Do you exhibit any signs of low testosterone? Perhaps you’re coming down with fatigue faster than you used to. Maybe your erections aren’t occurring as often as you need them.
When you’re experiencing one or a combination of these symptoms, you may be facing a hormonal imbalance that may require further medical testing.
Low testosterone is one such medical problem that could explain those symptoms. Testosterone plays a vital role in the body, helping promote a variety of health functions like red blood cell production and sex drive.
When a man’s testosterone levels dip below 300 ng/dL, this could be classified as a case of low testosterone. This disease can be debilitating and is often connected with adverse sexual symptoms.
And while it’s not difficult to connect cases of erectile dysfunction and diminished sex drive with low testosterone, the association between low testosterone and heart disease is a unique one. Testosterone doesn’t seem to affect blood vessels and heart function at a glance, after all.
That said, is this association something to be truly concerned about, or is it just a purported myth with no basis?
Let’s unravel the secrets of testosterone, its connection with the heart, as well as ways to keep your body in shape upon finding out that there’s an underlying health problem.
The Function of Testosterone in the Body
Before we establish a connection between these two essential body parts, let’s learn about testosterone’s function in the body.
Testosterone is an androgen produced primarily in the gonads in a man’s testicles (women produce them too but in smaller quantities). This steroid hormone has a variety of functions, all of which are vital for a man’s health.
For one, testosterone is responsible for the development of male characteristics and traits. This includes the deepening of the voice, growth of facial and body hair, and an increase in muscle mass.
Testosterone is also essential for the production of red blood cells. These cells are responsible for transporting oxygen throughout the body, which helps in nutrient delivery to different organs around the body, from the brain to the penis.
Aside from that, testosterone helps keep bones strong. This is because testosterone aids in the production of osteoblasts, which are responsible for bone formation.
What Happens When Testosterone is Too Low?
When testosterone levels in the body are too low, this can result in adverse consequences. Muscle mass may become less lean and libido may be drastically reduced.
Besides those aforementioned symptoms, here are signs of low testosterone that you should be aware of:
- Hot flashes
- Increased body fat
- Mood changes
- Distorted memory
- Reduced blood count
- Smaller testicle size
That said, after the age of 30, it’s normal for men’s testosterone levels to start falling by about 1% annually. In fact, the global prevalence of testosterone deficiency (or “andropause“) is estimated to be about 10 to 40%.
This condition tends to correlate with the age of the individual as well, with elderly men more susceptible to progressively lower T levels.
In some cases, this condition can be reversed by actively managing your testosterone levels by improving your lifestyle habits and finding proper clinical treatment like testosterone replacement therapy.
But if left untreated, low testosterone levels can progressively get worse and affect your general health. The onset of heart disease is among the worst things that can occur when testosterone levels are low.
The Heart and Testosterone: Can Low Testosterone Cause Heart Palpitations?
Multiple studies have proven a link between poor testosterone levels and poor cardiovascular health.
One study has shown that low testosterone levels have increased the risk of atrial fibrillation, or palpitations, in men. Another recent study has proven that low circulating testosterone levels may increase the risk of ischemic cardiovascular disease.
In particular, insufficient testosterone levels have promoted vascular and endothelial dysfunction over time. In addition, low T also has led to a higher risk of atherosclerosis and clogged arteries in men.
Unfortunately, that’s not the end of it.
In fact, another study found that low testosterone also leads to an increased risk of heart failure. Furthermore, patients with low testosterone had a greater mortality rate than those with heart disease who did not have low testosterone.
This is because men with lower T levels have been observed to have a higher likelihood of developing left ventricular diastolic dysfunction.
Besides the aforementioned cardiovascular events, low testosterone levels are also associated with the following diseases:
- Coronary artery disease
- Metabolic syndrome
- High blood pressure (See: How Low Testosterone Affects Blood Pressure)
- Risk of heart attack
- Type 2 diabetes
That said, if you have symptoms of low testosterone, don’t leave it untreated. Consult with a doctor specializing in testosterone therapy so that they can prescribe you the most relevant treatment plan for you.
Lifestyle Changes to Support Low Testosterone Levels
One of the first recommendations your doctor will make if you have low testosterone is to encourage you to adopt some healthy lifestyle modifications.
Here are some common lifestyle changes that a doctor may encourage patients with low T levels to do:
- Exercise more regularly: Exercising can improve both your testosterone levels and heart health. If you perform an exercise routine for at least 30 minutes a day, you can reap the benefits of a healthy sex life.
- Eat a testosterone-friendly diet: Some foods like fatty fish, leafy greens, cocoa products, and shellfish are excellent foods to include in your diet to boost testosterone levels naturally.
- Avoid smoking and drinking: Vices can harm not only your general health but also your sexual health. Lay off these items if you want to keep your body in shape and radiant.
In some cases, these changes may be enough to help improve your testosterone levels. However, if your condition is more severe, your doctor may suggest a testosterone therapy prescription to address your sexual health and cardiovascular risk factors.
This treatment uses gels, pills, and creams to improve your testosterone levels in a safe way. Talk with a Low T doctor to learn more about testosterone treatment.
Contact Orlando’s Top Men’s Health Clinic for Medical Guidance to Treat Low T Levels
Testosterone is a vital hormone for men who want to live healthy and fulfilling lives. Not only does this hormone play an important role in your sexual health, but it also helps to keep your heart functioning properly.
If you suspect that you may have low testosterone levels, don’t hesitate to talk with a doctor. Through lifestyle changes and proper hormone therapy, you can mitigate increased cardiovascular risk and live a healthy life.
The medical professionals at Orlando’s Premier Men’s Medical Center specialize in treating conditions that impact men’s health. Our concierge approach positions your unique case at the centerpoint of our focus. We don’t just give you a pill and send you on your way. We treat the underlying issues that led to conditions such as ED, Low Testosterone, Andropause, Adrenal Fatigue, and more. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment.