By Sayer Ji • Originally posted on GreenMedInfo.com
Boosting testosterone has become all the rage today, but unless you activate your body’s innate ability to do it naturally you will have to face the possibility of serious side effects.
As men reach their mid-forties their testosterone levels begin to decline, with approximately 1% to 2% decrease in measurable blood levels annually, and then dropping off precipitously after age 60 into full blown “andro-pause.” This ever-increasing decline can have a wide range of adverse effects, both physically and psychologically, ranging from muscle loss to insulin resistance, low libido to depression.
Today, an increasing number of aging men are opting for testosterone replacement therapy, some with dramatic results. But this approach, while often positive in the short term, can have some serious drawbacks in the long term, especially if the underlying and modifiable factors causing the deficiency are not addressed at their root.
First, testosterone replacement therapy often involves administering levels far higher than a normal physiologic dose, which increases the risks of serious side effects, including certain cancers.
Second, when testosterone is replaced, a negative endocrine feedback loop is activated sending a signal to the gonads to reduce its production further, ultimately feeding the original deficiency and even leading to testicular atrophy.
Third, when testosterone levels are suddenly increased through exogenous sources, there is often a concomitant increase in testosterone metabolites such as dihydrotestosterone (DHT) and estradiol, both which can lead to some particularly undesirable downstream effects, which include male pattern hair loss and excessive prostate growth.
Given these risks, the obvious alternative path is to support the body’s natural production of testosterone both by removing testosterone blocking chemicals and supporting one’s own body’s ability to produce more testosterone endogenously.