mass, as testosterone contributes to building muscle. A
7. Low Blood Counts:
Doctors have linked low testosterone with an increased risk for
anaemia, according to a
Some symptoms of anemia include:
This list is not extensive however, we believe these are the 7 symptoms that affect us most.
Males experience a gradual decrease in testosterone as they get older. The older you are, the more likely that you’ll have low testosterone.
A variety of factors can cause low testosterone. Males with testosterone levels below 300 ng/dL may experience some symptoms. Here at thechemistlive we can provide a simple test for your testosterone levels. Visit our blood testing clinic on the link below.