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Author Topic: Low Testosterone Age 36, are natural methods realistic? - still want more kids  (Read 15379 times)

mikeash76

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My name is Mike and I have been struggling with Low T for the last year of getting my first blood draw for testosterone. I'm 36 and last year I went to the doctor with concerns of weak erection and loss of stamina.  The test revealed levels of 210.  He wrote me a prescription for a testosterone gel and I proceeded to take it. After about 1 month and a half I noticed a lot of water retention but no real change in anything else.  I have to say the daily application of gel was extremely annoying an concerning since I have small children who are always crawling on me.

I went back after a month and a half of treatment told him I was getting off of it that I didn't like the prospects of being on something for the rest of my life with so little known about the long term effects, plus my wife and I want to have another child and the potential of becoming infertile scared me as well.

My doctor responded that I couldn't raise my levels naturally and I told him  I wanted to try.  So this year I got another test and my levels came out to be 290ng/l.  Its a good increase but definitely not ideal.  I am scheduled to meet with him on my latest results which I am proud of especially since I didn't really alter my lifestyle to much until recently which was stop smoking pot (smoked for over 15 years sometimes chronically) and pulled way back on drinking hard alcohol.
My question is regarding my options.  I am now on a strict diet and workout regimen and hope my levels will continue to increase but I know my doctor will want to put me back on HRT.  I would like to continue on my new lifestyle and see if I can get to 400 or better.  I am now around 12% body fat, 182 and working out pretty regularly.
I am an avid reader of your site and would like to know if there are any natural options for me that don't require HRT this early in life.  I want more kids and don't want to be medicated indefinitely..  If I can get it up to an acceptable level, is there any studies showing how long this takes? Any studies that confirm this possible.  Seems like everyone wants to sell HRT and not talk much about natural remedies (excluding you).

PeakT

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First of all, sorry to hear about the difficulties.  I've been down that road and it's not fun. 

I'm going to have to keep this short, cuzz, speaking of kids, I got three of 'em that need to be driven all over the place.  But let me make a few comments:

--Imo there is no practical difference between 210 and 290.  I would be very surprised if you will feel any improvement in symptoms.  290 is just a hair breath above what most labs would consider hypogonadal (280) and the lower end of those lab ranges are abysmally low imo.

--I understand about your concerns about the possible long term effects of HRT.  So far science has not found any long term effects as far as I know, but none of us has a crystal ball and so perhaps some subpopulations will be at risk in certain cases.  Who knows?

--I think you are wise to go off the topicals if you can.  That's my personal opinion.  Supposedly, according to one study, transferrence is not a concern.  I am skeptical however and think it's important to play it safe.  In the case of small children, this has the potential to be brain-altering, and I have kids and would never want that on my conscience.  Realize, though, that there are many  alternatives that are safe imo:  injections, Axiron, patches, pellets and possibly Forestra.

--If you there is any chance you want to have kids, then HRT is not a good idea, again imo.  The great majority of men will experience decreased fertility.  Use the search on my site and this forum regarding to look up things like Clomid, Arimidex, etc.  And I've got imho one of the most int'g pages on fertility as well:

http://www.peaktestosterone.com/Improving_Fertility

--You must balance your concerns about testosterone therapy with concerns about NOT treating testosterone.  And in your case when I say "testosterone therapy" I am including Clomid/Arimidex btw.  PM me and I will send you my book on testosterone.  In this book I document all the increased risks of being at low testosterone (less than about 350 or 400 ng/dl):  diabetes, venous leakage, Metabolic Syndrome, osteoporosis, erectile dysfunction, depression and on and on.  Again, I'm not a doc and can't tell you whether or not to go on pharmaceuticals or HRT, but you should be fully informed before you make a decision.

--As you know, I am a huge proponent of a natural lifestyle.  However, I have not seen much success with boosting low testosterone when a man is hypogonadal like yourself.  The exception is with a large amount of weight loss.  But, of course, you have little to nothing to lose!  So I encourage you to read through my site and try to improve your testosterone through lifestyle means, such as increasing sleep, improving your mental attitude, increasing Vitamin D levels, making sure you are getting adequate base nutrients, etc.  However, my experience is that men generally are not going to go from the 200's into the 500-1000 range from lifestyle alone, which is where someone your age would normally be.

--Last thing.  Here is some good starter info on testing to discuss with your doc:

http://www.peaktestosterone.com/testosterone_tests
THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE BOOK ON TRT/TESTOSTERONE:
https://www.amazon.com/Natural-Versus-Testosterone-Therapy-Myer/dp/1523210532/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1499116128&sr=8-1&keywords=natural+versus+testosterone+therapy
And check out my New Peak Testosterone Program: http://www.peaktestosterone.com/peak_testosterone_program
If you are on medications or have a medical condition, always check with your doctor first before making any lifestyle changes or taking new supplements.  And low testosterone is a medical condition.

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PeakT

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By the way, this thread would be good for you probably, i.e. the YouTube video with Dr. Morgentaler, who emphasizes that you're just trying to bring testosterone to normal testosterone levels:

https://www.peaktestosterone.com/forum/index.php?topic=681

THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE BOOK ON TRT/TESTOSTERONE:
https://www.amazon.com/Natural-Versus-Testosterone-Therapy-Myer/dp/1523210532/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1499116128&sr=8-1&keywords=natural+versus+testosterone+therapy
And check out my New Peak Testosterone Program: http://www.peaktestosterone.com/peak_testosterone_program
If you are on medications or have a medical condition, always check with your doctor first before making any lifestyle changes or taking new supplements.  And low testosterone is a medical condition.

FightLowT

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The "doctor" said you couldnt raise your testosterone levels normally or naturally?

Here's what I have to say about that.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HQey-2LP1E4

Just like you see the poor children in third world countries with their hands out stretched for food, well that's you for a trial of clomid therapy. Ok so clomid might not "naturally" raise testosterone levels through the use of food, exercise, and lifetsyle but more so it allows your body additional messenger hormones such as GNRH and LH which will in turn allow your pituitary to send stronger signals to your testicles and the result will hopefully be higher testosterone levels and sperm count.

http://www.ergo-log.com/clomiphenehormonetherapy.html

uh oh here is another one..

http://www.ergo-log.com/clomid-testosterone.html

I bet I could literally find studies like this all day long on the internet. I wonder why these "genius" doctors can't when I can. I tell you what I can do. For a minimal amount of money I am offering package services from yours truly. If you pay for the travel for just $50 I will go to your doctor's office with you and school his sorry ass in knowledge provided with the studies done by real doctors to back it up along with my own blood work and the results I have gotten. Here is the real deal value though. The grand finale. I will slap his sorry ass at the end of the visit. Where are you going to find that kind of  service? Tell me!


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PeakT

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Whoa!  HRT Enforcer??

"And this is my fwiend Guido, doc.  He's vewy intwested in what you got to tell me..."
THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE BOOK ON TRT/TESTOSTERONE:
https://www.amazon.com/Natural-Versus-Testosterone-Therapy-Myer/dp/1523210532/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1499116128&sr=8-1&keywords=natural+versus+testosterone+therapy
And check out my New Peak Testosterone Program: http://www.peaktestosterone.com/peak_testosterone_program
If you are on medications or have a medical condition, always check with your doctor first before making any lifestyle changes or taking new supplements.  And low testosterone is a medical condition.

mikeash76

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Thanks for the response FightLowT.

Because of this site, I am seriously thinking about Clomid especially since it seems to be a good agonist for natural hormone production and is used by fertility doctors (according to what I have read).  I want to keep it as natural as possible.

As stated earlier I smoked pot for 18 years  and I wonder if that along with my propensity to always be stressed out (even since early childhood) have eventually caught up with me.  This is why I have made such radical changes in my lifestyle and want to give the natural way a shot.  My thoughts are if I have been suppressing my own production, what happens if I stop.  I just raised my points levels by 40% without really even trying so I wonder if I can get to say 400 or a little better on my own.  I would like to give my self  6 months to a year to see if the change in lifestyle coupled with a little time will allow my body to reset and where my T levels normalize.  In my opinion my T  levels raising even though I did smoke and drink heavily all summer is a good indication that maybe I am doing the damage and that if I quit these habits (which I have for over a month now) and clean up for a year, maybe my body can get back to normal or at least to a more manageable level where I can be more precise with the treatment I need.
Also, I don't have low energy or mind fog.  Along with working full time and raising my children, I'm a finance major and making A's and B's. Erection strength and stamina and inability to work out at the levels when I was younger are what really signaled the Low T for me. I still want to have sex but sometimes the equipment isn't as cooperative to the degree I want it to be(Cialis has helped though). I have found if I work out hard 3+ days in a row I get crazy exhausted and even sick which makes sense because Low T can leave you more susceptible to getting sick. My family has a history of depression and I have been diagnosed but have never taken anti-depressants but instead self medicated (pot)..

This board gives me the confidence to mention the other treatments like Clomid and others that don't interfere with fertility to my doctor and to seek a new doctor if he is not receptive.

I'm sure I will eventually need HRT but I want to complete the baby making activities first and get a real and natural baseline of health before signing up for a lifetime of medicine which is not as scary as watching the videos posted by Peak T on youtube.
Looks like it's time to get on some Vit B complex, D-3, and go talk to the doctor this week about treatment options.  I feel good about it now thanks to this site and its members.

Thanks all.
Mike


mikeash76

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FightLow T,

Thanks for the posts on Clomid.  Are you still taking it? If not, can you talk about your transition off it and whether or not you are on other treatment? (I apologize if this is on another post somewhere).

  I am definitely going in with the objective to get that prescription and nothing else unless he has something comparable. The studies you cited along with the thread on this forum make that path the most comfortable one for me given my circumstances regarding fertility.

This treatment is still new and evolving, and I believe that eventually medicine will continue to produce additional  options for treatment depending on the patients circumstance.

I will provide updates on the outcome of my appointment and if I get a Clomid prescription, I will definitely chart my progress.  I have all of my lab results going back 2 years including T levels. This should allow for the ability to draw strong conclusions regarding my case and maybe help someone else in a similar situation.

Thanks again.

FightLowT

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I am no longer taking clomid. It has been my experience that after I have ceased the clomid treatment that symptoms gradually show back up after around two months to what they were at baseline. It's not very sudden and perhaps for some people it is more pronounced and the symptoms come back sooner than others. I suspect that the LH levels just slowly start to fall and in turn so does the testosterone. Based on other accounts I have heard from other people on other forums they experience this as well.

You may not like this advice but in my opinion you need not wait another six monhs to one year to begin clomid therapy.  I feel that you would be spinning your wheels without opting to try it now. Here is the reason why. With levels in the range that you are in, it would be highly unlikely to get to a point which would provide you significant relief you are seeking just through lifestyle changes. Just as Peak T has stated by all means incorporate those positive changes but do not expect for your system to magically get back to where it is optimum or substantially improved. Additionally if your goal is to improve your fertility you more than likely stand a far greater chance achieving this with the clomid due to it's ability to also increase sperm count since FSH levels are also elevated.

The last labs I had taken were about 3 weeks ago and the total T came to 343 ng/dl and Free T came to 11.3 pg/ml..Pretty sucky.. And yes I feel like shit for the most part. The best I have ever come in at without any clomid treatment was 400 ng/dl and this is why I say don't expect for your body to restabilize with a significantly higher level. I'm not saying it's impossible it's just very improbable. I am one of those guys that tried to do everything right with a healthy diet, lifting weights, plenty of sleep, etc.. and my levels still refuse to really move up. For some guys it's just like that. I used to be a very impressive natural bodybuilder. I still can throw a ton of weight around on a bench press (315x 10 reps) and still have the arms to confirm my bodybuilding past. If you check my first post I posted a picture to show everyone what I looked like when I was 22. I turned 33 years old this last summer. 

There is no telling what my levels were as a young lad at 22 but I'd almost guarantee they were substantially higher than they are now. I still weigh about the same as I did when I was 22 (210-215 at 5'9) it's just the weight has shifted more to my hips and stomach area and no matter what I do it diet wise, cardio, etc..won't go away...lol...


PeakT

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I still can throw a ton of weight around on a bench press (315x 10 reps)

Nice!  This is off topic, but with a little T and a little training, you can go after that NFL combine record:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ee2cWddxHdI
THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE BOOK ON TRT/TESTOSTERONE:
https://www.amazon.com/Natural-Versus-Testosterone-Therapy-Myer/dp/1523210532/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1499116128&sr=8-1&keywords=natural+versus+testosterone+therapy
And check out my New Peak Testosterone Program: http://www.peaktestosterone.com/peak_testosterone_program
If you are on medications or have a medical condition, always check with your doctor first before making any lifestyle changes or taking new supplements.  And low testosterone is a medical condition.

mikeash76

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I agree FightLow T.  I did more research on Clomid last night and found these articles as well

http://jeffreydach.com/2012/06/18/clomid-for-men-with-low-testosterone-by-jeffrey-dach-md

As a follow up question FightLowT, why not just stay on Clomid?  What are your future plans?  It appears that there are studies being published as recent as March 2012 (that I could find) that are showing very positive signs of long term Clomid use with no sides reported:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22458540

Thanks for you experience and information.  I do believe I am someone who will need assistance moving forward, I just want to put a little distance between me and the bad habits(primarily the chronic smoking) before I start treatment, however 6 months is probably a bit long. 

Anyways, based on the research I am seeing, it looks as if we are still at the bleeding edge of Low T treatment and that in 5-10 years there will be more acceptance of this condition as "real" and more accepted solutions and options. 




feelgood

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mike i'm a bit older than you, had low T, but wanted to preserve fertility as we've been trying for some time.

I went the Clomid rout for that reason. It sent me from T level of around 200/250 prior to clomid to around 500/550 on the Clomid. In fact only 4 weeks after starting, my T level came back at 627...it seems to be settling around 530 now. So decent range. I have been on it for 8 months - really no sides for me. i do 25mg every day (split a 50mg pill).

You could try Clomid, and if it doesn't agree with you, you could also consider HCG, another method of T treatment that maintains fertility and stimulates your natural production of T (like clomid, but in different ways). Have you looked into it? requires injections, which makes it more complicated, and why Clomid is worth a try since it's so easy.

Or - it seems that it's now common knowledge that you can retain fertility, even if you take external testosterone (injections, gels, pellets, etc), IF you couple it with HCG. I just didn't want to test it, because i don't think it's totally and utterly proven that can retain fertility.

I think it's admirable that you are trying to raise things naturally via diet, training, and taking care of yourself - and you should do that no matter what, but i agree with others when they say it would be tough for you to raise your T that was in a fairly significant way, to where you'd feel better.

I'm thin, in shape, and had a good diet, and i couldn't really raise my levels at all. I will say i was not (and i'm not still) perfect...like you, i dabble in a couple of vices a tad (i've got a hard core mt biking crew of buddies - they ride hard and also play kinda hard), so i'm sure i could be a bit better...but hey, we're human.


mikeash76

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Thanks Starry. 

If you don't mind, I have a few questions.

How long do plan on staying on Clomid? 

Was it hard to get your doctor to prescribe? Was it a GP or a specialist?

Any advice for me when I go to talk the doctor other then what FightLowT suggested?  I have a feeling he wants the gel but I don't really want that and want a more pure fertility based approach, not like the gel and supplement approach mentioned in your post especially because it's not fully proven.

Thanks again.

Mike

FightLowT

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Just say no to Androshit.Damn there it is again. I meant androgel..I keep messing up.  ;)ok.ok.. It is official now. Androgel is now officially and from here on out  ....ANDROSHIT!

Mike I have learned a lot over two years and even though I might have a pretty good idea as to what therapy might be the best route for my given goals, I am waiting for another month to go see a doctor I sought out that is regarded as an expert in bioidentical hormone replacement. I want to explore the options with this doctor to ensure my goals will be met or pursued with the greatest  liklihood of success. Whether this be clomid monotherapy, HCG with arimedix, or injections with hcg along with ai.etc I do not know. This will be something my doctor and I can determine. From what I have heard he appreciates having knowledgeable patients and is willing to work on a flexible level as to what may be best for them. My primary goals are to increase mood, energy levels, morning erections, libido, muscle mass, erectile strength,lower body fat, increase strength, and improve motivation. Seems like a long list I know but honestly I feel like crap and any improvement in all areas probably might not be that difficult to achieve given how I feel at the moment.

I wake up tired after a long nights sleep. I hardly have energy anymore to work out. I feel achey and brittle. I am highly negative in my mindset. It seems like my Low-T has been much more of a burden in comparison to most other guys. This might have something to do with how soon and drastic many of my symptoms surfaced about two years ago. Peak can confirm that many guys feel fine up to a point and some will say, " I felt great about six months ago and then it was like a switch got flipped". I think there is something to those kind of observations and perhaps levels for some men drop very suddenly or at least there comes a point when the symptoms manifest quickly once those levels have dropped. It's not just a coincidence that men who come here suspect they have low T levels with appropriate symptoms and then they go and get blood work done and it confirms what they feel. So we are not just a bunch of men who imagine things. Many of us here have been health nuts or have been very in-touch with our bodies at one time or at the present and listened to them and this is what in my opinion gives credibility to men complaining of symptoms surfacing rather quickly. I truly believe levels for some men drop fast and they might be the ones who feel the worst as a result.

feelgood

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Thanks Starry. 

If you don't mind, I have a few questions.

How long do plan on staying on Clomid? 

Was it hard to get your doctor to prescribe? Was it a GP or a specialist?

Any advice for me when I go to talk the doctor other then what FightLowT suggested?  I have a feeling he wants the gel but I don't really want that and want a more pure fertility based approach, not like the gel and supplement approach mentioned in your post especially because it's not fully proven.

Thanks again.

Mike

mike good question regarding "how long" on clomid. I really don't know. My doc says he's had guys on it "for years." There not that many (if any at all) studies on long term usage of clomid in men. Seems like most docs really feel/think it's fine, but still - that's what they *think.*

i plan to do what's doing for the near term, maybe through a year? don't know. I might try a restart test. Meaning taper, and then stop completely - there are a very few guys that have the T "stick" to the level the Clomid brought it up to. It's the minority though.

Plus, the Clomid really beefed up my sperm count and such.

I go to a urologist at a "men's health" clinic. So they are sensitive and knowledgable on T - they get it, and that counts for everything, when you're searching for a doc to help with hormone issues. He suggested clomid right off the bat, no hesitation. Also said i could try HCG - i just have not, because of how easy clomid is. Maybe i should try HCG just to mix it up. Don't know.

spiderman

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Fightlow T...That ergo-log site is a great find for more reading with good stuff on all the T boosters...

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