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Sexual Wellness

Low Testosterone In Men: Causes, Symptoms, And Treatments

Published on Jun 05, 2021


By Dr. Surya Bhagwati
Chief In- House Doctor
BAMS, DHA, DHHCM, DHBTC | 30+ Years of Experience

When discussing masculinity and manliness, the topic of Testosterone levels almost always comes up. In fact, there is a lot of interest in the problem of low testosterone in men. Some men are curious about the topic while others are a bit more concerned regarding their own situations.

Either way, this detailed post about low testosterone in men, its causes, symptoms, and treatments should answer most, if not all your questions regarding low testosterone levels. Additionally, you can also consult one of our Ayurvedic doctors online in case you have specific questions. 

What Is Low Testosterone In Men?

Testosterone is a hormone that the human body produces. Both men and women produce this hormone, but it is found in higher levels in men. The testicles (in men) primarily produce testosterone along with the pituitary gland.

Herbo Turbo helps to increase testosterone levels

This hormone is an important one because it is responsible for a man’s sexual development and appearance. It also regulates muscle mass, sexual features, red blood cells, bone density, sperm production and sex drive. The condition of male hypogonadism (low testosterone) occurs when the testicles do not produce enough testosterone hormone [1].

The production of testosterone declines by age with 30% of men in their 70s and 80s experiencing low testosterone levels, according to the American Urological Association [2]. The diagnosis for low testosterone is considered when testosterone levels drop below 300 ng/dL.

The normal total testosterone levels are:

  • 249-836 ng/dL for men between 19 and 49
  • 192-740 ng/dL for men between over 50

What does testosterone do?

Testosterone is the principal male sex hormone and plays a crucial function in a variety of male physiological processes. It is responsible for the development of male genital organs and secondary sex traits, such as facial hair and a deeper voice. Additionally, testosterone controls red blood cell synthesis, maintains bone density and muscular mass, and modulates mood and energy levels. Additionally, testosterone contributes to sperm formation and sexual function. 

Testosterone also contributes to men's general health and well-being, as well as the prevention of osteoporosis. Also recognised to have direct impacts on brain function, testosterone influences mood, cognition, and behaviour.

The testes create testosterone in males. The testes are placed in the scrotum, which contains the testicles. The testicles are responsible for producing sperm and testosterone. Small quantities are also generated by the adrenal glands. Testosterone production rises throughout puberty and falls with age. 

The hypothalamic-pituitary-testicular axis is the principal regulator of testosterone production in males (HPTA). The HPTA is a complicated system composed of the hypothalamus, pituitary gland, and testicles in the brain. The hypothalamus is responsible for the release of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). GnRH stimulates the secretion of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) by the pituitary gland (LH). LH then instructs the testes to create testosterone. Testosterone production is also regulated by feedback loops. 

When testosterone levels are excessive, they send a signal to the brain to decrease GnRH synthesis. This ultimately lowers FSH and LH synthesis, resulting in a decrease in testosterone levels. Many variables, including stress, sleep, nutrition, and exercise, may alter the HPTA and testosterone production.

Low Testosterone Causes:

Low Testosterone Causes


When wondering about what causes low testosterone, the primary reason is natural aging. As men grow older (after 30), there is a natural decline in the production of testosterone that continues throughout their life. This drop in testosterone is found to be on average, 1% per year.

However, this natural process does not affect health and wellbeing as much as we would like to believe. Instead, it is the sudden or sharp drop in testosterone levels that is a cause for concern.

Causes of low testosterone in men:

  • High levels of prolactin (milk-producing hormone)
  • Anabolic steroid abuse
  • Extreme weight gain (obesity) or weight loss
  • Pituitary gland dysfunction
  • Klinefelter syndrome
  • Alcohol abuse
  • Chronic renal (kidney) failure
  • Prior brain surgery or radiation exposure
  • Trauma (head injury)
  • Kallman syndrome
  • Delayed puberty
  • Some medications (including opioids and steroids like prednisone)
  • Liver cirrhosis
  • Metabolic disorders (like hemochromatosis)
  • Severe primary hypothyroidism
  • Inflammatory conditions (like sarcoidosis)
  • Excessive Estrogen levels
  • Chemotherapy
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Acute (short-term) or chronic (long-term) illnesses
  • Congenital defect (present at birth)
  • Injury or infection of the testes (orchitis)
  • Uncontrolled type-2 diabetes

12 Signs Of Low Testosterone In Men:

Here are 12 signs that you may have low testosterone levels, also known as Testosterone Deficiency Syndrome (TD):

Signs of low testosterone

1. Losing Hair Quickly (And Everywhere)

Balding and hair loss (like male pattern baldness) is something that we associate with aging. But in fact, a decline in testosterone is one of the factors that cause balding in men [3]. That said, those with Hypogonadism can end up losing not just their scalp hair but also their facial and body hair.

2. Losing Muscle Mass

As we get older, there is a drop in muscle mass that is noticeable due to the natural decline in testosterone levels. This is expected as testosterone play a major factor in muscle development. However, men with Hypogonadism can lose muscle mass quickly. That said, studies have found that while the natural decline in testosterone causes a drop in muscle mass, it may not necessarily affect muscle strength [4]. Herbal muscle gain supplements like Dr Vaidyas Herbobuild make use of testosterone boosting herbs to promote muscle gain.

3. Experiencing Extreme Fatigue And Low Energy Levels

Are you feeling tired all the time, like you have very little energy, even after a good night’s rest? If so, you may have low testosterone levels that may be causing your fatigue. It is found that men with low testosterone levels have lower energy levels and experience fatigue [5]. That said, low testosterone in men may not be the sole reason for low energy levels and extreme fatigue. So, it is best to talk to a doctor before coming to any conclusions.

4. Having Low Semen Volume

Semen is the milky fluid that helps your sperm survive outside of the body and helps in transporting the sperm to the egg during insemination. If you find that your semen volume is lower than normal, it may be a sign that your Testosterone levels are low [6]. You can talk to a Urologist to have your semen and sperm checked, especially if you are finding it difficult to produce sufficient semen during ejaculation.

5. Experiencing Low Sex Drive (Libido)

Your testosterone hormone level is a major factor in how strong or weak your sex drive is. There is a slight decline in testosterone, and sex drive with it, as men age. But some men can experience a sharp (and noticeable) drop in T-levels which can even cause a complete lack of sex drive and desire [7]. It may also lead to erectile dysfunction. It is such cases that may be a cause for concern.

Related Post: Best Ayurvedic Treatment For Erectile Dysfunction

6. Finding It Difficult To Get An Erection

Along with boosting your sex drive, testosterone also helps you get (and maintain) your erections. So, if you are finding it difficult to get or maintain an erection, your testosterone levels may have dropped [8]. The way testosterone works in an erection is it activates receptors in the brain to promote nitric oxide production. The increase in nitric oxide levels help relax the penile muscles and fill up the chambers with blood, resulting in an erect penis.

7. Having Smaller Testicles

The size of your testicles may be an indication of the levels of testosterone your body is producing. This is because your body uses testosterone to develop your reproductive organs (penis and testicles). So, men with lower testosterone levels can have smaller-than-average testicles [9]. That said, low T-levels is not the only reason for a smaller set of testicles. The best way to find out if there is anything wrong with your set is to consult a Urologist.

8. Having Weaker Bones

Studies have shown men with low levels of testosterone can experience Osteoporosis (bone loss), a condition more common in women [10]. This is because testosterone is one of the hormones responsible for the production (and maintenance) of bone.

9. Experiencing Body Fat Gain

Testosterone is one of the hormones that can affect how much fat your body produces and stores. Men with low levels of testosterone may find themselves gaining body fat [11]. The disruption of the balance between testosterone and estrogen can also lead to some men developing Gynecomastia (man boobs).

10. Having Low Blood Counts (Anemia)

Studies have found that having low testosterone levels can increase the risk of men having Anemia [12]. The researchers found an improvement in blood count in the men who were administered testosterone gel to increase their T-levels.

11. Experiencing Mood Changes Or Swings

Most of the more well-known effects of testosterone are on the physical body. But testosterone can also affect mental function and health. Low testosterone in men is found to cause changes in mood, a lack of focus, irritability, or depression [13].

12. Having Poor Memory

Some doctors believe that low testosterone levels can negatively affect memory. In addition, a study has found a possible like between taking testosterone supplements with an improvement in memory in men with low testosterone levels [14].

Testing For Low Testosterone In Men:

Low testosterone test

There are some symptoms or signs of having low testosterone that are easier to spot than others. When it comes to testing for Male Hypogonadism, the total blood testosterone level is the primary criteria your doctor will evaluate.

Your doctor may also request additional blood tests that check for Luteinizing hormone (LH), blood prolactin levels, and/or blood hemoglobin (Hgb) levels.

In addition to the blood tests, your doctor will take your health history and do a physical exam. The doctor will be looking for the previously mentioned low testosterone symptoms and causes.

How To Treat Low Testosterone In Men?

When it comes to low testosterone treatment, there are several options, including using Ayurved for low testosterone. However, it is the testosterone replacement therapy that is the most well-known for countering low T-levels.

1. Testosterone Replacement Therapy:

Low Testosterone Remedies

Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) come in five major forms [15]:

  • Gels: Clear testosterone gel can be applied topically and is absorbed directly through your skin.
  • Skin Patches: Applying a skin patch can let the testosterone be absorbed by the skin.
  • Mouth Patches: Tablets are stuck to the upper gums in the mouth, allowing the testosterone to be released into the bloodstream.
  • Injections: Injections of testosterone into the muscles are the most popular way to get TRT.
  • Implants: Pellets can be implanted in your soft tissue which allows your body to absorb the testosterone slowly.

TRT is known to increase T-levels quickly but also comes with several side effects and risks [16].

Side effects of Testosterone replacement therapy include:

  • Sleep apnea
  • Acne
  • Redness/itching around the application area
  • Lower sperm count
  • Shrinkage of testicles
  • Enlarged prostate
  • Topical testosterone (like gels, liquids and creams) can transfer to others like women or children, causing harm
  • Swelling, pain, bruising (for testosterone pellet implants)
  • Increased risk of erythrocytosis (excessive increase in blood hemoglobin and hematocrit)
  • Enlargement of breast tissue (Gynecomastia)
  • Increased red blood cell count

2. Testosterone Boosters For Low Testosterone In Men:

Oral supplements that make use of testosterone-boosting ingredients are favourites in the sexual wellness market. However, many of these products are not well-made with little to no effort put into proper research and development. This can result in unsatisfactory products that just do not work.


Herbo 24 Turbo Improves Low Testosterone

Ayurvedic testosterone boosters that use Ayurvedic herbs and minerals have proven to be very popular due to their safe and effective performance. Dr Vaidya’s Herbo 24 Turbo is an Ayurvedic power medicine that contains 21 Ayurvedic ingredients that support better performance in men. Several of these ingredients, including Shilajit and Ashwagandha, are well-known for their pro-testosterone effects [24,25].

3. Exercise To Improve T-Levels:

Exercise to improve low testosterone

When it comes to improving your health or treating an imbalance in the body, diet and exercise play a vital role.

There have been many studies that have found exercising regularly to be a factor in higher testosterone levels [17,18]. It was also found that increasing physical activity was more effective than following a weight loss diet for obese men trying to increase their T-levels [19].

As far as the type of exercise, High-intensity interval training (HIIT) and other forms of resistance training (weightlifting) was found to be most effective at increasing testosterone levels.

4. Eat A Balanced Diet:

Eat a balanced diet to improve signs of low testosterone

It is recommended that a balanced diet with proteins, carbs, and fat to promote hormone levels. Eating the right amounts of each can also help in promoting healthy fat loss, further supporting testosterone levels [20]. Even eating carbs along with resistance training is shown to help optimize T-levels [21].

When picking your diet plan, be sure to include whole foods and consult a nutritionist for the best testosterone-boosting diet tailor-made for you.

5. Reduce Stress & Cortisol Levels:

Reduce stress and tension to increase testosterone levels


Stress can be a significant hurdle when it comes to low testosterone in men because stress increases cortisol levels [22]. And since high cortisol levels can lower testosterone levels, being stress can end up lowering your T-levels [23]. Stress can also increase weight gain which can further reduce testosterone levels.

Try to lead a stress-free (or at least a less-stressed) life for a better chance at recovering your testosterone to healthy levels.


What happens if a man is low on testosterone?

When a man's testosterone levels are low, he may experience a variety of symptoms. He may have trouble getting or maintaining an erection, and his libido may decrease. He may also feel tired and have reduced muscle mass and bone density. Low testosterone can also cause moodiness and irritability.

What causes men's testosterone to be low?

There are many potential causes of low testosterone in men. These can include ageing, obesity, chronic illness, and certain medications. Testosterone levels can also be affected by stress, depression, and other mental health conditions. In some cases, low testosterone may be a genetic condition.

How do you fix low testosterone?

First, it is important to understand the root cause of your low testosterone. This can be due to various factors such as stress, poor diet, or even certain medical conditions. Once you know the cause, you can start to treat it accordingly. There are a number of different herbs and ayurvedic medicines like Dr. Vaidya’s Shilajit Gold that can help support healthy testosterone levels. 

What happens if low testosterone goes untreated?

If low testosterone goes untreated, it can lead to a number of health problems apart from loss of erections and sexual stamina. Low testosterone can cause a decrease in bone density, which can lead to osteoporosis. It can also cause a decrease in muscle mass and an increase in body fat. Low testosterone can also lead to a decline in cognitive function and an increased risk of dementia. Untreated low testosterone can also cause mood changes, such as irritability, depression, and fatigue.

How can men boost their testosterone?

They use a variety of techniques to treat testosterone imbalances, including dietary changes, massage, and herbal remedies. Some Ayurvedic herbs are thought to help increase testosterone levels. These include ashwagandha, shatavari, and tribulus terrestris.

Does masturbating reduce testosterone?

Masturbation is a common sexual activity that has many benefits. Though some believe that masturbating can lead to a reduction in testosterone levels, there is no scientific evidence to support this claim. Masturbation can help to release sexual tension and stress, which can increase testosterone levels. Masturbation can also help to increase blood flow to the genitals, which can also increase testosterone levels.


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  25. Lopresti, Adrian L., et al. “A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Crossover Study the Hormonal and Vitality Effects of Ashwagandha (Withania) in Aging, Overweight Males.” American Journal of Men’s Health, vol. 13, no. 2, Mar. 2019. PubMed Central, https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/1557988319835985.
  26. https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/15603-low-testosterone-male-hypogonadism


Dr. Surya Bhagwati
BAMS (Ayurveda), DHA (Hospital Admin), DHHCM (Health Management), DHBTC (Herbal Beauty and Cosmetology)

Dr. Surya Bhagwati is an established, well-known Ayurvedic expert with over 30 years of experience in treating and consulting in the field of Ayurveda. She is known for the timely, efficient, and patient-centred delivery of quality health care. The patients under her care receive a unique holistic treatment comprising not only medicinal treatment but also spiritual empowerment.

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