Testosterone Is a Health Hormone

Testosterone is a Health Hormone

Majid Ali, M.D.

In the minds of most people, testosterone is a hormone involved with male sexual function. This is a serious mistake. It is the root of most misconceptions about the roles of this hormone in preserving memory and other mental functions, muscle strength, heart health, bone resilience, and other functions in both men and women.

It is essential to recognize that all so-called sex hormones (testosterone, estrogens, and progesterone) are “health hormones” and are responsible for the health of all hormones. We really do not need any studies to show that these hormones are essential for memory or the health of the heart and bones. Testosterone belongs to the class of androgen steroid hormone and plays the primary role in the development of male reproductive tissues, such as the testis and prostate. It also promotes the development of secondary sexual characteristics, such as larger muscle and bone masses and the growth of body-hair. It is the principal sex hormone in males but is also crucial for female sexuality. Testosterone is a powerfully anabolic steroid. An adult human male produces about ten times more testosterone than an adult human female. However, females are more sensitive to the hormone.

November 14, 2014
New Study Finds Testosterone Replacement Therapy Does Not Increase Cardiovascular Risks in Men with Low Testosterone Levels

An important new study of men who have undergone testosterone replacement therapy has found that taking supplemental testosterone does not increase their risk of experiencing a major adverse cardiac event, such as a heart attack or stroke.

Researchers at the Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute in Murray, Utah, which is the flagship facility for the Intermountain Healthcare system, studied 5,695 men between the ages of 53 and 71. The men, all patients at Intermountain Healthcare hospitals, had initial low testosterone levels.

Researchers found that men who received testosterone supplementation to achieve normal or high testosterone levels had reduced overall rates of major adverse cardiac events at one and three years after their initial low levels of testosterone were measured, compared to other men who had persistently low levels of testosterone. The lower rate of cardiac events included a reduction in the adjusted risk of death and a reduction in heart attacks.

From  Intermountain Medical Center

Testosterone plays important roles maintaining cardiovascular health. For example, maintaining normal testosterone levels in elderly men improve many parameters which are thought to reduce cardiovascular disease risk, such as improved insulin functions, control of insulin toxicity, better glycemic control, increased lean body mass, and decreased abdominal (visceral) fat mass. The mechanisms of these actions involve protein synthesis and growth of those tissues with androgen receptors. In physiologic doses, testosterone has anti-inflammatory effects and improves the fluid characteristics of the circulating blood. For example, it regulates the population of a type of receptor on platelet-making cells in the bone marrow called thromboxane A2 receptors. In mammals, testosterone is primarily produced in the testes of males and the ovaries of females. Smaller amounts are secreted by the adrenal glands.

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Testosterone and Cardiovascular Health

Does Testosterone Increase the Risk for Cardiovascular Disease?

My simple answer: No, testosterone does not increase the risk for cardiovascular disease. If so , and I anticipate the question, then what might we make of the recent study published in late 2013 in the online journal PLOS One which found higher risk of cardiovascular events in middle-age and older men who received testosterone supplementation? My answer: I am not surprised that men with cardiovascular diseases suffered more heart and brain events. Testosterone is expected to increase the desire of men receiving the hormone to do more to enjoy life, which may pose a hazard for men receiving large doses of heart and brain drugs. This is what the PLOS One study actually reported. And I welcome the study except for one thing: the report did not highlight this crucial aspect of the finding.

Overselling Testosterone, Dangerously

The above was the title of an editorial in The New York Times on February 5, 2014. That did not surprise. Editorials of the Times nearly always reflect only the opinions of drug doctors. The Times journalists, of course, have no personal experience or perspective on complex medical issues which they address. They are not expected to.

I read the Times editorial twice to see if the writer knew anything about the essential point I make above—the special risk faced by heavily drugged men with heart disease and stroke who might be take inappropriately prescribed testosterone supplementation. I was not surprised. There was not a single word written about it. Nor was there recognition of the fact that PLOS study had absolutely no relevance to people without heart disease and stroke who show sharp drops in the blood hormone levels due to stress and environmental toxicities on sequential laboratory testing.

This is what knowledgeable and astute integrative do before prescribing testosterone supplementation. But, how would The New York Times know this? They never seek guidance from integrative doctors.

Below are some revealing quotes from the Times editorial:

A large study has found substantial risks in prescribing testosterone to middle-age and older men for a variety of ailments. One part of the study found that testosterone doubled the risk of cardiovascular disease in more than 7,000 men who were 65 years old or older, essentially confirming findings in previous studies. The other part found that testosterone almost tripled the risk of heart attacks in a group of more than 48,000 middle-age men with previous histories of heart disease. The harm in both cases occurred within 90 days of receiving the prescription..”

Note the words “tripled the risk of heart attacks in a group of men with previous histories of heart disease.

Here is another quote: “The reason seems clear. Drug companies have shamelessly pushed the notion, to doctors and to the public, that their testosterone-boosting product can overcome a supposed disease called “low T,” which is characterized by feelings of fatigue, loss of sexual drive, depressed moods, an increase in body fat and decrease in muscle strength, among other symptoms.” Here I applaud the Times.

Overselling Testosterone, Dangerously Part One Majid Ali MD

Does Testosterone Supplementation Hurt the Heart, Overselling Testosterone Dangerously Part Two Majid Ali MD

Men, Please Watch Out for Rising Insulin and Falling Testosterone Majid Ali MD

Low Testosterone State Majid Ali MD


donationTestosterone And Breathing

This is two videos and one audio file on testosterone and tips on breathing present by Majid Ali, MD.

How breathing effects health – how to regenerate testosterone cells
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