Hacking your testosterone influences everything from body composition to energy levels to mood. It’s easy to eat more butter; it’s hard to visit a doctor and get tested, but that’s what I recommend: know your levels. If you’re 25, you’ll know what your target is when you’re 35. By the time you’ve noticed symptoms of low testosterone, it’s too late to get your “normal” measurements!
*IMPORTANT TESTOSTERONE TREATMENT WARNING: Who Should Not Enroll in Testosterone Replacement Therapy? Men who have or had prostate cancer or breast cancer should not take testosterone replacement therapy. All men considering treatment should undergo a thorough prostate cancer screening prior to starting any therapy program with a rectal exam and PSA test. *Men who have or have had cardiovascular disease, or are at risk for coronary disease, or have had a history of heart disease may not be candidates for testosterone treatment. Blood testing, thorough physical examination and careful screening by your physician is absolutely essential before considering a hormone therapy program of any kind. Always discuss the potential benefits, uses, side effects and risks of prescription hormones and steroid drugs with your treating physician. Hormone Treatment is for medically qualified candidates only. The FDA has cautions about using testosterone products for low testosterone due to aging; requires labeling change to inform of possible increased risk of heart attack and stroke with use - FDA Testosterone Safety Update

I think that the biggest hurdle for most physicians prescribing testosterone is the fear that they’re going to promote prostate cancer. [See “Incongruous findings,” below.] That’s because more than six decades ago, it was shown that if you lowered testosterone in men whose prostate cancer had metastasized, their condition improved. (It became a standard therapy that we still use today for men with advanced prostate cancer. We call it androgen deprivation or androgen-suppressive therapy.) The thinking became that if lowering testosterone makes prostate cancer disappear, at least for a while, then raising it must make prostate cancer grow. But even though it’s been a widely held belief for six decades, no one has found any additional evidence to support the theory.


Herein lies the problem.  DHT is an extremely powerful androgen, significantly more potent than testosterone.  Somehow, fenugreek causes increases in muscle mass and libido while reducing DHT.  I often argue on the site that it is not exactly increased testosterone that you want.  You want the blessings of a high testosterone level: physical fitness, libido, and high energy levels.  If fenugreek can bestow these upon you, why do you need the testosterone?
Men who take Testosterone report a surge in their sex drive and frequency of sex. They are better able to work out, build muscle mass and strength. The fat around their belly melts away as they lose weight and trim their waists. Men who enroll in a comprehensive Testosterone Replacement program which includes diet, nutrition and exercise - feel better, sleep better and look better. They have their edge back along with a restored enthusiasm for daily living, pursuing relationships and living life.
We should probably start with the elephant in the room: do these supplements increase testosterone? The answer is probably yes. There are some ingredients that help convince your body to produce more testosterone, but there’s a catch. Testosterone boosters aren’t actually great at boosting; that is, at pushing your testosterone levels above your healthy, normal balance. Boosters typically act more like restorers — helping bring low testosterone levels back to that healthy equilibrium rather than boosting you above normal testosterone levels. Just like how if you have anemia, taking a vitamin B12 supplement can help restore your energy and reduce fatigue, but if your B12 levels are good, a supplement won’t give you super energy levels to stay awake for three days — your body will likely just process (read: pee) out the extra.
Everytime you add Testosterone to your system, be it naturally through producing in the testis, injected, oral, or dermal you will receive a spike in your blood levels. Estrogen is mainly created in men by an action of an enzyme called Aromatase. Aromatase floats around and binds to Testosterone and converts it to Estrogen. When you spike your T your E will follow in this way. The obvious and detrimental effects to many of the already estrogen dominant hypogonadal men will be inappropriate over stimulation of the estrogen receptors in the body. Gynecomastia, fluid retention, weight gain, brain fog, erratic emotions, depression, ect. Higher levels of Estrogen cause SHBG to be created. SHBG binds to Testosterone and transports it to the liver for disposal. On top of this Estrogen can bind to your androgen receptors causing Testosterone to float around with no where to go. If you are taking shots or gel or cream and feel little to no effect even though it’s technically raised your T blood ranges, you now have an multiple answers for why you little to nothing or feel even worse. This has been known for years that you must be prepared to control Estrogen. An Aromatase Inhibitor (AI) or anti estrogen medication (Clomiphene, Tamoxifen) is needed to stop the estrogen from getting out of control. By taking an Aromatase inhibitor and monitoring your E2 levels you can easily control Estrogen, Aromatase, and SHBG from getting out of hand and free up those blocked androgen receptors so you can now reap the benefits of elevating T to a healthy level. If your Doctor is not testing your E2(aka Estrogen, Estradiol) levels before and during talks and administration of TRT or will never prescribe an AI then you shouldn’t be following his advice at all and will be harmed by Testosterone usage. This may sound complicated but in the end it’s simple. Elevate Testosterone. Control Estrogen. Only two medications needed. Don’t settle.
The normal development of the prostate gland is dependent on the action of testosterone via the androgen receptor, and abnormal biosynthesis of the hormone or inactivating mutations of the androgen receptor are associated with a rudimentary prostate gland. Testosterone also requires conversion to dihydrotestosterone in the prostate gland for full activity. In view of this link between testosterone and prostate development, it is important to consider the impact that testosterone replacement may have on the prevalence and morbidity associated with benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH) and prostate cancer, which are the common conditions related to pathological growth of the prostate gland.
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The oldest form is an injection, which we still use because it’s inexpensive and because we reliably get good testosterone levels in nearly everybody. The disadvantage is that a man needs to come in every few weeks to get a shot. A roller-coaster effect can also occur as blood testosterone levels peak and then return to baseline. [See “Exogenous vs. endogenous testosterone,” above.]
I was depressed, getting fat, and zero libido. My doc did a full blood work up. My Total Testosterone level was 289 ng/dl. He offered TRT but I declined because I knew, at 53, that if I went on TRT my own testosterone production would shut down and at my age I would have a pretty difficult time kick starting it up again. I researched and researched for about a month. I started on Vitamin D 10,000 iu per day ( I knew this was a safe amount because I tested at 26ng/dl and optimum level is anywhere between 40-80ng/dl. I also took 1,200 mg of magnesium, 9mg of Boron and Vitamin K Complex. Tested again 3 months later and blood work showed I was at 720.

Known as the "male hormone," testosterone is produced primarily by the testicles. "Beginning around age 30, testosterone levels begin to decline naturally and continue to do so as a man ages," says Holly Lucille, ND, RN, a naturopathic doctor, educator, and author, "sometimes leading to low testosterone symptoms such as depressed moods, decreased sex drive, erectile dysfunction, and difficulties with concentration and memory.”


Exercise boosts testosterone in two important ways. First, specific types of exercise actually cause our body to produce more testosterone. We’ll talk more about those in a bit. Second, exercise helps to increase muscle mass and decrease body fat. As we’ve discussed previously, adipose tissue converts testosterone into estrogen. The less fat we get, the more T we have.


However, studies have found that social success among men is actually linked with high testosterone levels. For example, teenage boys who were perceived as socially adept and dominant had higher levels of testosterone than boys that were low on the totem pole. What’s even more interesting is that this same study found that teenage boys who had a history of being anti-social and displaying high physical aggression were found to have lower testosterone levels at age 13 compared with boys with no history of high physical aggression.
With the exception of increasing my fat and cholesterol intake, my diet wasn’t that unconventional. I didn’t follow a strictly low-carb or Paleo diet because recent research has suggested that a diet high in protein and low in carbs actually causes T levels to decrease. With that said, I was judicious with the carbs. I tried to get most of my carbs from veggies and fruit, but I didn’t freak out if my wife made us spaghetti for dinner.
If your need is greater though, there are other legal options to consider. DHEA is a precursor steroid hormone that is only available on prescription in the UK, but if taken under close supervision it can have dramatic effects. It must be taken under supervision though because too high a dose can cause mood changes and aggression — roid rage, in other words — as well as all the other unwanted by-products of too much testosterone.
Pine Pollen is an androgen, meaning in theory it can raise testosterone levels – effectively making it a naturally derived source of testosterone. Read more about this on the links below. But like I said I started taking it for a few weeks and did notice a bit more ‘up and go’ so to speak, but it did only last a few weeks. I have tried cycling it but haven’t noticed the same effects as I had when I initially started with it. I’m still experimenting and will keep this page updated. Therefore I recommend doing your own research.
The study population in these TTrials included men aged 65 years or older with mean morning serum testosterone concentrations of 275 ng/dL or less and symptoms of impaired sexual function, physical function, or vitality. These trials were placebo-controlled and the testosterone treatment group received 1% testosterone gel at variable doses adjusted to maintain plasma testosterone at levels normal for young men (500-800 ng/dL).
Male hypogonadism becomes more common with increasing age and is currently an under-treated condition. The diagnosis of hypogonadism in the aging male requires a combination of symptoms and low serum testosterone levels. The currently available testosterone preparations can produce consistent physiological testosterone levels and provide for patient preference.
Findings that improvements in serum glucose, serum insulin, insulin resistance or glycemic control, in men treated with testosterone are accompanied by reduced measures of central obesity, are in line with other studies showing a specific effect of testosterone in reducing central or visceral obesity (Rebuffe-Scrive et al 1991; Marin, Holmang et al 1992). Furthermore, studies that have shown neutral effects of testosterone on glucose metabolism have not measured (Corrales et al 2004), or shown neutral effects (Lee et al 2005) (Tripathy et al 1998; Bhasin et al 2005) on central obesity. Given the known association of visceral obesity with insulin resistance, it is possible that testosterone treatment of hypogonadal men acts to improve insulin resistance and diabetes through an effect in reducing central obesity. This effect can be explained by the action of testosterone in inhibiting lipoprotein lipase and thereby reducing triglyceride uptake into adipocytes (Sorva et al 1988), an action which seems to occur preferentially in visceral fat (Marin et al 1995; Marin et al 1996). Visceral fat is thought to be more responsive to hormonal changes due to a greater concentration of androgen receptors and increased vascularity compared with subcutaneous fat (Bjorntorp 1996). Further explanation of the links between hypogonadism and obesity is offered by the hypogonadal-obesity-adipocytokine cycle hypothesis (see Figure 1). In this model, increases in body fat lead to increases in aromatase levels, in addition to insulin resistance, adverse lipid profiles and increased leptin levels. Increased action of aromatase in metabolizing testosterone to estrogen, reduces testosterone levels which induces further accumulation of visceral fat. Higher leptin levels and possibly other factors, act at the pituitary to suppress gonadotrophin release and exacerbate hypogonadism (Cohen 1999; Kapoor et al 2005). Leptin has also been shown to reduce testosterone secretion from rodent testes in vitro (Tena-Sempere et al 1999). A full review of the relationship between testosterone, insulin resistance and diabetes can be found elsewhere (Kapoor et al 2005; Jones 2007).
I’m 56 and 5 years ago dropped to 270 with all the side effects listed for low test. After trying shots and not liking the roller coaster effect, I switched to gels. Androgel and Axiron had too low a dosage and far too messy. They need to not call them gels but liquids. If it pours like water it’s a liquid. My doctor recommended a compounding Pharmacy that made a cream and it was perfect. It had a click dispenser that looked like a deoderant that would pre-measure the dosage and I could rub it on my arms and shoulders or on my neck, really anywhere not covered in hair but the thinner the skin the better. It dried instantly so I could get dressed in a couple minutes. My totals never got out of the 400’s until I started the 150mg daily cream dosage, then they hovered around 700. The down side was Insurance didn’t cover it and I had to pay $50 a month vs free shots from the doctors office or $10 for the so-called gels. Bad news is it has now doubled in price due to new Federal production regs on compounding Pharms. Now, I am going back on the shots which I now have to buy the vile for $125 for 10 doses and have to take it to my doctor to administer it every 2wks while I am looking into bioidentical pellet implants.
Started HRT in my early 50’s as I had all the low-T symptoms and Type 2 Diabetes, which was hammering my body. My total T was about 100 (not sure about Free at that point). First started with Androgel, and was getting decent symptomatic improvement, but didn’t like the residue from the cream, and traveling with the creams was a problem. I’ve gone to pellet implants for the past 7 years. Every 4-5 months, very happy with results to date.

^ Jump up to: a b Sapienza P, Zingales L, Maestripieri D (September 2009). "Gender differences in financial risk aversion and career choices are affected by testosterone". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 106 (36): 15268–73. Bibcode:2009PNAS..10615268S. doi:10.1073/pnas.0907352106. PMC 2741240. PMID 19706398.


Bushey, Brandon; Taylor, Lem W.; Wilborn, Colin W.; Poole, Chris; Foster, Cliffa A.; Campbell, Bill; Kreider, Richard B. and Willoughby, Darryn S. (2009). “Fenugreek Extract Supplementation Has No effect on the Hormonal Profile of Resitance-Trained Males” International Journal of Exercise Science: Conference Abstract Submissions: Vol. 2: Iss. 1, Article 13.

High levels of testosterone in the bloodstream lead to increased energy and aggressiveness. The latter pertains to one’s sense of motivation to train harder to achieve optimum muscle growth. Increased aggressiveness or motivation during a workout due to the intake of testosterone boosters guarantees faster progress to beginners as well as professional athletes and bodybuilders.
I am sorry but if you are a doctor you really are making it obvious that it’s possible for doctors to know nothing about this problem.What kind of Doctor are you? Or did you get a doctorate in some obscure field? Are you a reverend doctor by chance? I think for the sake of people who need this help you should quit talking out your ass .I won’t say you are wrong.You have already proved you don’t know anything useful about HRT and I doubt you are a doctor.
Tailor the above recommendations to your personal needs and lifestyle. If you’re a vegetarian drop the bacon and steak, but keep the whey protein and eggs. If you have an injury that prevents you from heavy weightlifting, move as much as you can in the way that you can. There are no studies out there which can tell you exactly what will happen if you do X and Y, but not Z. And I certainly can’t tell you either. Don’t be afraid of self-education – that’s how I learned all this – and embrace the idea of conducting your own experiment and being your own test subject. Incorporate as many of the recommendations above as you’re comfortable with, consult your doctor, and track your results.
I am sorry but if you are a doctor you really are making it obvious that it’s possible for doctors to know nothing about this problem.What kind of Doctor are you? Or did you get a doctorate in some obscure field? Are you a reverend doctor by chance? I think for the sake of people who need this help you should quit talking out your ass .I won’t say you are wrong.You have already proved you don’t know anything useful about HRT and I doubt you are a doctor.
61y/o with 18month progressive lethargy, depressed mood, no sex drive, no erections. Doc put me on cymbalta (slept even more than 14hrs daily) then on Wellbutrin. All the time I was pushing for T testing. Came back low in March of this year and put on IM cypionate 100mg q3 weeks. Even I knew that was too low and infrequent. Nonetheless, that how it’s been since April. Finally got urology consult in Shreveport and got a level done at that time. Was 127 just two weeks after last injection. He is going to bump me up to 300mg q2 weeks and do a level 2 days after first injection and 1 day before next shot. Since I’m getting care thru VA, it’s a waiting game. Saw urologist last week. Prob won’t see testostosterone in mail for another week or two. I’m excited to feel like living again, not sleeping all the time, and perhaps some nooky now and then . Appreciated this article arm subsequent posts and personal trials. Would love to find a competent and assertive urologist in my area of Louisiana. I’m around Monroe….so if you know one, let me know!
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If you are not making muscular gains by using your old BCAA supplement, our Advanced BCAA is the product to use to solve this problem.  Advanced BCAA’s are superior to free form BCAA’s because it is  more absorbable. Advanced BCAA is in peptide form and from predigested whey protein.  This makes it much more effective and beneficial to gaining muscle.  So if you have given up or don’t think BCAA’s work, try our Advanced BCAA powder and you wont be disappointed.
I have tried pellets, I went from 5 grams/day gel, to 10 grams, had little change due to work schedule and no energy made it difficult to manage daily. Levels got down to 78 at one point. Testo pellets worked great but it took 10 to make a difference and it brought me up to the 300-400 range. My body rejected 3 pellets and expelled them. Tried axiron, didn’t work, natesto, which the doc never heard off next, a Nasal spray which helped but the bottle ran out 5 days early either by my mistake or dosage problems. Back to 10 grams Testim AG ($360 after deductible) which helps if i could stay consistent but I’m 28. With a job, and health insurance, deductible issues I can not afford 800 dollars a month, 360 after deductible. Recent levels of FSH/LH are .7 and 1.2 (low). Total testosterone 114, free 18.9, and bioavalability at 39.6 (low). I had a MRI of my pituitary gland today, and get results next week. Hoping to start depo T next week as I return to work. If I can recommend anything to anyone, is make sure it’s affordable, you have the time or energy to apply/administer, and understand most people will not understand what you are going through. 2 killers of testosterone are chronic stress and lack of sleep. In 3 years of treatment I wish I came to this man’s article and others and read up prior because I’m on the brink of losing everything I’ve worked for due to hypogonadism. Wish you all results and good health, and thank you for a great article!
A number of research groups have tried to further define the relationship of testosterone and body composition by artificial alteration of testosterone levels in eugonadal populations. Induction of a hypogonadal state in healthy men (Mauras et al 1998) or men with prostate cancer (Smith et al 2001) using a gonadotrophin-releasing-hormone (GnRH) analogue was shown to produce increases in fat mass and decreased fat free mass. Another experimental approach in healthy men featured suppression of endogenous testosterone production with a GnRH analogue, followed by treatment with different doses of weekly intramuscular testosterone esters for 20 weeks. Initially the experiments involved men aged 18–35 years (Bhasin et al 2001) but subsequently the study was repeated with a similar protocol in men aged 60–75 years (Bhasin et al 2005). The different doses given were shown to produce a range of serum concentrations from subphysiological to supraphysiological (Bhasin et al 2001). A given testosterone dose produced higher serum concentrations of testosterone in the older age group (Bhasin et al 2005). Subphysiological dosing of testosterone produced a gain in fat mass and loss of fat free mass during the study. There were sequential decreases in fat mass and increases in fat free mass with each increase of testosterone dose. These changes in body composition were seen in physiological and supraphysiological treatment doses. The trend was similar in younger versus older men but the gain of fat mass at the lowest testosterone dose was less prominent in older patients (Bhasin et al 2001; Bhasin et al 2005). With regard to muscle function, the investigators showed dose dependent increases in leg strength and power with testosterone treatment in young and older men but there was no improvement in fatigability (Storer et al 2003; Bhasin et al 2005).
Testosterone is a sex hormone that plays important roles in the body. In men, it’s thought to regulate sex drive (libido), bone mass, fat distribution, muscle mass and strength, and the production of red blood cells and sperm. A small amount of circulating testosterone is converted to estradiol, a form of estrogen. As men age, they often make less testosterone, and so they produce less estradiol as well. Thus, changes often attributed to testosterone deficiency might be partly or entirely due to the accompanying decline in estradiol.
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