Restored Energy May Have Helped
Testosterone supplements may help hormone-deficient men lose weight, find researchers. Presented at the European Congress on Obesity, the study reveals that men who took the supplements lost an average of 35.2 pounds over five years as their testosterone levels became normal again. The study involved obese men between 38 and 83 years old. BBC says the findings suggest that raising testosterone levels could reduce waist circumference and blood pressure. However, testosterone supplements may increase the risk for prostate cancer and heart disease. Men in the study had several problems due to their hormone-deficiency, including lack of energy. Researchers say that the supplements may have led to reduced weight because of restored energy levels that helped men become more physically active.
Men Have Hormonal Shifts Too
Experts estimate that more than 5 million men suffer from hair loss, lack of concentration, mood swings, decreased desire for sex, weight gain and fatigue, all due to age-related hormone changes referred to as menopause in women. "This disorder is not something that should be ignored," said Robert Brannigan, MD, urologist at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. He believes that male menopause (male hypogonadism) is a highly prevalent disorder with 95 percent of cases left undiagnosed and untreated. The hormonal shifts in men occur more slowly than the shifts experienced by women. In men, testosterone levels drop about one percent every year starting in a male's late thirties. Male hypogonadism may be treated with hormone replacement therapy via gels, patches, injections or pellet implants.
Is There Such a Thing?
Is there such a thing as male menopause and can its symptoms be successfully treated with synthetic testosterone? Not necessarily, says the Drug and Therapeutics Bulletin (DTB). Unlike female menopause, where estrogen levels fall dramatically, testosterone levels in males drop about 1 to 2 percent a year after the age of 40. However, says DTB, low testosterone is not a consequence of aging. Half of men in their 80s have testosterone levels that fall within the normal range. In addition, low testosterone levels do not necessarily produce symptoms. DTB also questions the benefit of hormone therapy in treating symptoms commonly thought to be associated with male menopause including depression and low sexual function which also appear in men with normal testosterone levels.