Testosterone: The facts
There are many health issues men face that they are quick to brush off or suppress, which can have dire health consequences. Low testosterone levels and weight gain can negative effects, both mental and physically. Luckily, these health issues can be treated naturally.
DHEA, which stands for dehydroepiandrosterone, is a supplement shown to increase free testosterone levels and promote weight loss.
DHEA is a hormone that your body makes naturally – it is a hormone produced by your body’s adrenal glands.
It’s available as a supplement and is a common ingredient in testosterone boosters.
One study reported in the European Journal of Applied Physiology found that DHEA supplementation could increase levels of free testosterone in middle-aged men.
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It is important to note that the research on how DHEA supplementation affects the body is limited.
Weight loss promise
The vast majority of studies suggest DHEA supplements are not effective at reducing fat mass.
However, some evidence suggests that DHEA supplements can produce small decreases in fat mass in elderly men or adults whose adrenal glands don’t work properly.
One study found that DHEA decreased fat mass by about four percent over the course of four months, although this was in patients with adrenal gland problems.
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While the effects of standard DHEA supplements on fat mass aren’t impressive, a different form of DHEA may be more promising.
This form of the supplement, called 7-Keto DHEA, has been reported to increase metabolic rate in overweight men and women.
What’s more, during an eight-week exercise program in overweight adults, body weight and fat mass decreased three times more after taking 7-Keto DHEA supplements, compared to placebo.
In this study, individuals taking the supplement lost about 6.4 pounds (2.9 kgs) of body weight and 1.8 percent body fat.
Those in the placebo group only lost 2.2 pounds (1 kg) and 0.6 percent body fat.
While more research is needed, it’s possible that this form of DHEA could help you lose fat.
General tips for losing weight
The best way to treat obesity is to eat a healthy reduced-calorie diet and exercise regularly.
To do this, The NHS says to:
- Eat a balanced calorie-controlled diet as recommended by a GP or weight loss management health professional (such as a dietitian)
- join a local weight loss group
- Take up activities such as fast walking, jogging, swimming or tennis for 150 to 300 minutes (2.5 to five hours) a week
- Eat slowly and avoid situations where you know you could be tempted to overeat.
“You may also benefit from receiving psychological support from a trained healthcare professional to help change the way you think about food and eating,” advises the NHS.
If lifestyle changes alone do not help you lose weight, a medicine called orlistat may be recommended, the health body notes.
If taken correctly, this medicine works by reducing the amount of fat you absorb during digestion.
The NHS adds: “Your GP will know whether orlistat is suitable for you.”
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