Testosterone is often thought of as a purely male hormone, but both men and women need this vital hormone at the appropriate levels. While women have lower levels of testosterone compared to men, it still plays an important role in their overall health.
It plays a role in development and maintenance of muscle mass and strength, bone density, libido, mood and overall energy levels.
Some of the potential benefits of testosterone in women include:
Improved muscle mass and increased strength: Testosterone can help women to build and maintain lean muscle mass and improve their strength. This is important for optimising physical health and fitness throughout life, but can be particularly significant in maintaining independence and functional fitness in later years.
Cardiovascular health: Testosterone has a protective effect on the cardiovascular system, helping to reduce the risks of heart disease and stroke.
Increased bone density: Testosterone can help maintain bone density, reducing the risk of osteoporosis, a condition in which bones become weak, brittle, and much more prone to fracture.
Boosted libido: Testosterone can help to boost sex drive promoting a healthy relationship.
Enhanced mood and cognitive function: Testosterone has been shown to improve general mood and to enhance memory and concentration in women, particularly those who are postmenopausal
Natural ways to boost testosterone:
- Regular exercise; particularly resistance training, such as lifting weights and high intensity interval training can help boost testosterone levels.
- Eat a healthy, balanced diet: eating a diet rich in protein, healthy fats and nutrient-dense foods will help support healthy hormone levels.
- Minimising stress: high levels of the stress hormone cortisol will negatively affect testosterone levels, so reduce stress levels through such activities such as yoga, pilates, tai chi, meditation, massage or take a regular walk in nature.
- Prioritise quality sleep: getting adequate sleep is essential for optimal hormone balance, so ensure a calm and soothing sleep environment and a relaxing routine before bedtime to settle at a good time and ensure quality, restorative sleep.
- Boost your vitamin D levels through sunlight, by getting active outdoors: either through walking, cycling, running, gardening or just enjoying your morning coffee outside.
- Limit your alcohol consumption: alcohol can change the way a woman’s body metabolises sex hormones, so moderation is key.
- Limit your exposure to oestrogen-mimicking chemicals: xenohormones are chemicals we may unknowingly be exposed to in everyday life that mimic the action of sex hormones and cause disruption of natural hormone balance. This exposure may occur via pesticides used in food production, plastics exposure, through our daily cosmetics, cleaning products or personal care products. Wash or peel fruit and produce before consumption, make organic choices where possible and be mindful and read labels carefully when shopping.
By harnessing the potency of testosterone from natural sources, we can stay stronger, happier and healthier; fighting many of the effects of aging and enjoying a fantastic quality of life in our later years.