Testosterone - Overview, Function, Production, Benefits

What is Testosterone?

Testosterone is the main male sex hormone. Its main function is to develop the male genitalia as well as the formation and maintenance of male secondary sexual characteristics. 

The word testosterone comes from the German word "Testosterone", which is made up of two words "testis" and "steron". Testis refers to the testicles and steron refers to the steroid hormones.

Testosterone is a hormone which is present in humans, mammals, reptiles, birds and other vertebrates. In human beings from the group of mammals, the testosterone hormone is produced by testicles in the man, and in the female, it is produced by the female. 

Testosterone is an anabolic steroid that is produced primarily by the testicles, although a small amount is also released by the adrenal glands. Testosterone is the androgenic hormone par excellence, but it is not exclusive to men. The ovaries and adrenal glands of women also produce less testosterone and it is related to the increase in female sexual desire.

Additionally, testosterone belongs to the class of hormones known as androgens. Dehydroepiandrosterone sulphate (DHEAS), dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), androstenedione, and dihydrotestosterone are additional androgen hormones (DHT). However, DHEAS, DHEA, and androstenedione are hormone precursors, as they need to be converted to testosterone and DHT to express their effects.

Testosterone Production

In men, 95% of testosterone is produced by the testicles and the remaining 5% is secreted in the adrenal gland. The Leydig cells of the testes control the production of this 95% of testosterone. The whole process is known as steroidogenesis. steroidogenesis is perfectly regulated by the hypothalamus and pituitary gland of the brain through the hormone LH (Luteinizing hormone). The raw material for testosterone is cholesterol. The raw material for testosterone is cholesterol, which is biosynthesized into testosterone through a complex process in the body. The hypothalamus and pituitary gland of the brain just command secretion the amount of testosterone secretion. From the hypothalamus in the brain, commands to secrete gonadotropins are sent to the pituitary gland, which controls the actions of various hormones. The pituitary gland then sends gonadotropins to the testicles, which secrete the male sex hormone, testosterone.

Testosterone is secreted into the bloodstream every 11 to 90 minutes. Where a small amount of testosterone is replaced by estrogen (female hormone), but the majority is processed in the liver and excreted in the urine. Even healthy men produce small amounts of female hormones. Once testosterone is expelled into the blood and starts circulation, testosterone travels through the bloodstream bound to other proteins: sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG) and albumin. s a result of this interaction, testosterone's ability to attach to its receptor is hindered. On the other hand, a small amount of testosterone remains free in the blood and is active to carry out its function.

Testosterone Function

Testosterone has a wide range of functions, especially in the men's body. It controls the body function from the features of the old age of a man. It is helpful in the masculine body such as skeleton, muscle mass, body hair, improving reproductive function, and being involved in physical and mental health. 

  • Development of baby (birth to 6 months of age)

Testosterone is involved in the development of the male reproductive organs during the male fetal period. From 6-24 weeks of pregnancy, the fetus produces a lot of testosterone. In the fetal period, testicles are not from the scrotum but it is managed by the scrotum. After male hormones, dihydrotestosterone (DHT), is said to be involved in the formation of male genital organs such as the penis. 

In addition, during 2 weeks to 6 months after birth, again testosterone level gives a hype in the boy's body. It is said that this period affects gender differences and the development of the brain. After that, boys have the same testosterone levels as women until puberty.

  • Male genital development during puberty

During puberty, it is the third time when testosterone production increases in the body. It brings a huge change in men's bodies. Around 18-20, testosterone expresses male secondary sexual characteristics such as pubic hair growth, voice change occurs', testicles and penis development, mood changes, and many more. In addition, disaster changes are also seen in the body and body language. It is when a boy turns into a man. 

  • Skeletal and Muscle Growth

Testosterone is also linked to Skeletal and Muscle Growth. It increases the muscle mass in the body with a proper diet and exercise. In addition, the growth hormones and male hormones are related to the sudden growth of the skeleton and muscles during puberty. However, the balance between growth hormones and male hormones is very delicate. If the male hormones are too high during puberty, it affects the growth hormones and stops the bone growth and height will not increase. It is required to balance out both hormones. Therefore, please do not think that you will grow taller with male hormones. A balance is required. Some sportsmen overdose on anabolic steroids and male hormones to increase muscle strength and endurance, but end up at the risk of side effects.

  • Increase Sexual Libido

Testosterone is directly linked to sexual urge and libido. Basically, it generated pheromones which are said to attract the opposite sex. It increases dopamine, a neurotransmitter with an excitatory effect. It relaxes the mind and also helps to increase erection. Basically, it works to activate the switches such as "excitement" and "erection" necessary for men to have sex one after another. Testosterone is the most natural and powerful aphrodisiac in the body. It is necessary to keep a healthy life of testosterone.

  • Effect on brain and mind
  • Testosterone moderates the healthy and relaxed mind and thoughts in the body. As said above, it also supports brain function. From the fetus to the first six months of life, testosterone is thought to have an impact on brain sex differences. Because of this, it has an impact on the "male method of thinking" that includes "how to perceive things," "thinking pattern," and "choice," as well as a certain type of masculine anger, temper tantrums, and impatience. Yet testosterone is supposedly associated with an increase in vitality, feeling stress, etc." According to one theory, testosterone is a hormone that all people, regardless of gender, need in order to live happy, fulfilling lives.

    • Heart Function and Health

    Testosterone is linked to vasodilation, anti-inflammatory effects, improvement of glycolipid metabolism, and strengthening of skeletal muscle. Hence, it maintains better heart health as well as better blood vessels in the body. There is growing evidence for the positive effects of testosterone on the cardiovascular system. A low level of testosterone causes heart problems in the body.

    Benefits of Testosterone In Men

    As we know, testosterone is one of the important male hormones. In addition, in fetal period, testosterone becomes especially important in men after puberty. Beyond the fetal stage, testosterone becomes particularly significant in males following puberty. Boys' testosterone production starts to rise between the ages of 11 and 13 and continues for the rest of their lives.

    The following is a description of how testosterone works in men's bodies:

    • It encourages the growth and development of the penis, testicles, scrotum, and sexually active glands.
    • It encourages the development of phenotypic traits that are exclusive to males, such as the growth of Adam's apple, the emergence of body and facial hair, and a deeper voice.
    • It promotes the development of male fertility by promoting spermatogenesis, the process by which sperm are produced in the seminiferous tubules.
    • It promotes semen's final formation as well as the spermatids' development into spermatozoa.
    • It increases the hair growth by reducing hair fall and dandruff
    • It develops bone growth and prevents bone problems.
    • It increases muscle mass and muscle strength.
    • It increases libido, sexual desire and reproductive organs.
    • It helps to keep the prostate's health and size in balance.

    Benefits Of Testosterone In Women

    Women also contain testosterone and produce it in their body but in less amount as compared to men. To sustain ovarian function, bone metabolism, cognitive function, and sexual function in women, testosterone and other androgens are helpful. The function of androgens in female reproduction is unclear, despite the fact that healthy ovarian function depends on maintaining enough quantities of them.

    High amounts of androgens can cause excessive growth and defective creation of antral follicles, as seen in polycystic ovarian syndrome because androgens are necessary for follicular development (PCOS). 

    Additionally, it has been demonstrated that androgens raise the number of FSH receptors in follicles, which is what causes follicular proliferation.

    Testosterone Values

    The healthy level of testosterone in the body is as followed-

    • In the man - between 300-1,000 ng/dL.
    • In the woman - between 15-70ng/dL.

    An adult man produces about 20 times more testosterone than an adult woman. 

    You can test and compare your testosterone level with the testosterone test. There is Hormonal analysis which is one of the basic diagnostic tests for the study of fertility, both in men and women. It will help you to get information on the causes of infertility, decreased sexual desire, irregular menstrual cycles, testicular tumours, etc.

    Testosterone Deficiency

    When there is a lack of testosterone in the body, it causes many symptoms and serious problems to the body. Here is a list of symptoms that will help you to know that you have testosterone deficiency and it's time to increase your testosterone level.

    • Obesity: Low male hormones reduce visceral fat and suppress weight gain and obesity in the body. It suppresses the body’s function and gradually becomes metabolically overweight. If you are seeing a sudden change in weight, the possibility of low testosterone hormone is high.
    • Low Libido: Male hormones are responsible to maintain sexual function and interest in men. A low libido, sexual urge, and erectile dysfunction are signs of low testosterone. The decline in male hormones increases the risk of erectile dysfunction (ED). Additionally, it is linked to diminished sensitivity and diminished ejaculatory sensation, which can deteriorate romantic relationships and cause men to lose confidence in themselves.
    • Low muscle stretch: A lack of testosterone causes a decrease in male strength and physical strength. It will affect your energy level and make you feel tired easily. If you are facing a problem, by doing anything or your work performance decreases, then you need to increase your testosterone level and muscle mass of the body.
    • Feeling Unstable: A low male hormone makes you feel unsettled constantly. You are unable to relax and feel less concentrated in the body. It induces stress that may lead to depression sometimes. 
    • Hair Loss, Poor Skin: Testosterone is important for skin and hair. A lack of testosterone affects hair, skin and nail health. It deteriorates the beauty of health. It causes excess hair fall, dull skin and signs of aging in the body.
    • Prostate problem: A low testosterone level in the body puts pressure on prostate health. An enlarged prostate or urine problem is a sign of testosterone deficiency.

    How to Increase Testosterone Level?

    There are many ways to increase the testosterone level in the body. Many foods and herbs support the production of testosterone naturally in the body. Well, many supplements are also available to give the best to men.

    Foods & Herbs: Ginger, Oyster, Pomegranate, Green vegetables, onion, olive oil, Korean ginseng, horny goat, maca roots, etc are the natural foods that increase the testosterone level in the body naturally. There is a negligible chance of having adverse effects with the help of natural testosterone booster food. Remember, with naturally testosterone food, you should also add testosterone booster exercise to your routine.

    These are easily available foods. You can get these herbs in extract form easily in the market. You can consume it easily in daily life. It will be great to consult a dietitian or some professional to focus only on the testosterone level. 

    Drugs & Supplements: Various gels, injections, capsules and supplements are available that increase the testosterone level in the body and reduce the symptoms of testosterone deficiency.

    Based on the exact deficiency and the traits of the man or woman, the treating physician will decide how to administer the testosterone. It is important to consult professionals to use natural supplements too. Having an overdose of natural supplements or chemical drugs is not good for your health. 

    Medical monitoring and dose control are crucial because the artificial administration of testosterone can have adverse effects. Breast enlargement, fluid retention, and prostate growth are the most frequent adverse effects. You need to be careful to choose the right way of using it.

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