In a recent podcast I listened to, an expert mentioned some alarming facts about globally declining testosterone levels.
He said that the average total male testosterone now is 250, having dropped 1% point every year in the past 40.
Being aware of the importance of testosterone, especially in the bodybuilding context, I decided to dig into these studies and statistical data analysis to verify the average amount of testosterone a ‘modern’ man produces daily.
I also discussed these worrying trends with my physician for some additional insight.
These are our findings.
- The daily testosterone production varies between 3-10 mg in healthy males.
- Low testosterone levels can lead to various factors, ranging from low sex drive, mood swings, and muscle loss.
- Taking natural supplements, and exercising are some ways of boosting your testosterone levels.
How Much Testosterone Does Man Produce Daily?
A man produces between 3-10 milligrams of testosterone daily, but on average, healthy young men produce around 6 mg of testosterone each day .
This amount is secreted primarily by the testes, specifically Leydig cells in testes tissue.
Nevertheless, these numbers may differ depending on measurement methods and the subject’s age.
Generally speaking, since testosterone circulates the body through the bloodstream, levels are determined via a blood test. However, the amount is measured in different ways.
In the UK, for example, testosterone level is measured in picomoles per liter (pmol/L) for free testosterone (unbound and available for your body to use) or in nanomoles per liter (nmol/L) for circulating testosterone levels (total testosterone in your blood).
Testosterone levels higher than 225 pmol/L or 12 nmol/L are considered normal.
In the US, free testosterone level is measured in nanograms per deciliter of blood (ng/dL), with harmonized reference ranges between 264 ng/dL and 914 ng/dL that are considered healthy (according to four Cohort studies) .
Nevertheless, this ‘healthy’ range may vary more or less depending on the lab.
And you don’t have to be Ph.D. to figure out that a number 4 times higher than the baseline will not equate to the same benefits and wellness for your body, but more on that later.
Levels Change With Age
Testosterone levels peak at puberty (late teenage years).
These levels stay relatively high for the next couple of years, up until the 30s.
Around the age of 30, testosterone levels naturally start to decline at the pace of 1% per year because, unlike females, males experience a more gradual change in hormone levels.
Finally, at the age of 70, average testosterone levels decrease by 30% compared to peak ages.
According to studies, the trajectory of total testosterone levels gradually declines in healthy men after the 40s .
On average, it should look like this:
- T-levels in 40s: 252 - 916 ng/dL
- T-levels in 50s: 215 - 878 ng/dL
- T-levels in 60s: 196 - 859 ng/dL
- T-levels in 70s: 156 - 819 ng/dL
If these typical testosterone levels are disturbed during a particular phase of life (and that seems to be a plague of modern men), various symptoms may arise, lowering the quality of life.
What Symptoms Occur When Production Is Below Normal?
When testosterone production is below normal, various symptoms may interfere with male sexual traits.
Those symptoms may eventually affect the levels of attractiveness and overall health.
Being a crucial sex hormone, low testosterone symptoms mainly manifest in particular points of the health spectrum, such as muscle and bone strength, energy levels, and fertility.
This hormone is also essential for heart and cognitive health .
“Testosterone deficiency is a very specific clinical condition that is defined by the presence of a set of specific signs and symptoms that occur as a result of decreased production of testosterone by the testes in men.”
- Shalendar Bhasin, MD & Professor of Medicine in Harvard Medical School
These health problems don’t happen overnight, so you should be continuously mindful of some common symptoms of lower testosterone levels .
They may include:
- Depression, memory loss, irritability
- Fatigue and sleep issues
- Loss of facial hair
- Loss of body hair
- More fragile skin
- Erectile dysfunction and loss of sex drive
- Brittle bones and decrease in muscle mass
Even though these symptoms are linked to low testosterone levels, you might experience them even if your levels are above the normal range.
However, you should be able to feel the difference in your general well-being.
Luckily, there are ways to boost testosterone levels and possibly avoid the symptoms that come with the low T.
How to Fix Low Production?
To fix the low production of testosterone naturally, you need to incorporate healthy habits, such as strength training, a nutrient-rich diet, and natural supplements.
For most men, low testosterone is nothing but a result of bad lifestyle choices like smoking, lack of activity, constant stress, and a poor diet high in processed foods.
When you change these habits, your testosterone levels will naturally start to recuperate.
Let’s get into the most effective natural ways to achieve this.
In my opinion, exercise is still the cheapest and most potent medicine out there, and it will help you balance your hormones, including testosterone.
It does this in two ways:
- Aerobic exercises - These will help you lose fat. Knowing that adipose tissue converts testosterone into estrogen (female sex hormone), the equation is straightforward - less fat means more testosterone .
- Weight lifting - Particularly heavy lifting. Compound movements are critical - bench presses, shoulder presses, bodyweight squats, and deadlifts. This activation of large muscle groups has been shown to increase testosterone levels .
In my experience, to reap the most from exercise, rest between a minute or two between sets, avoid taking each set to failure and go for high volume. Don’t overtrain and generally move more.
2. Avoid Testosterone Lowering Chemicals
Unfortunately, nowadays, it’s hard to avoid certain chemicals (‘endocrine disruptors’) that interfere with our body’s hormone system and contribute to various health issues.
The most relevant endocrine disruptor for this topic is a chemical called ‘xenoestrogen’.
Xenoestrogen imitates estrogen in the human body and thereby contributes to significant T levels drop.
It’s present in many things - gasoline, toothpaste, shampoos, pesticides, and plastics.
To minimize your contact with this chemical, do the following:
- Avoid unnecessary exposure to gasoline and pesticides
- Store food in glassware
- Don’t heat food in plastic containers
- Reduce exposure to BPA
- Try to eat organic as much as possible
Check out also this article about the common chemicals that lower testosterone.
3. Use Supplements
Another challenge of the modern world is nutrient-poor food and insufficient sun exposure.
Therefore, you might want to include some nutritional supplementations to help you on your journey to optimal T levels.
The most effective ones are:
- Vitamin D3 - Studies suggest that this supplement could improve T production . How many IU (international units) is adequate for you depends on your sun exposure, but I recommend going between 3000 and 4000 IU.
- Omega 3 Fish Oil - This oil may help you increase semen volume and total sperm count, traits linked with higher testosterone levels .
- Natural T-booster - These supplements support natural testosterone production with various science-backed herbs and nutrients. They also don’t cause side effects typical for anabolic steroids (increased body and facial hair, kidney problems, hypertension, etc.).
If nothing helps, check with your GP if your low T levels might be due to some underlying health condition like liver disease, kidney disease, or diabetes.
Some cases might demand certain testosterone treatments, such as testosterone replacement therapy (TRT).
How Long Does It Take to Increase Testosterone?
It takes around 4-6 weeks of testosterone replacement therapy (Testosterone-Cypionate, Enanthate, or Propionate) to start feeling the improvement in symptoms.
However, changes like muscle mass growth may take up to 6 months. Increasing testosterone through natural interventions may take longer, but it won’t wreak havoc on your health.
What Time of Day Is a Man’s Testosterone Lowest?
Man’s testosterone levels tend to be lowest around 8 p.m., with a tendency to climb at night. The peak is measured around 8 a.m. and fluctuates throughout the day. That’s why testosterone blood work is done in the morning when free testosterone levels are highest.
Fine-Tune Testosterone Levels
I can’t stress enough how important it is for every man and woman to optimize testosterone levels.
But, if the modern world doesn’t allow you to change your habits entirely, you might be able to bolster your natural production with some of the testosterone boosters for men we found most effective during our in-depth testing.
They aren’t magic pills, but all of our testing data shows that they can improve testosterone production considerably over the long term and with no to negligible side effects.
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