Last Modified on Jan 06, 2014
What is Low Testosterone?
Increasing numbers of men are coming to realize they suffer from low testosterone levels, but that doesn't mean they know what it means or how it affects life and health. Testosterone is the primary male hormone, responsible for our larger muscles, deeper voices, sexual development, and other sex characteristics. And it's natural enough that different men at different ages have differing amounts of testosterone running in their blood and organs; yet those who have particularly low levels of testosterone may suffer from erectile dysfunction (ED), reduced libido, and other sexual health and general health symptoms. Furthermore, low T levels are negatively correlated with premature death in older men, with depression, and with increased risk of diabetes; so remedies to improve your testosterone levels can provide overall health benefits.
Do you have low T? Symptoms of low testosterone include:
- Brain fog
- Dry skin
- Weak nails
- Muscle loss
- Frequent urination
- Memory loss
- Weak libido
- Erectile Dysfunction
- Weight gain
- Insulin resistance
- Cholesterol/Lipid issues
- Emotional issues
Holistic Treatment for Low Testosterone
In order to raise your testosterone levels, you can try a number of herbal remedies to increase the hormone's production or otherwise treat the side effects of low T. For erectile dysfunction, maca root(2) is generally the best respected herbal remedy for increase libido, though cayenne pepper and other home remedies to improve cardiovascular health are also a good bet. Additionally, Cordyceps sinensis supplements have shown some promise in raising testosterone levels.(3)
05/13/2009: Juan-Diego Garcia from Albuquerque, New Mexico: "I would like Ted's input on the issue of increasingly low testosterone levels affecting so many people. What part does excess estrogen intake (soy, pesticides, etc) play in this phenomenon? How do we counteract it?"
EC: Great questions, thank you. Your post has been emailed to Ted for response.
07/12/2012: Chasse from Calabasas, Ca replies: "L-carnitine is just not advisable to a individual who is usually on cancers treatments for example doxorubicin. It is because it will probably guard the cardiovascular system tissues coming from the harmful effects of doxorubicin, and therefore decreases its practical use.
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Taken From TheVitaminMag.com
Many individuals who're on ordinary dose of L-carnitine are afflicted by recurrent body allergy, throwing up, diarrhoea as well as frustration.
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01/09/2009: Melinda from Tucson, Arizona: "Firstly I want to say I love the site! My boyfriend was recently diagnosed with very low testosterone, and has been prescribed Testim, however I came here to see what natural alternatives he might be able to try, but cannot find anything on the subject. Please consider adding low testosterone to your list of ailments. My boyfriends Dr. was doing blood tests, but a testosterone test would have more than likely been skipped had I not mentioned he has zero sex drive, and is tired alot.
Thank you, Melinda"
01/10/2009: Joyce from Joelton, Tn replies: "Hello Melinda,
First off a couple of questions. Does your boyfriend drink? Does he have white spots on his fingernails? People who drink much are usually low on zinc, thanks to the alcohol. White spots on the fingernails can be an indication of a zinc deficiency. He might try 25 to 50 mgm. zinc supplement daily to see if it helps increase his libido."
01/24/2009: Melinda from Tucson, Arizona replies: "Low testosterone-Hello Joyce, thank you for your response. Actually he cut down on his drinking when he met me :), he only drinks maybe once a week now. He did try zinc and magnesium a few weeks before they did the blood tests and found his low testosterone, because we read somewhere that it and magnesium might help. Have not looked to see if he has white spots on his nails, will do that. He has noticed a slight improvement from the testosterone medication Testim that his Dr. prescribed, but has also been on it only two weeks."
01/24/2009: Sierra from London, UK replies: "Melinda, does your boyfriend exercise? If not, or doesn't do much of it, this might be part of the problem. On the other hand if he cycles a lot (either stationary or other), that might also effect his testosterone levels. Studies have shown cycling can adversely effects sperm count, so maybe too testosterone levels (anyone know?) Also to be considered - if he keeps a laptop on his lap for many hours a day. Many factors could play into it. Please let us know what you find out!"
04/26/2009: Ralph from RGV, Texas replies: "In regards to the subject of low testosterone, things that I've found in reading other sites are as follows:
1. Too high an intake of estrogen-promoting foods (fenugreek, soy, soyproducts)
2. Plastic- bottled drink consumption (there were some news reports that during transport, certain types of plastic bottles were exposed to higher-than-room temprature, causing a molecular break-down of the plastic chemiclas that the human body would absorb and treat like the estrogens in 'the pill')
3. Like mentioned earlier, essential mineral deficiencies (zinc, calcium, magnesium, potassium
4. Vitamine deficiencies (vitamins a,c,e,d, b3 or niacin)
5. An inability to digest certain protiens causing amino acid deficiencies (amino acids are the building blocks for hormones. In testosterone's case, most notable are L-arginine, and L-carnitine.)
6. Other undiagnosed medical problems such as ednocrinological disorders (affect hormone production), diabetes, fibromialgia, auto-immune disorders, ect."
11/30/2010: John from Los Angeles, California replies: "The supplement Acetyl-L-Carnitine appears to help with low testosterone issues.
"Treating symptoms of age-related testosterone deficiency ("male menopause"). Taking acetyl-L-carnitine by mouth along with propionyl-L-carnitine seems to help symptoms related to declining male hormone levels. This combination taken for 6 months seems to improve sexual dysfunction, depression, and fatigue in much the same way the male hormone testosterone does."
01/06/2014: Sandra M from Los Angeles, Ca replies: "Great list of possible causes! I wanted to add that your #2 should be expanded to most heated single-use plastics, not just water bottles. Lots of people put these in their dishwashers or heat their food in them in the microwave, and this is a regular source of exposure to these estrogen-mimicking chemicals."
Low Testosterone Remedies
07/24/2013: Mark from Mint Hill, Nc, Usa: "Need a natural booster or remedies for low testosterone."
05/20/2009: Luis from Cali, Colombia: "Guys, if you want to increase the testosterone level take Chrysin (better with Bioperine), Muira Puama, Maca and Tribulus Terrestris. Desirable 7 Keto.
Check your blood free testosterone if you are over 50 years old. A level below minimum normal rank, o near, is dangerous for your heart health"
06/21/2012: Curious from Dallas, Tx replies: "Hey Luis from Cali, I researched the supplements you recommended for low testosterone. All of them have been proven that they do not raise testosterone hormones in the body. Only the sex drive. Not sure what the difference is lol. Have you taken these supplements and had a blood test? More info would be appreciated. Thx"
[YEA] 05/29/2009: Brian from Fort Worth, TX: "low testosterone -- low thyroid will lower your testosterone big time! mine dropped to 204, should be around 600. i started on armour thyroid and my testosterone went up to 285 within a couple of months"