Men today are already very much aware of how crucial testosterone is. Not only does your primary male sex hormone help you perform well during sex, but it’s also necessary for your overall health.
The problem, however, starts when your testosterone levels start to fall off. When this happens, you’ll start experiencing various changes in your body. And they’re not all easy to deal with, just like the loss of your libido. If you want to know how to spot symptoms of falling testosterone levels, continue reading.
Symptoms of Declining Testosterone Levels
Most people associate testosterone with strength and sexual virility. However, when your testosterone levels start to decline, it’s not just your sexual performance or your physical strength that will suffer. Here are several low testosterone symptoms you should watch out for.
- Erection Problems
Stimulating your penile tissues so that they would produce nitric oxide is one of the most crucial functions of testosterone. Nitric oxide is a neurotransmitter and vasodilator that plays an important role in your erectile function.
Nitric oxide basically triggers the production of a compound called cGMP or cyclic guanosine monophosphate. Without enough levels of nitric oxide in your penile tissues, you won’t be able to produce enough cGMP to start an erection.
Hence, when your testosterone levels decline, your nitric oxide production decreases and your erectile function becomes impaired.
- Loss of Sex Drive
Testosterone is the main regulator of your libido. This means that when your testosterone levels fall below normal, you may start experiencing a reduction in your sex drive.
- Loss of Hair
Not all symptoms of low testosterone levels are centered around male sexual performance. Falling levels of testosterone can also affect your physical appearance.
Since the hormone is needed for the development of male characteristics such as body hair, you may suffer from hair loss when your testosterone levels are too low. In fact, in young men with premature hair loss, low testosterone is often the cause.
Even women who have extremely low testosterone levels can also suffer hair loss. According to research, balding women may experience hair regrowth if they undergo testosterone therapy.
- Reduced Muscle and Bone Mass
One of the reasons why testosterone is usually associated with physical strength is that the hormone is directly involved in the development of your muscles. The higher your testosterone levels are, the easier it is for your body to grow and develop muscles.
In contrast, when you have low testosterone levels, your muscle development will become impaired. Numerous studies have revealed that a decline in testosterone levels is typically accompanied by a reduction in muscle mass, which is also associated with lesser muscle strength.
In addition, extremely low levels of the primary male sex hormone can also lead to a reduction in muscle mass. In fact, testosterone-related osteoporosis is a real concern among elderly men whose testosterone levels are way too low.
- Increased Body Fat
As your muscle and bone mass decrease, your body fat will increase when your testosterone levels are declining. The problem with this is that body fat is another risk factor for low testosterone levels.
Carrying excess weight around your waist can lead to an uptick in aromatase activities. Aromatase is an enzyme that converts testosterone into female sex hormones like estrogen. This means that the more belly fat you have, the more likely it is that your testosterone levels will drop.
- Reduced Testicular Size
Your muscles are not the only ones that grow smaller when your testosterone levels are declining. Your testicles, which are the ones primarily responsible for synthesizing testosterone, can also become smaller.
When your testicular tissues are no longer producing testosterone, they could atrophy. This means that your testicular cells actually waste away or degenerate. When those atrophied testicular cells die, it can cause your testicles to become smaller in size.
- Impaired Fertility
Testosterone is very important for the normal growth of your spermatozoa. As sperm cells grow inside your testicles, they need testosterone for their nourishment.
When you’re not producing sufficient amounts of the hormone, your growing spermatozoa may stop developing. What’s worse is that your sperm cells may actually start dying off even before they become mature.
This means that you will have fewer spermatozoa in your semen, and that can negatively affect your fertilization capacity. In fact, infertility is common among men who have hypogonadism, a condition that causes you to produce very little testosterone and sperm.
Raising Your Testosterone Levels Naturally
Although declining testosterone levels are quite common as you advance in years, the good thing is that there are many ways by which you can combat declining testosterone levels. And you won’t necessarily have to undergo testosterone replacement therapy, which can be quite costly for you.
Your diet, for instance, can help you address your problems with low testosterone. When you’re not producing enough of the male hormone, you’ll need to nourish your body will all the nutrients needed for normal testosterone production, including vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, and zinc.
This means that you’ll benefit greatly if you incorporate shellfish, tuna, beef, and fortified breakfast items into your diet. Alternatively, you can also take supplements to increase your intake of zinc, vitamin D, and omega-3 fatty acids.
Numerous herbal supplements can also help you raise your testosterone production. Tongkat Ali, for instance, has been proven safe through several scientific studies. It’s very effective in elevating testosterone levels that experts recommend it for men suffering from late-onset hypogonadism.
The good thing about Tongkat Ali is that it can help you address several problems associated with extremely low testosterone levels. For instance, the herb is proven effective in treating erectile dysfunction, as well as in increasing libido. Not only that, but Tongkat Ali is also recommended for men with low sperm counts and impaired fertility.