Posted on 16. Apr, 2012 in Health News
Love handles, spare tire, muffin top – you’ve heard these terms before. I’m sure you haven’t heard that this extra belly fat we carry can lead to hormonal problems, particularly in men. Research has shown that metabolic syndrome, which is characterized by abdominal fat, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and high blood sugar, is associated with erectile dysfunction and low testosterone. That belly fat specifically could be related to low testosterone levels.
Testosterone starts to slowly decline after age 30. This drop in testosterone leads to a loss of muscle tissue, which in turn slows down the body’s metabolism. A slower metabolism allows the body to gain fat, which is usually in the belly area. Being obese also encourages the body to produce more of an enzyme called aromatase which is not such a good enzyme. It basically increases testosterone’s conversion into estrogen, meaning less testosterone and more estrogen! Not good for a guy.
Any drop in testosterone levels commonly contributes to low sex drive, erection issues, and a loss of energy and vitality. Men with low levels could experience the following as well: Muscle weakness, weight gain, usually around the waist, reduced bone density, and depression.
If you have these symptoms and if you have the dreaded spare tire, pot belly or muffin top, I recommend you get your testosterone levels checked. Low testosterone is yet another reason to watch your weight!
Michael Corsilles, ND, PA-C