Although the main purpose of testosterone is to promote sex drive and sexual performance, testosterone activity in the brain can have a number of effects. Varying levels of testosterone can cause different effects on our minds, some good and some bad.
Dizziness is an effect that is often quoted in relation to testosterone but are they really related? Let’s find out!
Is lightheadedness a symptom of low testosterone?
Psychological symptoms include:
These cognitive symptoms aren't limited to hypogonadism (low sex hormone gland activity); they're also frequent in dementia. In fact, low testosterone is frequently confused with dementia as it is associated with memory problems, as well as problems with focus and verbal expression. Low testosterone levels in males have been linked to memory problems and "brain fog." The negative effects of low testosterone are especially detrimental in older men.
Why does low testosterone cause this symptom?
It is uncertain exactly how and why low testosterone causes such adverse effects on brain activity. However, the correlation between testosterone and cognitive function has been linked to a number of pathways. Since the symptoms experienced are categorized as psychological and related to cognitive ability, it is an indicator that low levels of testosterone are disrupting brain area function.
It all starts in the hippocampus, which has androgen and estrogen receptors and serves as the brain’s platform for perceptual processing and memory. Through the interaction of androgen receptors in the brain with estrogen receptors through aromatization, testosterone may have immediate effects on the hippocampus that alter the subjective experience. You must keep in mind that testosterone makes effort feel good. Therefore lower testosterone decreases your capacity to lean into the effort and results in dizziness, confusion, and lack of attention.
How common is it?
Low testosterone is pretty common. As they age, men tend to produce less and less testosterone, especially when they go into their forties. On top of that, obesity and a sedentary lifestyle, both of which are common these days, can cause lower testosterone levels.
Keep in Mind: Normal does not equate to common.
Low testosterone is not normal, despite being prevalent. It is abnormal to feel worn out, have a decreased libido, or have trouble focusing, notably to this level, although it is part of life to feel down once in a while.
What are my choices in therapy?
There are three major ways to effectively treat low testosterone and get rid of the symptoms associated with it. Depending on the severity of your problem, you may be able to resolve this issue through:
- Supplementation, or
- Testosterone replacement therapy.
Regardless, you should first consult a doctor if you believe that you have issues with T levels so they can advise you on a proper course of action.
1. Correcting your diet
“Let food be thy medicine,” the old adage holds true in a lot of cases. It’s the most cliche but effective means of turning your overall health around for an abundance of modern-day issues.
The best and least damaging method to start raising your testosterone levels is through making dietary changes, which is also the first advice your doctor will give you before starting any kind of intervention. A diet high in protein is the foundation for good health and muscle maintenance. Alcohol, sugary foods and beverages, empty calories, and bad fats can cause obesity which lowers testosterone production. On top of that, junk food tends to lack the necessary ingredients which help your body produce testosterone naturally.
2. Testosterone supplementation
The fitness industry developed T-Boosters as natural testosterone supplements in order to assist with testosterone production and ensure hormonal optimization. They include specific combinations of ingredients that are known to help with testosterone production but also with protecting testosterone from being converted into other hormones.
These supplements include ingredients that are also present in food but in lesser amounts. These are natural supplements that you may use in combination with a healthy diet and exercise to help your body produce the right amount of testosterone and alleviate symptoms of deficiency.
3. Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT)
This is generally reserved for clinically alarming cases of low testosterone. You must do extensive blood work as well as hormone and lipid profiling before a physician deems it necessary to prescribe exogenous testosterone compounds. As shown by research (1, 2), it is an effective and beneficial method to treat low testosterone, but it does have its share of risks, so it is not prescribed without a concrete reason.
More than merely physical consequences, testosterone also has an impact on men's memory and other cognitive processes. In fact, "brain fog," or a general deterioration in memory and attention, is one of the most readily apparent symptoms of low testosterone in males.
Most commonly, low testosterone is caused by chronically elevated levels of stress, sleep apnea, and a general lack of sleep. Other causes of low testosterone are testicular damage or infections, pituitary gland damage, obesity, a sedentary lifestyle, and exposure to radiation.
The hippocampus and amygdala both contain testosterone receptors that can sense testosterone activity. Research shows that testosterone also affects their structural makeup.