Are Low Testosterone Levels Affecting Your Brain?
Testosterone, an important male hormone, is first produced by a male just seven weeks after conception. During puberty, testosterone levels rise, peaking in the late teens and leveling off in adulthood. However, after the age of 30, testosterone levels begin decreasing each year. While most men have plenty of testosterone, even after levels begin to decline, sometimes the body doesn’t produce enough testosterone, resulting in a condition known as hypogonadism. 1
While most men are aware that Testosterone is a critical hormone for muscle building and sexual health, mounting evidence shows how essential this hormone is for brain health as well. The link between testosterone and healthy brain function strengthens the case for hormone replacement therapy in men who have levels of testosterone falling below the normal range of 300-1000 ng/dL.2
How Low Testosterone Negatively Affects the Brain
Low levels of free testosterone may result in numerous negative effects, including erectile dysfunction, low energy, loss of muscle mass, and low bone density. However, low testosterone levels also negatively impact brain function. When testosterone levels decline, the brain begins to suffer.
All bodily functions change over time, and mental functions change with age as well. Memory is the most fragile mental function, and with age, new learning becomes slower, and in some cases, the details begin to slip away. The changes that occur with aging often result in the random “senior moment” or even dementia, cognitive impairment, and Alzheimer’s in others.
Just as the memory begins to slow, testosterone levels are naturally declining in men. Experts believe that falling testosterone levels may account for some cognitive decline. Studies from the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging found that low levels of free testosterone increased the risk of Alzheimer’s disease in men, even when other risk factors for dementia were considered. Along with Alzheimer’s, low free testosterone is associated with other neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson’s disease.3
According to the Mayo Clinic, low testosterone may make it difficult to concentrate and may reduce self-confidence. Current data also shows a link between reduced testosterone levels and depressive disorders. In fact, studies show that older men with depression tend to have testosterone levels that are nearly 20% lower than normal.4
These changes to the brain due to falling testosterone levels can have a serious impact on quality of life. Many physicians treat diseases, such as depression, Parkinson’s, and Alzheimer’s, yet they fail to address underlying hormone problems that negatively affect the brain.
Benefits of Testosterone for the Brain
While lost testosterone levels are linked to negative effects on the brain, higher testosterone levels offer some great brain benefits. One study referenced in the Harvard Men’s Health Watch found higher levels of testosterone in middle-aged men were linked to the preservation of brain tissue in many regions of the brain later in life.5
Not only can higher testosterone levels increase brain tissue preservation as men age, higher levels of free testosterone have also been associated with improved cognitive performance in aging men. Studies show that testosterone works to activate a distributed cortical network, improving spatial cognition and increasing verbal and visual memory. However, a report from Oxford Medicine found that both low levels of testosterone and excessively high levels of testosterone may result in a decrease in cognitive function, so properly balanced levels are key to improved brain function.6
New research presented at the American Academy of Neurology shows that testosterone may also help improve the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease as well as reduce the risk of stroke in men. The study on testosterone therapy for patients with Parkinson’s disease found that testosterone replacement therapy relieved common Parkinson’s symptoms, including anxiety, fatigue, and depression.7
The Case for Testosterone Therapy
Healthy testosterone levels and healthy brain function go hand in hand. A healthy brain determines how the body ages. Studies support the idea that low levels of testosterone negatively affect the brain, while high testosterone (within normal parameters) offers benefits to the brain.8
We already know that testosterone therapy alleviates many of the other symptoms of low testosterone, such as low libido, lower energy levels, and erectile dysfunction. So, the $64,000 question: Will testosterone therapy improve brain health in men?
While few studies examine testosterone therapy and brain health, research showing the link between higher levels of testosterone and healthy cognitive function would support the idea that men with low testosterone would also experience mental benefits from testosterone therapy. Balancing testosterone levels can help men enjoy better overall physical and mental health, boosting overall quality of life for the aging male.9
Why Choose Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy?
Bio-identical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) for men with low testosterone offers specific benefits. Bio-identical hormones are designed to have the exact molecular structure of the hormones the body produces naturally. This allows for the proper utilization of these hormones, and then they can be metabolized and excreted naturally.
BHRT is also thought to have a lower risk of side effects than traditional hormone replacement therapies. Since bio-identical hormone replacement therapy involves a unique preparation of ingredients tailored to a patient’s specific needs instead of the mass production of synthetic hormone replacement therapies, there’s a lower risk of increasing testosterone to unsafe levels that may negatively affect health.
Men experiencing poor memory, cognitive decline, difficulty concentrating, depression, or other signs of low testosterone should have their free testosterone levels tested. Men with low or borderline testosterone may want to consider testosterone therapy since elevating testosterone with bio-identical hormone replacement therapy benefits brain health, bone health, sexual health, and overall quality of life.
For more information contact us at www.renewmetoday.com to take the hormone health test, and find out where your nearest office is.