You might already know that testosterone decline is common; about a fifth of men 40 and over have testosterone levels below 300 nanograms per deciliter (commonly considered “low” testosterone). However, you may not know that testosterone decline often begins long before symptoms become evident, and you also may not realize that this drop in testosterone levels is not healthy or inevitable. Even the standards used by doctors to determine “high” or “low” testosterone have changed.
Why have these standards changed? Because men are presenting with lower T-levels across the board. Today’s standard for “normal” testosterone is much lower than the old standard because men are experiencing lower production of testosterone than their fathers or grandfathers.
Declining Testosterone Levels: A Reason for Concern?
A recent study published in The Aging Male Journal by Dr. Malcolm Carruthers examined approximately 2,500 men over a period of 25 years, measuring hormone levels as the men aged. The study concluded that approximately one in five middle-aged men experiences significant declines in hormone production — significant enough to warrant T-therapy.
Why the concern? A low T-levels result in health declines, such as:
- Low energy
- Low sex drive
- Proclivity towards weight gain and resistance to building/preservation of lean muscle mass
- Joint pain
- Night sweats
- Erectile dysfunction/sexual dysfunction
In other words, testosterone is a significant factor affecting your overall health as a man. While ED gets a lot of attention, there’s much more at stake. Your ability to perform well on the job, in the gym and in life overall can be affected by testosterone levels.
What Causes Testosterone Levels to Drop?
While age is often a legitimate factor, many men underestimate the impact of environment and the day-in, day-out lifestyle decisions they make.
For example, a recent study concluded that a single week of sleep deprivation can cause your T-levels to drop up to 15 percent. Another study concluded that overweight men that changed their diets and lost 15 percent of their body weight saw impressive improvement in production of testosterone. Feeling stressed? Unmanaged stress causes your body to produce excessive amounts of cortisol, a hormone that robs your body of hormones essential for the production of testosterone.
Our bodies were not designed to deal with many of the modern-day issues we currently face. Environmental toxins, food additives, chemicals, pollution and frenetic lifestyles (and limited outlets for managing stress) — all of these factors depress testosterone production. Today’s modern man faces hormone challenges that men of the past did not experience.
When Should I Get Tested for Low Testosterone?
Multiple factors collude to cause manopause, which is why it’s important to take the following actions:
- Get tested for testosterone levels in your late 30s to early 40s to establish your baseline T-levels.
- Evaluate your lifestyle choices to see if you are self-sabotaging your body’s production of testosterone. You may need help with diet, exercise, sleep and stress management; all of these factors work together to support or suppress testosterone production.
- Consult a doctor about available T-therapy and holistic treatment options.
Effective Manopause Treatment Options
It’s long been accepted that women undergo hormonal changes, perhaps because the obvious symptoms of menopause are impossible to ignore. It only makes sense that men would also experience hormonal changes, but the good news is that multiple treatments exist. Get tested for manopause by making your appointment with Dr. Perrin.