Many people commented on last week’s ezine with my list of libido-boosting foods and my brother’s article on chocolate (at that same link)… and yes, several of you even tried some of his delicious and decadent chocolate recipes.
And others said that a lack of libido in your relationship wasn’t “your fault”, that it was your man’s issue and that he won’t address it…A few of you scolded me saying “aphrodisiacs” alone won’t bring back one’s youthful playfulness (I totally agree, there are a lot of lifestyle decisions that affect hormone health and thus one’s sexual health and libido).
(Hmmm…I disagree on this one. I think that the hormone health of both parties in a relationship should be foremost on the couple’s respective minds!).
But while women may talk to their doctor (and friends, and even their mate) about the misery of their menopausal symptoms…most men won’t talk about what ails them when it comes to their just feeling less than optimal and much older than their years.
So Let’s Talk about That
We know that natural hormone decline is one of the culprits in menopause and results in a lot of quality of life-affecting symptoms and disease progression. Well, a similar transition is also happening with men! But men are not as likely to discuss their emerging symptoms with their doctor…or anyone!
“Male menopause”, or “andropause” is an interesting topic that I’ve discussed before on this blog…but it’s very important and worth highlighting some easy actions one can take that can really make a difference.
And this isn’t just an issue for your mate.
A lack of vibrancy – at some point while aging – will likely be an issue for your father, your brother, siblings…best friends…any of the men in your life. As they age and transition through “andropause”, they will experience hormone changes that can impact their muscle, bone, brain, insulin resistance, cardiovascular health…their zest for life and so much more.
Andropause – Why Men Start to Lose their Vibrancy and Overall Health
As usual, much of how we feel…how we look…and how we age…is rooted in our hormonal health.
We know that a man’s testosterone peaks in his 20’s and gradually declines about 1% a year after the age of 30.Testosterone is a sex hormone important to both men and women, even though many of you likely think it is only a “guy” thing. It is essential for libido, arousal and orgasm. In men it is also important relating to achieving an erection.
As this decline progresses a man may or may not realize he is suffering from low testosterone (“Low T”).
Additionally, a man may also start to produce and experience too much estrogen as he ages! Yes, estrogen. That can cause even more health symptoms and problems. And he may be completely unaware of this underlying hormonal imbalance wreaking havoc in how he feels.
A middle-aged man may start seeing a variety of symptoms that may remind you of many of the major symptoms associated with menopause!
- Increase in abdominal fat
- Brain fog and fatigue
- Night sweats
- Mood swings
- Increased risk of insulin resistance
- Decreased muscle mass
And yes, erectile dysfunction issues may also start to be seen.
But let’s clear up one major confusion.
This Issue of “Low T” is Not Just about Sex! And It is Not Resolved with a Pill
Taking Viagra won’t help a man age with more vibrancy or health. Yes, it can help with erectile dysfunction and arousal (since he is likely to be less stressed about performance)….but….Viagra does not address low testosterone levels!
Viagra doesn’t really address a man’s vibrancy…or a whole slew of other potential health symptoms associated with natural hormone decline!
Along with all of the above life-affecting “male menopause” symptoms, Low T is a risk factor for many health conditions and diseases, including obesity, diabetes and heart disease. Low T may also be a risk factor for cognitive decline and possibly for Alzheimer’s type dementia.
So What’s a Man to Do?
There are a lot of lifestyle changes (diet and keeping at a healthy weight are key), nutrients (through diet or supplements) and other things (stress management, burst training) that can help naturally increase a man’s testosterone levels.
Read this informative article that details much more about,
- The hormone changes occurring during andropause (and testosterone is only part of the equation! Too much estrogen is also a major factor!)
- Where all this excess estrogen is coming from (and this is what causes “man boobs” in men)
- The role these hormone changes play in regards to developing obesity, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and other conditions
- Natural ways for men to boost testosterone and reduce excess estrogen
- Bio-identical hormone replacement for men
And What About the Other Men (Dad, Brothers and Best Friends) in Your Life?
This information is important for all of the men in your life. Many of you, I know, are caregivers for your parents…and most of you know that I was my father’s caregiver for many years.
When my dad was 79 he had a period of time where he was just in bad shape…depressed, irritable, overweight…not acting like himself at all. The doctors wanted me to “let him go”! What?
So I used my doctor’s knowledge and gave my dad back his energy, enthusiasm and spunkiness again…and we were blessed with him in our lives for more than another decade, just losing him recently.
You can read about my experience in reducing his inflammation and getting him back to his old energetic and positive self again (a little testosterone, DHEA, Mighty Maca and other healthy supplements). You need to be a well-informed advocate!
Start the Discussion!
So if you’re a man reading this…start the discussion with your doctor and your significant other.
If you love a man and are reading this…again, let’s have you start the discussion!
While you may think it will be a difficult discussion, read some of this material and bring up the possibility of hormone imbalance and the interventions that may help. No-one should age before their time. And a few simple changes can reap great benefits.
And should you be a caregiver…one final thought… is that you need to take care of yourself first…in order to help take care of another. Serving a Keto-alkaline™ diet to your ailing father while you munch on French fries and burgers…not such a good idea. Check out my thoughts on caring for yourself first, here.
Would love to hear your thoughts on this topic…especially would love to hear from the men out there!