I heard a story on Morning Edition on NPR on my way to work on Monday about low testosterone levels in men.
“Low T,” as it is called, seems to be increasingly common in men. This has led to a huge increase in the sale of prescription drugs and non-prescription supplements designed to increase testosterone levels in men, whether they need it or not. To be sure, some men do need testosterone therapy, but it seems that many more don’t, but use it anyway. Testosterone therapy is not without risks and can increase the risk of heart attack.
Back to the NPR story…The doctor quoted in the story, Dr. Ronald Tamler, said that,“the most common reason for low testosterone in my practice, I find, is obesity.” He goes on to explain that excess fat can alter the balance of hormones, reducing testosterone and increasing estradiol. His research shows that weight loss (via surgery) is the most effective way to treat “low T.”
So maybe the solution to low T isn’t to (always) worry about replacing T. Many times the answer may be to lose some W!