Male hormones can significantly impact a man’s quality of life. At times, hormone levels may go out of whack due to several factors. Read on to learn how hormones function and their significance in the body’s homeostasis.
In this article:
Major Male Sex Hormones and Uses
Whether you are aware of it or not, your hormones control and coordinate the activities in your body.
Hormones function as chemical messengers that signal your body and regulate physiology and behavior. These signaling molecules are secreted by the glands directly into the blood, which carries them to the body’s organs and tissues to exert their functions. Without hormones, your cells wouldn’t know when to do important things.
Male Hormones and Their Functions
Males have several hormones that serve specific purposes and work together with other hormones in the body. The following hormones play a significant role in regulating the male reproductive system:
When one thinks of male hormones, testosterone always comes first to mind.
Testosterone is the primary male sex hormone that aids in developing manly features such as facial and body hair, deep voice, and muscle strength. It is associated with sex drive regulation (libido), bone mass, fat distribution, muscle mass and strength, and red blood cells and sperm production.
When your testosterone levels drop, this causes an imbalance that leads to low testosterone deficiency.
Low testosterone deficiency is a condition in which the testes do not produce enough testosterone. Low T leads to low sex drive, feelings of depression, decreased brain performance, lack of energy, loss of muscular strength, and osteoporosis.
Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT) is one of the most known ways to treat low testosterone levels among men. Doctors may recommend skin patches, topical gels, oral therapy, pellets, and injections.
Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH)
FSH helps control the production of sperm and helps signal the testes to produce testosterone.
A test called the FSH test may determine the cause of infertility, find the reason for low sperm count, and look for a problem with the testicles. Men who have been unable to get their partner pregnant after a year of trying may need an FSH test.
A high FSH level in men may signify damage in the testicles due to radiation and chemotherapy treatments. High FSH levels may also be a result of alcohol abuse or infection.
Low FSH levels could indicate a disorder in the hypothalamus or pituitary gland.
Too little FSH may cause a variety of problems in males, for instance, low sperm count, low sex drive, and delayed puberty in growing children.
Luteinizing Hormone (LH)
The pituitary gland produces the luteinizing hormone, one of the main hormones that control both men’s and women’s reproductive systems.
LH structure is closely similar to that of FSH. LH and FSH hormones function together to stimulate testosterone production. When bloodstream testosterone levels are low, the pituitary gland releases LH.
Persistent high levels of LH in men may be caused by:
- Klinefelter Syndrome, a congenital abnormality characterized by two X chromosomes in addition to one Y chromosome
- Hypogonadism, a condition that occurs when the male gonads or testes do not produce enough of the testosterone hormone
Meanwhile, diminished LH may cause infertility due to limited sperm production.
Other Important Hormones in the Male Body
Cortisol serves as your built-in alarm system that controls your fear, mood, and motivation.
Whenever you are under stress, your cortisol levels increase and lower after a high alert situation has passed. However, a constant increase in cortisol levels may lead to problems such as weight gain, high blood pressure, diabetes, osteoporosis, tiredness, and impaired brain function.
Ghrelin is a digestive hormone that controls appetite. Also referred to as the hunger hormone, ghrelin sends signals to your brains to feel hungry.
Insulin helps regulate blood sugar levels and store excess glucose for later energy use. People with type 1 diabetes do not have enough insulin to move the glucose into the cells. People with type 2 diabetes, on the other hand, have problems with using insulin efficiently (insulin resistance) and do not produce enough insulin.
Serotonin helps stabilize our mood, feelings of well-being, happiness, and other body functions such as sleeping, eating, and digestion. Low levels of serotonin in the brain may cause anxiety, depression, and insomnia.
Melatonin serves as a time cue for the sleep-wake cycle. During the day, melatonin levels are low because of the retina’s large amount of light. As a supplement, melatonin aids as a temporary treatment for insomnia.
Male hormones function in several ways, often working together with other units of the body. Consult your doctor if you notice any unusual symptoms or changes such as weight loss, decreased libido, and constant fatigue associated with hormonal imbalance.
How do you keep your hormones in check? Let us know in the comments section below!