Men and Hormone Health

As men age, research has shown that his testosterone levels will naturally decrease.  These natural decline in hormone levels start in a man’s late thirties.  However, we are starting to see more and more of a decline in testosterone in men in their teens and twenties.  On top of that, older men’s levels are decreasing at a much faster percentage than normal. 

We are starting to realize that these problems are two fold.   One of the main problems is that males are being exposed to more estrogens during their life.  These are foreign estrogens that are found in the environment.  They are in our plastics, water supply, and foods.  These estrogens interfere with natural hormone balances and decrease the body’s ability to produce and utilize testosterone.  These changes are especially evident in later years due to the accumulated exposure of estrogen through life and decreasing internal levels of male hormones. The other name for male hormones in the body is androgens.  Therefore, we have started to term these abnormal male hormone changes as andropause.

When hormones are affected then we start to see many different symptoms such as fatigue, mood changes, sexual dysfunction, fertility problems, weight gain, and sleep problems.  If you are experiencing these symptoms then it is important to get your hormones assessed.  However, there are natural things that you can do to help decrease symptoms and prevent. 

First, of all testosterone levels are affected by exercise and diet.  Regular exercise, especially resistance training, can help to increase testosterone levels.  Also, high intensity interval training can help to improve hormones in the body.  The other component of exercise that is helpful is the fact that weight loss and healthy weight maintenance is an important component for hormone health.  Dietary changes are also very important.  Decreasing exposure to foreign estrogens through organic food and filtered water is important.  Also, increased sugar and processed food consumption can interfere with hormones.  Therefore, it is also important to eat a clean diet.

If your levels are low it is also important to find a practitioner that can work with you to help to get your levels up in a safe and effective manner.

 

Link to research on Andropause:

http://webmedia.unmc.edu/alliedhealth/nichols/Andropause%20and%20Men.pdf

 

Link to Time Magazine Andropause article:

http://healthland.time.com/2010/06/16/examining-the-myth-of-male-menopause/