The Importance of Testosterone For Women: What You Need to Know
While many of us equate testosterone with body building, and men in general, the reality is, this naturally occurring substance in the body is also necessary for women. Despite being categorized as a male hormone; females produce it too. And, while it is correct that men produce significantly more testosterone than women, women have (and require) far more of this hormone than they do estrogen.[i] Unfortunately, as women age, their hormones tend to decline, and a testosterone deficiency can occur as early as 30.[ii]
Symptoms of Low Testosterone in Women
Women who exhibit symptoms of low testosterone are often underdiagnosed or misdiagnosed as the symptoms may be mistaken for the side-effects of menopausal changes.
Some of those effects can include:
- Muscle weakness
- Lack of sex drive
- Decreased vaginal lubrication
- Difficulty focusing
- Breast pain
- Memory problems
If you suspect you have low testosterone levels, a blood test can be used to determine where your testosterone levels are at. If a woman who is under 50 years old has a plasma total testosterone level that’s under 25 ng/dL, it’s considered low. Testosterone levels lower than 20 ng/dL in women who are 50 and older are also considered low.
Testosterone is Not Just About Sex Drive
When women and testosterone are discussed, it’s often in association with sex drive and libido, but that’s just one of its important roles. Testosterone is essential for a woman’s physical and mental well-being. Plus, it affects nearly all the tissues in the body, from the heart and blood vessels to the brain, lungs, spinal cord, breasts, bladder, vaginal tissue, skin, bone, muscle and more. Low testosterone can also present several potential health dangers. It can increase the risk for developing osteoporosis, and for America’s #1 killer – heart disease.[iii]
The Benefits of Bringing Testosterone Levels Within the Normal Range
When testosterone levels are brought within the range of normal, women often feel like they can “really live” again. Research out of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, published in the November 27, 2013 online issue of Menopause, found that women who had undergone hysterectomy and experienced low testosterone levels afterward, experienced multiple improvements following the administration of testosterone, including improved muscle mass, mental wellbeing, and enhanced sexual function.[iv]
Of course, low libido is one of the most common complaints among women with low testosterone levels. Bringing them back to where they need to be, can help relieve vaginal dryness, increase blood flow, and boost sex drive, which results in a greater passion for living. A woman’s energy levels often improve significantly as well, and she may also feel more engaged in conversation, experience better focus and mental clarity, and improved bone density.
How to Raise Testosterone
If you suspect a testosterone deficiency, have a qualified hormone replacement specialist test your levels. If mild to moderately deficient, you can raise your levels safely and naturally with herbal supplements such as Testro Vida (insert hyperlink http://www.delgadonaturals.com/testro-vida-pro/). Heavy weight lifting, high intensity interval training (HIIT), quality sleep, stress reduction, and having more sex, can all help to boost testosterone levels as well. If you are severely deficient, or the above recommendations fail to restore your testosterone levels, then talk to your healthcare practitioner about bioidentical testosterone therapy.
Many people are under the impression that women who undergo testosterone therapy when their levels are low will become more aggressive, assertive and ‘over-testosterized’, but that is a myth. Worth noting however, is the fact that even though it’s a naturally occurring substance, if it is taken in very high doses, referred to as “supraphysiologic dosing,” or higher than what the body needs, harmful side-effects may occur. But we’re not talking about using massive amounts for body building, we’re talking about the importance of balancing this hormone when levels are low, in order to prevent the negative impacts of low testosterone. [v] So long as you have your testosterone levels measured regularly while using bioidentical testosterone, the potential for harm is negligent.