07 Apr 5 Common Causes of Low Testosterone in Men
Have you been experiencing low energy levels and a lack of a sex drive? Have you noticed some worrying changes in your physical and emotional state?
If your answers to these questions are yes, you might be suffering from low testosterone production.
Low testosterone (or Low-T) is a condition where the male reproductive glands are unable to produce enough hormones to maintain normal, acceptable ranges of testosterone in the body. Low testosterone is quite common among older men above the ages of 45. Over 40% of men in the United States suffer from low testosterone.
The average male body starts experiencing low testosterone production over time. The amount of testosterone starts declining by an estimated 1% per year after the age of 30.
While it’s completely natural, some other potential causes also contribute to low testosterone levels. These include:
The primary cause of low testosterone is underactive testes. Due to genetic inheritance or other factors, the testes are sometimes unable to manufacture normal levels of testosterone to ensure optimal growth and health in men.
Underactivity of the reproductive organs can also be caused by issues such as undescended testicles and pituitary damage due to excessive amounts of iron in the blood.
Obesity and male testosterone production are directly linked with each other. Obesity weakens the body’s response to insulin, leading to high blood sugar and insulin levels.
The increased amount of fat cells in the body metabolizes testosterone to estrogen, resulting in low testosterone levels. Increased cholesterol levels also reduce free testosterone in the body.
Injury or Infection
Damaged or injured testes can also cause low testosterone. Physical trauma during exercise or sports can cause physical injuries to the testicles, which affects testosterone levels.
Injuries also make the testes more susceptible to infection, which can also affect testosterone production.
Exposure to Radiation
People who have had cancer treatments often experience low testosterone in the following months. Chemotherapy can damage the testicles and impair their ability to produce sufficient amounts of testosterone.
Chronic alcohol abuse and excessive alcohol consumption have been found to affect testosterone production in the body. Too much alcohol damages the cells responsible for producing and secreting testosterone.
Another factor that impacts testosterone production is that the same enzyme the body produces to synthesize testosterone is used to metabolize alcohol. When too much alcohol is consumed, the protein is used up in metabolism rather than synthesizing testosterone.
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