Can Low Testosterone Levels Predict Mortality?
Hormones and death
LAST UPDATED: November 2018.
Author: Ben established the site in 2015 as a free resource for people who may be interested in the different ways we can improve performance.
Prior to this he graduated from university in 2005 and has held numerous positions in the corporate sector.
Are testosterone levels an effective bio-marker for death?
All men suffer from lessening levels of testosterone as they age, this is known as the andropause.
This is a natural physiological occurrence such as when women experience the menopause.
However, unlike the menopause which affects women from about the age of 45 and quite suddenly, andropause creeps in around the age of 30 for men and see’s a continued decline of testosterone.
Because the reduction of testosterone is gradual, it is often not noticed nor identified. In fact the many symptoms such as irritability, loss of libido, fatigue, fat distribution and loss of muscle mass is certainly just put down the the ageing process.
However, there’s much more to testosterone, its benefits and how it effects our health than was always previously thought.
There’s much more to testosterone than the typical bodybuilder image.
Can testosterone read the future, your future?
Well, not exactly.
You may be interested to read that testosterone itself cannot give you a glimpse in to your future, however, your level of testosterone may.
There are been five contemporary studies that have reliably demonstrated that if you have a low baseline level of testosterone it can be a predictor for mortality.
Even when all other conditions such as disease have been accounted for and controlled.
[Shores MM, Moceri VM, Gruenewald DA, Brodkin KI, Matsumoto AM, et al. Low testosterone is associated with decreased function and increased mortality risk: a preliminary study of men in a geriatric rehabilitation unit. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2004;52:2077–81.]
The studies concluded that those men with abnormally low testosterone levels, which is sometimes referred to as hypotestosteronaemia, had an 88% chance of increase mortality risk compared to men who had testosterone levels considered ‘normal’ and ‘healthy’.
These results were following analysis of the Veteran’s Affair’s clinical database involving over 850 men during a period of 4 to 8 years.
A further study from 2007 proved that there is an increased risk of death for those men who experience a fall in bioavailable testosterone levels.
[Maggio M, Lauretani F, Ceda GP, Bandinelli S, Ling SM, et al. Relationship between low levels of anabolic hormones and 6-year mortality in older men: the aging in the Chianti Area (InCHIANTI) study. Arch Intern Med. 2007;167:2249–54.]
This study comprised of over 400 men who were 65 years old or older. The study also demonstrated that if other hormones are also at lower levels, it can exacerbate the risk or mortality.
A study which involved nearly 12,000 healthy men between the ages of 40 and 79 years old over a period of 6 to 10 years, and, concluded that those men who experienced a higher level of testosterone showed around a 14% reduction of risk of death when cardiovascular and all cause mortality rates were being investigated.
[Khaw KT, Dowsett M, Folkerd E, Bingham S, Wareham N, et al. Endogenous testosterone and mortality due to all causes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer in men: European prospective investigation into cancer in Norfolk (EPIC-Norfolk) Prospective Population Study. Circulation. 2007;116:2694–701]
As we have touched upon before, regarding the relation between cardiovascular disease, low testosterone and death, 930 men who were part of a study regarding cardiovascular disease found that those who suffered from low testosterone levels were at a higher risk of mortality compared to those men with higher testosterone levels.
Does having a lower level of testosterone mean I am more likely to die sooner?
As a result of these findings, it demonstrates clearly that testosterone can be a predictor for your future health and mortality.
Testosterone (or lack of) has a significant relationship with all-cause and cardiovascular mortality, this association has been proven through numerous studies.
Therefore, if you have a lower level of testosterone, it is a significant marker for your mortality.
Can we naturally and safely increase our testosterone levels?
In short, yes.
That’s good news.
It is paramount to maintain a healthy level of testosterone because this male sex hormone has such an effect on your overall health.
Healthy testosterone levels mean that we can maintain and regulate a number of factors such as:
- Bone density
- Fat distribution and gain
- Muscle mass
- Cognitive perfromance
- Cardiovascular health
One simple to way to help increase and maintain healthy testosterone levels is through exercise.
Incorporate regular, resistance exercise in to your life. Training with weights helps stimulate more testosterone.
Also, performing multi-joint exercises such as the squat, deadlift and bench press stimulates the most testosterone compared to isolated movements like the bicep curl.
When we get deep, restful sleep is when growth hormone is secreted. So ensure you get enough sleep, the less sleep means less growth hormone.
While we encourage you to stay ‘sun smart’, some sunshine to your skin each day is extremely beneficial.
Vitamin D is an essential vitamin (deemed crucial for human survival) that your bodies synthesizes when your skin gets enough sun exposure.
If you do not live near the equator with near constant sunshine, you may have to supplement with D3.
Avoid ‘junk’ foods. Eat natural and whole foods that are not full of sugars, salts and preservatives.
Meat, fish, eggs, dairy and vegetables can provide all of the nutrients, vitamins and fuel for energy and recovery you body needs to stimulate testosterone.
A supplement can help bridge the gap between what you eat, can’t manage to eat and what your body needs.
Also, if you are not getting enough sunshine, you want a supplement including D3.
There are a number of supplements available that are marketed as testosterone boosters.
However, not all are the same nor effective.
Therefore, you need to look for a testosterone booster supplement that comprises of a number of ingredients that are proven to help stimulate more natural testosterone production.
We have researched and found the most effective, here.
However, some key ingredients to look out for are as follows:
- Vitamin D3
- D-Aspartic Acid
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin K2
- Oyster extract
- Panax Ginseng
Armed to the teeth with this number of well established and beneficial vitamins, you can naturally and safely increase your testosterone levels.