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Can Testosterone Improve Mental Function?

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The benefits of optimal testosterone levels go further than the physical. Having the right levels of the male androgen may be able to boost your mental capacity too.

In this article we’ll take a look at the links between optimal male hormone levels and mental functions.

Here’s what we’ll cover:

  • Testosterone and cognitive ability
  • The link between male homrones and mental ability

Testosterone and Cognitive Ability

Normal T levels for a man lie between 300 and 1000ng/dL but after the age of 30, a man’s testosterone levels begin to decline by about 1% a year [1]. When levels fall below 300 you are classed as hypogonadal – you suffer from ‘low T’.

As testosterone decreases, you start to lose muscle mass – a process called sarcopenia. This will also contribute to a decrease in strength and functional ability- you’ll feel weaker in the gym and whilst completing everyday tasks. You’ll also notice that your neuromuscular control– the ability to coordinate movements and maintain balance, may suffer too.

When we think about low testosterone we often think about these physical or sexual side effects – and they are all serious. But scientists agree that our male hormones influence the brain and have a big effects on a number of mental functions too [2] – focus, concentration, attention and memory for example. These are all referred to as cognitive processes. 


concentration-and-t-levels

Key Point: Testosterone doesn’t just protect your physical health, it boosts mental abilities too.


How Are Mental Ability and T Levels Related?

As we age we start to lose mental abilities, and this seems to coincide with the loss of testosterone too. As a steroid hormone thought to influence both emotional and cognitive functions [2].

Optimal T levels may help to protect you from symptoms of mild cognitive impairment (MCI). This is a condition where aspects of cognition are affected but don’t severely affect daily life – unlike dementia for example.

A study published in the European Journal of Endocrinology [3] found that low levels of testosterone in older men was associated with poor cognitive performance. They suggested that a T booster may be effective in improving mental ability. In another study, T was found to play a male-specific role for testosterone in enhancing memory by increasing the biological processing of incoming information [4].

Not all studies have found positive changes though. For example, a study by Kenny et al [5] found that even with 200mg of T every 3 weeks, no marker of cognitive function improved. The study group however did have extremely low testosterone levels – 128ng/dL – which is well below the optimal threshold of 300-1000ng/dL which may have affected the results seen.

Studies have shown that T levels relate to lower performance on cognitive tests. A study in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism [6] for example, found that in older (but healthy) men, higher T levels meant better performance on several tests of cognitive function.

Another study found that hypogonodal men have significantly lower visuospatial ability than healthy males [7]. That means that they struggled to process incoming visual information, making tasks like driving, map navigating or playing sports more difficult.

A similar study found though that by boosting T levels over an 8-week period to optimal levels, spatial ability could be normalized [8].

Low T may even be linked to dementia

Studies also show that T levels are lower in men suffering from dementia of the Alzheimer’s type are lower than healthy males. It is thought that testosterone plays a protective role in brain health.

Hogervorst et al [9] found that the link was so strong between the two that they should be classed as ‘co-morbidities’. Interestingly though the study found that there is no link between T levels and dementia in females.

Other studies have seen the same relationship with free T levels being inversely related to the protein Aβ40 – a useful predictor of dementia [10].


cognitive-ability

Summary

As the primary male hormone, testosterone is responsible for promoting muscle mass, strength and masculinity. It also helps to boost virility and libido.

Mental processes such as concentration, spatial awareness, attention and memory are also linked to testosterone. As levels of this hormone drops, cognitive ability also declines. This can lead to poor mental recall and productivity. Cognitive illnesses have also been linked to low T including dementia.

It is important to optimize your testosterone levels through regular exercise and healthy diet nutrient-dense supplements.


What Can You Do To Boost Testosterone?

Testofuel is an all-natural, high-quality anabolic support complex containing nutrients shown to boost testosterone in the most robust of scientific studies.

This supplement has the ability to support:

  • Muscle Growth and Strength – the golden chalice of weight lifting
  • Improved Recovery – hit the gym time and time again
  • Enhanced Energy – you’ll be able to train longer and harder to maximize results

TestoFuel is ideal for improving your mental performance both in and out of the gym, and helping you attain that all-important muscular physique.


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References

  1. Brawer, M. Testosterone replacement in men with andropause: an overview. 2004 Rev Urol. 6 (Suppl 6)
  2. Celec, P et al. On the effects of testosterone on brain behavioral functions. Front Neurosci. 2015; 9: 12
  3. Beauchet, O. Testosterone and cognitive function: current clinical evidence of a relationship. Eur J Endocrinol. 2006; 155(6): 773-81
  4. Ackermann, S et al. Testosterone levels in healthy men are related to amygdala reactivity and memory performance. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2012; 37(9): 1417-24
  5. Kenny, AM et al. Effects of testosterone on behavior, depression, and cognitive function in older men with mild cognitive loss. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2004; 59(1): 75-8
  6. Barrett-Connor, E et al. Endogenous sex hormones and cognitive function in older men. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 1999; 84(10): 3681-5
  7. Hier, D.B. & Crowley, W.F. Spatial ability in androgen-deficient men. New England Journal of Medicine. 1982; 306: 1202–1205
  8. O’Connor, DB et al. Activational effects of testosterone on cognitive function in men. Neuropsychologia. 2001; 39(13): 1385-94
  9. Hogervorst, E et al. Serum total testosterone is lower in men with Alzheimer’s Disease. Neuroendocrinology Letters 2001; 22:163–168
  10. Gillett, MJ et al. Relationship between testosterone, sex hormone binding globulin and plasma amyloid beta peptide 40 in older men with subjective memory loss or dementia. Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease. 2003; 5(4): 267-269

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