Testosterone is an important hormone in men’s health. While most people are already aware that T levels decline as men age, they may not know that low T leads to additional consequences besides a decreased sex drive. Testosterone affects several different areas around the body and brain, including:
- Muscle mass
- Weght gain
- Bone strength
- Heart health
In addition to these areas, though, recent research has started uncovering that there are even more chronic health problems men may face as their testosterone levels start to decline.
Low T and Chronic Diseases
Since testosterone plays a role in so many elements of health, it shouldn’t be that surprising that declining T levels can lead to negative outcomes. Recent studies have begun to show that there’s a strong correlation between low testosterone and the risk of chronic diseases. Some conditions that seem to correlate with T levels are arthritis, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and more.
Having one of these conditions can lead to lifestyle changes, but two such chronic conditions necessitate further accommodations. Even if someone’s testosterone levels haven’t fallen to a level that could receive a clinical diagnosis, it can still correlate to having multiple chronic illnesses. These results apply to not just older men, but to younger ones as well.
Low Testosterone and Increased Mortality
Another study on the health effects of testosterone found that men with low testosterone levels also have a much higher risk of dying than those with average or higher levels. The sample pool focused on older men, and those with the lowest total testosterone levels had a statistically higher mortality rate than others in the study, especially of health conditions often associated with testosterone decline.
What These Results Mean for Those with Low Testosterone Levels
While both these studies focused on the correlation of testosterone with chronic diseases and mortality, neither of them has concluded that low testosterone was the cause of these outcomes. There’s a strong chance that low T may be connected to other factors that increase the risk of mortality and chronic disease. Further research will be necessary to understand what leads to these conditions.
However, this doesn’t mean that those with low T should brush these studies off. If nothing else, the research indicates that testosterone levels may be an indication of other health issues, even in younger men. Such results should not be ignored.
Men who notice declining and low testosterone levels should keep an eye on other aspects of their health and pay attention for any warning signs of chronic illnesses. Taking note of something as simple as testosterone decline can help make improvements to overall health and possibly even decrease the risk of chronic disease.