Testosterone is considered the “male hormone” par excellence. However, the sex hormone (androgen) is found in both the male and female body – but in different doses. Women produce only about 0.7 mg of testosterone daily. Men, on the other hand, produce about 7 mg. Testosterone is mainly produced in the testicles, but also in the adrenal cortex. The hormone is therefore absolutely necessary for a healthy organism and in particular for normal male development. However, testosterone is also responsible for the build-up and growth of muscle mass and strength. But what happens if too little testo is produced in the body? It is assumed that in Germany about one in four men over the age of 40 is affected by testosterone deficiency. Athletes or those who have worked physically for a long time often have lower testosterone levels and should prevent accordingly. And it can also affect younger men, whose level of suffering can also be enormous.
But what are typical symptoms of a testosterone deficiency? What are the causes? And how can you effectively increase the testosterone level in your body through nutrition or dietary supplements and prevent a testosterone deficiency? You can find out all this here in this article.
Testosterone deficiency symptoms
Natural fluctuations in testosterone levels also occur in healthy men – this is completely normal. But how can you tell that you actually have a testosterone deficiency? The symptoms are often not entirely clear and vary from person to person. However, they often include a loss of libido (desire for sex or enjoyment of sex) or even erectile dysfunction, a decrease in muscle mass, gynecomastia and mood swings, even depressive episodes. Most sufferers report that they have “lost weight.” In particular, decreased muscle mass and strength and more body fat are mentioned, but also psychological suffering such as decreased vitality, fatigue, irritability and moodiness.
What are the symptoms of testosterone deficiency?
The symptoms of testosterone deficiency are often very different and appear in different manifestations that develop slowly. Most often mentioned are:
- Decrease of the musculature
- less strength
- increased accumulation of fat – especially on the abdomen
- Gynecomastia (enlargement of the male chest)
- loss of libido (less desire for sex)
- erectile dysfunction (erectile dysfunction)
- less drive
- depressed mood or mood swings
- hair loss
- reduction in the size of the testicles
- cognitive disorders
Possible causes for testosterone deficiency
In most cases, a testosterone deficiency occurs in old age or is genetically determined. But even men in their “prime”, i.e. between 20 and 40 years of age, are unfortunately sometimes not spared this fate. Reasons for this are, for example, disorders or diseases of the testicles such as injuries or inflammations, absence or loss of function of the testicles, disorders of the pituitary gland or hypothalamus such as pituitary insufficiency, tumors, side effects of medications or drugs that cause a deficiency of gonadotropin-releasing hormone, androgen resistance due to genetic conditions, age hypogonadism (=age-related testosterone deficiency) and many more.
What can cause a testosterone deficiency?
As already described, the causes of testosterone deficiency are very diverse. These include:
- Injuries or inflammation of the testicles
- Alcohol and drug consumption as well as medication
- prolonged fasting
- physical or psychological stress
- severe infections
- chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes
- old age
- overweight and lipometabolic disorders
- poor nutrition
How is testosterone deficiency diagnosed in men?
If the above symptoms occur over a longer period of time and limit your quality of life, you should consult a doctor. A detailed medical history is followed by a physical examination and several laboratory tests. Here, the total testosterone is determined in two examinations. The blood sample must be taken in the morning. In some cases, the free testosterone in the body is also determined.
Testosterone is an androgen from the group of sex hormones. There are no uniformly defined threshold values for when a testosterone deficiency exists. And testosterone therapy can also vary greatly. The missing hormone is used, for example, as capsules, depot injections or as a gel to be applied to the skin.
Do I have testosterone deficiency?
The following questions can help you to get an initial assessment of whether you may be suffering from testosterone deficiency. Please note: These questions are of course not a medical history, but merely serve as a guide.
- Has your general well-being deteriorated (state of health, etc.)?
- Do you suffer from joint or muscle problems? Are you finding it harder to build muscle or have you even lost muscle mass?
- Has your muscle strength decreased?
- Do you suffer from sudden sweats, hot flashes or sweat heavily?
- Has your sleeping pattern worsened (falling asleep and staying asleep, waking up too early, insomnia)?
- Has your general performance decreased? Do you get tired more quickly at work, are you less physically and mentally resilient?
- Have you been frequently irritable or even aggressive lately? Can even small things upset you?
- Do you often feel nervous and restless inside?
- Do you suffer from depressive moods, are you sometimes sad, discouraged and listless?
- What about your sexual well-being? Do you have the feeling that you have less desire for sex or even enjoy sex?
- Has your potency decreased?
- Has the number of your morning erections decreased?
If you have clearly answered yes to many or even all of these questions, it is possible that you have a testosterone deficiency. For an exact diagnosis, however, you should consult a doctor.
Fix testosterone deficiency
A testosterone deficiency can be remedied by various measures. On the one hand, there are drugs that supply the missing hormone – often in the form of injections, capsules, patches or gels. However, this is only possible after a medical diagnosis and order.
The so-called depot injections are injected under the skin and gradually release the hormone so that the level levels off. In practice, it was shown that the lack of sexual desire returned after about three weeks. Improvements in erectile function are usually noticed after about six months.
Testosterone tablets usually need to be taken two to three times a day with a fatty meal so that the body can utilize the active ingredients well and have a long-lasting supply.
Most patches used for testosterone deficiency must remain on the skin for at least 20 hours. The disadvantage is often that they do not adhere properly and thus cannot develop their full effectiveness.
Testosterone gel is still relatively new. It is usually applied in the morning and thus adapts its effect to the natural daily rhythm of testosterone levels.
In addition, there are foods and supplements that can prevent or even correct a testosterone deficiency. In addition, it is of course important to avoid the testosterone killers such as a too high proportion of body fat, alcohol, nicotine, lack of sleep and stress as much as possible.
Athletes, especially from the power sports and bodybuilding, also often relied on so-called Testosterone Boosters to compensate for the testosterone deficiency or to increase the level. The idea behind this is of course on the one hand to boost muscle building, but on the other hand to keep the testosterone level stable.
Bio-Kem Nutrition Test Plexx 400
Powerful muscle building supplement with 4 anabolic prohormones for experienced users over 21.
Dark Labs Devil Test
for the maximum testo-boosting effect for muscle building, fat reduction and increase of libido as well as sexual performance.
EX4EX Methyl Mass Prohormone Stack
Extremely powerful prohormone stack incl. aromatase inhibitors and strong anabolic steroids for fast building of powerful muscle mass. For advanced users only.
Freedom Pharma Bear Arms
Strong anabolic supplement for advanced athletes with high dosage – for more muscle mass, reduction of body fat and increased libido.
What helps with testosterone deficiency?
For a long-term healthy testosterone level or to remedy a testosterone deficiency, a healthy lifestyle is important. This includes on the one hand the diet (with which foods you can increase your testo level, we show you in a moment), sufficient sleep and of course sports. Studies have shown: The more intense the training, the higher the increase in testosterone in the body. Thus, weight training and interval training are the most suitable. Since testosterone binds to protein, you should also make sure to eat enough protein. Many strength and endurance athletes as well as bodybuilders therefore use Testosterone Supplements to improve muscle building. In addition, natural performance limits can be overcome in this way.
What foods increase testosterone levels?
For both women and men, testosterone is an essential hormone that supports numerous important bodily functions such as cognitive abilities (memory or coordination) and the formation of red blood cells. However, it also supports muscle building and maintenance as well as strength increase, which is why athletes in particular pay attention to a diet that promotes healthy testosterone levels.
This includes, for example, salmon, nuts, avocado, pumpkin seeds, Brazil nuts, good oils – i.e. everything that contains unsaturated fatty acids – but also maca, ginseng, pomegranate, garlic, grapes or turmeric. Since testosterone is formed from cholesterol, a diet rich in unsaturated fatty acids can consequently increase testosterone levels.
However, it is also important that you take in enough zinc. Zinc is an important component of proteins and many enzymes and is also said to have a testosterone-increasing effect. Therefore, cheese, beans, fish and yogurt should also be on your menu.
In addition, you should make sure that you get enough vitamin D. The sun vitamin promotes normal testosterone secretion and supports the organism in its metabolic processes. Unfortunately, it is not so easy to get enough vitamin D in the winter months, because the vitamin is formed through the skin when exposed to sunlight.
Allicin, as found in garlic and other leek-like vegetables, is said to inhibit cortisol. Cortisol is the antagonist of testosterone. Don’t want to consume tons of garlic on a daily basis? Just as for zinc and vitamin D, there are high-quality supplements available.
NOW Foods Zinc Picolinate
Zinc for metabolism, immune system, wound healing, hair and skin.
Vitamin D-3 10000 IU NOW Foods
High-dose vitamin D-3 capsules to improve general health and strengthen the bones.
NOW Foods Garlic Oil 1500mg
High quality garlic oil: The best of the great tuber.
Dietary supplements against testosterone deficiency
To increase your testosterone level, you can supplement zinc and vitamin D on the one hand, or also use so-called Testosterone Boosters. These are preparations that – often with herbal ingredients – increase the testosterone level. The phytoandrogens and saponins contained in plants such as ginseng, Maca, pine pollen, nettle root, Tribulus Terrestris (earth star) & Co. have a positive effect on your testosterone balance.
BCAAs (branched chain amino acids) are also said to effectively increase testosterone levels in conjunction with a sensible training program. This way you can not only prevent a possible testosterone deficiency, but also increase your level and thus the muscle building and your well-being.
BCAA Xpress Scitec Nutrition
BCAA powder in the ratio 2:1:1 for more muscles, pump, energy and focus.
BCAA 2:1:1 Swiss Pharmaceuticals
BCAA powder in the ratio 2:1:1 for more muscles, pump, energy and focus.
Chain’d Reaction APS Nutrition
The ultimate BCAA supplement with branched-chain amino acids for improved muscle recovery and muscle growth.