A recent study conducted on men 65 and older revealed the fact that men with the most increased level of testosterone lose much less lean muscle mess than the ones with lower levels of testosterone. In the majority of the cases, when people lose weight because of age, they mainly lose muscle mass. That is not the case with the people who have high levels of testosterone.
Testosterone protects muscle mass
Men who have high levels of testosterone are able to lose less lower body strength than men with lower testosterone levels. Muscle mass and lower body strength are very important when it comes to old people. Many old people fall and as a result suffer fractures. The main reason for that is the fact that they do not have the necessary mobility, muscle mass, and strength in the legs.
Men lose more muscle mass and strength than women as they age, suggesting that sex steroids, and testosterone in particular, may contribute to body composition and physical function changes. The main purpose of the study was to find the connection between testosterone and healthy aging in the case of older men. Lead author of the study, Erin LeBlanc, MD, of Kaiser Permanente Northwest in Portland, OR, stated that men who were 65 or older, with high testosterone levels did not loss as much muscle mass in their legs and arms, as the men of the same age who had low testosterone levels.
She also stated that men with higher levels of testosterone who lost weight because of aging were able to stand up more easily from a chair than men who had low testosterone levels prior to losing weight. The study, accepted for publication in the Endocrine Society’s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, used data from 1,183 men with ages 65 and older. The researchers believed that testosterone, or sex steroids as they are also called can influence the decline in lean muscle mass, weight, and physical performance in the case of men.
Researchers used dual energy x-ray absorptiometry scans in order to measure body composition. The volunteers were asked to do certain exercises which tested their walking speed, lower body power, and grip strength. LeBlanc stated that the testosterone levels can influence the amount of lean muscle mass and strength men lose when they get older. She also stated that testosterone levels can influence healthy aging in men.
Importance of testosterone
Testosterone is very important for the body. It is a hormone produced mainly in testes, and it can increase the muscle mass, increase the concentration and memory, boost the libido, and raise the energy levels. Testosterone levels decline with age; usually by 1 percent starting from the age of 30. Testosterone help people put on muscle mass, and since it starts to disappear, the muscle mass starts to decline. Physical activities can increase the production of testosterone levels. Men who have very low testosterone levels might receive artificial testosterone treatments.