Maintaining proper amounts of testosterone in the human body is essential to sustain overall health and well-being.
Testosterone is a steroid hormone necessary for enhanced libido, energy, immune function, and protection against osteoporosis.
What is Testosterone?
Testosterone is a hormone produced primarily in the testicles for men and the ovaries and adrenal glands for women.
This hormone is essential to the development of vigorous growth and masculine characteristics.
For women, testosterone comes in much smaller amounts.
Testosterone production increases about 30 times more during adolescence and early adulthood.
After early adulthood, it’s natural for levels to drop each year slightly. Your body may see a 1% decline after you’re 30 years old.
Testosterone plays a crucial role in your: muscle mass and bones, facial and pubic hair, body’s development of deeper voice, sex drive, mood and quality of life, verbal memory, and thinking ability.
Testosterone is a genuinely fantastic hormone. The hormone isn’t just present in human beings but also plays a remarkable role in the development of various animals.
Testosterone is a predominantly male hormone that plays a very pivotal role in the development and ensuing display of sexual as well as reproductive characteristics.
Many research studies and institutes generally regard this hormone as the most crucial male hormone called androgen.
In addition to being released by males, this hormone is found to be somewhat lesser in females.
However, the role that testosterone plays in females differs significantly from what functions it performs in females.
What are some benefits of testosterone?
Coming from a class of androgens (male hormones), they are often more commonly referred to as anabolic steroids or only steroids for short.
A significant reason for this is how significantly this hormone influences the onset and display of male characteristics from puberty.
The testes are the site of testosterone’s production in males; however, a small portion of this vital hormone is also produced in the adrenal glands.
This hormone’s level and degree of production are strictly regulated and controlled by the hypothalamus and the pituitary gland, which is situated in the brain.
The hypothalamus role in the production of testosterone is that it guides the pituitary gland to know what hormone levels the body needs to produce for optimal functioning.
Once this message is duly received, the pituitary glands move on to communicate this message to the testes, which promptly commences testosterone production.
This entire communication process is carried out purely through the movement of chemicals and hormones moving through the bloodstream.
One thing that a lot of people aren’t aware of is the fact that the job of this hormone doesn’t begin at puberty. It starts a long time before that.
This hormone begins its work on influencing the growth and development of the male sex organs even before birth.
What it does when males reach the age of puberty is that it involves the onset and display of secondary characteristics.
Some of these characteristics include but aren’t limited to traits such as,
- Growth of facial hair.
- Growth of body hair.
- The deepening of the voice.
- Increase in the size of the male sex organs (the testes and the penis).
In addition to the above, testosterone also plays a vital role in other aspects of male life. Some of them include:
- The distribution of fat in the male body
- The production of red cells.
- The creation of sperm.
- It is pivotal in the maintenance of muscle mass and strength as well.
- It also significantly influences libido or sex drive.
Among many other important reasons, this hormone is regarded as one of the essential hormones in maintaining optimal health and well-being, as far as males are concerned.
Several types of research keep uncovering the various benefits of the testosterone hormone.
For example, this hormone has been identified as instrumental in the prevention of osteoporosis in male individuals.
However, it’s important to note that testosterone levels in the body can rise or fall at any given point in time due to several influencing factors.
It should also be noted that an abnormal testosterone level can also lead to the onset of several signs and symptoms.
For example, having a low level of testosterone in the male body could lead to:
- A reduced sex drive.
- It also leads to the body possessing less energy.
- Severe weight gain.
- It could also lead to cases of depression.
- Severe mood swings.
- Feelings of low self-esteem.
- Lower bone density.
- Lesser muscle mass and structure.
While testosterone levels in the male body slowly reduce as advances in years, many other factors may also be responsible for your testosterone level.
On average, the quantity of this hormone that the body can produce slowly declines as he ages quickly.
Generally, the age at which this decline starts is usually from either your late 20s or early 30s at the latest.
In addition to age, some other causes of a reduced level of the testosterone hormone include:
- Severe injury to the testes.
- Cancer treatments, such as radiation and chemotherapy
These factors can negatively impair the pace at which this hormone is produced in the body, hence its adverse effects.
That’s not all. Your health status also plays a vital role in how your body can effectively and adequately produce the testosterone hormone.
The following illnesses mainly affect the production of testosterone negatively.
- Kidney diseases.
- A case of alcoholism.
- Incidence of cirrhosis of the liver
- Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), to mention a few.
In addition to the numerous effects that varying degrees of this hormone have on aspects of everyday male life and living such as concentration, mood, water-retention, and so on, testosterone also plays a very pivotal role in how people look.
As we mentioned above, the level of testosterone hormone that the body can willfully produces gradually decreases with age.
Often, depending on the health and level of diet that an individual can maintain, the rate of this decrease might be relatively slow.
On average, once males are over the age of 30, the body’s hormone level can quickly produce steadily decreases by 1 – 3% over time.
As such, the level of testosterone found in males over the age of forty is usually over 500. In some cases, though, this number can be as low as below 300.
All of this is in sharp contrast to the 800-plus count generally recorded in males in their teens. As men enter their 50s, these numbers decrease even more drastically.
These factors and several others lead to the logical conclusion that low testosterone levels can severely negatively impact an adult male’s life and way of living.
With the statistics cited above, it isn’t hard to imagine that cases of low testosterone levels aren’t that uncommon in adult males.
Some research studies in adult male testosterone levels suggest that in addition to the natural decrease in age, the contemporary lifestyle that most males live today also plays a significant role in the rate at which testosterone drops.
A particular revealed that the lifestyle afforded to older males could be accountable for as much as a 20% decrease in the levels of testosterone being produced over twenty (20) years.
There is a considerable threat as this affects not just the health of males but also the looks of males, especially as they age.
How we look often plays a more significant role than we’d like to admit how we feel. This isn’t to say that looking good straight translates to feeling good.
However, a good number of people generally tend to act more confident when they appreciate how they look. This case is mostly seen with adult males.
So briefly, we will be analyzing how the presence and the level of testosterone present in males, impact how they look.
Impact of Testosterone Levels on Body Mass
The impact that testosterone has on the muscle and body is not new. Most people who are familiar with how bodybuilding regimes work are well aware of the effects that this hormone has on the muscles.
Essentially, the role that testosterone roles as far as muscles are concerned is very well established.
Yet, even with this much knowledge about testosterone’s effects on muscle mass, few people understand how direct a connection exists between these two things.
Muscle formation occurs as a result of several minor traumas that take place in the muscle.
These traumas come about as a result of constant exercise and are consequently fix by the actions of new protein strands.
This is how the desired increase in strength and size of a muscle generally comes about.
The presence of sufficient levels of testosterone is crucial for the successful completion of this entire process.
Testosterone is necessary for the growth and development of the needed protein strands for muscle repair.
At the same time, it simultaneously influences the release of the human growth hormone (HGH), which further facilitates the entire process.
The primary purpose of the human growth hormone’s involvement is to boost the rate and speed at which testosterone can help your body facilitate the production of a bigger and better shape muscle mass.
When the level of production of the testosterone decreases in the body, muscle formation becomes much harder.
Men with low testosterone have been known to report that regardless of how much and how hard they exercise, they do not see the expected level of muscle mass definition that they ought to.
Some claim to observe that their muscles seem to waste away, even with constant exercising.
In the absence of testosterone to aid with the process of binding muscle tissue together, it falls apart over time and begins to shrink gradually.
Effect of Testosterone Levels on Body Weight Gain
The effects of testosterone on body weight gain are quite strong. A direct impact of low testosterone doesn’t only make your abs smaller, but it could also lead to a severe case of large male breasts.
Studies have concluded that one primary reason for this is that low levels of testosterone generally come with a very high body fat percentage.
However, this is not the case with body fat levels when it comes to normal, healthy testosterone levels.
Most people aren’t aware that exercise in and of itself is not capable of causing you to lose weight.
What happens is that when you have reasonable and healthy testosterone levels in your body, exercising will result in the level and activity of mitochondria being increased.
These consequently triggers a high level of sensitivity to insulin, which results in the body shedding excess fat deposits.
One thing worthy of note here is that gaining excessive weight, especially in a particularly unhealthy manner, can reduce the testosterone levels that the body can produce.
As such, the added fat produced in tandem with the low testosterone in the body only worsens the case.
Generally, fat deposits tend to increase in males with less testosterone than they can produce. What’s more, fat burns up testosterone rather rapidly.
This means that the more fat your body contains, the faster the already low testosterone levels in your body will get depleted.
In addition to the above, the lower your testosterone levels drop, the easier it becomes to succumb to fatigue and a reduced zest to exercise. That will only serve to increase the fat content deposit in the body.
Effect of Testosterone Levels on Hair Loss
Another significant effect of testosterone also extends to the hair. Low levels of testosterone have also been implicated as a possible cause of the infamous male pattern baldness syndrome.
These directly or indirectly means that the lower the level of testosterone you possess, the higher the likelihood of developing male pattern baldness (MPB).
While male pattern baldness is generally dependent on genetics, testosterone in dihydrotestosterone (DHT) production can cause the growth of hair to cease altogether.
High levels of testosterone also play a role in how well the growth of hair occurs in men.
This is one of the reasons to ensure that your testosterone levels are just right, especially as you grow older.