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Testosterone is an important ingredient in every male’s genetic makeup, but levels of androgen testosterone vary from man to man. Let’s consider this hormone and why it’s vital for male health, energy and fitness.
Testosterone promotes growth hormone responses in the pituitary, influencing protein synthesis in muscles. Testosterone influences male pattern fat distribution, bone density and red blood cell production, and therefore low amounts of testosterone (also called “Low T”) can severely impact the potential and results of even the most tried and true fitness regimens.
Low T, otherwise known as hypogonadism, can occur as early as during fetal development, and pertains to the testes being underactive and producing little to no sex hormones. Also known as low serum testosterone, gonad deficiency and andropause, this disorder has several primary causes, including problems with the testicles, and several secondary causes, mainly stemming from a problem with the pituitary gland or the hypothalamus, parts of the brain that signal the testicles to produce testosterone. Causes of secondary hypogonadism can include: inflammatory diseases; medications; obesity; HIV/AIDS; concurrent illness (including severe emotional stress); and radiation treatment.
Thankfully, there are a variety of ways you can restore, raise and maintain testosterone at ideal levels suitable for muscle gain and making the most of active living. Getting enough sleep is one big help we can give ourselves. In fact, research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association showed that regularly getting a good night’s rest—ideally between seven and nine hours every night—helps to remedy low levels of testosterone. Losing excess weight through a sensible diet, along with regular exercise, is also crucial. A 2013 study in the European Journal of Endocrinology showed that a properly balanced nutritional diet (no crash dieting) and exercise offset effects of hypogonadism.
Ingesting zinc-rich foods such as edible oyster (Ostrea edulis), red meat and poultry, beans, nuts, blue king crab, spiny lobster and whole grains—equivalent to 11mg of zinc each day—is another step you can take, as studies indicate a correlation between serum testosterone level and concentrations of zinc found in hair tissue, with testosterone synthesis influenced by micronutrients such as zinc and copper.
Finally, there are also supplements, such as BodyHealth’s Male Vigor™, which provides a natural boost to male testosterone levels through ingredients such as fenugreek seed extract, Asian ginseng, various B vitamins and calcium D-pantothenate, among others. Male Vigor promotes healthy and natural testosterone synthesis.
Low testosterone is common and frustrating, but it doesn’t have to ignored. We can strive for hormonal balance and with better levels of testosterone achieved naturally, you’ll feel more capable and energetic than ever before.*
*These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
If there is anything society has come to realize over the last century, it is that women are just as powerful, smart, ambitious, and capable as men. And while society as a whole is still catching up as far as true equality, the facts are evident when you look at some of the most incredible and influential people today.
When it comes to fitness, however, men and women are not the same. The natural, physiological differences necessitate unique approaches to achieve optimal results. While the fundamental science behind attaining a shredded, lean physique is basically the same for both sexes, the exact steps and application require careful consideration.
One thing I've learned is that injuries can be great teachers. There are so many lessons to be learned from the injuries we experience. They force us to slow down and evaluate our bodies on a deeper level. Like many, I'm guilty of sometimes taking my healthy days for granted. When we pick up an injury, we're suddenly motivated to learn everything we can about that specific injury. We're also dedicated to the necessary rehab it will take to overcome the injury and strengthen our weak areas.
As with many injuries, I've learned there are no "quick fixes" for my stubborn Achilles. Over the years, I've also learned there are no "get fit quickly" schemes.