Testosterone is a hormone that is mostly associated with the male gender though both genders need it for optimal health. It is produced in the reproductive gonads and the adrenal glands of the human body. Testosterone is responsible for body growth and development, reproduction, moods, bone mass, muscle mass, red blood cells production, etc.
Testosterone levels in the body start to become significant from puberty onwards and begin to decrease after the age of 30-35 years old in both genders. Men need to have higher amounts of this hormone than women as it is crucial in developing many central “male” features such as a deep voice, muscles, body size and bone density, etc.
Causes of low testosterone
Low testosterone is generally caused by:
- Radiation exposure
- Injury to the reproductive organs
- Alcohol and drug abuse
- Obesity or extreme weight loss
- Some medications e.g opioids, oral hormone tablets, steroids, etc.
- Delay in puberty
- Chronic kidney failure
- Some inflammatory conditions e.g sarcoidosis
- HIV AIDS Etc.
- Reduced production of hormones by the reproductive organs and the peripheral tissues for pre-menopause and post-menopause women and as a result of aging.
- Early menopause
- Estrogen therapy
- Adrenal insufficiency; where the adrenals glands are not working efficiently
- Removal of the ovaries
Symptoms of low testosterone
Low levels of testosterone in the body is generally associated with the following:
- Moodiness and irritability
- Weight gain
- Having a thin body
- Muscle weakness
- Hair loss
- Decreased energy
- Reduced fertility
- Decreased libido and drive, etc.
- Low libido,
- Irregular menstrual cycle
- Poor bone and muscle strength
- Low red blood cell production etc.
Age is a major factor in the reduction in testosterone in the body but there are other factors notably, health conditions that significantly contribute to low testosterone in the body.
Testosterone levels among the population today
There is a global decrease of testosterone levels in the body in both males and females because of the increased intake of artificial and poor-quality foods. Beyond foods, our poor lifestyle choices are also a major contributor to this phenomenon such as sedentary living with not much exercise.
HOW To know your testosterone level?
The condition of low testosterone in the body is called hypogonadism which in many cases can be corrected with some therapies and changes in lifestyle. A simple blood test is all you need to determine the amount of testosterone in the body. When consistent low testosterone level in the body is affecting your quality of life, doctors might suggest artificial testosterone through injections, gels, and oral testosterone applications. This treatment is known as testosterone replacement therapy (TRT).
Is testosterone therapy (TRT) healthy?
There is much skepticism on the effectiveness of the TRT on improving testosterone in the body. Some studies have shown that it has little or no effect on the testosterone hormone while others report on its promise to help testosterone deficiency.
Testosterone therapy is not recommended for those that use it as an anti-aging formula when the decrease of this hormone is a result of aging. It can have some consequences on the body such as shrinking of reproductive organs, sleep apnea, cancer, acne, etc.
Try to avoid this therapy unless it is absolutely necessary. This is because several studies have been conducted on the dangers, side effects, and possible health concerns that testosterone therapies pose such as tumors, cancer, heart failure, the decline in fertility, etc.
Try your best to go for the most natural option and avoid the artificial placement of any man-made testosterone in your body because you might end up bitterly regretting it when the consequence shows up. You can read more on testosterone supplements here
Supplements that boost testosterone production
The supplements recommended below are the most important supplements you need to improve your testosterone. During the course of my research, I have come across more than 15 recommended supplements across more than 30 top health blogs on the web.
That is quite a lot of supplements to take but these 3 supplements listed below have been consistently recommended across the websites and they are coupled with research papers that prove their effectiveness.
There are numerous studies on the positive effect of fenugreek seeds on both male and female hormones including maintaining the hormonal balance in the body.
Fenugreek is an old herb, spice, and food that is widely used for hormonal balance, as an anti-inflammatory herb, to increase breast milk for feeding mothers, etc. The leaves, seeds, and other parts of the plants are all used in natural medicine.
This herb was well used in ancient medicine when they depended on plants and other natural products for their health care.
How to take:
Take a teaspoon of the herb morning and evening after meals if you are using the powder. If using the capsules, take as described on the package. You can also incorporate it into your cooking for its benefits and unique taste.
Where to buy it:
Because it is not only a herb but also a spice, it is available in supermarkets in the spices section and spice shops in the local market. it is also available in health stores in a capsule form. You can use the seeds or the powdered seeds but, the powdered seeds herb is best and easiest.
This is because the seeds are quite hard and can be difficult to properly grind to a powder with a home blender.
It is commonly known as the sunlight vitamin. Vitamin D is produced by the body upon exposure to the sunlight from the sun. It is responsible for strengthening the body’s immune system, bone health, mood stability, etc. Unlike most vitamins, vitamin D acts like a hormone in the body which is why some doctors refer to it as a natural steroid.
The sunlight referred to here is not the afternoon hot sun as it can have bad consequences on the skin from the ultraviolet rays. It is advised that you expose yourself to the morning till 11 o’clock sun and the mid-afternoon (3 pm) till late evening sun for maximum benefits
Alternatively, you can take vitamin D tablets you can buy from the pharmacy and other health shops though, I will advise that it is best to allow your body to produce the vitamin D from sunlight exposure. You can also try foods that contain vitamin d but the truth is that it is difficult to get sufficient vitamin D from foods alone. You need to get under the sun.
I will suggest you try to get the morning and evening sunlight to allow your body to produce the vitamin D it needs. There are studies that have shown the positive effects of vitamin D on testosterone. You can read more about vitamin D here.
Where to buy:
Vitamin D capsules are available in pharmacies and natural products shops. Take the tablets as directed on the package.
You can combine using vitamin D capsules and making time to spend under the morning and evening sun for maximum benefits and a fast solution.
Zinc is essential to human health and development. It contributes and supports over 100 chemical processes in the body and is linked to improving testosterone in the body. Low zinc in the body contributes to anemia, improper body growth, and development, poor cell production, poor appetite, poor immunity, etc.
Studies have also linked low zinc in the body with low testosterone and infertility. Supplements are recommended for those that prefer them to correct the deficiency. Zinc-rich foods are also advised to be included in your diet such as meats, fish, beans, eggs, dairy, etc. for a more sustainable solution.
Where to buy:
Zinc tablets and capsules are available in health stores, natural products shops and pharmacy shops. Take the capsules as directed on the product package
Other factors affecting your testosterone production
One of the major things to consider when dealing with not just low testosterone but many other health problems is the contribution of your diet and lifestyle to your health. Exercise and diet is a significant contributor to low testosterone in the body.
Overeating, constant diet, and extreme dieting can be factors including the poor exercise of the body. Some studies have shown that weight training exercise boosts testosterone and other hormones in the body. Here are some of the lifestyle factors affecting this hormone in the body:
- Stress – cortisol is a hormone that is released by the body when we are stressed and studies have shown that it can significantly lower important hormones in the body. So try to relax and worry less at the end of the day even if it has been a stressful day.
- Alcohol, smoking, and other related habits.
- Poor sleep – studies have shown that when we sleep less or poorly, our testosterone can drop by 10% – 15%
- Being obese – like stress, obesity is linked with numerous health issues. But remember strict dieting and poor eating habits can also lower testosterone levels in the body etc.
All of the recommended supplements are commonly found in health shops and natural products shops. Remember to combine remedies with changes in lifestyle because even if you use all the remedies mentioned, they will not be as effective as they could have been with a healthy lifestyle.
During my research to write this article, I have read countless articles, and the majority of them listed at least 2 supplements in their articles. There are herbs and specific foods that do improve hormonal balance in men and women from my experience but those are posts for another day. If you would like me to write on them, kindly let me know in the comments below.
I hope I helped you in some way to improve your testosterone. These remedies and guidelines mentioned are authentic to the best of my knowledge. Try them and please let me know if they worked for you.
Kindly rate this article down below and leave your comments or questions in the comment section below. I will do my best to reply promptly.
Thank you for coming over. Have a nice day.