I’m sure we’re all familiar with testosterone and some of its responsibilities. In this series I’ll be talking about what it is and what it does (today’s post), what happens when things go wrong, what you can eat to boost your levels, supplements that are helpful as well as lifestyle choices to help improve testosterone levels.
It is the most important sex hormone in men, responsible for sexual development and reproduction. It is classified as an androgen or steroid hormone. It is also responsible for secondary sex characteristics in men such as:
- Deepened voice
- Increased hair all over body but especially pubic area and facial hair
- It is responsible for heavier muscle mass
- Increased heaviness of skeleton due to bone growth and density
Women also produce testosterone but at much lower levels; ranging from 1/10th to 1/20th the amount produced by men. It is produced in a woman’s ovaries and adrenal glands.
Men produce testosterone mainly in the testes with a small amount produced in the adrenal glands. The brain’s hypothalamus and pituitary gland control testosterone production. The hypothalamus tells the pituitary gland how much to produce and the pituitary passes the message on to the testes. This happens through chemicals and hormones in the bloodstream.
Testosterone plays a role in sex drive, sperm production, fat distribution, red blood cell production and maintenance of muscle strength and mass. Testosterone may also help prevent osteoporosis in men.
Now that you know what it is and what it does, stay tuned for next week’s post when I talk about a few of the things that can happen with testosterone levels get too low.
In the meantime, have an awesome week and we’ll see you next week!