When it comes to sex hormones, women are driven by estrogen while men are driven by testosterone, right? The truth is, both genders have both.
The difference comes in their levels. In this piece, you will read about these levels, conditions that alter with this normalcy, and commonly asked questions like does working out increase testosterone.
NORMAL TESTOSTERONE LEVELS
Before delving any more in-depth, you must know the normal testosterone levels in both men and women.
According to the University of Rochester Health Encyclopedia, the total amount of testosterone in men is around 280 to 1,100ng/deciliter.
This number, however, is too high compared to the levels of testosterone in women.
The normal levels for women are considered to be between 15 to 70 ng/deciliter.
It is important also to note that the levels of hormones vary throughout the day. As so, testosterone levels are highest in the morning.
SYMPTOMS OF HIGH TESTOSTERONE IN FEMALES
A testosterone imbalance in women can affect not only the physical appearance of women but also their overall health.
Symptoms of high testosterone in females include:
Acne, deep voice, excess hair on the body and face, increased muscle mass, irregular periods, larger than the average clitoris, reduction in breasts and mood changes.
On the other hand, extreme testosterone levels in women can lead to infertility and obesity cases.
CAUSES OF HIGH TESTOSTERONE IN FEMALES
Your high levels of testosterone may be due to the following underlying medical conditions
CONGENITAL ADRENAL HYPERPLASIA (CAH)
This term is used to refer to inherited disorders that may affect your adrenal glands.
Your adrenal glands play a key role in secretion of hormones cortisol and aldosterone, which take part in managing your metabolism and blood pressure.
Your adrenal glands also produce the hormones DHEA and testosterone. The problem comes in because women with CAH do not have the necessary enzymes to regulate the levels of testosterone being produced.
Therefore, these women end up with little cortisol and higher levels of testosterone than the ones required in a woman.
Females with CAH will show symptoms ranging from excess body hair, larger than normal clitoris, severe acne, rapid childhood growth but have a short height as adults.
This condition has been linked to genetics. It is characterized by excess and unwanted hair growth in women.
This hair growth is almost similar to that of men where, coarse hair grows of the chest, face and back of the affected female.
Extremely high testosterones will lead to other symptoms like deep voice, acne and balding among others.
POLYCYSTIC OVARY SYNDROME (PCOS)
According to an article in the National Institute of health, this condition affects between 8 and 20% worldwide.
This disorder is mostly common in women of reproductive age.
Its symptoms range from irregular menstrual periods to excess body hair.
Besides, PCOS may lead to dire complications in your body such as infertility, obesity and heart diseases.
DIAGNOSIS OF HIGH TESTOSTERONE IN FEMALES
Your doctor will diagnose if you have high levels of testosterone through the following ways.
Physical examination- Your doctor will look for general symptoms such as excess body hair and facial hair growth. They will also inquire more about your menstrual cycle abnormalities and libido.
Blood tests- If you have the above- mentioned symptoms, your doctor will proceed to a blood test to check your hormone levels. They can also check either your glucose of cholesterol levels.
To be accurate, your doctor will insist on having this test early in the morning, when your testosterone levels are at their maximum.
Ultrasound- This diagnostic method may be used to check for PCOS. Your doctor may perform an ultrasound of the ovaries and uterus.
LOW TESTOSTERONE LEVELS
This is also an abnormality that is common in women. You may actually need to seek treatment for low testosterone levels, which in most cases is caused by an underlying condition or surgery (like removal of the ovaries)
However, the above- mentioned are not the only causes of low testosterone levels. Also, your testosterone levels may naturally tend to decrease as you age.
A review from Boston University School of Medicine suggests testosterone therapy to spike up the falling testosterone levels. However, some experts have disagreed with this fact, stating that it could have more side effects on women.
Some of the side effects that testosterone therapy may cause include: acne, deepening voice and male pattern baldness.
Alternatively, you can turn to safer methods to boost your testosterone levels such as exercise. These will come in double blessings since they will also help in keeping you fit.
DOES WORKING OUT INCREASE TESTOSTERONE IN FEMALES?
To answer your question on does working out increase testosterone levels in females, yes it does.
According to a 2001 study published on Pub Med, exercise led to increasing testosterone levels of women.
In this study, the testosterone responses of 47 women were recorded after resistance exercises. The researchers found that strength training can increase testosterone levels and also help in fat distribution in women.
You will have an easier time building more muscles with high testosterone levels than low testosterone levels.
WHAT MOVES BOOSTS THE TESTOSTERONE LEVELS IN FEMALES?
In as much as exercise does help increase testosterone levels in females, it is important to note that not all exercises can do this. Moreover, if you wanted to increase your testosterone levels, you would have to include specific activities to your program.
Below are some of these exercises.
These exercises have been proved to increase both short- and long-term testosterone levels in women.
In a review published in the European Journal of Applied and Occupational Physiology, a 30- minute weight lifting session led to increased testosterone levels in females.
In this study, the women recorded a 16% increase in their testosterone levels.
WHAT CAN YOU DO IF YOUR TESTOSTERONE LEVELS ARE LOW?
Alternatively, consider the following tips to your question on does working out increase testosterone levels.
If your levels are low, consider them for a slight boost.
Hit the gym less- If you have been overtraining, consider reducing your training and take rests if you need to. Excess training in workouts like running can actually reduce your testosterone levels.
Exercise more if you don’t- If you have never found a reason to hit the gym, your low testosterone levels have given you one. Researchers have proved that acute endurance training and resistance training can increase the level of your androgen circulation. This includes your testosterone.
Move some weight- Consider quitting the treadmill and turn to lift some weights instead. Apart from increasing your androgen circulation, weight lifting will also help you to develop stronger bones.
To further answer your question, does working out increase testosterone in females, experts recommend weight resistance training for women 2- 3 times a week.
Eat more zinc- This is a powerful little mineral that can be found in pumpkin seeds. It will increase your testosterone levels by blocking the enzymes that convert testosterone to estrogen in your body.
Testosterone is an essential hormone in your body. As you seek to answer your question, does working out increase testosterone in females, also consider alternatives highlighted above.
Before engaging in any medical treatment for testosterone levels in your body, consult your doctor first.[related_posts_by_tax posts_per_page="4"]