Testosterone is a male hormone. Besides promoting libido it has other important functions such as maintaining muscle mass and forming bone, and regulating heart muscle and cholesterol. It also helps to improve the oxygen levels throughout the body as well as controlling blood glucose and strengthening the immune system. As men age, the pituitary gland produces less free testosterone while more free testosterone is being converted to estrogen which results in many health problems. The causes of low testosterone are as follows:
As we mentioned in the previous articles, human aging is the biological and pathological processes that vary from person to person and that are controllable to some degree. Starting at age 40 levels of testosterone start to diminish. The levels of the by-product prolactin of testosterone of men increases, stimulating the production of the enzyme 5-alpha reductase that causes the conversion of testosterone to gihydro-testosterones DHT thus triggering low levels of testosterone.
2. DHEA deficiency
DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) is a substance made by the adrenal gland. It is the precursor of the sex steroids estrogen and testosterone. DHEA has some male hormone effects and deficiency of DHEA contributes to fatigue, poor concentration and diminished overall body functions.
Zinc is a natural aromatase enzyme inhibitor. It helps to block the conversion of testosterone into excess estrogen. Inadequate zinc levels block the pituitary gland from releasing lutein and follicle stimulation of hormone which stimulates the production of testosterone.
Aromatase is an enzyme of the cytochrome P450 superfamily, whose function is to aromatize androgen and produce estrogen. As men age they produce greater amounts of aromatase enzymes that cause the conversion of testosterone into estrogen resulting in male hormone deficiency.
5. Liver disease
Damage to liver causes extra estrogen and sex-hormone binding globulin resulting in lower levels of testosterone.
6. Frequent sexual activity
Normal sexual activity helps to improve the yang qi in the kidney according to Chinese herbalists (that is the reason why most kings in Chinese history have some sources of sexual dysfunction). Frequent sexual activity (more than once a day and every day) will cause the depletion of yang qi resulting in low levels of testosterone, sexual dysfunction and libido in the future days.