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Testosterone, Hormones and General Men's Health / Astanxanthin arrived...
« on: October 26, 2013, 05:40:13 pm »
Last week my Astaxanthin arrived...

What I have to share with you is that -besides it raises testosterone or not- it DO make the muscles to recover faster... Since taking it (a week - 4mg/day), the last three days I feel as if I haven´t been in the gym... LESS muscle soreness than before taking it, even when upping weight in some of my exercises this same week...

Really interesting...

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Unfortunately, here in Argentina hormonal analysis are expensive and complicated to get prescripted, unless you show your doctor you have a terrible disease!

Anyway, although I can not measure percentages, I know my body and could take account of the effects through my morning erections, my progress in the gym and other parameters...

By the way, have you felt more attractive to the opposite sex when your testosterone is high? This weekend I took some time to read about the increase in the production of pheromones, when our testosterone is above "normal" levels...

In my case, I noticed something... A neighbor who never paid much attention to me, has stopped twice lately to chat with me... and even made ​​a comment about the width of my back :-P

It's really funny... and interesting at the same time!

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Gone are the days in our so called advanced western society when healthy living meant simply getting the right nutrients from our foods. Nowadays our foods are jam packed with an array of harmful chemicals not to mention mainstream personal care products that we absorb through our skin many of which are carcinogenic. Nearly all of today's diseases stem from what we absorb, our bodies simply cannot deal with this overload of toxins exceeding the body's capacity to detoxify itself. .

Studies By Dr Linus Pauling, twice noble prize winner, said "you can trace every sickness, every disease and every ailment to a mineral deficiency". Yet, all over the world, minerals are disappearing from agricultural soils at an alarming rate. In 1992, the official report of the Rio Earth Summit concluded "there is deep concern over continuing major declines in the mineral values in farm and range soils throughout the world". This statement was based on data showing that over the last 100 years, average mineral levels in agricultural soils had fallen worldwide - by 72% in Europe, 76% in Asia and 85% in North America. What has caused this staggering decline?

Most of the blame lies with artificial chemical fertilisers. We now know that plants absorb 70 to 80 different minerals from the soil, while the number returned to it by plants grown with commercial fertilisers can be counted on the fingers of one hand. Every crop that is cut or animal that is sent to market marks a further depletion in the mineral status of the soil on which it was raised. Organic wastes that in former times would have been composted and returned to the land are nowadays mostly consigned to landfill sites or incineration.

There are many other ways in which the move to chemical farming prevents crops from taking up even the sparse amounts of trace minerals left in the soil. Soil contains bacteria, fungi, plant and animal life, in a state of constant interaction and balance. Every one of these organisms needs dozens of different minerals to survive and play its part in the ecosystem. Some bacteria have a vital role in converting soil minerals into chemical forms that plants can use. NPK fertilisers (fertilisers used in modern farming that only contain nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium) gradually change the soil pH towards acidic conditions in which these bacteria can not survive. To combat soil acidification farmers lay lime on the land adding back calcium and magnesium to raise the soil pH, but it also converts manganese and some other trace minerals into chemical forms that plants are unable to absorb.

Pesticides and herbicides also reduce the uptake of trace minerals by plants. Plants have an important relationship with certain fungi that can form networks covering several acres. The fungus obtains carbohydrates from the plant root, at the same time supplying the plant with nutrients it draws from the soil. This gives the plant access to a vastly greater mineral extraction system than is possible by their roots alone. Chemical fungicide sprays destroy these beneficial fungi and so again reduce the ability of plants to absorb soil minerals. Insecticides can also reduce trace mineral uptake by inactivating choline-containing enzymes in plants, essential for the absorption of manganese and other minerals.

The combined effect of soil mineral depletion and the reduced availability of those minerals that remain is that most of the food that we eat is mineral deficient. The table below summarizes the reductions in the average mineral content of 27 vegetables and 17 fruits, between 1940 and 1991:


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Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA)
Dosage: 200mg

200mg DHEA is near the upper limit of what is used to boost testosterone. DHEA is very well studied, and appears to boost testosterone most of the time in persons older than 40 years of age.
Usage of 200mg DHEA in youth (18-25, for the most part) is much more hit or miss. It has been noted in some studies, but some studies also come back null. The DHEA pool always rises (indicating absorption), just sometimes this does not translate into higher testosterone levels for unknown reasons.
It does boost testosterone in women as well, but estrogen too. Minimal to no side-effects regarding androgenicity (man-like side effects) are seen with the average dose of 50mg in women, which is what many fat burning and anti-aging supplements contain.
Females may also use the derivative compoun called 7-Keto (or 7-Oxo), which is a metabolite of DHEA that cannot turn into either estrogen or androgens.

D-Aspartic Acid
Dosage: 3g

One human study of 14 days noted an increase in testosterone, whereas a study lasting longer than that failed to note an increase; it is possible the body regulates testosterone increases from D-aspartic acid.
Usage should, at least until more research is conducted, be limited to short term use or used by infertile men (of which this negative regulation may not exist).

Vitamin D
Dosage: 3000iu

At least one study of 3,000 IU has noted an increase in testosterone concentrations in men with low vitamin D status, and a followup in men with normal vitamin D status failed to replicate this information.
It appears that a deficiency of vitamin D suppresses testosterone production and normalizing this deficiency normalizes testosterone; supraphysiological levels of vitamin D do not appear to be further beneficial.

Zinc
Dosage: 30mg

A deficiency of zinc reduces testosterone concentrations in serum, and normalizing this deficiency causes a compensatory increase; zinc supplementation does not increase testosterone above baseline.

Fenugreek
Dosage: 500mg

Fenugreek has been shown to increase testosterone in healthy males, which is thought to be due to a backlog of testosterone conversion into DHT via inhibiting the 5-alpha reductase enzyme. The reduction in DHT needs to be considered though, as many persons wishing to increase testosterone (for libido or muscle building) would also prefer an increase in DHT.

Source: http://examine.com/stacks/increasing-testosterone.html

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In my case, I incorporate B-complex vitamins by sprinkling brewer's yeast in all my meals... It has almost no taste...

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The purpose of this post is learn to buy the right supplement, among so much variety, so not to waste our time, money and expectations.

When, for example, a study says "one gram daily magnesium increases testosterone levels", is highly unlikely that you can get the same results using, let´s say, magnesium oxide...

The same applies to zinc, and to many minerals and vitamins...

Magnesium
Best forms: glycinate, malate, taurate
Garbage forms: aspartate, oxide, lactate

Zinc
Best forms: L-methionine, L-OptiZinc monomethionine, carnosine, glycinate
Garbage forms: aspartate, oxide

Vitamin B9
Best forms: folinic acid (also known as 5-MTHF) <- one of the forms of folate found naturally in foods
Worst forms: folic acid <- a cheap synthetic form of folate

(will continue....)

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The researchers published their first results in Neuroendocrinology Letters in 2006. These came from an animal study in which they had given male rats daily injections of 3 mg zinc per kg bodyweight in the small intestine. The course of injections lasted for four weeks. At the end of the period the researchers got the animals to swim for thirty minutes.

A control group of rats also swam, but had not been given extra zinc. Yet another control group did nothing at all. The researchers then measured the rats’ testosterone level immediately after completing the swimming test.



The physical activity led to a decrease of the testosterone level – but not in the animals that had been given extra zinc. The lactic acid level of this group of rats also rose by less than that of the rats that swam but had not been given zinc. The researchers suspect that the body uses large amounts of zinc during physical exercise and that, as a result, other body processes that generate energy or produce hormones are hampered. Zinc is needed in these processes as well.

"Physiological doses of zinc supplementation may produce useful outcomes for performance", the researchers conclude. But rats aren’t humans, so the researchers followed up with an experiment on human subjects: ten male students with an average age of 20 who had a sedentary lifestyle. The results of this study appeared a year after the animal study results. They were published in the same journal, by the way. [Neuro Endocrinol Lett. 2007 Oct;28(5):681-5.]

The students were given a daily dose of 3 mg zinc sulphate per kg bodyweight for a period of four weeks. That’s a lot of zinc. If you weigh 80 kg you'd be getting get 240 mg zinc per day [appr. 80 mg elemental zinc]. That’s more than ten times the daily amount of zinc recommended by nutritionists.

After four weeks on the supplements, the students had to cycle to exhaustion point on an ergometer, pedalling harder as the test progressed. The researchers also got the students to perform the same test when they had not been stuffed full of zinc. The figure below shows the effect of the zinc supplement on the testosterone level.



The effect on free testosterone is particularly striking. At rest the level was fifty percent higher than normal, and this increased after the exhaustion test. In the control group the free testosterone level went down by about twenty percent after the cycling test.

The zinc supplement had a similar, but less marked, effect on the concentration of thyroxine. Levels of this hormone increased by about ten percent in the students that had taken zinc. The supplement did not prevent the concentrations of T3 and T4 from declining as a result of physical exertion. We know that athletes react differently to supplements and diets than non-athletes do. And the researchers have also done tests with athletes. More about these in the next posting.

Source:
Neuro Endocrinol Lett. 2006 Feb-Apr; 27(1-2):267-70.

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Testosterone, Hormones and General Men's Health / Show us your arsenal!
« on: September 13, 2013, 09:27:33 pm »
Here's mine, constantly growing:


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Athletes who want to build muscle mass can use not only proteins, creatine and amino acids, but also fish oils to achieve this. The anabolic effect of omega-3 fatty acids has been confirmed, so now molecular scientists at the University of Aberdeen have gone a step further. They are about to publish the results of a study in Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications from which you can deduce which fish oil supplements have the strongest anabolic effect: those containing lots of EPA.

Taking fish oil supplements or eating a diet that is rich in fish fatty acids have a body recompositioning effect: your fat mass decreases and muscle mass increases. Scroll down to find links to articles on the anabolic and fat-cell killing effect of fish fatty acids.

Researchers in Aberdeen, Scotland, were curious about how fish fatty acids can have an anabolic effect, so they designed experiments with full grown C2C12 muscle cells from mice to try and work out the mechanism involved. They exposed the cells in test tubes to 50 micromols of the fish fatty acids DHA and EPA, and stimulated anabolism with leucine.

When the researchers measured the build-up and breakdown of muscle cell protein, they noticed that these were 25 percent higher and 22 percent lower respectively in the muscle cells that had been exposed to EPA.





The researchers then looked at the activity of anabolic signal molecules in the muscle cells. The figure below shows that EPA and DHA both activated p70s6k, but only EPA activated FOXO3a. The fish fatty acids had no effect on the other signal molecules that the researchers examined: Akt, mTOR, 4EBP1 and rps6.



"Fish oil supplementation containing a higher proportion of EPA than DHA could be the most efficacious in improving protein accretion in response to anabolic stimuli such as L-leucine/resistance exercise and could attenuate protein breakdown in ageing skeletal muscle", the researchers conclude. "Further work in humans is clearly required to test this hypothesis."

Source:
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2013 Mar 22;432(4):593-8.

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If men take a daily dose of the supplement Alphastat, their testosterone level rises, according to a study at the University of Yaounde in Cameroon. The active ingredients in the supplement, the carotenoid astaxanthin, and an extract of the saw palmetto Serenoa repens, reduce the conversion of testosterone into estradiol and DHT.

The sponsor of the study is the American company Triarco Industries, the maker of Alphastat. Alphastat contains a mix of saw palmetto extract and astaxanthin, which in laboratory studies slowed down the enzymes 5a-reductase and aromatase. These enzymes transform testosterone into DHT and estradiol, respectively, leaving more testosterone over.

Triarco has called the mix Mytosteron. Triarco Industries put Alphastat on the market as a prostate protector, and wanted to know whether the supplement also increased testosterone levels in humans. So Triarco asked researchers in Cameroon if they wanted to study this in an independent trial.

The researchers gave 40 healthy men aged between 40 and 70 a daily dose of either 800 mg or 2g of Alphastat. They were given the supplement for two weeks. Below you see how both dosages increased the concentration of testosterone in the blood of the test subjects.



Both dosages lowered the concentration of DHT in the blood, as you can see below.



When it came to reducing the estradiol level, the lighter dose was a little more effective than the heavier dose (see below).



Human studies have never shown saw palmetto to have a testosterone-increasing effect. The effects that the researchers noticed were therefore probably due to the astaxanthin. At least, if they didn’t just make up the results. The reported increase in the testosterone level seems too good to be true.

And what usually seems to be too good to be true in the wonderful world of supplement research, usually turns out to be so.

Astaxanthin is on its way to becoming incredibly hip. Give it to rats that have to run in a wheel, and they burn more fat and their stamina increases. In endurance tests with mice, astaxanthin maintains the glycogen stores. Give astaxanthin to mice you are fattening up and they become less fat. If astaxanthin really is a testosterone booster – which we doubt, but anyway – it’s on its way to becoming as unstoppable a hit as resveratrol.

Sources:
J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2008 Aug 12;5:12.

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The researchers did experiments with rats aged 3 months and 20 months. Lab rats don’t get to be very old, so a 20 month-old rat is equivalent to a human in his sixties. The researchers put the rats in a bath at 41-43 degrees Celsius, every day, three times a day. The illustration shows the set up.



The rats stayed in the bath for 10 minutes each time. After 4 weeks the researchers measured the animals’ testosterone and LH synthesis.

The hot baths had no effect on the young lab rats, but in the old rats their testosterone level went down by a factor of 3.

I = concentration of hormones in the young rats who had not been put in the bath; II = in old rats who had not been put in the bath; III = in young rats who had been put in the bath; IV = in old rats who had been put in the bath.





Exposing the testes to high temperatures reduces the effect of the enzyme P450c17 and the StAR protein – full name steroid acute regulatory protein. StAR is a key protein in the conversion of cholesterol into testosterone in the testes. The old rats that had hot baths produced none at all.

The Koreans think that their findings apply to humans too. "Hot baths may have negative effects on testosterone synthesis in older human males”, they write in the last paragraph of their article.

Recent studies have shown that heat treatment has a small but measurable muscle strengthening effect. After a heavy training session, a hot bath speeds up muscle recovery – although alternating hot and cold baths work even better. But all studies have been done on fairly young people. Judging by the Korean animal study, heat is a double-edged sword for older athletes.

Of course rats aren’t humans, but we’ll be switching to cold showers immediately. Even though we only know about The Kinks from documentaries on the sixties, we’re old enough to remember The Buggles.

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Mine is:

Breakfast:
30mg Opti-L-Zinc
5.000 IU Vitamin D3 + 10.000 IU Betacarotene

Lunch:
1-2 cap/s of good fish oil

Bedtime:
1 cap DIM 100mg
1 cap NoEstrogen (Powerlab)
Zinc again, only on days I've had sex or an intense workout (sweating too much)



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Has anyone here ever tried the weight loss cocktail?

http://www.peaktestosterone.com/Weight_Loss_Cocktail

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Ito A, Shirakawa H, Takumi N, Minegishi Y, Ohashi A, Howlader ZH, Ohsaki Y, Sato T, Goto T, Komai M.
Source
Laboratory of Nutrition, Graduate School of Agricultural Science, Tohoku University, Sendai 981-8555, Japan.
Abstract
BACKGROUND:
Vitamin K is essential for the posttranslational modification of various Gla proteins. Although it is widespread in several organs, including the testis, the function of vitamin K in these organs is not well characterized. In this study, we investigated the function of vitamin K in the testis and analyzed its role in steroidogenesis.
METHODS:
Eight-week-old male Wistar rats were fed a diet supplemented with menaquinone-4 (MK-4, 75 mg/kg diet), one of the predominant K? vitamins present in the testis, for 5 weeks. In vivo testosterone levels of the rats' plasma and testes were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, and in vitro testosterone levels of testis-derived tumor cells (I-10 cells) maintained in Ham's F-10 medium with 10% fetal bovine serum were measured following treatment with MK-4 (0 to 100 ?M) at several time points. Testosterone and cellular protein levels were analyzed with respect to their effects on steroidogenesis.
RESULTS:
Testosterone levels in the plasma and testes of MK-4-fed rats were significantly increased compared to those of control rats, with no obvious differences in plasma luteinizing hormone levels. Secreted testosterone levels from I-10 cells were elevated by MK-4, but not by vitamin K?, in a dose-dependent manner independent of cAMP treatment. Western blot analysis revealed that expression of CYP11A, the rate-limiting enzyme in steroidogenesis, and phosphorylation levels of protein kinase A (PKA) and the cAMP response element-binding protein were all stimulated by the presence of MK-4. Enhancement of testosterone production was inhibited by H89, a specific inhibitor of PKA, but not by warfarin, an inhibitor of ?-glutamylcarboxylation.
CONCLUSIONS:
MK-4 stimulates testosterone production in rats and testis-derived tumor cells via activation of PKA. MK-4 may be involved in steroidogenesis in the testis, and its supplementation could reverse the downregulation of testosterone production in elders.

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Testosterone, Hormones and General Men's Health / Best form of boron?
« on: September 05, 2013, 03:28:00 pm »
Hello everyone,

I was wondering if there´s any "best" or "ideal" form of boron... Is calcium fructoborate better absorbed than the other forms?

By the way: what dosages have achieved -for you- the expected results (increased T, low estradiol)? 3 mg daily? 6 mg? 10 mg?

Thanks in advance!

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