The Impact of Low Testosterone on Men

Signs and Symptoms to Look Out for if You Are Concerned

If you are concerned that you may have low levels of testosterone, there are various signs you can look out for. Some of the key signs that can indicate that there is a problem with your testosterone levels include:

Lack of sex drive
Instances of erectile dysfunction
Sleeping difficulties
Feeling tired and lacking energy
Increased irritability
Infertility

It is important to remember that, like other hormones, testosterone can have an effect on your physical, mental, and emotional health. This is a problem that can be treated; the earlier you take action, the better it will be for you.

Why Seek Treatment for Low Testosterone?

Some men may wonder whether they should bother getting a diagnosis or treatment for low testosterone levels. Well, you need to bear in mind that even if you are not affected by low levels of this hormone now, it could affect you further down the line. For instance, perhaps you are happy and single at the moment, enjoying your life as a bachelor and social nights with friends. What happens if you meet someone special and that person wants to have a family? If you are infertile because you never had the problem addressed, it could lead to serious issues.

So, if you feel that you suffer from low levels of testosterone and you are experiencing some or all of the signs, it is well worth getting some tests carried out to confirm whether low hormone levels are indeed your problem. If so, you can get further advice on the variety of treatments that could help you including a range of natural ones that could help to boost your testosterone levels.

 

 

Source – https://goodmenproject.com/health/impact-low-testosterone-men/

Are Protein Supplements Necessary for Building Muscle?

You’ve likely seen protein supplements for sale that promise to build muscle at lightning speed. But do you really need an expensive supplement to gain muscle? This depends on a few different factors. Let’s take a closer look at the science behind protein and how it relates to increasing muscle mass.

HOW MUCH PROTEIN DO YOU NEED FOR MUSCLE GROWTH?

Protein, fats and carbohydrates are the three macronutrients all humans need to eat in large amounts to survive. They all provide calories, which are converted into energy to help maintain your body’s day-to-day functions.

Every cell in your body contains protein, and it’s essential for repairing cells as well as making new cells, including muscle cells. After working out or strength-training, your body will start to repair and replace any damaged muscle fibers. These repaired muscle fibers will increase in thickness and number, creating muscle growth.

This means muscle growth primarily happens when you rest after a workout. That’s the time it’s also most important to have enough protein in your system to support muscle growth. So, how much is enough?

The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for protein is 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day, or 0.36 grams per pound. This equals about 56 grams of protein per day for an average woman, and 46 grams per day for an average man.

Although, if you’re trying to build muscle, you’ll need more than that for increased muscle synthesis. A recent meta-analysis of 49 different research studies found that consuming extra protein does improve muscle growth. But the benefits stopped at a certain amount of daily protein. Consuming more than 1.62 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day, or 0.74 grams per pound, did not result in more muscle gain.

This maximum amount equals about 130 grams per day for an 80 kg (176 pound) person. And considering that, on average, men eat about 100 grams of protein per day, and women eat 70 grams, you’re likely already getting close to the maximum amount.

CAN YOU GET ENOUGH PROTEIN FROM FOOD?

Yes, all the meals and snacks you have throughout the day can easily add up to more than enough daily protein for building muscle. Today’s Dietician has a great chart of the protein content per serving of many common foods. You can also check out the protein contents of some excellent vegan foods here.

If you take a close look at your diet and find you really aren’t getting enough grams of protein based on your weight, then you may want to consider taking a protein supplement on days you fall short. But there are a few pointers to keep in mind to get the most out of your supplement.

The best time to eat a protein supplement is soon after your workout. This is when your muscles are repairing and growing, and would most benefit from a protein boost.

Protein supplements are also typically processed into an easily-digestible form of protein that’s absorbed quickly by your body. This is good for a post-workout snack, but you may want to eat it with other foods, including some fats, to slow down its digestion at other times. This will help prevent your blood sugar from spiking.

Also, most protein supplements and powders are based on whey protein, which is derived from cow’s milk. If you’re vegan or have trouble digesting cow’s milk, look for a dairy-free supplement you can tolerate.

CAN YOU EAT TOO MUCH PROTEIN?

Eating lots of protein is regularly pushed in the media. But what we don’t hear often enough is the fact that consuming excessive amounts of protein is linked to various health risks, including:

Weight gain
Constipation
Diarrhea
Dehydration
Kidney damage
Heart disease
Increased cancer risk
Calcium loss

How much protein is too much? We already learned that eating more than 1.62 grams per kilogram of body weight per day is the maximum amount that will have any benefit for muscle gain. Eating more than that is pointless, and consuming more than 2 grams per kilogram of body weight is considered excessive by dietary experts.

So, protein supplements and powders can play a role in building muscle. But you can also skip the cost and simply eat enough well-balanced, nutritious foods to get the protein you need for your strength training goals.

A 10-Minute Total-Body Dumbbell HIIT Workout You Can Do on Busy Days

On days when exercise is at the bottom of your priority list and making it to a fitness class on time presents a scheduling nightmare, a HIIT workout can be your saving grace. Obviously you can also skip your workout, and you should never feel guilty for doing so. But if you’re someone who feels a little less stressed and a little more in control of a busy day after fitting in time to sweat, then a HIIT workout is pretty much your best option.

HIIT, or high-intensity interval training, is a workout style that involves brief bursts of high-intensity intervals followed by brief periods of low-intensity recovery. The biggest draw of HIIT is that it lets you fit in more work in less time. Since you give close to 100 percent of your effort during each high-intensity burst, your heart rate skyrockets and your muscles fatigue pretty quickly. And yes, that means the workout is going to be challenging—but on the upside, HIIT workouts are typically really short.

Gerren Liles, NASM-certified personal trainer at Mirror, says that HIIT is a go-to for most fitness professionals because it’s one of the best ways to raise your heart rate and improve strength and performance. “Incorporating HIIT twice a week, along with pure strength training, mobility work, and proper recovery will create a healthy, well-rounded individual with the confidence and stamina to take on the world,” Liles says.
And your HIIT workouts don’t need to be complicated. In fact, since you’re working really intensely, it’s almost better to stick with less equipment and focus on basic movements. That way, you don’t need to worry about form as much and can just really give it your all.

The dumbbell HIIT workout below, which Liles created for SELF, includes compound exercises that work multiple muscle groups at once and moves that target specific muscle groups. It only requires one pair of medium-weight dumbbells, and will take you just 10 minutes to do. It’s also scalable for all fitness levels, he adds. “I use all of these full-body exercises (and more), in my MIRROR classes,” Liles says. Each circuit in the workout includes two dynamic (moving) exercises and a static hold. “After the intense, dynamic exercises, the static hold is a smart way to wring the last bit of juice out of your muscles, where you are challenging them to stabilize while in a fatigued state,” says Liles.

The Workout

Do the first move for 60 seconds, at an easy, controlled tempo with full range of motion.

Do the second move for 30 seconds, at 80 percent to maximum effort, attempting to reach fatigue or breathlessness without compromising your form.

Do the last move for 15 seconds, which just requires you to hold a single position.
The goal is to not rest in between each exercise in a circuit, and to take no more than 60 seconds to transition from one circuit to the next, Liles says. “Since it’ll be working a different muscle group, that part of your body should be refreshed and ready to go.”

What you’ll need: One pair of medium-weight dumbbells. Liles says to pick a weight with which renegade rows feel challenging, but doable with proper form (very minimal movement in your torso as you row each arm back).

Circuit 1
Alternating Lateral Lunge With Dumbbells — 60 seconds
Skater Hop — 30 seconds
Sumo Squat Hold —15 seconds

Circuit 2
Renegade Row With Dumbbells — 60 seconds
Bent-Over Row With Dumbbells — 30 seconds
Bent-Over Row Hold With Dumbbells — 15 seconds

Circuit 3
Alternating Reverse Lunge With Dumbbells — 60 seconds
Split Lunge Jump — 30 seconds (switching legs after 15 seconds)
Lunge Hold Right — 15 seconds
Lunge Hold Left — 15 seconds

Circuit 4
Deadbug — 60 seconds
Bicycle Crunch — 30 seconds
Hollow Body Hold — 15 seconds

Circuit 5:
Push-up — 60 seconds
Burpee — 30 seconds
Triceps Push-up Hold — 15 seconds