Many men of a particular age experience a natural decline in their sex drive as they get older. Of course, physiology is a significant factor in these changes. Testosterone is the hormone that increases sexual desire, increases muscle mass, influences sperm production, and maintains bone density. Testosterone production generally peaks around the age of 30.
Some men might also experience a decreasing interest in sex as testosterone levels decrease. Other men might not be able to perform as well as they used to. A decrease in sexual interest can also lead to depression and even damage one’s intimate relationships. It is a natural desire to do something to correct low testosterone.
If you are wondering if testosterone boosters are right for you or are concerned about the side effects, here is a look at the risks and benefits of taking a testosterone supplement.
What are testosterone boosters?
Testosterone therapy is commonly used in treated hypogonadism. Hypogonadism is a condition that develops when the body is unable to produce adequate testosterone on its own. Although there are many supplements on the market, it isn’ necessarily clear which ones are effective in helping low testosterone.
Testosterone boosters are supplements that are often taken to increase the production of testosterone in those who are naturally producing enough.
Prostate and Heart Risks
In some cases, taking a testosterone booster can actually cause more problems than they actually solve. Some recent studies have concluded that certain supplements are linked to heart issues. The New England Journal of Medicine reported that men over the age of 65 were more likely to experience heart problems when using testosterone boosting gels.
Another study reports that even men under the age of 65 increased their risk of experiencing heart problems when using a testosterone supplement.
Lastly, a study conducted in 2014 on rats suggested that testosterone boosters were responsible for promoting tumors in the prostate. However, there are no human studies yet.
Other Over the Counter Supplements
A common alternative to prescription testosterone supplementation is an OTC or over-the-counter supplements. These are available online or at a pharmacy.
These supplements typically promise to improve low testosterone levels naturally. In most instances, these supplements are called “testosterone boosters” and usually come in a powdered mix.
Over-the-counter options do not actually contain and hormones or other testosterone. They typically contain herbal supplements or other homeopathic substances that are said to naturally increase testosterone production.
The evidence of these supplements’ effectiveness is minimal.
Other Side effects
Like most other medications or supplements, testosterone boosters also come with possible side effects and risks. These side effects tend to be more prevalent if the user is taking them for aging treatment rather than a treatment for a specific condition.
Some commonly reported side effects include:
- Acne flair-ups
- Enlarged or sensitive breasts
- Sleep apnea
- Shrinkage of testicles
Remember to consult with your doctor before taking any testosterone boosting supplements. Additionally, read the labels for the ingredients to avoid any possible allergic reaction or interactions with these products.