Testosterone is a hormone found in both men and women in their testicles and ovaries, respectively. This hormone is pivotal to both genders, especially for men for masculine characteristics. Whereas for women, testosterone is typically produced in smaller quantities. It is natural for our body to drop testosterone levels as we age. As such, many people resort to boost their testosterone levels artificially. This is because a low level indicates negative health effects. However, is boosting your testosterone level a good idea? What precisely does testosterone therapy mean? Is there a natural alternative to this therapy? In this guide, let’s discuss all these questions in detail and determine the pros and cons of enhancing testosterone in your body.
What is Testosterone Therapy?
Testosterone therapy is the treatment that people seek when they experience a noticeable drop in their testosterone level. Such a delay causes health problems such as delays in puberty in men and certain breast cancer in women. However, this treatment is found to improve symptoms associated with this condition. Some of the symptoms include sexual dysfunction, very low energy, fatigue, poor cognitive function, etc. To mitigate these symptoms, people use supplemental testosterone.
Nevertheless, some users use this therapy as a remedy for aging. This is because testosterone plays an important role in our body’s muscle mass and bones. Low levels of testosterone can lead to an increase in body fat and a decrease in muscle mass. Typically, some doctors suggest testosterone replacement therapy for serious conditions. However, maintaining your testosterone level naturally is the best option to consider. In addition, this method will have the least side effects when compared to other popular alternatives.
Pros and cons of Boosting Testosterone in Your Body
Even though low levels of testosterone come with potential health risks and inconveniences in life that one has to deal with, as good as it may seem initially, one cannot overlook the disadvantages that come along. Let us discuss both the pros and cons of testosterone replacement therapy to help you make up your mind:
- Healthy heart- A healthy heart means healthy blood flow to the rest of our body. This hormone aids red blood cell production, whereas low T levels or hypogonadism leads to various heart-related illnesses. However, most studies are inconclusive as to how far TRT works, yet some research found positive impacts on cardiovascular risks due to hormone therapy.
- Added muscle mass – Since testosterone is responsible for enhanced muscle mass, this therapy can increase muscle size, induces strength and, makes the person feel energetic with enhanced endurance.
- Bone strength- The strength of the bones decreases as men age, alongside a general reduction in testosterone levels. This may cause diseases such as osteoporosis. Hence, a boost in testosterone will, in turn, enhance bone density.
- Improved libido- Lower levels of testosterone may lead to erectile dysfunction in men. Therefore, testosterone therapy aids in increased sexual activity.
- improves mood- Depression, fatigue, irritability and, unexplained mood swings are typical symptoms of low testosterone levels. Those who have undergone this treatment have felt a general improvement in their moods and have reported feeling positive with an increase in their confidence level. Some studies also suggest testosterone replacement therapy for anti-depressant treatment.
As in the case of any medical treatment, just as much as there are advantages there could be possible disadvantages too which are bound to appear sooner or later. Some of the potential risks related to testosterone replacement therapy are as follows:
- Increased acne
- Water retention
- Frequent urination
- Breast enlargement
- Testicular size-reduction
- Low sperm count
- Aggressive mood swings
Replacement hormone therapy may have serious health implications for some men. This treatment is not advised for men with prostate health risks. Research studies conducted on testosterone therapy have mostly been inconclusive. Data results have been mixed; however, few studies also suggest an increase in the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Additionally, boosting your testosterone levels may also compromise your fertility. Hence, this treatment is not recommended for men planning to have children in the future.
Points To Bear In Mind
It is important to note that treatment is unnecessary if your levels fall within the moderate range. If you are struggling with hypogonadism, you must seek help from a hormone specialist. Only a specialist can identify your symptoms and determine whether you need testosterone therapy or not. The chances are that your symptoms may very well be related to some other underlying health condition. Therefore, explore your options, try to garner thorough knowledge on the pros and cons and, see what would work best for you.
Most doctors and experts have mixed opinions on hormone replacement therapy. A trusted doctor would advise you to have a better understanding of the potential risks involved and consider alternatives before boosting your testosterone levels through an external source. The current market is flooded with testosterone injections, gels, creams and, the likes. Only go for products that come from trusted sources like Testogen that are natural and FDA approved ingredients, as there are counterfeit products in the market that does more harm than imaginable. Even though the benefits outweigh the potential risks, you must still make a shared decision with your hormone specialist. Doctors generally don’t encourage this therapy unless they deem it extremely necessary. Otherwise, natural ways of maintaining or boosting your testosterone levels are advised.
How to maintain Testosterone Level naturally
Researches conducted so far are generally in favor of maintaining testosterone levels at a moderate level. One can achieve this by living healthy and preventing circumstances that would adversely affect the same. In other words, prevention is always undoubtedly better than cure. Here are some natural ways that ensure the maintenance of optimal levels of testosterone in our body:
- Exercise – Exercise is the best solution for most of our health-related problems. This upholds maintaining or even boosting, your testosterone levels. Research suggests that exercise was more advantageous than a weight-loss diet in obese men to experience a spike in their hormones, especially weightlifting HIIT training being the most effective.
- Diet- Your diet can impact your testosterone levels either adversely or beneficially. Simply put, what you eat affects your hormones. Therefore, if you limit food intake or even overeat, it will affect your testosterone levels. Make sure you consume a healthy and balanced diet.
- Good sleep- A peaceful, night-long sleep positively affects your testosterone levels. Hence, sleep your way to maintain optimal testosterone levels!
- Minimize stress- High stress can cause your hormone levels to drop drastically. Higher hormonal levels promote overeating, weight gain and store fat around your main organs. In turn, your testosterone levels are compromised.
- Vitamin D and other natural supplements- Vitamin D and zinc aids in boosting your testosterone level. So, getting some sun and consuming vitamin supplements can positively impact your hormone level. Other natural supplements include magnesium, fenugreek, ashwagandha, DHEA, etc.
The general understanding that testosterone is associated with men alone does not hold true. Both men and women produce testosterone to function normally, and they both experience a declination of this hormone as they age. However, the relevance of this hormone deems more important for men as discussed in detail above. Treatment is not mandatory if your levels are within a moderately acceptable range. A doctor can certainly guide you in the right direction so, seek expert help when you feel the need for it and give your instincts some credit. Never buy testosterone without a prescription at any cost. And if you do decide to go ahead with it, follow-up care should also not be side-lined.