A study coming out of Sheffield, England, has shown that testosterone can have a major impact on how sugar and fat is processed within the body. The research team announced at the annual Endocrine Society meeting, that lower testosterone levels are a common issue in Type 2 Diabetics.
For a long time, many people within the medical community saw testosterone as a bad thing, especially if there were higher than average amounts of this hormone within the body. The medical community used to believe that testosterone led to an increase in heart disease risk, along with the dangerous side effects often seen in men who partake in body building. This new research however, is showing that instead of testosterone being a bad thing, it might actually help cut the risk of heart disease and diabetes, as well as the subsequent death that often comes from this dangerous conditions.
Dr Daniel Kelly, of the University of Sheffield, is the one who did this research study, which was done using mice who had low levels of testosterone in their system. The point of this research was to show how important testosterone is when it comes to fat and sugar being processed within the body, and the negative health consequences associated with an abnormality in the body’s handling of these two items. What Kelly found in his mice study was that because the mice didn’t have the right levels of testosterone, the liver and muscle could not handle sugar properly, and the fat ended up getting clogged up in the arteries and liver, instead of being diverted away as it should.
The study and findings ended up getting Kelly the Endocrine Society’s Presidential Award, because this might be a huge breakthrough in preventing heart disease and diabetes.
The medical community had already known that people who are obese have a higher risk of developing diabetes, due to how the increase in often leads to lower testosterone levels. Over 20% of all diabetics with Type 2 have lower testosterone levels, which is why so many people feel lethargic and don’t have a libido, and this negatively impacts their overall quality of life. When we look at the research Kelly did, it makes sense that using hormone replacement therapy could alter the chances of an obese person getting diabetes, since it can help the body process fat and sugar how it is supposed to, which will then lead to weight loss, and that will lower heart disease risk.
Although you might not think diabetes is a huge issue, a lot of people in the medical community, such as Professor Hugh Jones, believe diabetes will turn into the new cancer, meaning it will end up costing the health care system millions of dollars each year. Diabetics are prone to a lot of medical issues, such as gangrene and kidney failure, and those suffering with the condition have a higher risk of strokes and heart disease or can fall into a diabetic coma, which can lead to sudden death. Diabetes has been known for years as being a silent killer, because sometimes the symptoms don’t show up until the disease has progressed fairly significantly, which then leads to complications and death.
More research will need to be done on testosterone to make sure that the positive benefits of it outweigh the negative aspects, but hormone replacement therapy might be a great option for men who have a history of these conditions in their family. Men need to get checked more often to see if their testosterone levels are low, and then if more research proves this data to be correct, getting those men on replacement therapy might significantly decrease their risk of getting diabetes or heart disease. It’s important to find the balance when it comes to testosterone, because too much can have a lot of negative effects, but if the testosterone can simply put a man back at normal range for his age, it surely would help more than hurt. This study did not show what testosterone replacement therapy would due to a woman, which is a more dicey issue, but for men the results look promising.