Testosterone plays a vital role in men’s health. A hormone that regulates the sex organs, testosterone also impacts metabolism and bone loss, and low testosterone can compromise men’s health.
According to the Urology Care Foundation, roughly 20 percent of men in their 60s have low testosterone, a figure that increases to 30 percent among men in their 70s. While a gradual decline in testosterone levels is part of the aging process, low testosterone can have a negative impact on the body. Low testosterone levels increase body fat and reduce muscle mass, and low testosterone can even lead to depression. Difficulty concentrating is another potential side effect of low testosterone. Men with low testosterone may also experience weakened bones, a symptom that could leave them more susceptible to osteoporosis.
While there are prescription medications designed to boost testosterone, oftentimes low testosterone levels are a byproduct of the lifestyle choices men make. That means men might be able to increase their testosterone levels naturally by making certain lifestyle changes.
• Maintain a healthy weight. Men who are obese or overweight are more susceptible to various ailments or conditions, including low testosterone. When a body is carrying excessive weight, it secretes more aromatase, an enzyme that helps convert testosterone to estrogen, a group of hormones that promote the development and maintenance of female characteristics of the body. Maintaining a healthy weight is a great way to avoid the overproduction of aromatase, which can help the body maintain adequate testosterone levels.
• Make time for sleep. Poor sleeping habits affect many hormones in the male body, and testosterone is no exception. Men who don