The subject of the testosterone hormone has recently received a lot of public attention. Much has been said about the effects of low testosterone levels and its impact on wellbeing. But what is testosterone? And what is the meaning of low levels, and how do you cope with it?
Firstly, testosterone is a hormone produced by men, mainly in their testicles. It is responsible for the growth of hair (such as beards or mustaches), low voice pitch, sex drive, and muscle tone, among other things. Of course, they are also responsible for boys turning into men during puberty. Strange as it may seem, the production of testosterone starts not in the testicles, but in the hypothalamus, which sends a signal to the pituitary glands that in turn tell the testicles to produce the hormone. Thus, when we talk about low levels of testosterone, we must take into consideration the chain of commands needed for the production of the hormone.
A man may suffer a low level of testosterone due to various reasons such as obesity, lack of exercise, and the consumption of low quality food; whereas smoking, for example, will raise the T level. Also, it is a known fact that the testosterone produced diminishes with age. There is no agreement as to what is the “normal” level at any age and one should compare results of tests with charts where levels are segregated by age groups, rather than by the reference shown in regular tests.
If you show symptoms associated with low T, such as thin muscles, loss of body hair, or larger breasts, you should check with your doctor and take a T test to determine and correct your T level.