Men, Ageing & Testosterone

When was the last time the men in your life had his testosterone levels checked?

Experiencing ‘hot flashes’ and waking up with a soaked night shirt are two of the signs that a man may have low testosterone. Other signs include low libido, fatigue, poor concentration, breast growth, beer bellies, and even prostate issues. However, studies show that men are often reluctant to admit, even to themselves, when they need help dealing with hormonal health problems.

The Role of Testosterone (T) in Male Aging

Testosterone is considered a mainstay for male virility, and low testosterone is a potential risk factor for accelerated aging. A healthy level of testosterone provides much-needed energy and decreases fatigue. Recent studies show the big “T” is involved in the protection of neurons and brain cells by suppressing oxidative stress. Research indicates low T is a potential risk factor for type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disorders, and age-related dementia. Scientists have discovered that testosterone is necessary for proper function of the mitochondria (the little energy furnaces found in our cells) and that low levels of T are also associated with higher oxidative stress, enhanced inflammation, and increased risk of cardiovascular events.

What Affects a Man’s Virility?

Current research shows that many middle-aged men are already experiencing the types of changes that indicate they are aging faster than they should be. Longevity specialists now recommended that men become mindful about how they’re maintaining their heart, hormones, and other age-rated biomarkers (i.e., muscle strength, energy). Key areas to address are a sedentary lifestyle, excessive weight gain, poor eating habits (eating too much, too late, the wrong types of food etc), exposure to environmental toxins, excessive use of alcohol and opiates, and a high level of chronic stress. High stress along with anxiety, depression and poor sleep could be the major factor contributing to low-T in an otherwise healthy male. For more information on how to deal with stress, check out the Canadian Men’s Health foundation at:

Supplemental Support for Healthy Hormones

Use of herbal formulas and as well as key nutrients (i.e., Vitamin B6, and zinc) can balance testosterone levels and support prostate health, without harmful side effects. For example, saw palmetto (Serenoa repens) extracts can help to preserve testosterone levels by decreasing the activity of the enzyme responsible for converting testosterone to another sex hormone called dihydrotestosterone (DHT). According to one study, saw palmetto supplementation may be useful for alleviating the symptoms of low testosterone production, leading to improved body composition, libido, and mood. Another study in rats with Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH), found that saw palmetto decreased inflammation and improved oxidative stress.

Saw palmetto is widely available in supplement form and is often combined with other ingredients that help enhance prostate health, such as pumpkin seed extract, stinging nettle root and pygeum extract. A typical dose of saw palmetto extract is 180-320mg daily, taken with meals.

Often, an awareness of the underlying issue is more than half the solution. At any age,a man’s commitment to incorporate healthy choices may prove a vital step toward promoting his longevity and quality of life.