Fight Low Testosterone and Andropause with these easy steps
What is Andropause?
Andropause is a time in a man’s life when distinct hormonal changes start to occur their body over a long period of time. These changes include, but are not limited to, declined levels of testosterone that starts converting into estrogen usually at the age of 40 (Note that it has been observed to occur much earlier and much later in some cases).
Most men empathize for women who face the agony of nature in the form of menopause, they are also inwardly happy that they do not have to go through it. Just because men don’t face mood swings, hot flashes, body aches and other effects of declining hormone levels that women do, it certainly does not mean that they do not go through hormonal changes.
What’s interesting though, is that a considerably large number of people in the scientific community believe that men do not go through such changes in their lives. However, nearly 70% of all people report that men do face similar hormonal declines after the age of 40 or 50. If you are a man around the age of 40, you might have thought that the hormonal chaos could only happen to the opposite sex.
The biggest reason why this misconception is rooted so deeply in our society is that while similar stages affect women they experience more visible physical symptoms and the effects last usually up to 5 years, whereas men experience more elusive changes over a period of time that could be as long as 20 years.
‘Andropause’ technically means the gradual decline in the production of androgen. It is a series of three stages that occur almost like a chain reaction – First comes a drop in testosterone levels (Also known as Low T), followed by an increase in Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG), and finally an increase in production of aromatase.
Low testosterone is a medically diagnosable state where a blood test results show the levels dropping below 300 Nanograms per deciliter (ng/dL). It is important to understand that, usually, more than 95% of the testosterone shown in a blood test are usually unavailable to be delivered to different body parts because of their binding properties with the proteins circulating through blood vessels. This testosterone is usually flushed out of the system. Symptoms of Low Testosterone can include fatigue, increased body fat, mood swings, loss of bone mass, the breakdown of tissues, low libido, and lower semen count.
Andropause, in general, is a part of the natural aging process. The side effects of hormonal imbalance in men also cause interruptions in living a quality daily life. It is essentially the male counterpart to menopause (hence, sometimes aptly referred to as Manopause) and it too can sometimes cause inception of unbearable symptoms. There are several treatments such as testosterone replacement, but a large number of men have reported that they received a lot of help by resorting to natural methods of treatments like testosterone-boosting foods. Some of these are also discussed later. These foods also decrease the risks of acquiring diseases associated with old age, such as heart disease and diabetes.
Naturally boost testosterone levels with the following Ingredients
Mainly known for its use as a condiment and seasoning, cardamom is full of lipids, antioxidants, and a certain hormone regulator. All of them together promote testosterone regulation as well as help increase muscle mass. In addition to these, it also encourages the production of Glutathione that breaks down oxidative stress leading to improved testosterone levels. Although it is also available as capsules and tablets, the natural form of cardamom feels great when added to hot beverages and food.
Honey is the most delicious remedy to fight low T. It is full of energy and works great with almost every kind of breakfast, or even as an after-dinner sweetener. If you care for mouth-watering smoothies, there is no better natural sweetener than honey to accompany them with. What is more important to notice is that it contains Chrysin, which is a potent crystalline compound that stops the testosterone from converting into estrogen. Other chemical known as Boron is also present in honey and serves the same function. This does not necessarily mean that your body creates more testosterone when you consume honey, but it certainly means that it preserves more, eventually raising testosterone levels. Make sure you use unprocessed honey, and to let out a secret, it works as a great aphrodisiac too!
Shilajit is actually an Ayurvedic mineral with mentions in ancient Indian writings as old as 400 years. Ancient Sanskrit writings described it as the conqueror of mountains and there is no other way to be more precise. The most potent of shilajit can be found oozing out of the rocks located over 16000 ft. above sea level in untouched parts of the Himalayas. It looks mostly like tar, but it is considered to be edible and contains very densely packed nutrients. Shilajit is known to boost mineral absorption balancing out hormones and it is rich in zinc and selenium content that are also essential for optimal testosterone production.
Because of its natural effects of reduced stress, improved sex life, and elevated mood, it is quite famous and can be found in many online stores. However, it is important that you do not buy powders and extracts claiming to be shilajit. The natural shilajit, as we have mentioned, looks and feels like a raisin made of tar.
Almond is an amazing nut that too contains nutrients to boost testosterone production. Calcium, magnesium, potassium, fatty acids, vitamin E, etc. are all included in almonds and they improve the function of the testicular and adrenal glands. Almonds also contain an amino acid (L-Arginine) that is known to build muscle mass as well as improve mood and erectile function.
If there was a nutrient that most men missed in their usual daily diets, it would be magnesium. Pumpkin seeds are rich in magnesium, which is an important mineral that helps increase testosterone while reducing tissue damage. They also contain leucine, an essential amino acid which aids in the healthy oxidation of fats. People suffering from erectile dysfunction or other aging-related challenges will find this amino acid particularly useful. Another good thing about pumpkins is that they are also low in cholesterol.
This Chinese traditional medicine is a super herb that is known for its healing properties as well as for fighting low testosterone levels. Men participating in bodybuilding competitions use Tribulus root for not one, but many, many benefits. It can also build tissue without having to go for the regular workout at the gym. It increases sex drive and reduces the chances of premature ejaculation.
Best Approach to Reduce Symptoms of Low Testosterone
The key to boosting testosterone is to live in a stress-free environment for the time you are trying to do so. Other than that, it’s important to follow a regular exercising routine and eating green protein-rich foods. Increasing the intake of beneficial herbs mentioned above will definitely help you fight andropause and related symptoms.
How to tell if you are facing Andropause
We suggest the best way to do that is by getting your blood samples examined for testosterone and glutathione levels in your late 30s. But probably to look at the systems that usually entail andropause, they would be unusual grumpiness, depression, low energy and motivation, higher cholesterol and abdominal obesity, blood sugar irregularities, etc. It is not just limited to the symptoms and is definitely not an issue to lean over. Testosterone below 300 ng means that you have a 33% increased risk of death. Why? Because one of the benefits of testosterone is to help the body produce nitric oxide that helps regulate blood pressure levels by broadening and cleaning the blood vessels. There are a number of other crucial functions of nitric oxide in our body and with Low T, its levels can drastically diminish too.
Testosterone also acts as a powerhouse helping men look younger and feel fit. Poor diet, lack of sleep and exercise can gradually drive Low T to andropause. It can begin as early as in your 20s and usually there is no way to tell at that age since the body is full of testosterones previously produced and also because the process gradually decreases testosterone production and not all of a sudden.
Young adulthood is the perfect time to take preventive measures we have discussed above, but what can a man facing active Andropause and critically low testosterone in later stages of his life do? As men reach their 40s, there will be physical and emotional changes. Fat will take the place of usually hard abdomen muscles. Uninterrupted sleep will become more or less a dream. Ability to perform in the bed will decrease and sex will be less often.
Most physicians are not even fully aware of andropause and they state that these are just the signs of aging. At the same time, some researchers argue that there are more than 30 million American men who are experiencing andropause right now. When it strikes, it is easy to get scared because of the lack of people who will guide you with the right knowledge and in the right direction. Some even end up buying into expensive experimental procedures that have not even proven their effectiveness yet.
However, there are some other natural remedies that do not only help you fight Andropause, but their regular use can result in High T levels throughout your life.
Natural Testosterone Boosters that help fight Andropause
Whereas early scientists used to resort to testicles as the source of testosterone production, medical professional today know that it starts in the brain. The hypothalamus situated in the middle of our skull secretes gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). This hormone signals the pituitary gland to produce follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) both of which prompt the testicles to produce sperm and testosterone respectively. A few natural extracts mentioned below have been proven to successfully combat andropause considering the root cause of the problem and they can also help maintain high testosterone levels:
Tongkat Ali is a tree found in the jungles Asia, particularly Malaysia, Thailand, and Indonesia. It is also commonly known as the Asian Viagra or Longjack and the natives consider each part of the tree as a medicine. The root of the Longjack is of significance when it comes to fighting andropause. Its consumption results in increased libido, sexual drive & performance, and it even treats Erectile Dysfunction and Impotence. Researchers are still studying the roots of Longjack for their mysterious yet proven ability to enhance androgen levels in the male body and improve sexual health.
In a random, placebo-controlled human clinical trial conducted by the National Population and Family Development Board of Malaysia, Tongkat Ali extract was found to significantly decrease binding Globulin, and hence, increasing Free Testosterone. The root is still being used locally as a tonic, energy enhancer, and an aphrodisiac.
Yohimbine hydrochloride is extracted from the Bark of Yohimbe and it is generally considered an aphrodisiac for both men and women. It is probably the most researched extract that is said to increase testosterone levels. A group of medical experts from London concluded that Yohimbine is indeed a useful medicine to treat orgasmic dysfunction and that it enhances the orgasmic experience.
It also faced a placebo-controlled clinical trial which included 86 patients with erectile dysfunction. A dosage of 60 mg per day was administered for 8 weeks and it successfully improved sexual desire, satisfaction, frequency of contacts, and erection quality during sex.
Other than its testosterone boosting qualities, it also works as an antioxidant and as a treatment for several anxiety disorders. Bodybuilders admire this product as its antioxidant qualities help in muscle gain and weight loss.
Maca Root, just like shilajit, is a nutritionally dense edible super-substance containing high levels of minerals, vitamins, enzymes and essential amino acids. It contains large numbers of energy vitamins (vitamin B-12 in particular) and magnesium, which is great for remineralization as well as testosterone production (as we discussed previously).
Maca also stimulates and nourishes the hypothalamus and pituitary glands which are key players in the production of testosterone and are sometimes also referred to as “Master Glands”. It will regulate the production of hormones to bring them to optimal levels as required by different parts of your body. Maca is also known as nature’s Viagra.
It has been proven that consumption of Maca also helps in PMS, menopause, hot flashes, and of course andropause. It also improves fertility, libido, and sexual function, especially in men.
Some medical practitioners argue that high-testosterone levels are the prime cause of prostate cancer. But, it has long been disregarded by researching medical personnel because the testosterone levels are highest in men aged 20 – 30 years and yet the cases of prostate cancer almost never arise from this group. Newer studies suggest that it is actually the increased levels of estrogen, which the testosterone is converted into in later stages of life that may be the culprit.
Testosterone actually strengthens muscles, helps improve blood flow, improves bones’ structure, enhances mental and cardio functions, and works as an energy enhancer. It is never too late to get some extra free testosterone pumping in your blood.