It can be very emasculating for a man to admit his testosterone levels are low. After all, high testosterone is linked to a higher libido, stamina and overall manliness. So what about when you’re over 60 and your testosterone levels sink? How can you improve them and why is this happening?
Well, our bodies contain two types of testosterone. One is the kind that is bound to a type of hormone and is responsible for dictating to the body how much free testosterone there is. The other form is testosterone that is free and unbound, and is the form of testosterone that is metabolised by the cells for use.
Testosterone helps aid in development of different systems in the body from the skin, kidneys, and muscular development so it’s crucial we keep it up as much as possible because by the time we hit our 60s, the level of testosterone in the body can drop.
A new 25-year study of 2500 men, published in The Aging Male Journal by Dr Malcolm Carruthers, discovered other symptoms that point to manopause i.e. reduced testosterone levels: joint pain, night sweats, low mood, low libido, decreased sexual function, weight gain and irritability.
The term manopause means a time in a man’s life where his hormonal loss is evident through physical changes, which in turn affect his sense of self. A strong, manly man may struggle to deal with becoming less ‘manly’ in other departments.
And although ageing men don’t experience a sudden drop in testosterone (like how women have a drop in oestrogen), men’s testosterone levels do decline as they get older, making them become manopausal.
Here are three ways to increase testosterone levels naturally:
Heavy resistance exercise has been shown to not only help strengthen bones and increase muscle size and strength, but increase testosterone levels.
So if you are thinking about getting back into the gym and working out again, take it slow and let your body adapt to the fitness training. Do not try to go too hard at first, because that can lead to a higher risk of injury and too much strain on your heart. Speak to your doctor before commencing any physical routine.
Yep, your testosterone levels are linked to your diet. Research shows monounsaturated fat and saturated fat can dramatically increase testosterone levels and there are plenty of ways to increase fat into your diet: olive oil, almonds, peanuts, avocados, and pecans are all sources of monounsaturated fats.
3. Take zinc
Take a daily zinc supplement containing no less than 11 mg of zinc per day as this is the dose recommended by the USDA for men over 50. Interestingly, even a moderate zinc deficiency can cause your testosterone levels to drop significantly.
Lowered testosterone can also effect your ability to “get it up” and keep it up. Here are some natural remedies to encourage stimulation.
1. Ginkgo biloba
One of the most well-known Chinese medicines, ginkgo biloba is great for circulation problems, low energy levels and general fatigue – which are all symptoms of impotence. Take 40-80 mg of standardised extract of Ginkgo biloba, three times a day to see an improvement.
Known as the ‘male remedy’ in China, there is evidence to suggest that gingseng can enhance vitality and protect from the effects of stress. A clinical trial from Korea found that 60 per cent of patients taking ginseng benefited from its therapeutic properties during intercourse. Take 150mg, three times a day.
3. Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)
Apple cider vinegar truly is a cure-all! It is a fast remedy for impotence with many men seeing an improvement quickly. ACV doesn’t actually treat erectile dysfunction directly but it helps treat the problems that cause impotence such as diabetes and high blood pressure. Simply mix a tablespoon of organic apple cider vinegar together with some lemon juice and Manuka honey for taste and repeat this three times per day.