Obese men who have low testosterone levels may experience some weight loss if they take testosterone therapy, according to a new study. However, the study’s authors warn that testosterone therapy, which is sometimes prescribed to treat male menopause (andropause) should not be viewed as a weight loss remedy.
The researchers, who presented their findings at the 9th European Congress on Obesity in Lyon, France, studied overweight men who received testosterone injections for up to five years to treat erectile dysfunction and other symptoms associated with low testosterone, which can include loss of sex drive, depression, fragile bones, and difficulty concentrating, among others. According to one of the researchers, Farid Saad, DVM, the weight loss “was an incidental finding that was entirely unexpected.”
All the men in the study received two injections of testosterone during the first six weeks of treatment and then an injection every three months. Men who were treated the longest lost more than an average of 30 pounds and also had improvements in blood pressure, LDL cholesterol, and blood glucose levels.
Low testosterone levels are common among men who are obese. Excess weight leads to elevated levels of estrogen, which in turn lowers testosterone levels. Therefore, obese men who lose weight can increase their testosterone levels naturally.
Low testosterone levels may also be associated with type 2 diabetes, and can be one of the risk factors for prostate cancer. Men who are considering testosterone therapy for any reason should discuss the benefits and risks with their healthcare provider and also investigate natural ways to increase testosterone.
Read more in our Low T Health Center.
Boyles S. Testosterone linked to weight loss in obese men. WebMD 2012 May 9