Erectile dysfunction is a common finding in the aging male. A prevalence of over 70% was found in men older than 70 in a recent cross-sectional study (Ponholzer et al 2005). Treatment with phosphodiesterase-5 (PDE-5) inhibitors is proven to be effective for the majority of men but some do not respond (Shabsigh and Anastasiadis 2003). The condition is multi-factorial, with contributions from emotional, vascular, neurological and pharmacological factors. The concept of erectile dysfunction as a vascular disease is particularly interesting in view of the evidence presented above, linking testosterone to atherosclerosis and describing its action as a vasodilator.
The mineral zinc is important for testosterone production, and supplementing your diet for as little as six weeks has been shown to cause a marked improvement in testosterone among men with low levels.1 Likewise, research has shown that restricting dietary sources of zinc leads to a significant decrease in testosterone, while zinc supplementation increases it2 -- and even protects men from exercised-induced reductions in testosterone levels.3
As with cognitive effects, previous studies examining CVD changes following testosterone treatment have been conflicting and inconclusive. Dr. Budoff and his research team used coronary computed tomographic angiography (CCTA) to assess 138 men, including 73 treated with testosterone and 65 receiving placebo, for changes in coronary artery plaque volume after 1 year.
A study out of the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in Belton, Texas, examined the effects of fenugreek supplementation on strength and body composition in resistance-trained men. Researchers found that while both the placebo and fenugreek groups significantly increased their strength during the first four weeks, only the fenugreek group saw significant increases in strength after eight weeks of training and supplementation.
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Based on my research, I guess fenugreek is kind of a crapshoot, a toss-up, a gamble, a coin toss, a roulette spin of sorts, you get the idea. There are a lot of conflicting reports on whether it increases or decreases testosterone levels, but it seems like the libido-improvement is consistent. The vast majority of men report positive effects from fenugreek so go ahead and give it a shot.
Studies have shown that testosterone-replacement therapy may offer a wide range of benefits for men with hypogonadism, including improved libido, mood, cognition, muscle mass, bone density, and red blood cell production. But little consensus exists on what constitutes low testosterone, when testosterone supplementation makes sense, or what risks patients face. Much of the current debate focuses on the long-held belief that testosterone may stimulate prostate cancer.
Hooper, D. R., Kraemer, W. J., Saenz, C., Schill, K. E., Focht, B. C., Volek, J. S. … Maresh, C. M. (2017, July). The presence of symptoms of testosterone deficiency in the exercise-hypogonadal male condition and the role of nutrition [Abstract]. European Journal of Applied Physiology, 117(7), 1349–1357. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28470410
I am 50 yrs old. I tried to go the route my urologist provide of 50mgs of injectable test weekly. No man can live on that dose. For the past five years I have self administered injectable cyponate at the rate of 250 mgs to 750 mgs weekly. Non stop , no breaks. I have polycythemia from these injections. I give blood every 8 weeks to combat this. I have administered 10 X the recommended dose with no bad side effects. I get full blood work done yearly. Doctors are so scared they will get sued if something happens that they wont give you enough. Its a shame.
"Some say it's just a part of aging, but that's a misconception," says Jason Hedges, MD, PhD, a urologist at Oregon Health and Science University in Portland. A gradual decline in testosterone can't explain a near-total lack of interest in sex, for example. And for Hedges' patients who are in their 20s, 30s, and early 40s and having erectile problems, other health problems may be a bigger issue than aging.