Testosterone: roles, production, lack, supplementation
In this video and in this health and wellness blog post you will find:
- The definition of testosterone
- What is the role of testosterone
- How does testosterone levels increase?
- When to take testosterone?
- The side effects of testosterone
To begin with, you should know that testosterone is a hormone, a chemical messenger that circulates through the blood.
Testosterone is present in both men and women (at a much lower level).
The production of testosterone takes place mainly in the testicles and the adrenal glands (small glands that are located just above the kidneys, they produce and release several hormones like testosterone, cortisol, ...).
It is interesting to know that the ovaries (female sex organ that produces eggs and different hormones), also produce testosterone, but in an extremely low quantity.
Sex hormones such as testosterone or estrogen are made from cholesterol.
Testosterone is a steroid hormone because it has a nucleus called steroid in its chemical formula.
The production of testosterone is influenced by other hormones called FSH and LH.
These are secreted by the pituitary gland (a gland located in our brain), and their production is also influenced by another hormone, Gnrh.
Gnrh is secreted by the hypothalamus, another gland that is also located in our brain.
Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)
Gnrh, FSH and LH have a negative feedback on testosterone production.
When the blood level of testosterone increases, it inhibits the production of Gnrh, FSH and LH, resulting in a decrease in testosterone production.
Conversely, when testosterone levels become too low, there is a stimulation of Gnrh, LH and FSH production to increase testosterone production.
Testosterone is part of the androgens, the group of hormones that allows the establishment and development of male characteristics such as genitals, hair, the change of voice at puberty, ...
Testosterone also plays a role in stress control, competition, feeling of dominance, mood and decision making.
Testosterone is an anabolic hormone, which means that it stimulates the production of proteins, muscle mass, bones and blood cells such as red blood cells.
All these functions allow athletes to develop their physical capacity, but also to recover more quickly after the effort.
I would like to draw your attention to the fact that increased body fat in men, and especially in people who are obese, stimulates the transformation of testosterone into estrogen, which results in breast development and a reduction in testosterone levels.
Risk factors that decrease testosterone levels are :
- Alcohol consumption
- Diseases such as depression
- Certain drug treatments
- Age (testosterone production decreases with age)
The effects of testosterone deficiency are fatigue, loss of energy, sleep and/or libido problems, and increased weight associated with reduced muscle mass.
It is important to know that taking large amounts of testosterone can lead to side effects such as mental problems, aggressiveness, cardiovascular diseases and increases the risk of prostate cancer and liver problems.
Taking testosterone should only be done with the advice of your doctor and regular follow-up.
Dr. Noura Marashi (doctor of pharmacy, health youtuber, creator of the health and well-being application Pharmaquiz)
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