Testosterone is popularly known as the “male” hormone, but did you know that both men and women produce it? Unfortunately, many Filipinos lack basic knowledge of testosterone and fall victim to all kinds of misconceptions. They quickly generalize it as the hormone solely responsible for the development of male characteristics and remain unaware of the other essential functions it plays.
For starters, testosterone is an androgen hormone produced in a person’s reproductive organs (testes in men and ovaries in women) and adrenal glands located above the kidney. Apart from contributing to hair growth, deepening of the voice, and sexual drive, it also influences red blood cell stimulation, behavioral patterns, and bone density regulation.
16 Interesting Facts about Testosterone a.k.a the Male Hormone
Lack of testosterone can cause various complications that may destabilize your quality of life. Apart from taking multivitamins for adults, having a deeper understanding of the hormone will help you maintain your overall wellness. To get started, here are some interesting facts about testosterone.
- To accurately determine a person’s testosterone levels, doctors use the tanner scale. Instead of relying on age as the basis of measurement, the scale relates to a person’s bodily development across five fixed stages. Measured in nanograms per deciliter (ng/dl), healthy testosterone levels are as follows1:
|Tanner Stage||Male (in ng/dl)||Female (in ng/dl)||Noticeable Changes|
|I||Less than 7–20||
Less than 7–20
|II||8–66||Less than 7–47||Pubic hair starts to form. Breast budding for females.|
For females: Acne may appear. Armpit hair forms. Height increases at a faster rate.
For males: Voice starts to “crack” and muscle size increases.
For females: First period arrives.
For males: Acne may appear. Armpit hair forms.
For females: Reproductive organs and genitals become fully developed.
For males: Facial hair starts to grow.
- Generally, men with partners have lower testosterone levels than single men, and fathers have lower testosterone than men without kids.2
- Low testosterone (also known as low T) is a condition usually acquired by older men. After age 40, men experience a 3% reduction in testosterone per year. After age 60, around 20% of men reportedly experience andropause (male menopause).3
- While low T may be an ailment common to older adults, young men can also get it due to lifestyle and environmental factors. Obesity, steroid use, and excessive consumption of substances are common causes of low T under 30.
- Other than the loss of sexual drive, signs of low testosterone include mood swings, fatigue, and a general lack of drive.
- People who engage in strength-building exercises such as weightlifting have higher levels of testosterone. Increasing your muscle mass will stimulate your body to produce the hormone.3
- High testosterone levels in both sexes can cause fertility issues. In women, high levels of the hormone can cause polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), which affects one in 15 women of reproductive age.
- Ideally, the standard testosterone level for women is 15 to 70 ng/dL. Lower levels can result in irregular menstrual periods and vaginal dryness, while higher levels can lead to excessive hair growth and blood sugar complications.
- Lack of sleep is one of the most notorious causes of low testosterone. Men who sleep less than five hours a night have 10–15% less testosterone.4
- People with poor diets are more likely to acquire low T. To keep complications at bay, eating foods rich in Vitamin D and Zinc will help your body produce the hormone.
- A study that examined 630 young adult Filipinos (aged 21–23) found that mating-oriented men have higher testosterone and cortisol levels than parenting-oriented individuals.5
- While more testosterone was previously linked to antisocial behaviors, new studies show that higher T levels also make men more generous — but mainly to impress others and improve one’s social status.6
- In 2011, Wayne State University researchers found that men with more testosterone are more competitive when it comes to attracting females. Testosterone levels were positively associated with dominant behaviors such as assertiveness over the conversation.7
- A person’s testosterone level correlates with his financial risk-taking behavior. In the findings of a Harvard study, men with higher levels of the hormone invested 6% more than the average participant.8
- Another study that examined testosterone levels and risk aversion found that people with higher testosterone levels are more likely to pursue a finance-related career.9
- When it comes to relationships, low testosterone levels are a good sign. A study that examined 30 heterosexual couples showed that both men and women who were satisfied with their relationships have lower levels of the hormone.10
Evidence shows that testosterone can significantly affect one’s quality of life — and that goes whether you’re male or female. From aiding in bodily functions to influencing social behaviors, having healthy amounts of the hormone will be vital in maintaining your overall well-being.
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SourcesTypical testosterone levels in males and females
Pair-bonding, fatherhood, and the role of testosterone: A meta-analytic review
Low testosterone, or ‘male menopause,’ no longer just for older men
Sleep Loss May Lower Testosterone
Fatherhood Decreases Testosterone
Testosterone causes both prosocial and antisocial status-enhancing behaviors in human males
Wayne State study links testosterone with men’s ability to “woo” potential mates
Financial risk-taking behavior is associated with higher testosterone
Gender differences in financial risk aversion and career choices are affected by testosterone
Men, women in more satisfying relationships have lower testosterone