Testosterone and estrogen are two important hormones found within the body. Men typically require more testosterone and less estrogen, while women require more estrogen and less testosterone. Contrary to what some people think, both are necessary for good health – men still need estrogen and women still need testosterone. It’s important to know when you may have a deficiency or an imbalance of these hormones. This post delves into the importance of both hormones and how to tell if you have an imbalance.
The importance of testosterone
Testosterone plays a major part in determining assigned gender at birth. It is a vital hormone for reproductive health, as well as contributing to body hair growth and voice changes during puberty. A healthy male produces 7 to 8 times more testosterone than a woman. That said women still need testosterone – the hormone is important for both men and women when it comes to keeping bones strong and regulating red blood cell circulation. Testosterone also plays an important part in the libido of both men and women.
There are a few telltale symptoms of low testosterone that can be worth monitoring. Many men and women experience fatigue, muscle weakness, low bone density, mood swings and reduced libido. Thinning hair and weight gain are meanwhile two symptoms of decreased testosterone in men. Fortunately, a testosterone deficiency is very easy to treat. A doctor will be able to run tests to determine if you have a deficiency and you can then be prescribed supplements.
It’s worth noting that too much testosterone can have equally negative effects including fatigue and infertility. Men and women with too much testosterone may experience increased levels of aggression and increased levels of body hair. Men may experience a swollen prostate and trouble urinating, while women may experience deepening of the voice. Like testosterone deficiency, this can be easily diagnosed and treated.
The importance of estrogen
Estrogen is key to female reproductive health. It is actually a combination of three different hormones. Women typically produce between 2 to 10 times more estrogen than men, which helps with regulation of the menstrual cycle and general ovary health. Both men and women need estrogen to regulate blood pressure and cholesterol, however low estrogen levels typically aren’t as much of an issue for men as low testosterone levels are for women.
Too much estrogen can be bad for both men and women. It can cause fatigue and low sex drive. Men may experience loss of body hair and even growth of breasts. Women meanwhile may develop fibroids, experience uneven periods and possibly gain weight. Fortunately, treatments exist that can help lower estrogen levels if this occurs.
Low estrogen can negatively impact fertility in women and may result in mood changes, hot flashes and low libido. For women trying to get pregnant, low estrogen levels can be a big issue. All women experience a drop in estrogen levels during menopause. There are various treatments for low estrogen levels, including medication for those experiencing complications in their menopause.