Testosterone- its more than just a sex hormone

What is the first thing you think about when you read the word testosterone?

I’m guessing temperature regulation and mood stabilization weren’t in your top 5 descriptive choices. However, those are but two of the many functions outside of libido in which testosterone plays a major role. Muscle tone, energy levels, hair growth, etc…Was brain function in the top 5? Guess what, it should be #1. The brain uses testosterone to maintain proper function and I’m not talking about paying attention to that cute young thing that just walked into the room. There are some studies that have determined that proper testosterone levels (among others) even help to reduce the onset and development of Alzheimer’s Disease! Testosterone is a potent anti inflammatory substance that the brain and body use to maintain a proper working environment. How else would some guys suffering from mood swings, depression and anxiety feel better when their testosterone levels were optimized?

Speaking of optimized. Let’s talk about optimized vs “normal” for a second. Most measurable substances in the body (testosterone, estrogen, thyroid, blood sugar, etc…) have a normal range that is pretty wide. For instance, I use Access Medical Labs for a lot of my patient’s blood work. They list the normal total testosterone as anywhere from 280-1100. That’s a pretty wide range. If you don’t think so then put it in terms of $$$ and you will get the difference.  Case in point. There is a guy who came in for testing and his total testosterone was 450 and he had low libido, lack of motivation, erectile dysfunction, moodiness and weight gain. Clearly something is going on with this guy. I optimized his testosterone into the 800-900 range and his problems disappeared. He had had low testosterone. What? He had “normal” levels but felt like last weeks road kill. After getting his levels OPTIMIZED he felt like superman.

Did you look at his symptoms? Do your kidneys affect mood swings, depression, motivation? No, the brain does. I know it is a simple example but we all need to start thinking about these hormones as having functions outside the pelvis. They are vitally important to men and women’s well being. Yes, women NEED testosterone as well. More on that later.

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