How Low Testosterone Affects Health, Mood, and Sex

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Researchers are unlocking the mysteries of how low testosterone is related to men’s overall health. Along the way, they’re uncovering connections between low testosterone and other health conditions.

Diabetes, metabolic syndrome, obesity, and high blood pressure have all been linked to testosterone deficiency. Low testosterone isn’t known to cause these health problems, and replacing testosterone isn’t the cure. Still, the associations between low testosterone and other medical conditions are interesting and worth a look.

Does Low Testosterone Indicate Poor Health?

In recent years, researchers have noticed general links between low testosterone and other medical conditions. One showed that in 2,100 men over age 45, the odds of having low testosterone were:

  • 2.4 times higher for obese men
  • 2.1 times higher for men with diabetes
  • 1.8 times higher for men with high blood pressure

Experts don’t suggest that low testosterone causes these conditions. In fact, it might be the other way around. That is, men with medical problems or who are in poor general health might then develop low testosterone.

Research into the relationship between low testosterone and several other health conditions is ongoing.

Diabetes and Low Testosterone

A link between diabetes and low testosterone is well established. Men with diabetes are more likely to have low testosterone. And men with low testosterone are more likely to later develop diabetes. Testosterone helps the body’s tissues take up more blood sugar in response to insulin. Men with low testosterone more often have insulin resistance: they need to produce more insulin to keep blood sugar normal.

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