Low testosterone doesn’t just affect your sex drive, as commonly believed. In fact, it can affect almost every aspect of your life. It can cause decreased muscle mass, bone density, insulin resistance, reduced energy, irritability and feelings of depression. In one observational study of men with low testosterone levels, testosterone treatment was associated with decreased mortality rates, as compared to those receiving no testosterone treatment.
So, if you’ve been wondering, “Does low T affect my mood?” the answer is probably yes. It’s hard for many people to wrap their minds around the fact that testosterone affects your whole body, so here is a quick explanation as to why.
There are three types of testosterone in your body, but only one kind — called “free T” — is available to bond to T receptors in your muscles, brain, and organs. When there is a shortage of “free T” in your blood stream, those receptors don’t get filled and cause symptoms like depression and difficulty sleeping. Luckily, testosterone hormone therapy can help by replacing the T you are missing in your bloodstream.
Low testosterone is defined as 300 ng/dL (nanograms per deciliter) of total testosterone and less than five ng/dL of free T. It is important to specify that you want to be tested for free T as well as your total testosterone levels. Getting tested is the first step towards changing your life for the better, and getting your energy and drive back.
Be alert, and pay attention to your body. There is research showing that one out of four men over 30 has low testosterone levels, so many ailments that you brushed off could have a direct correlation to low testosterone. Indeed, it has been proven that testosterone levels peak during a man’s late 20s, but which decline soon afterwards and decrease at a rate of 1.5% a year after the age of 30.
So the next time you wonder “Does low T affect my mood?” take active steps towards getting better and replacing the free T in your bloodstream. The protein receptors in your brain, muscles and organs will profusely thank you.