Research on menopause focuses mostly on females and the changes they incur as they age. However, did you know that men also experience physical changes? The most frequent disorder of sex hormones in men is called hypogonadism, which is usually associated with a testosterone level of less than 300 ng/dl.
Hypogonadism is linked with an increased accumulation of visceral fat, insulin resistance and a risk of adult onset diabetes. Overweight or obese men tend to have lower testosterone levels since increases in belly fat converts testosterone to higher levels of estrogen. Lower testosterone levels can dramatically lower energy levels and increase depression in men.
Men with adult onset diabetes have a 70 percent higher risk of hypogonadism. A balanced diet with healthy protein sources (lean meat, poultry, wild fish, organic eggs and low fat dairy, nuts/seeds) combined with natural sources of carbohydrate such as fruits and vegetables and healthy fats (avocado, olive oil) can dramatically reduce insulin resistance which can lead to weight and belly fat loss.
Adding a moderate exercise program to the above diet can synergistically lower visceral fat and restore balance in the body. When weight loss occurs, estrogen coverts to testosterone which begins the process of restoring energy levels leading to vitality and sense of well being.
What can you do if you suspect you have male menopause? Have your physician measure your testosterone levels and if low, supplemental testosterone may need to be prescribed.
In addition a diet and exercise adjustment can significantly change your life and restore energy and well-being. It’s important to realize that men and women share the journey of change and that males can experience changes in the body that need attention to keep harmony within the sexes.