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How big a concern should low testosterone levels (336) be if I am getting older?



Dear Anthony,

Testosterone is a steroid hormone from the androgen group. In mammals, testosterone is primarily secreted in the testes of males and the ovaries of females.

In males, the testes produce most of the circulating testosterone. Testosterone production declines naturally with age.

Testosterone production decreases rapidly after age 50 (to 20-50% of peak level by age 80).

The testes produce testosterone regulated by a complex chain of signals that begins in the brain. This chain is called the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis.

In males, a decreased testosterone level may indicate hypothalamic or pituitary disease with reduced secretion of LH and FSH, or damage to the testes with reduced production of testosterone.

Low testosterone levels appeared to predict and increased risk of death due to poor cardiovascular health and abnormal cell health.

For many men, low testosterone levels go undiagnosed. Men with low testosterone were more likely to have elevated markers of inflammation, called inflammatory cytokines, which contribute to many diseases.

As for raising your testosterone level, it is possible that you can do so by non-pharmacological means. The general advice argues for ample exercise and a diet heavily weighted toward fresh fruits and vegetables. There is a statement to the effect that zinc supplementation has been shown to raise testosterone levels.

Chrysin, nettle roots, and muira puama are among the herbal treatments more advertised.

A testosterone level of 336 ng/dL falls within the normal range for adult males.

A normal level of testosterone for a man will range from the low 200s to more than 1200 nanograms per deciliter (ng./dL).

In men, mid-life hormone changes usually begin without notice, especially after the age of forty. Andropause, the condition in which the testosterone level slowly declines with age, also decreases a man's ability to enjoy sex.

Life without testosterone is life without desire but life without desire may be unexpectedly pleasant.


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