Testosterone is known as ‘the man’s hormone’. However, you may be surprised to learn that it’s also an important hormone for women.
In fact, the image that high testosterone levels cause men to behave badly is largely a myth.
Granted, testosterone is essential to male growth and the definition of traditional male characteristics.
It helps the genitals develop, boosts muscle size and strength, and is vital for a high sex drive.
In women, it’s an important hormone to ensure correct ovarian function, bone strength, and even helps with sexual libido.
In all cases, testosterone has been linked to better fast metabolism, improved memory and cognitive abilities, and even mood stability.
The following testosterone statistics may surprise you, but you need to know them.
- Men’s testosterone levels are declining by 1% a year
- Testosterone levels start to decline from the age of 20
- Excess weight reduces testosterone production
- Weight lifting boosts testosterone levels
- Testosterone levels tend to be highest in the morning
- 50% of men over 80 have low testosterone levels
- Estimates suggest 40-50% of men over 45 have undetected low testosterone levels
- Low testosterone levels has been linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease
- Men with diabetes are twice as likely to have low testosterone
- People with low testosterone levels are more likely to be depressed
Top Testosterone Statistics in 2023
1. Men’s Testosterone Levels Are Declining By 1% A Year
Thanks to the internet it often seems men go further than ever today in their pursuit of manliness.
You only have to take a look at YouTube and you’ll find an array of crazy macho stunts.
However, while these seem impressive, they are a result of personality, not testosterone.
The truth is, your grandfather probably had significantly higher levels of testosterone than you do.
Studies show that average testosterone levels have been steadily declining since the 1970s.
In 1987, the average 60-year-old man had a testosterone level of 17.5nmol/L. The average 60-year-old man in 2002 had testosterone levels of 15 nmol/L.
In other words, average male testosterone levels are decreasing by 1% a year.
It’s not just testosterone that is being affected. Sperm counts are also shrinking and reproductive issues, specifically testicular cancer, are on the increase.
(J Clin Endocrinol Metab Survey 2007)
2. Testosterone Levels Start To Decline From The Age Of 20
This is simply human nature. In effect, the human body peaks between 18-30 years old.
After 30, testosterone levels start to decrease, as does muscle mass.
The good news is there are things you can do to maintain your muscle mass and testosterone levels.
The average testosterone level at 20 is 700 ng/dL, although normal is anything between 270-1070 ng/dL.
By the age of 35 you can have a significant decrease in testosterone levels.
That’s why it’s recommended you have your testosterone levels checked every five years after the age of 35.
3. Excess Weight Reduces Testosterone Production
Many people in the Western world are gaining weight. This is largely due to the easier availability of food and changes in lifestyle
For example, you can order almost any food you want and have it delivered to your door, allowing you to keep watching your favorite program.
In other words, you don’t need to move to eat.
Additionally, many people now work in more sedentary jobs compared to previous generations.
The result is weight gain. Unfortunately, recent studies have linked weight gain and obesity with a lower level of testosterone.
Scientists are still researching the exact link but it is believed that the excess weight places more stress on your body, reducing its ability to produce testosterone.
4. Weight Lifting Boosts Testosterone Levels
Physical activity gets your body moving, your muscles working, and leaves you feeling good.
Weight lifting is particularly effective at boosting testosterone levels and overall health.
In the first instance it builds muscles and strengthens bones.
That encourages your body to create more testosterone.
Weight lifting also boosts your metabolism and maintains that boost after you stop exercising.
This can help you lose weight, reducing the stress on your body and helping you produce more testosterone.
(Urology Care Foundation)
5. Testosterone Levels Tend To Be Highest In The Morning
When you sleep your brain processes the activities of the day and makes sense of them.
That’s why sleeping on a problem can really make a difference.
Your body also heals while you sleep. That’s why sleep is such an important part of daily life.
If your cells are repaired you’ll wake up feeling refreshed and ready for anything.
Being refreshed means your body is working at its best, which includes the production of testosterone, which is why it’s highest in the morning.
That’s also why doctors tend to prefer testosterone tests to be done early in the day, before the levels start to drop.
(Urology Care Foundation)
6. 50% Of Men Over 80 Have Low Testosterone Levels
Research shows that testosterone levels naturally drop by around 1% every year after the age of thirty.
It’s therefore hardly surprising that by the age of 80, most men have significantly lower levels of testosterone.
In fact, research done by the Urology Care Foundation suggests that as many as half the men over 80 will have low levels of testosterone.
That means less than 250 ng/dL.
While there are symptoms of low testosterone you can’t be certain that it’s an issue unless you have a blood test done.
It’s worth having one done regularly.
(Urology Care Foundation)
7. Estimates Suggest 40-50% Of Men Over 45 Have Undetected Low Testosterone Levels
Recent research suggests that low testosterone isn’t just an issue for the older generation.
Several studies have shown that men over 45 have a significant likelihood of having low testosterone levels.
Specifically, 40-50% of men over 45 are likely to have low testosterone.
That means their levels are below normal for their age range.
Unfortunately, doctors are not generally very good at diagnosing this hormone issue, meaning many men over 45 don’t know they have a testosterone issue.
8. Low testosterone Levels Has Been Linked To An Increased Risk Of Cardiovascular Disease
A study by Cancer Research UK showed that low testosterone levels increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.
It’s not surprising. Low testosterone levels are made worse by excess weight.
People who are obese are less likely to exercise and will place more stress on their bodies, specifically their hearts.
The result is an increased risk of cardiovascular issues.
(Cancer Research UK)
9. Men With Diabetes Are Twice As Likely To Have Low Testosterone
Diabetes and low testosterone levels seem to be linked.
On the one hand, low testosterone levels will encourage your body to store fat instead of burning it.
This is usually visceral fat which increases the risk of diabetes.
Equally, people with diabetes tend to be overweight, the diabetes is triggered by excessive sugar consumption disrupting the body’s ability to create insulin.
In effect, the body’s systems are unbalanced, creating stress, which reduces your ability to produce testosterone and other hormones.
Several studies confirm the link between diabetes and low testosterone.
10. People With Low testosterone Levels Are More Likely To Be Depressed
This is an interesting one as there are limited studies but all confirm that people with low testosterone levels are more likely to be depressed.
The exact reason for this is currently unknown.
However, there is also an established link between testosterone levels and economic status.
Men with higher testosterone levels tend to be more successful. This means they earn better money and generally have less stress in their lives.
That can help to maintain testosterone levels in the future.
It’s also possible that men with less testosterone are more likely to gain weight and that this weight gain leads to low self-esteem.
That can, in turn, lead to anxiety and depression.
Why Testosterone Levels Are On the Decline
Testosterone levels decline naturally with age, but current studies indicate there is more to it than just age.
The truth is the world is complicated, lives are hectic, and there are several reasons why testosterone levels are declining:
This is perhaps the most obvious reason. Humans generally react to the environment around them.
The more active you are, the more prepared your body is for activity.
The reverse is also true. Unfortunately, people generally live more sedentary lifestyles as so many processes are automated and jobs tend to be less physically demanding than in the past.
The result is excess weight and a reduction in your body’s ability to produce testosterone.
Humans today have to contend with much more than in the past.
One of the biggest issues is the stress of modern life.
However, there are also an array of toxins that you should be aware of.
The biggest issue is plastic. In the 1970s 50 million tons of plastic was produced every year.
Today it has increased to 300 million tons.
Unfortunately, most plastics contain EDCs. These interfere with your body’s ability to produce hormones.
They have also been linked to an increased risk of cancer.
EDCs are in plastic bottles, storage containers, detergents, and many other everyday items.
You’re exposed to them all the time and they accumulate in your body, gradually affecting various organs and systems.
One of which is the reduction of testosterone production.
The digital age is supposed to make life easier. However, there are so many issues in the world that people are constantly stressed.
Alongside this, people now find it very hard to disconnect.
In short, stress levels are elevated and this increases the amount of cortisol produced by your body. Unfortunately, the release of cortisol, which happens whenever you’re stressed, prevents the production of other hormones, such as testosterone.
When You Should Get Medical Help
Low testosterone levels reduce your sexual libido.
It can also affect your mental health, give you problems sleeping, and reduce your fertility levels.
In fact, the list of issues attributed to low testosterone levels is surprisingly long.
- Weight gain
- Low sex drive
- Erectile dysfunction
- Larger breasts
- Hair loss
- Loss of muscle mass, bone density, and strength
- Low self-esteem and depression
- Difficulty concentrating
- Memory loss
If you’re suffering from these symptoms then get yourself checked out by a doctor.
It’s a good idea to have your testosterone levels checked every five years after the age of 35.
In addition, if you’re trying to conceive and haven’t had any luck within a year, get your sperm and testosterone levels checked.
People of all sexes need testosterone for their bodies to function properly.
However, men have a greater need for testosterone.
However, the current testosterone statistics show that testosterone levels are declining, along with sperm counts.
While there are many factors causing these declines, it is possible to improve your testosterone levels naturally.
You’ll need to start exercising regularly. This will help you lose weight and boost your body’s testosterone production.
You can also make sure you get enough high-quality sleep, boost your vitamin D and zinc intake, and reduce the amount of alcohol you drink.
It’s also beneficial to eat healthy fats and lower your stress levels.
If you can do that, you’ll be able to increase your testosterone levels and avoid being part of these statistics.