Male Hormones Imbalance
by Benjamin Bunting BA(Hons) PGCert
Written by Ben Bunting: BA, PGCert. (Sport & Exercise Nutrition) // British Army Physical Training Instructor // S&C Coach.
What is Male Hormone Imbalance?
Hormonal imbalance is not solely an issue for women; men can experience hormone-related health issues as well.
Hormone levels naturally decline with age but lifestyle factors can have an even larger effect.
Maintaining an optimal hormone balance requires both diet and regular exercise, with regular activity helping to stimulate testosterone production and build muscle mass.
Sleep is also critical in order to achieve hormonal balance and help ensure you maintain an ideal weight.
When these fluctuations become persistent or cause any negative symptoms it's essential that medical advice be sought immediately.
Common symptoms of hormonal imbalance in men can include:
- Rapid or unexplained weight gain
- Changes to sleep habits
- Fatigue or tiredness
- Increased sensitivity to cold or heat temperatures
- Muscle mass loss
- Changes in hair growth and color
Other indicators may be decreased sex drive in intimate relationships and loss of muscle mas or hair color changes.
Insufficient sexual drive (low sex drive), mood changes including irritability or bursts of anger as a sign that something may be amiss with their hormone levels being out of balance.
Andropause - which involves a decline in testosterone production that can impede sexual drive, muscle strength and overall health - is another symptom of hormone imbalance; similarly gynecomastia (the development of breast tissue in men) may also result from hormone misbalances.
Hormone levels can be affected by many different factors, including stress, genetic predisposition and medication usage.
Your primary care doctor may be able to prescribe certain medications that will regulate hormones; in other instances you may need more specialized help from an endocrinologist or urologist.
Hormones can be balanced using natural supplements and bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT).
A practitioner for this form of bioidentical hormone replacement can use hormone pellets to replenish any missing hormones in your body and restore them back up to optimal levels.
Common Causes of Male Hormone Imbalance
Hormones are chemicals produced by glands within your endocrine system that travel through your bloodstream to deliver messages that control and regulate body functions, such as metabolism and stress reactions.
Hormone levels naturally fluctuate throughout life and may even be altered by illness, injury or poor nutrition - leading to weight gain, fatigue, decreased sexual drive or low libido and depression as a result.
Some symptoms of hormonal imbalance can be more prevalent among men, while others are more often experienced by women.
If you're experiencing irregular sleep patterns, fatigue, decreased sexual drive or muscle mass or unexplained changes in mood it is worth visiting your physician to establish whether there's an underlying cause that needs addressing.
Andropause is a natural part of aging and occurs when testosterone levels decline, leading to diminished sex drive and muscle mass as well as memory problems. Your doctor may recommend testosterone therapy therapy in order to restore levels.
Injury to your head or brain may also contribute to hormonal imbalance, and can damage both your pituitary gland and hypothalamus gland. Such incidents could take place due to car accidents, falls, or contact sports and can be devastatingly serious.
You could also experience hormonal disharmonies if your endocrine system lacks essential vitamins like Vitamin D and Zinc.
Your healthcare provider will likely order more extensive testing in order to accurately diagnose you with hormone imbalance, including blood tests as well as thyroid function and testosterone analysis.
Symptoms of Male Hormone Imbalance
Hormones are chemicals produced by glands of the endocrine system and released into the bloodstream to carry important messages about major body functions like metabolism and reproduction.
Hormone levels typically fluctuate naturally over time; however, when they misfire symptoms of male hormonal imbalance can arise.
If your hormone balance is unbalanced, you might notice changes to your energy, mood, hair loss, weight gain or sexual drive. Many men assume these changes are simply signs of age but could actually be the result of an imbalance in testosterone, cortisol or thyroid hormones.
Testosterone is considered the primary male hormone, and any imbalances in this production can cause various health complications for men. Low testosterone can result in erectile dysfunction, muscle weakness, fatigue and hair loss as well as reduced bone density.
Gynecomastia, or the overdevelopment of breast tissue in men, is another telltale sign of male hormonal imbalance. Though not harmful, this symptom can take an emotional toll and erode self-esteem severely. Hormonal disturbances and inactivity often play a part in this condition.
Men who suffer from hormonal imbalance often report feeling depressed or anxious. This could be caused by low testosterone, but more likely by thyroid imbalance leading to weight gain, fatigue and lack of motivation. Hormone replacement therapy provides safe and effective relief.
An imbalance of male hormones can affect both the prostate and pituitary glands, which control the development of sperm production as well as sexual function regulation. An overproduction of sperm or low testosterone levels could result in decreased sexual desire or difficulty with conception.
Reducing hormone imbalance begins by consulting a trained health practitioner. A hormone specialist can assist in understanding symptoms and developing an action plan to provide relief and promote optimal health.
A healthcare practitioner may provide bioidentical hormone replacement therapy via pill, gel, cream or skin patch to restore balance to your hormones and restore functionality to your body.
Testing and Diagnosis for Male Hormone Imbalance
Testing and Diagnosing Male Hormone Imbalance Most people associate fluctuating hormone levels with women, but men can experience them as well.
With age comes more noticeable changes, including muscle loss, wrinkle formation, or increased belly fat accumulation.
While it can be tempting to dismiss such symptoms as being part of natural aging or stress related issues, it is crucial that they are acknowledged so you can seek treatment immediately and prevent further harm to your body.
Hypogonadism (low testosterone), the most prevalent hormonal imbalance among males, can result in low libido, fatigue, depression, gynecomastia and infertility if left untreated - as well as potentially leading to prostate cancer and heart disease.
Male hormone imbalances include thyroid dysfunction, adrenal fatigue and metabolic syndrome.
Testicles and pituitary gland produce key hormones responsible for driving sperm production; too little of these hormones may result in either azoospermia or more serious oligospermia which compromise fertility.
An extensive saliva test can quickly identify early symptoms of hormonal imbalance in men as it measures active hormones versus protein-bound ones found in blood tests.
Treatment Options for Male Hormone Imbalance
Hormones are chemical messengers produced by glands within your endocrine system and transported via bloodstream to send messages to tissues and organs about what to do when.
If an imbalance arises between low or too high hormone levels, body functions become compromised, creating what's known as hormonal imbalance - in particular andropause, adrenal fatigue, hypothyroidism and erectile dysfunction may all have negative impacts.
Hormonal imbalance symptoms in men can often be difficult to recognize and treat due to their similarities to symptoms associated with other conditions and their subtlety.
This can make diagnosis and treatment of this common issue challenging. If any of the following key symptoms regularly crop up for you, seek professional guidance as soon as possible for optimal health and wellbeing.
Low testosterone levels (or hypogonadism) is the most frequently seen hormonal imbalance among men in their 40s and 50s, and may lead to symptoms including irritability, mood swings, reduced muscle mass, depression, breast growth (gynecomastia) and infertility.
Hormone replacement therapy offers effective solutions; options include pill, patch, or injection forms that should only be administered under guidance by qualified healthcare staff.
An active lifestyle and nutritious diet are great tools to preventing hormone imbalances and maintain balance in your hormone levels.
One effective way of increasing testosterone and other essential hormone levels is through eating foods rich in lean proteins, fruits and vegetables as well as healthy fats.
Increase your vitamin D consumption by eating tuna, egg yolks and fortified milk/cereal products such as tuna. Exercise to support testosterone and maintain overall good health.
Regular exercise can also help improve your mood and stave off depression or anxiety, along with drinking plenty of water and staying hydrated.
Hormonal imbalance is sometimes indicative of chronic illnesses like heart disease or diabetes; so if you believe you might have such issues it's essential to seek medical advice right away.