“Testosterone booster” supplements are being marketed as a way to “boost your testosterone levels and restore youthful vitality and vigor.” This article critically examines the scientific evidence for the use of these products for this purpose. You can visit theislandnow.com to learn more.
Many factors contribute to the development of age-related changes in muscle mass, body composition, and physical function, including reduced duration or intensity of exercise; lower levels of anabolic hormones such as testosterone; reduced intramuscular stores of glycogen; increased fat mass associated with accumulation of visceral fat in particular and increased production of proinflammatory cytokines. There is also a strong association between insufficient sleep and poor quality sleep with rapid aging. Moreover, aging is associated with an increased risk of falls related to neurodegeneration, reduced muscle strength and functional ability, and higher prevalence of chronic diseases and metabolic disorders.
In the short term, testosterone replacement can improve strength and physical function in men with hypogonadism. However, there is no evidence that testosterone treatment increases maximal aerobic capacity or prevents the decline in maximal aerobic capacity associated with aging. Moreover, no studies have investigated whether testosterone treatment improves physical performance or health-related quality of life over time in healthy men. Testosterone treatment does not increase muscle size or strength in healthy men over time. Testosterone use also does not increase cardiac benefits such as exercise tolerance. Studies in men with ischemic heart disease and non-ischemic dilated cardiomyopathy have shown no beneficial effect of testosterone treatment on exercise tolerance, sudden cardiac death, or heart failure mortality.
Testosterone also does not produce long-term benefits on lipids compared with placebo; instead, there is some evidence for deleterious effects in this subset. Testosterone might also increase hematocrit and hemoglobin levels, which could increase the risk of stroke and myocardial infarction via its stimulation of red blood cell production. Further studies are needed to clarify these associations. Testosterone treatment reduces lean body mass and muscle strength, which can result in falls. This may be of concern for older men. Testosterone treatment in older men with hypogonadism produces an increase in fat mass and a decrease in lean body mass, relative to placebo.
Testosterone also increases prostate volume, but after biopsy, there is no increase in the risk of prostate cancer or other serious medical problems such as benign prostatic hypertrophy. It is unclear if testosterone treatment affects the risk of erectile dysfunction or prostate cancer over time. Testosterone therapy appears to have a beneficial effect on mood, depression and anxiety factors among aging males; however, studies are limited.