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Old 06-30-2011, 03:14 PM
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rockdawg21 rockdawg21 is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: San Antonio, TX
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Here's the article. I think most people probably understand this stuff anyways. Still, it doesn't explain why Sonnen and Marquardt were going through HRT.

Causes of Low Testosterone
Testosterone is one of the most important hormones in the human body and plays an especially important role in male health as its the main sex hormone. Low levels of testosterone can be caused by a variety of reasons like hypogonadism and zinc deficiency. Let us understand the role of testosterone in the human body and understand what causes a drop in its concentration.

Testosterone is a key steroid hormone produced in the body, which plays an important role in many fundamental physical processes. Hormones are essentially chemical signaling molecules, that activate certain processes in the body, through a receptor mechanism. A signaling molecule like testosterone, binds with the various chemical receptors in the body, to trigger various bodily processes. A steroid is a particular chemical type of hormone called terpenoid lipid.

It is the hormone that initiates most of the sexual developmental processes in a male and also contributes to other vital processes. Hence it is also called as the male sex hormone as it manifests all the typical male qualities and physical processes. The testosterone secretion timing and amount is regulated by the hypothalamus and the pituitary gland in the brain through a complex signaling mechanism. It is also produced in the female body but in comparatively very lesser amounts. The female equivalent of testosterone is estrogen, the female sex hormone.

Testosterone is synthesized from cholesterol by mostly the Leydig cells in the male testicles. In females, it is synthesized in the ovaries by Thecal cells in very small quantities. In males, testosterone plays the very important role of initiating sperm production in the sertoli cells of the male testes. Drop in the levels of testosterone causes problems in cognitive processes, depression, sleep disorders, fatigue, decrease in libido and erectile dysfunction. It is also known to cause excessive fat accumulation.

Causes of Low Testosterone

Low testosterone level (that is less than 3000 nanograms testosterone per liter) is caused by many reasons depending on age, physiology, diet, medical history and lifestyle. One of the major reasons behind the lowering of testosterone in blood, has been observed to be aging. Although there are exceptions, mostly after a man crosses forty years of age, the production of testosterone, has been known to go down at a rate of 1% to 2% every year. This is known to be the beginning of the andropause, which is a very gradual decrease in testosterone levels, ultimately leading to ceasing of sexual and reproductive ability. The rate of progression and conclusion of male menopause varies a lot, depending on the health of the individual.

The other major reason for low testosterone levels is hypogonadism. It may be a congenital (pre-birth development) disorder or an acquired one. Both differ, depending upon the source of the abnormality. Its called primary hypogonadism, if the reason for the low testosterone is the development of abnormality in the testicular production mechanism. The secondary type of hypogonadism is caused by an abnormality in the pituitary gland in the brain, which indirectly controls the testicular production of testosterone.

There are other diseases which cause a decrease in testosterone. The type 2 diabetes or diabetes milletus causes a significant decrease in its levels. Consumption of drugs like glucocorticoids, used in the treatment of acute allergic disorders, ketoconazole, used in the treatment of skin infections and a deficiency of zinc in diet, have been known to indirectly cause a decrease in testosterone.

Other factors contributing to dropping levels of the hormone are the use of drugs. Drugs like opium, adversely affect many physical processes of the body. Depleting layers of testosterone, may also be a result of the onset of testicular cancer, which jeopardizes the reproductive mechanism in a male.

Hormonal imbalances like these are thus caused by a range of problems in the human body. A yearly body check up and blood testing can detect any alarming signs of abnormality. Listen to your body carefully and monitor even small changes that occur. This goes a long way in detecting such hormonal imbalances, which can then be treated effectively. Regular strength building exercises have been known to stimulate testosterone production. So staying active and exercising may increase your chances of maintaining the testosterone levels naturally!
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