Are you one of the many people in Lake Park who are burning the candle at both ends and maybe only getting 4 or 5 hours of sleep a night? Are you also one of those guys having problems with his sex drive and feeling out of sorts? Well, recent studies done in Lake Park in the last 3 years show that these symptoms could all be due to the effect of sleep on testosterone – just how, though, may be a chicken and egg question!
While it’s true that lower testosterone levels can be the cause of a sluggish sex drive and irritability it seems to be a matter of research opinion whether low sleep levels cause low testosterone or low testosterone causes lack of sleep.
Hormone Imbalance in Women
High prolactin levels in men are a guaranteed killer of your sex life. The normal range for prolactin in men is 2-14 ng/ml, but yours should be under 8 and preferably between 2-3 if you want optimal sexual function. The symptoms in males of high prolactin levels are low/no libido, weak erections, premature ejaculation, long refractory period, listlessness, and low energy.
So how can you lower your prolactin? There are some over-the-counter supplements that will help if you are in the 8-14 range and you want to get down closer to 2 or 3, but if your levels are above 14, you need to talk with your doctor or endocrinologist about getting on a prescription-strength supplement.
The over-the-counter supplements that can lower prolactin levels in men are P-5-P, which is the bioavailable form of Vitamin B6. 100mg daily is the recommended dose. Another option is 400mg daily of an herb called Vitex Agnus Castus, also purported to have mild prolactin lowering effects in males. Finally, you can take mucuna pruriens standardized for l-dopa. Your dose will vary based on how much l-dopa is in the formulation.
If these don't work for you, I would strongly recommend talking to your doctor about a prescription drug called Cabergoline, which will obliterate your prolactin and turn you into a "marathon man" sex machine.
My prolactin varied between 15-21 ng/ml, so I used a combination of P-5-P and penis hand exercises to deal with my problem. The P-5-P lowered my prolactin below 8, and the hand exercises improved my erection quality as well as my penis size, which gave me greatly increased confidence which also improved my libido. I went from 5.5 puny inches to very well endowed.
Weight Loss Consequences, Physical or Emotional?
Menopause is a natural occurring process in aging women. It is the biological way of stopping the body's abilities to produce babies. Time has no mercy on anyone. Being natural, the actual menopause doesn't need any treatment; the drugs that are used, are used to treat symptoms and to help with some chronic conditions.
Studies made on a special kind of recent treatment have proven some interesting things. Hormone therapy has both benefits and side effects. Studies have shown that in certain women, the administration of different dosages of both estrogen and progesterone can increase drastically the chances of having a later heart attack or to even experience breast cancer. Studies on the women where quickly halted. Still, the actual fear was bigger of the side effects than it was supposed to be. Yearly, not even 10 of 10 000 develop these conditions as side effects, and they are under the treatment of several forms of estrogen and progesterone hormone therapy. Depending on many factors, doctors should prescribe the most correct and adequate hormone treatment for menopausal symptoms.
Low-dose antidepressants are also some of the drugs that are being used, mostly in combating hot flashes, fact witch they do very well. As with all drugs the side effect problem is very present: nausea and dizziness and even sexual dysfunction.
Another drug that has proven to do very well against hot flashes and nerve related pains and other chronic symptoms is a certain gabapentin, with roughly the same symptoms as in anti depressants. Pills or even patches may be used to reduce the blood pressure and again the all so common hot flashes.
A most severe problem in aging women, with menopause is the appearance of osteoporosis and the risks of fracture that it presents. Some different medication has been released to combat this but side effects do exist, in milder forms.
Vaginal problems have also been known to be distressful for women. For this purpose a variety of creams and tablets have been developed that administer vaginal estrogen to the specific area in small adequate dosages. Talking to the doctor to decide the best of treatments would be a very wise thing to do.
Knowing how to stay away from symptoms is a very important thing. It is best to know what are the causes that trigger the hot flashes and it would be a very wise choice to avoid them. For vaginal problems water based lubricants are god to be used. Relaxation and getting the right amount of sleep is an imperative thing. Exercising before bed time usually helps, or knowing different relaxing techniques. Staying healthy in general usually does a lot of help to the body because of the fact that you are giving him the right tools with hum to fight the disease. Exercising and having a healthy diet greatly increases chance of not having complications. A good daily workout also helps, the body having better way of dealing with problems.
Various Menopause Treatment Options
Are you one of those guys who are burning the candle at both ends and maybe only getting 4 or 5 hours of sleep a night? Are you also one of those guys having problems with his sex drive and feeling out of sorts? Well, recent studies done in the last 3 years show that these symptoms could all be due to the effect of sleep on testosterone - just how, though, may be a chicken and egg question!
While it's true that lower testosterone levels can be the cause of a sluggish sex drive and irritability it seems to be a matter of research opinion whether low sleep levels cause low testosterone or low testosterone causes lack of sleep.
Here's what we know about sleep, and testosterone to date as it relates to men:
After age 30, men's testosterone levels drop between 1 and 2% a year! By the time they reach 40 they start experiencing trouble sleeping. They complain of less deep sleep time, the period of sleep where the body repairs itself.
In fact, as a man gets older, the most recent studies assert, he can lose deep sleep time altogether! That means the older a man gets, the more his testosterone levels continue to decline, the less deep sleep he gets, the more his body's repair mechanisms decline and the higher his risk climbs for disease!
The reason for this decline in deep sleep time is thought to be due to a loss of neuron activity, which synchronizes brain activity. These neurons are responsible for about 20% of achieving deep sleep. They are intact in young men and get further scrambled as a man ages.
To further complicate things, low testosterone levels are thought to contribute to this loss of neuron activity in the brain. The take away of these studies, then, whichever perspective you come from, seem to say that restoring testosterone to healthy, youthful levels would likely help a man not only achieve deep, restorative sleep again, but also keep him healthier, re-invigorate his sluggish sex drive and keep him in a happier frame of mind.
Do You Have Symptoms of Low Testosterone?
One of the most frequent complaints I hear from my over-40 patients is that their sex drive has diminished significantly from when they were younger. One of the first things I do is to check a testosterone level and most often find that it is decreased. Interestingly, as well, is that they also often complain of not sleeping very much and are depressed!
Now whether their lack of sleep is from a too hectic lifestyle, stress, or from their decreased testosterone level, is not clear. However, when I recommend that they try to get between 6-8 hours of sleep a night their testosterone levels seem to naturally increase and their mood is brighter!
But decreased testosterone levels don't just affect men over 50, it can start as young as the 30-40's! Many men don't seek treatment because they think it's just a part of getting older and they're embarrassed to talk about it! Like menopause in women, low testosterone is not something men have to suffer through just because it's associated with getting older. Here are some other symptoms you may not associate with low testosterone levels:
•Emotional changes, like depression, irritability, "grumpy old man" syndrome
•Decreased muscle strength
•Loss of height
•Weight gain, especially belly fat
What Does Cause Low Testosterone?
Low testosterone levels can be caused or aggravated by a number of things both nutritional and environmental. For my patients who have lower than optimal testosterone levels, here are some other things I tell them to pay attention to in their diet and lifestyle:
•Xenoestrogens - in food and water supplies. These are "environmental estrogens" from soy products and plastics that get into our food and can decrease testosterone levels. Stay away from foods containing soy, most notably protein bars and soymilk. If you buy frozen foods, transfer them from their plastic container into a glass dish before heating.
•Lack of Protein - men need between 0.5 to 1 gram of high quality protein per pound of body weight per day to both build muscle strength and testosterone. Sources include pork, beef, and chicken, which also have higher levels of zinc, which is testosterone friendly.
•Lack of Cholesterol - many men over 40 are watching cholesterol intake for the sake of their arteries, but too little cholesterol will stop testosterone production. Aim for about 30% fat, mostly monounsaturated (nuts, olive oil) and some saturated (red meat, eggs) to build testosterone. Go very light, or leave out, polyunsaturated fats (fish, vegetable oils) as studies have shown they can decrease testosterone perhaps because they may contain xenoestrogens.
•Lack of Nutrition - zinc is a major building mineral for testosterone. The B vitamins, especially B1, B6, and B12 are helpful in keeping testosterone levels healthy. Be sure that your vitamin/mineral supplement includes these.
•Too Much Alcohol - alcohol increases blood sugar levels, which decreases testosterone. Limit to a few drinks per week.
•Lack of Sleep - as mentioned earlier, less than 6 hours of sleep a night can seriously rob your body of its repairing mechanisms and this includes the re-manufacturing of hormones like testosterone. See that you get at least 6-8 hours of sleep at night, more if you have been ill or under a lot of stress. Try some natural sleep aids like Valerian, calcium/magnesium supplements with some warm milk before bed. Cut back caffeine to not past 4 pm, and limit heavy meals to 2-3 hours before bedtime.
Researchers may finally decide which comes first; low testosterone then poor sleep, or poor sleep then low testosterone. In the meantime, I'm going to continue to counsel my patients that adequate sleep is at least a significant factor in low testosterone levels. However, before you start thinking dangerous steroids or prescription testosterone replacements, try the natural suggestions offered here. I believe your T-levels will be up to optimal levels and your sex drive and pleasant mood back on track in no time!
Mark Rosenberg, M.D.
Institute For Healthy Aging
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Lake Park, Florida
Kelsey City, now known as Lake Park, was the first zoned municipality in the State of Florida. It was designed and planned by Dr. John Nolan of Boston, Massachusetts, and the Olmsted Brothers, the landscaping firm of Frederick Law Olmsted's sons, Frederick Jr and John Charles. Since then, the boundaries of Lake Park have expanded to 2.35 square miles (6.1 km2) of residential, business, industrial and mixed-use land. The Lake Park Town Hall, constructed in 1927 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, survived the 1928 Okeechobee hurricane and served as a shelter for town residents during the storm.
As of the census of 2000, there were 8,721 people, 3,346 households, and 2,024 families residing in the town. The population density was 4,018.8 inhabitants per square mile (1,551.7/km²). There were 3,650 housing units at an average density of 1,682.0 per square mile (649.4/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 41.26% White (38% were Non-Hispanic White,) 48.80% African American, 0.34% Native American, 2.89% Asian, 1.27% from other races, and 5.44% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.80% of the population.
There were 3,346 households out of which 31.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 37.1% were married couples living together, 16.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 39.5% were non-families. 29.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.58 and the average family size was 3.28.