Health

Testosterone and Aging

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Here’s some new evidence that a common problem for Zoomer men is NOT the result of getting older. A study out of Australia finds that a drop in testosterone levels over time is more likely to result from a man’s lifestyle and health changes rather than from aging.

The study authors analyzed testosterone measurements in more than 1,500 men who were tested five years apart. On average, testosterone levels did not decline significantly over that time; rather, they decreased less than 1 percent each year. However the investigators found men who had declines in testosterone were more likely to be those who became obese, had stopped smoking or were depressed. Past research has linked depression and low testosterone. And the researchers caution that while stopping smoking may be a cause of a slight decrease in the hormone, the benefit is huge.

Meanwhile a separate study from Ireland showed that shedding pounds may help overweight men with low testosterone boost their levels of the male hormone. In that research, overweight middle-aged men were put into three groups. After a year of regular exercise and a better diet, the prevalence of low testosterone levels was cut in half in the healthy lifestyle group. Testosterone is important for many bodily functions, and the bottom line according to the research is that it’s critical that doctors understand that declining levels are not a natural part of aging but the result of a health issue.

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