Testosterone is known as the male hormone. Its functions are to:
● Improve brain function
● Increase energy
● Increase strength
● Increase bone density
● Improve sexual sensitivity
● Improve sexual function
● Improve HDL and LDL levels
● Improve cardiovascular health
Testosterone decreases with age. A reduction in human growth hormone causes part of this decrease. Older people, who remain in good health, can expect to see 10 percent to 20 percent less muscle strength. With inactivity and disease, sarcopenia can set in – basically muscle atrophy – we are not using it, so we lose it. It takes about two weeks of exercise to offset each day an elderly person is put on strict bed rest.
On top of losing muscle mass and strength with age, fat levels accumulate – actually double by the time we reach 75 years of age. The distribution of fat is typically deposited around our waists. Accumulated fat can lead to other diseases. Health factors from a shortage of testosterone are:
● Heart attack
● Alzheimer’s disease
Testosterone declines in later years for women – just like men. Women normally produce about one-tenth of the testosterone men do. One of the glands that produces testosterone in women is the ovary. Low levels of testosterone reduce libido and can cause sexual dysfunction. Studies have shown increasing testosterone in women results in reestablishing mood, well-being and the restoration of sexual drive and arousal. One such study was reported in the New England Journal of Medicine. The results were very conclusive – increased testosterone improved sexual function, mood, and general well-being.
Doctors generally agree that testosterone therapy works in women who have had their ovaries removed. There are some physicians who do not see any reason to consider using this therapy to address the normal decline of testosterone in aging women. Oral contraceptives reduce testosterone levels in women. Women who are postmenopausal have much lower levels of testosterone.
Testosterone affects other hormone levels. When testosterone is lower than normal, your body’s overall hormone balance is out of kilter. Some cancer studies have associated the levels of testosterone as having a risk factor for breast cancer. The evidence is not totally conclusive. As a result, many scientists have assumed that increased testosterone can be a higher risk for breast cancer. There have been some studies that have shown breast cancer cells exposed to estrogen growing rapidly. When testosterone levels are increased, the rate of growth of the cancer cells falls significantly.
Production of testosterone can be enhanced by certain activities and nutrients, such as:
● Lose excess weight
● Exercise – high-intensity interval training
● Strength training
● Optimal vitamin D3 levels
● Reduce stress
● Eat healthy fats
● Eliminate sugars
● Intermittent fasting