Low testosterone levels is a surprisingly common condition for men to suffer from. With the number of men growing year on year. It’s been estimated that low testosterone impacts tens of millions of men across the globe. With the vast majority, not even realizing low T is causing issues or realizing that what they are experiencing isn’t normal & can actually be fixed. So you need to know the signs you need to do a testosterone test and know your levels like the back of your hand.
Testosterone is an essential & the primary male hormone (Important for women as well, just at lower levels). For men testosterone impacts essentially every aspect of your health. From sex drive and energy levels. Muscle mass, body fat & body composition. It impacts your moods & characteristics, when levels are healthy you are more confident, assertive & happier. Your testosterone levels also impact things like your bone health, heart health & circulation.
When you have healthy T levels, all the above are healthy. When you are suffering from low T, some or potentially all of these things can suffer, plus more. There are a wide number of symptoms of low testosterone. I’ve listed below the seven most common signs of low testosterone. Which are signs you need to get levels checked. I’ve also listed two scenarios where you will want to do a testosterone test and get to know your levels.
Signs You Should Do a Testosterone Test
- Lethargy/ fatigue
- Muscle loss
- Struggling to gain muscle
- Poor mood & depression
- Brain fog
- High body fat
- Struggling to lose body fat
- Loss of libido
- Erectile dysfunction
1. Lethargy/ Fatigue
As healthy testosterone production helps you feel energetic alert & motivated. Low testosterone levels often mean you feel the exact opposite. When T levels are low, it’s common for you to feel fatigued, lethargic & just lacking the energy & motivation to do every day things.
Low T levels are linked to men having increased risk of chronic fatigue. Fatigue is one of the most common signs of low testosterone. If you find you frequently feel overly tired & lethargic. You struggle to wake up every morning. You have to drinks tons of coffee, just to get going. Struggle to be active like other men of your age, there is a good chance that low testosterone levels may be to blame.
2. Muscle Wastage/ Struggling To Gain Muscle
Testosterone has a major impact on the physical characteristics of your body. It’s a natural steroid hormone. Which means it’s it has a serious impact on your ability to gain muscle mass and improve your strength levels. When you are suffering from low testosterone. it’s not uncommon for you to struggle to gain muscle mass & strength. You may even experience losses in strength & loss of muscle mass.
This becomes a negative feedback loop. As the lower your muscles mass is, the lower your testosterone production tends to be. Which in turn can mean even further muscle loss & this can go on & on. Studies have shown that men being given exogneous testosrerone can increase protein synthesis by as much as 27%! when administered to men. Simply put, the more testosterone your produce, the easier it becomes for your body to develop muscle.
If you’ve noticed that you are struggling to gain muscle mass & increase strength levels. Even worse if you think you are losing muscle or strength. I would suggest that you investigate further what may be happening and get a testosterone test done to see if that’s the cause.
3. Loss Of Libido
Another major symptom of low T is a low sex drive or noticable loss of libido. When you are suffering from testosterone level. It can be common to lose interest in sexual activity. Potentially no longer be aroused by things that would have once aroused you.
As I’m sure you can imagine. This can be have a massive impact on your relationship and personal life. The good new is that when you fix your low T issues. Your libido is usually one of the first things that returns. If you have noticed a recent loss of libido or if you have had minimal desire in sex for a while. I would say this is a major signal you need to test your testosterone levels.
4. Gaining Body Fat
When it comes to body composition. Testosterone doesn’t just impact muscle mass but levels of body fat as well. Studies have closely correlated higher testosterone production with lower levels of body fat. People with higher testosterone tend to be leaner. Where as people with low testosterone ted to carry higher levels of body fat. Especially around the belly & torso. If you think of a man with a “beer belly”, that is often a tell tale sign of low testosterone.
There was a study looking in to men put on androgen deprivation therapy. This involved lowering testosterone levels to almost zero. In this study it was found that these men saw an increase of 22% in visceral fat around the abdominals. So in short. Low testosterone will give you a more weight around the midsection. Having higher levels of fat increases you risk of ilness. High levels of visceral fat increases risk of multiple serious diseases. Such as an increased risk of heart disease. So it’s not a small issue of low T just meaning a few extra pounds.
5. Erectile Dysfunction
Struggling to achieve erection or maintain one, can be a sign you are suffering from low testosterone levels. Testosterone triggers the release of nitric oxide.This plays a key part in allowing blood to pass through blood vessels. Making it an essential molecule for blood to flow to the penis & therefore developing & maintaining erections. So when your T levels are low. Nitric oxide levels are lower making it harder for blood to flow to the enis & for you get & maintain an erection.
Erectile dysfunction can occur for a few different reasons. So if ED is something you are suffering from. You shouldn’t just assume that you have low testosterone if you have erection difficulties. If you have ED alongside any of the other issues listed in this article. Low testosterone levels are fairly like. Even if you think you just suffer from erectile dysfunction. I would again recommend a testosterone test so you can rule it in or out as the potential cause.
6. Memory & Focus Problems
Healthy testosterone is about so much more than just body composition & sexual heath. It impacts a wide range of brain functions, including memory & focus. One of the most common symptoms of low testosterone in men is what is known as “brain fog”. This is where you struggle to focus, have unclear recall & just don’t feel like your brain is “firing on all cylinders” or a general decline in memory and focus.
One study showed that men who suffer from low testosterone had increased likelihood of cognitive decline and developing dementia. This isn’t to say that forgetfulness is a deinitive sign of low testosterone. But if you have noticed a decline in your memory & focus. It could well be down to you suffering from a drop in T levels. I would suggest this combined with other symptoms is a good reason you to get a testosterone test done and find out your levels.
7. Poor Mood/ Depression
Testosterone levels are also closely correlated with your emotional health & moods. A study from 2012 shows that hypogonadal men (men with low testosterone levels) that did not seek treatment for low T. Showed more severe symptoms of anxiety & depression. In comparison with men of similar men & hypogondism who were assigned testosterone treatment.
Other studies have displayed similar findings. They have shown that healthy testosterone levels improve mood significantly in men. This includes quantifiable decreases in negative emotional responses. Like nervousness, anger and irritability. Now poor mood, anxiety, irritablity, depression etc. Doesn’t necessarily mean low testosterone levels. It’s still potentially one of the signs you need to be on the look out for.
8. You Are On TRT/ Anabolic Steroids
If you are on TRT (testosterone replacement therapy) or anabolic steroids. You should be reguarly getting your T levels tested. As well as complimentary biomarkers such as your estradiol, free testosterone levels, SHBG & hermatroctrit.As you are synthetically increasing testosterone levels. You need to keep a close eye on T & your hormone profile, to make sure everything is being managed corrrectly.
9. You Are Over 40
One thing I would love to see countries do is soem kind of drive to get men over 40 to test testosterone levels. This is the sort of age where most men start to experience more sevre symptoms. Catching these early means you can take the necessary steps to counter this. So it doesn’t become a major issue!
How To Test Testosterone Levels
This may be something you can arrange through your GP. Sadly in most cases this is something that proves near impossible or at least involved a ton of effort for you. A lot of men will often get a test done privately as this far easier. Then armed with thier blood test results can potentially get their GP to help with a course of action, if there testosterone levels are low.
Final Thoughts On Reasons To Test Testosterone Levels
Hopefylly you have found this article useful & now know the signs that you need to test testosterone levels. If you have any questions, just drop me a comment below. Make sure you share with anyone else you think will find it useful. Yoiu can also follow me on my social media sites. Where I share info about all things related to testosterone production & optimizing health!