Commonly used by athletes and bodybuilders to help gain more mass, testosterone supplements can also be used for many other applications, both cosmetic and therapeutic. The most common applications for the use of a testosterone supplement is to balance out the amount of testosterone in males, which can become lacking due to disease, age, or genetics. Most supplements containing testosterone are even marketed as powdered drinks or capsules, which can be taken on a daily basis to help boost the amount of testosterone produced by the body. Some supplements containing testosterone are even marketed as additives to diet bars and protein shakes, with the intention of increasing body and muscle mass with the use of added testosterone produced by the body.
Types of Testosterone Supplements
The most common types of supplements containing testosterone found in the market shelves today are as follows:
- Capsules and pills – testosterone supplements made in the form of capsules and pills are made to be taken on a daily basis, usually twice daily for faster and better results. Although not readily synthesized by the body, it contains additives that help assimilate it into the body, allowing for a faster absorption rate.
- Ready-to-consume powder – another common medium of ingesting testosterone is through powdered ready-to-prepare drinks. These are usually consumed during breakfast time, mixed with home-made shakes or whey protein formulas, and sometimes even whole milk or soymilk with the intent of aiding bodybuilders and athletes gain more muscle mass and to bulk up faster. While the absorption rate is yet again impaired due to its having to pass through the digestive tract, products such as these also contain several extracts that aid in the absorption. Many testosterone supplements in powdered form also come with flavorings that help to make it more palatable, although it is usually mixed with other foodstuffs to help ease it down.
- Bars and instant meals – while instant meal bars are usually jam-packed with protein and carbs to help bulk up bodybuilders, some brands may also contain testosterone that can help to amp up strength and performance. Although uncommon, some protein bars brands have added traces of testosterone into their line of instant meal bars in the hopes that the added male hormone will assist the muscular development of individuals using them.
- Injectable testosterone – strictly used for medical applications, an injectable testosterone supplement can help to address a lagging presence of testosterone in men in the hopes of curing disorders such as gynecomastia, bloating, or unexplained weight gain. These can only be used under the supervision of trained medical experts, although some individuals have attained illegal batches of injectable supplements and have used it in the absence of supervision, with grave results.
Benefits of Testosterone Supplements
Taking supplements that contain testosterone offer many benefits for the aspiring athlete or bodybuilder, as well as any average person who wants to buff-up a bit. Here are just some recorded benefits of taking a testosterone supplement:
- Added energy – because testosterone is the main hormone that the male body produces, a large amount of testosterone is responsible for increased energy production. While it does not add to the spurt of energy itself, it does make the body feel revitalized and always ready for action.
- Weight-loss – studies have shown that middle aged men who take testosterone supplements are able to maintain a youthful figure and good body weight compared to people who don’t. This is due to the increased metabolic rate that comes about with well-balanced levels of testosterone in the body. The weight loss can also be attributed to the increased output of energy, and thus increased activity.
- Increased sex-drive – beneficial for men in their middle-age that are still want to be sexually active more often. Taking a testosterone supplement has been shown to promote increased sex drive, even without the use of sex enhancing drugs like Viagra. While it does not guarantee increased performance, clinical studies have shown that since testosterone promotes virility and potency in men, a moderate consumption of testosterone supplements should help increase one’s sex drive significantly. Despite this, taking testosterone in any form will not address problems such as erectile dysfunction or impotency.
Side Effects of Overuse of Testosterone Supplements
With these benefits come drawbacks that should be considered prior to opting to use testosterone supplements. While moderate consumption of supplementation may be beneficial, people who tend to overdo it will suffer drastic side effects, among them:
- Increased aggression – testosterone is a hormone that is known to cause aggression in males, and an overabundance of such a hormone in the body may cause unwanted agitation or temper flares, especially if one does not have a proper anger management plan. This can cause extreme problems by creating situations that are unwanted at the office or workplace where frustrations tend to be bottled up instead of meted out. Increased agitation and temper flares may also affect interpersonal relationships due to sudden and often uncontrollable outbursts associated with hormonal imbalances, which are brought about by the overabundance of testosterone in the body.
- Risk for prostate cancer – with an excess of testosterone comes a great risk for benign prostatic hyperplasia which is caused by excessive testosterone being converted into dihydrotestosterone or DHT. One may well have to undergo a prostate removal if the worst happens, and while such an incident is rare, being large and muscle-bound is not worth the risk of developing any sort of cancer whatsoever!
- Guaranteed baldness – an excessive amount of DHT in the body brought about by too much testosterone will guarantee that a man’s mane will not last them beyond their mid age years, as DHT has now been found to be the primary cause for baldness in men. For those who wish to avoid going bald baldness, then an excess consumption of testosterone should be guarded against.
Testosterone Supplements – The Conclusion
Although testosterone supplements are not in and of themselves bad, it should always be consumed under the supervision of medical experts to prevent any unwanted side-effects from happening, which may complicate your health and well being.