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Low Testosterone and how to fix it

1 in 4 men over 30 has low testosterone.
When testosterone is low, men experience decline in energy and stamina, low libido, decline in sexual performance, depression, fatigue, loss of muscle strength, lack of motivation and weight gain.

There is an epidemic of testosterone deficits. ABC News quoting the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism stated that 1 in 4 men over 30 has low testosterone. When a male patient’s testosterone is low, they experience decline in energy and stamina, low libido, decline in sexual performance, depression, fatigue, loss of muscle strength, lack of motivation and weight gain. Plus all these men with low testosterone have representation of BPH- Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia: frequent urination, especially during the night and loss of sleep as a result of this, difficult urination with dribbling.

According the scientific data, the normal level of total testosterone is at or above 550 ng/dL. Why is it important to have normal testosterone? Not only because of all those symptoms, but because normal levels of testosterone associated with 30% reduction in cardio-vascular events and 24% reduction in having full blown stroke or transient ischemic attack-TIA.

What can be done in order to elevate testosterone level and improve quality of life?

You can increase testosterone levels and improve quality of life with specific diet, supplementation and exercises. In order to understand this, go ahead and read:

Testosterone and estradiol.

In the body testosterone is converted to estradiol (one of the estrogens) by the enzyme called aromatase. Aromatase can be found in the fat tissue and activity of this enzyme increases with increase of fat deposition. Beside this, aromatase activity is greater in men over 40, so they will convert more testosterone into estradiol then younger men. As a result of this estradiol to testosterone ratio will be elevated and multiple symptoms of low testosterone will be manifested.

Maintaining normal balance between estradiol and testosterone is necessary for the optimum health. Beside this, soy can increase estradiol to testosterone ratio because soy inhibits activity of several enzymes in testosterone synthesis. So, if your goal is to increase testosterone level, eliminate soy from your diet!

Cortizol and testosterone.

When we are under the physical or emotional stress our body secrets more cortizol and insulin, as a result of this with time sensitivity to insulin will be diminished and insulin resistance takes place. Having high levels of insulin in the blood and low insulin sensitivity will lead to metabolic syndrome and diabetes in the future. If you want to increase testosterone level you have to decrease cortizol. Why? Because cortizol has ability to directly inhibit testosterone synthesis by increasing activity of aromatase and kill cells responsible for the testosterone production in the testes.

So, stress increases cortizol and insulin, decreases testosterone and insulin sensitivity.
We can normalize this mechanism with low glycemic diet, stress reduction, exercises and specific supplementation.

Switch #1 Have a Low Glycemic and Antioxidants rich diet.

So, food made from white flour, sugar, corn syrup, white rice will rapidly increase insulin and blood sugar levels and decrease testosterone. Conversely, whole foods, including most vegetables and many fruits have much milder effect on insulin and sugar levels. Examples of Low Glycemic Index Foods are: green leafy vegetables (lettuce, kale, green and red cabbage, collard greens, mustard greens), tomatoes, cucumbers, berries, zucchini, eggplants, radishes, sweet potatoes and yams.
Reducing Glycemic Index in your diet for only 4 days produces increase in insulin sensitivity and increase in testosterone production.
Antioxidant level of your foods is very important too, because cells responsible for the testosterone production in the testes (Leydig cells) are very sensitive to the antioxidant level in the body. So, if you eat antioxidant rich food, your testosterone level will be elevated.

Switch #2 Exercises 

Improve insulin sensitivity and increase testosterone production, but exercises induced increase in insulin sensitivity diminished greatly in obese and overweight men who continue high glycemic index diet with lots of sugars, breads, cookies and other white flour products. So, Low Glycemic diet and exercises work hand by hand to increase testosterone levels.

Switch #3 Take nutritional supplements to control cortizol, aromatase activity and oxidative stress.

About a decade ago Dr. Kyl Smith filed a Health Claim Petition with the FDA for the brain nutrient Phosphatidylserine. Until today, it is the only nutritional supplement approved by FDA. Phosphatidylserine helps to calm anxiety, lower cortizol and increase testosterone. Taking 400 mg phosphatidylserine with lunch and dinner ( 800 mg /day) will make a huge difference.

Ashwaganda (Withania somnifera) is well known for promoting good health, endurance and vitality. It has been used in India for 4000y. Ashwaganda modulates stress induced cortizol, increases antioxidants activity, reduces physical and mental fatigue. Take 300-400mg of ashwaganda with lunch and dinner (600-800mg/day).
Astaxanthin is a Powerhouse of good nutrition, it is a Premier Antioxidant.

Astaxanthin is a red carotenoid pigment responsible for the pink color of salmon, crabs and shrimps. It has 100 fold greater free radical quenching potency then antioxidant potency of vitamin E, and approximately 6000 times the potency of vitamin C. If you take 4-6mg of Astaxanthin twice a day (8-12mg/day), you will feel the difference.
Amazing pomegranate. Pomegranate is patent antioxidant with anti-aromatase activity. Pomegranate juice, fruits, peels seeds and oil contain a lot of phytonutrients that exhibit 2-3,5 times more antioxidant capacities then red wine and green tea.

Beside this, pomegranate juice and extracts are strong inhibitors of aromatase, in other words they increase testosterone concentrations and reduce level of oxidative stress in the body.

Call me at 610-277-3430 if you have any questions regarding this newsletter.

Dr. Natalie

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