Additional Benefits & Downsides
Aside from the emotional and love benefits, testosterone has significant cardiovascular benefits (more matters of the heart). It protects the body against heart disease, improves glucose metabolism and prevents diabetes, increases muscle mass, and promotes weight loss. It improves lipid metabolism (cholesterol) and protects the brain against Alzheimer’s and other dementias.
There are some downsides: testosterone in large doses can increase acne and hair growth in women. Lowering the dose and giving certain nutrients and medications can manage these side effects. For men, the burning question and conventional wisdom has been that testosterone increases the risk for prostate cancer. However, over the last few years, this has been essentially turned on its head. As men age, their testosterone levels fall, and yet their risk for prostate cancer goes up. Studies have shown no relationship with either low or high testosterone in the risk for prostate cancer. If a man with low testosterone is given testosterone, it can “wake up” the prostate and perhaps even uncover an occult prostate cancer.
Abraham Morgentaler, MD, a Harvard trained urologist, in his book “Testosterone for Life”, uses the analogy of a plant that is wilted from lack of water. When you water that plant, it perks up and “grows” for a short time, however, no matter how much you water the plant, once it reaches a certain height, it will not grow anymore. This is how testosterone works on the prostate. Morgentaler also traces the origination of the belief that testosterone causes prostate cancer and it is based on one paper from a study in 1941 with 3 patients treated with castration. Testosterone does not cause prostate cancer. Men who have had prostate cancer, once their PSA goes to 0 and remains there for some time, can be given testosterone. I encourage you to read Dr. Morgentaler’s book if you still have doubts.
Whether you are male or female, don’t miss out on the wonders of testosterone. If your hormone therapy is not optimal, consider asking a knowledge doctor about testosterone therapy. It will change your life for the better.