They are secreted by the endocrine glands that travel through the bloodstream with important functions.
Much is heard about female hormones, from the moment of puberty to menopause.
Men, however, are often totally ignored when it comes to knowing exactly what they do or stop making their own chemical compounds as they run through their veins.
With less than a gram of weight, the pituitary gland is the control center of this complex system. Located at the base of the skull, it regulates most endocrine glands, such as the thyroid, adrenal glands or testes.
From moods to muscles, men are so affected by hormones. Keeping male hormones in the right balance offers many benefits.
Not only does the correct amount of testosterone ward off negative attitudes, but it also results in better sexual performance, better physical condition and a general increase in health.
You’ve probably heard about testosterone and, while it certainly plays an important role in men’s health, it’s just one of several hormones in action.
Hormones produced by man feed a complex endocrine system that sends signals to organs throughout the body, from the brain to the testicles.
These hormone levels change from hour to hour. And, if the hormones become unbalanced or begin to decrease (which happens around the age of 40, sometimes before), the body starts to store too much fat and asks the person to eat when they are not very hungry.
This leads to metabolic syndromes, such as diabetes. A hormonal imbalance also hinders a man’s ability to fight stress, while making him feel exhausted, anxious, irritable and less interested in sex.
What role does testosterone play in this hormone game?
Testosterone is a term that is often associated with male fury. The truth is that testosterone does not really create overtly negative behaviors.
However, testosterone does affect the size and strength of the muscles and bones, so it could offer benefits if the screaming turns into punching.
Testosterone, one of several male hormones classified as androgens, is also a major player in sexual appetite and sperm production. This is also why men tend to have deeper voices than women, as well as the ability to grow a beard or mustache.
Testosterone and weight
Men generally lose more weight than women. And they lose it faster. While it does not seem fair, there is a physiological reason for their success: on average, they carry 40 pounds more muscle than women and 10 times more testosterone.
While testosterone increases metabolism, the increase in muscle mass burns calories, even while the body rests. The good luck of the weight loss begins to disappear, eventually.
As men reach their 40s, testosterone production decreases by around 3% every year for the rest of their lives. This makes it more difficult to maintain a fat burning metabolism and, conversely, makes it easier to gain weight.
In addition, men with large midsections are more likely to have low testosterone levels than those who balance flat abs, which allows them a cycle of weight gain
The crisis of middle age
Approximately when a man reaches age 50, he may get bored with his career, marital status or his life in general, but this emotional reaction has physiological roots.
All it takes is a simple blood test that can reveal potentially low testosterone levels, which can be the source of depression or dissatisfaction.
There is a large amount of hormones that can affect the emotional and physical well-being of a man, but one in particular becomes less reliable after the age of 60.
Thyroid hormone decreases with age and several recent studies show a link between decreased thyroid hormones and sexual dysfunction. This includes erectile dysfunction, which is the inability to maintain an erection of the penis.
The most common problems of low thyroid or hypothyroidism also include declining sexual desire, but it does not stop there.
The classic symptoms include weight gain, hair loss, memory loss, constipation and rough and dry skin. The good news is that with synthetic hormone replacement, these symptoms, including erectile dysfunction caused by hypothyroidism, usually revert.
There are a lot of benefits for an abundant amount of male hormone, such as increased energy, alertness and muscle tone. Unfortunately, hormones also play a role in abnormal cell reproduction, particularly for men.
Cancer cells in the prostate, for example, are fed by testosterone. This makes the indiscriminate use of testosterone creams and other replacement therapies a real health problem.
Testosterone replacement therapy alone grew more than 24% from 2005 to 2009, the year it reached $ 838 million in annual sales. Before men add synthetic testosterone to their systems, they must undergo tests to make sure there are prostate cancer cells present.
Approximately half of men 50 and older probably have cancer cells lurking in their prostate.
It’s also worth paying attention to another hormone, melatonin , regardless of sex. This hormone regulates the internal clock and is the reason why it is sleepy at night and awake in the morning.
Apparently harmless behaviors, such as sleeping with a lamp on or playing television, can increase the risk of cancer.
This is because exposure to light during the night short-circuits the production of melatonin and can cause abnormal cell growth.
It is estimated that 4 million men in the United States have low levels of testosterone, a decline that begins around 40 years.
Approximately equivalent to the female menopause, the male version is called “andropause” or “male menopause” and can wreak havoc on a man’s weight, energy levels, mood and sexual desire.
Late andropause, which occurs after age 70, can also indicate the progression of Alzheimer’s disease or even the tendency to develop memory-related age problems.
Loss of Androgens
Androgens are steroid hormones whose main function is to stimulate the development of male sexual characteristics.
For women, the loss of androgens (male hormones) begins surprisingly early (before age 40) and results in fatigue, loss of bone mass and decreased sexual desire.
For men, this gradual change usually peaks at age 50 and gives way to everything from male pattern baldness to osteoporosis , which is a loss of bone density.
A reduction in androgens, which includes testosterone, can also have an emotional impact. While recent research refutes the fact that male hormones cause men to act more aggressively.
Replacing testosterone with synthetic hormonal medications is an option, but it is not a simple solution. In 2009, a federally funded study of men who used testosterone gel stopped when a high rate of cardiac complications arose.
In 2010, a $ 45 million study by the National Institute on Aging is studying testosterone treatments.
While awaiting any research-related revelation, men can resort to exercise and other lifestyle changes to help reduce weight, which can help them use testosterone more efficiently.
Men’s hormones go up and down
These 30-day hormone cycles remain a controversial issue within the medical community, largely because there is not much data to support the idea.
Still, it makes sense to many people that men are likely to experience monthly hormonal ups and downs that affect mood and energy levels.
After all, there are seasonal, daily and even hourly deviations in hormone levels.
The amounts of testosterone can increase and decrease four or five times per hour, and tend to be higher in the morning and lower at night.
For many men, testosterone levels also follow a seasonal pattern: they increase in the fall and decrease in the spring.
Keeping track of mood swings for 30 days will likely reveal an emotional pattern triggered by hormones, simply understanding what lies behind one’s attitude can make a big difference in daily interactions.
Some research suggests that insufficient levels of male hormones would have the following effects:
- Memory failures
- Passive attitudes.
- Loss of interest
- Increased shyness and hypochondria.
- Difficult to focus.
- Mood changes and excessive emotionality.