As the primary male sex hormone, testosterone is vital to many developmental processes that occur throughout a man’s life. Primarily produced in the testicles, it is necessary for the growth and development of various male sexual and physical traits and characteristics.
Testosterone production – What are the normal testosterone levels in men?
The amount of testosterone that a man produces varies as he ages.
- From birth to around 5 months, testosterone levels range between 75 nanograms per deciliter and 400 nanograms per deciliter.
- From age 6 months to 9 years, testosterone levels are less than 7 nanograms per deciliter to 20 nanograms per deciliter.
- From age 10 years to 13 years, testosterone levels are around 130 nanograms per deciliter to 800 nanograms per deciliter.
- From age 14 years to 16 years, testosterone levels range from 100 nanograms per deciliter to 1,200 nanograms per deciliter.
- From age 17 years to 18 years, many reach their peak testosterone production, with testosterone levels ranging from 300 nanograms per deciliter to 1,200 nanograms per deciliter.
- From age 19 years and throughout his adult years, testosterone levels start to drop gradually, with normal levels ranging from 240 nanograms per deciliter to 950 nanograms per deciliter. It is important to note that after age 30, the amount of testosterone produced by the body decreases by about 1% each year.
Testosterone benefits – What is the role of testosterone in men?
Testosterone plays a major role in a man’s sexual and reproductive growth, development, and maintenance, including the following:
Testosterone is important in the growth and development of the penis, testicles, prostate, and other parts of the male reproductive system. If your body does not have enough testosterone, there is a risk of underdeveloped male genitalia.
Testosterone is key to the regulation of a man’s libido or sex drive. If your testosterone levels are low, you may suffer from low libido, lose interest in sex, and have trouble getting or sustaining an erection, increasing your risk of erectile dysfunction.
Testosterone supports the production of enough high-quality sperm that can successfully fertilize an egg for reproduction. If you have low testosterone, you may not be unable to produce lots of sperm with good structure and motility, increasing your risk of infertility.
Body hair growth
Testosterone is key to the growth of body hair, especially during puberty. Without enough testosterone, you may have a hard time growing facial hair, underarm hair, chest hair, pubic hair, arm and leg hair, and other body hair.
Testosterone is essential to having strong and healthy bones. If your testosterone levels are low, you may suffer from bone loss and be at risk of bone problems and disorders, such as osteoporosis.
Testosterone is key to the growth and development of muscles. Without it, your risk of muscle loss and other muscular problems may increase.
Testosterone helps in the proper distribution of fat in the body. If you have low testosterone, you may not be able to burn fat efficiently and you may have an increased risk of obesity.
Red blood cell production
Testosterone plays an integral role in the production of new red blood cells, which is important for proper blood circulation in the body. If your testosterone is low, your vital organs, including your penis and sexual parts, may not receive enough blood to be able to function right.
Mood and behavior
Testosterone helps regulate mood and behavior. Certain studies have found that men who have low testosterone tend to have higher odds of having being depressed, irritable, and fatigued.
Testosterone can influence one’s memory, mathematical reasoning, spatial abilities, and other cognitive skills. In one study, it was found that male test subjects with normal testosterone levels had a lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease. In another study, men with normal testosterone showed better information processing speed and verbal memory.
Testosterone levels test – How can you determine your testosterone levels?
If you want to know your testosterone levels, you have to undergo a test called testosterone levels test. It is a kind of blood test in which a sample of your blood is drawn from your arm and sent to a laboratory for analysis.
You should talk to your doctor about getting a testosterone level test so that they can advise you on what kind of preparations you should do for the test. To get more accurate and precise test results, you should schedule your test in the morning, sometime around 7 am to 10 am, as these hours are when testosterone levels reach their peak.
Once your test results are back and you get a low testosterone result, discuss with your doctor how to proceed. You have to receive the best treatment available to get your testosterone levels back up as soon as possible.
Testosterone-boosting foods – What foods can help increase your testosterone levels?
Because testosterone offers a ton of health benefits, it is crucial that you keep your levels within the normal range. To make that happen, you should eat more foods that can help increase your testosterone levels. The following are highly recommended testosterone-boosting foods:
This is an excellent source of vitamin D, which is an essential nutrient that can enhance testosterone production. It is also rich in protein, low in calories, and good for the heart.
These are a nutrient-dense food that is also loaded with vitamin D. Eating one or two a day can help with testosterone maintenance and keep your energy levels up.
These contain high concentrations of zinc, which is an essential nutrient that can help keep your testosterone levels up.
These include cauliflower, broccoli, kale, cabbage, turnips, and Brussel sprouts. They contain indole-3 carbinol, which is a compound that can boost testosterone levels by reducing estrogen levels.
These include black beans, kidney beans, and white beans. They are a great source of zinc and vitamin D, which are two essential nutrients that can help improve male sexual function.