Your Testosterone Levels

What Causes Abnormal Testosterone Levels?

To successfully treat and prevent recurrence of abnormal testosterone levels we need to understand and — if possible — remove the underlying causes and risk factors.  We need to ask: "What else is going on inside the body that might allow abnormal testosterone levels to develop?"

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Accurate diagnosis of the factors behind abnormal testosterone levels consists of three steps:

Step 1: List the Possible Causative Factors

Identify all disease conditions, lifestyle choices and environmental risk factors that can lead to abnormal testosterone levels.  Here are four possibilities:
  • Zinc Need
  • Low Progesterone
  • Premature Aging
  • Male Hypogonadism

Step 2: Build a Symptom Checklist

Identify all possible symptoms and risk factors of each possible cause, and check the ones that apply:
white spots on fingernails
non-human estrogen use
grooves across fingernails
PPI antacid use
increased focal length
history of birth control pill use
water retention before menstruation
sugar/sweet craving
slow reaction time
temple-based headaches
reduced skin elasticity
elevated estrogen levels
... and more than 50 others

Step 3: Rule Out or Confirm each Possible Cause

A differential diagnosis of your symptoms and risk factors finds the likely cause of abnormal testosterone levels:
Cause Probability Status
Zinc Need 92% Confirm
Low Progesterone 18% Unlikely
Male Hypogonadism 3% Ruled out
Premature Aging 1% Ruled out
* This is a simple example to illustrate the process

Arriving at a Correct Diagnosis

The Analyst™ is our online diagnosis tool that learns all about you through a straightforward process of multi-level questioning, providing diagnosis at the end.

If you indicate having had recent lab tests, The Analyst™ will ask further questions including this one:
What are your testosterone levels when you are not using supplemental testosterone?
Possible responses:
→ Don't know
→ Extremely low
→ Reduced (low)
→ Normal
→ Elevated
Based on your response to this question, which may indicate confirmed low testosterone levels, confirmed normal testosterone levels or confirmed high testosterone levels, The Analyst™ will consider possibilities such as:
Progesterone Low or Estrogen Dominance

Testosterone is converted into estrogen naturally.  When this conversion is overactive the result is too little testosterone and too much estrogen.  High levels of estrogen also trick the brain into thinking that enough testosterone is being produced, thereby reducing the natural production of testosterone.

Zinc Requirement

(This relationship of testosterone levels to zinc status does not apply to women.)

Studies support the use of zinc supplementation in the treatment of low sperm count especially in the presence of low testosterone levels.  Both sperm count and testosterone levels rose in men with initially low testosterone levels.  Zinc status should be evaluated in men with decreased serum testosterone levels.  [Nutrition Report, September-October, 1996;14(7): p.52]

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