Testosterone is so often associated with beefy, bulky males that it’s easy to forget that testosterone levels in women are equally as important. While it is a key male sex hormone, women produce testosterone in smaller amounts, helping to keep emotions, sex drive, energy levels, and fat loss in check.
Understanding Testosterone in Women
As mentioned, testosterone is a hormone, which is basically like a “chemical messenger” helping to keep major bodily functions doing what they’re supposed to do. Testosterone, as well as estrogen, is created in the ovaries and adrenal glands before being released into your bloodstream.
Testosterone Levels and Your Body
As a woman ages, maintaining proper estrogen levels is often the focus, as this hormone can decrease during menopause, which typically occurs between ages 40 and 55. The drop in estrogen can lead to a loss of sex drive, moodiness, hot flashes, night sweats, and vaginal dryness or irritation.
However, the symptoms for testosterone levels being off are quite different. If you have too much testosterone in your body, symptoms may include increased body hair, acne, an irregular menstrual cycle, hair thinning, a deeper voice, and infertility. Women may experience increased testosterone levels if they have Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, adrenal disease, diabetes, or other hormone-related disorders.
On the flip side, not having enough testosterone may mean feeling exhausted and tired more than normal, losing interest in sex, experiencing increased mood swings, anxiety, and depression, or having difficulty concentrating. There are many reasons why testosterone levels decrease in women, but some of the most common include aging, ovary failure or removal, early menopause, irregular menstrual periods, and adrenal gland disorders.
Testosterone Levels in Women and Fat Loss
If you’ve been exercising regularly and eating right but are still gaining weight or having trouble losing fat, it could be an indicator that your testosterone levels are too low. The lowered testosterone makes it difficult for your body to regulate muscle and fat, so much so that it tends to favor holding onto fat–especially stubborn belly fat.
Is Your Testosterone Too Low?
Hormones are all fun and games until they start messing with your life, which includes your progress toward your fat loss and body strengthening goals. To get your levels in check, you do have options. Consider the following treatments available, and talk with your doctor about what may be best for you.
- Birth control: If you’re on the pill or if you use the ring, patch, hormonal IUD or other form of synthetic estrogen and progestin provider, your testosterone levels could get out of whack. While there are pros and cons to switching to the barrier method or abstaining from sex instead of something hormone-based, if you’re not ready to welcome a little kiddo to the world, you need to consider your options carefully.
- Dietary changes: While we at SlendHer haven’t tested this method personally, some people are said to have seen results by changing what they eat. Called The Hormone Reset Diet, this 21-day focused eating plan helps to bring hormone levels back to normal ranges by adapting a person’s diet to be more focused on the hormonal root cause.
- Testosterone therapy: Typically done through injections, women can increase their testosterone levels by working with a reputable provider of testosterone therapy. A very precise amount, specific to your body, needs to be administered to avoid your levels becoming too high. Weigh the advantages and disadvantages thoroughly before making a decision.