Low Testosterone – Not Just A Concern For Men
Both men and women often gain noticeable weight at middle age because of the same basic problems: decreased physical activity, poor eating habits, and a major factor is hormone imbalances.
The slightest hormonal imbalance can affect metabolism and cause weight gain. Often, when one hormone is out of whack, it will affect other hormones, which cause them to eventually become imbalanced. Men and women who have had healthy diets and maintain a moderate level of physical activity but who still put on weight will often be suffering from hormonal problems, which in turn can cause a less active metabolism.
One of the common culprits can include low testosterone – which is NOT JUST A CONCERN FOR MEN. Both men and women produce testosterone, which men make in the testes and women produce primarily in the ovaries and to a lesser extent in the adrenal glands.
Although when we hear testosterone, we think mainly of the male sexual health, testosterone is a necessary hormone that is essential for our health and well-being as well as to build bone density to prevent osteoporosis and to build muscle mass. The more muscle mass we have, the higher the metabolism we will have. When testosterone levels drop, we lose muscle mass and end up with a slower metabolism.
According to the Mayo Clinic, testosterone declines by about one percent a year after age 30 for men. This decline is called andropause, and is often viewed as a normal part of aging.
Testosterone that is lower than normal has been linked to:
- sleep issues
- permanent fatigue
- moody behavior
- low sex drive or sexual dysfunction
- risk of diabetes
- physical weakness or sore muscles
- rapid weight gain and obesity
- depression, anxiety, memory lapses
- cardiovascular conditions and increased LDL “bad” cholesterol
- hot flashes and night sweats
Not all of the symptoms will be present, but concerns should be raised if two or more of them persist. This can be highly dangerous if undiagnosed, purely because of its tendency to cause weight gain and severe medical problems. The good news is that these problems can often be reversed with proper diet, exercise and the right supplements.
While low testosterone is often considered a natural part of the aging process, the simple truth is that we do not have to miserably accept less energy and larger waistlines. When we understand why our bodies do what they do, we can work with our bodies to help accomplish what we need for our health and self-esteem.
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