Does Low Testosterone Lead to Diabetes?

Filed Under: Diabetes, Men's Health, Blood Sugar
Last Reviewed 02/06/2014

Does Low Testosterone Lead to Diabetes?

Low testosterone affects one in three diabetic men. But which came first, testosterone deficiency or diabetes? A study published in Diabetes Care may answer that question.  

Finnish researchers measured levels of sex hormone–binding globulin (SHBG) and testosterone in 702 middle-aged men who had no blood sugar problems, and then reexamined them after 11 years.

At the time of follow-up, 147 had developed metabolic syndrome and 57 were living with diabetes. What’s important about this study is that regardless of other factors, the men with the lowest testosterone levels were nearly two and a half times more likely to have developed diabetes or metabolic syndrome.

The idea of treating diabetes by normalizing testosterone levels is picking up speed. A study looking at supplemental testosterone as an adjunct therapy is underway, and many physicians who use bioidentical hormones have been treating patients with it for years. 

If you are male and over the age of 45, get your testosterone level tested. If it’s low, testosterone replacement should be considered. In addition to regulating insulin and making it easier to control blood sugar, testosterone reduces body fat, increases libido, boosts energy levels, and improves mood and memory. Testosterone requires a prescription and may be obtained from compounding pharmacies.

Now it’s your turn: What do you think about the testosterone-diabetes connection?

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