- What is considered the norm?
- Causes of failure
- Symptoms of failure
With age, the amount of testosterone in the body gradually decreases. This condition is called andropause (by analogy with female menopause).
The physiological decline begins in most men at 30–35 years old at a rate of 1-3% per year. This process stops after 50 years. Hormonal failure can occur at any age. Doctors today are concerned about the fact that androgen decline is diagnosed in young men and is progressing rapidly – up to 5% per year. Since the decrease in testosterone occurs gradually, men often ignore the first symptoms or do not associate the changes with changes in hormonal levels. Meanwhile, simple measures will help to restore strength – regular physical activity, proper nutrition, and vitamin-mineral complex intake.
What is considered the norm?
The amount of total testosterone is in the range of 12-41 nmol / l, which corresponds to 300-1200 ng / ml.
However, free testosterone has a greater effect on men’s health . It is not associated with plasma proteins and is responsible for sexual signs and sexual desire. Its level depends on age. In healthy men under 50 years old, 5.7–30.4 nmol / l is considered the norm, while those over 50 are considered to be 5.4–19.4 nmol / l. Reducing the amount of free hormone below 5.3 units is a reason for contacting a specialist.
Causes of failure
Causes are age, hereditary and under the influence of external factors. An age-related decline in performance is a natural process; if a failure occurs at a young age, other reasons should be sought. Most often – it is a violation of the endocrine organs.
Dysfunction of the testes, pathology of the hypothalamus and pituitary affects the synthesis of testosterone. Congenital abnormalities can be underdeveloped testes, sometimes boys are born with the absence of this organ or with pronounced deviations of its structure. Sometimes the testicles are not located in the scrotum, in another place, which causes a violation of their function.
There are the following factors that cause androgen deficiency:
- Wrong way of life: abuse of alcohol, drugs. It has been proven that in children of drug addicted parents the amount of testosterone is initially low and corresponds to the indices of the elderly;
- Low physical activity. Strength training and moderate exercise contribute to the synthesis of male sex hormones, but this rule does not apply to bodybuilders and weightlifters. Excessive physical activity has the opposite effect and suppresses androgens;
- Passion for foods that cause the production of estrogen, an insufficient amount of vitamins, minerals and protein in the diet. The male body needs all these elements for the synthesis of testosterone molecules;
- Prolonged sexual abstinence, the lack of a permanent partner affects male power; Read: Why the erection disappears during sexual intercourse
- Stressful situations, emotional upheavals stimulate androgen deficiency. Stress causes increased adrenaline formation in the body, which in turn inhibits the production of testosterone;
- Poor ecology;
- Excess weight affects the level of androgens. Firstly, it suppresses the production of its own androgens, and secondly, it stimulates the production of female sex hormones. Estrogens in turn inhibit testosterone production even more;
- Some drugs – antidepressants, analgesics, antidepressants, psychotropic drugs, potency stimulants affect the hormones of men.
Diseases and abnormalities in health affect the male sphere:
- Increase in blood glucose over 7 mmol / l;
- Hypertonic disease;
- Kidney disease;
- Decreased bone density, softening of the bones;
- Overheating of the testicles (more than 37 degrees at a rate of 34.4);
- Elevated bilirubin causes a delay in the body’s estrogen.
The reason for the failure may be the lack of sunlight. The lack of ultraviolet rays inhibits the production of hormones, but doctors also do not advise too much to get involved in tanning.
In order not to miss the first warning signals, you should know the signs of androgen deficiency. This will help to consult a doctor in time. A specialist will prescribe a treatment, but more often the rejection of bad habits and a change in diet restore men’s power without the use of medications.
Symptoms of failure
Common signs of trouble are:
- Impairment of memory and attention;
- Weakness, sweating;
- Hot flashes, fever as in menopausal women;
- Violation of the cardiovascular system.
There are also specific signs of a lack of a male sex hormone.
- Decreased sexual function , problems in sexual life. Testosterone itself does not directly affect the male power, but it affects the brain centers. Under its influence produces nitric oxide – a substance that stimulates an erection. Androgen directly affects libido, so when it is lowered, the craving for sexual contact decreases, erotic fantasies disappear. As a result, men remain dissatisfied with the quality of sexual contact: sensations are dulled, difficulties arise with ejaculation.
- Loss of muscle tissue , reduced strength and endurance. Testosterone directly affects the muscles. With an anabolic effect, it contributes to the accumulation of muscle mass. When it decreases, catabolism increases, muscles seem to be “deflated.” Habitual strength training does not help fix the situation.
- Changing the emotional sphere . Appears depressed mood, apathy, depression may develop. The fact is that testosterone responds to the behavioral reaction of men, ambitions, the ability to achieve the goal, to remain calm in a difficult situation. Close people are alarmed by the long depressed state of a person, the previously active man does not want to move forward, there are no life goals. Psychologists call this behavior change a “midlife crisis”. Sometimes an emotional disorder reaches a peak level, then a person can make a suicidal attempt. Hormonal injections will bring a man to his senses, however, if they are canceled, depression may resume.
- The accumulation of body fat and its redistribution by the female type. In healthy men, androgens increase metabolism, so the stronger sex is less inclined to corpulence than women. There are genes that are responsible for the accumulation of body fat, they are sensitive to androgen deficiency. The situation is aggravated by the fact that accumulated fat reserves inhibit testosterone synthesis even more. Therefore, the normalization of hormonal background is also the prevention of obesity.
- Weak growth of body hair, beard thinning. Androgens are responsible for male pattern hair growth, the appearance of abundant vegetation on the chest, legs, back. If you notice a loss of hair, slow mustache and beard growth, you should be tested for testosterone levels.
- Gynecomastia – an increase in the mammary glands of a man. The symptom develops with marked and prolonged hormonal imbalance.
If hormonal disruption occurs in adolescents in adolescence, secondary sexual characteristics may not appear sufficiently. These young people do not protrude Adam’s head, the figure is not formed by the male type (in the form of a triangle – wide torso, narrow hips). An adult man with a lack of hormones speaks in a thin voice, he has no growth of vegetation on his face and body.
Erectile dysfunction and decreased sexual desire do not always indicate low testosterone. This may be a sign of other diseases. In each case, an individual examination and treatment program is required.
Testosterone deficiency can lead to a number of negative effects:
- Prostate cancer;
- Diseases of the cardiovascular system;
Androgen reduction is a natural process in the elderly, but in young men, disorders require correction. Treatment involves the following activities:
- Identification of associated diseases and their treatment;
- Hormone replacement therapy.
To normalize hormonal balance, you should give up bad habits, resume regular sex life, increase physical activity.
Increase the amount of testosterone foods high in protein – lean meat, nuts , fish and seafood, eggs . Be sure to include in the diet of vegetables, herbs, fruits, pumpkin seeds as a source of vitamins and valuable nutrients.
Read: Products for testosterone.
It is important to pay attention to your own weight. A decrease in body weight leads to a normal hormone level. Therefore, you should follow the calorie intake, exclude fatty foods, beer and other alcohol. Regular, but not excessive exercise will help regain weight. It is recommended to exclude products that adversely affect the level of the hormone: carbonated water, caffeine-containing drinks, energy.
Men should get enough sleep . Inadequate and inadequate sleep leads to hormonal disorders, therefore, without a night’s rest, it will be difficult to restore balance in the body.
Drugs prescribed by a doctor can be divided into 2 groups:
- For replacement therapy – Testosterone, Nebido, Adriol;
- To stimulate the synthesis of its own androgens – Gonadotropin, tincture of Rhodiola.
Gentle on the body and increase the male power of Eleutherococcus, ginseng, ginger, garlic .
The duration of hormone replacement therapy has not been fully established, but some doctors are inclined to believe that drugs should be taken for life. Improvement of sexual function, the disappearance of signs of androgen deficiency occurs in 90% of cases.
You can not use testosterone alone. Hormone therapy can lead to exacerbation of other ailments, in some cases it is contraindicated.
To restore the hormonal level, one should reconsider the way of life, improve nutrition, and get rid of bad habits. Benefit will bring dosed physical activity, a good night’s rest. You can not reduce cholesterol to the limit figures, because this element is used by the body to synthesize testosterone.
Androgen deficiency affects many systems of the body, not just erection and sexual function. Timely treatment to a specialist, replacement therapy will help restore male function and improve well-being.