Are You Turning Into A Grumpy Old Man? What Every Man Should Know About Andropause

July 7, 2011


Manopause, Grumpy Old Man Syndrome, or andropause – whatever you would like to call it – male menopause exists. Just like women, men experience a decline in their hormones, and while it may be more gradual, the effect that andropause has on the body is substantial.

It begins one morning as you catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror while closing the medicine cabinet. Is that really you: the older man with graying hair and what looks like an inner tube encircling his waist? Scarier still, he looks a little like your father. When did this happen?

Then you begin to take inventory. Things have changed.  For starters, you’re exhausted. The trips to the gym just aren’t resulting in the muscle mass and strength that used to come easily after a rigorous workout regimen. Physically, it seems like you’re winding down. You used to laugh at those Viagra commercials, but they’re beginning to sound embarrassingly familiar. To add, you’ve become the old curmudgeon that you made fun of as a kid. You used to run circles around all the guys at the office, but these days the younger guys are running circles around you. You’re beginning to wonder if you’ve become an office joke. What happened to the energy and drive that allowed you to thrive from your job?  Now it’s beginning to look like retirement might be the logical next move. Maybe you should bow out gracefully. Circle of life, right?

Before you resign yourself to the symptoms of aging, you need to know that while these symptoms may be common among middle-aged men, the rest of your life doesn’t have to be spent winding down. What if you could combine the energy and drive of your twenties with the maturity and experience you’ve accumulated in your fifties? Wouldn’t that be ideal?

The answer lies in balancing one’s hormones. As we age, our hormones, specifically testosterone in men, declines. It’s simply a matter of putting back in what’s missing and in this case, we’re talking about testosterone.

Testosterone is what separates the men from the boys. Its abundance in men is also what differentiates men from women. Studies show that as men age their testosterone levels slowly decline. In fact, men that are diagnosed with testosterone deficiency have an increased incidence of anxiety, depression, self-confidence and irritability than those with healthy testosterone levels. And you thought we were kidding about the Grumpy Old Syndrome, right? Because testosterone is important in developing and maintaining muscle mass and strength, it’s also important in keeping a healthy heart. What is the heart? A muscle.

Andropause symptoms:

Lack of drive, assertiveness and initiative
Lowered self-confidence
Difficulty making decisions
Decreased mental acuity
Low sex drive
Decline in sexual performance
Decreased endurance and stamina
Increased fat around the middle
Decreased muscle mass, tone and strength
Sleep apnea

Often men visit their doctor complaining of the symptoms of low testosterone, but because their blood work is in the ‘normal range’ they are overlooked for treatment. It’s important to take both lab tests and clinical symptoms into consideration. Many physicians measure total testosterone levels rather than free testosterone and secondly, your testosterone levels are compared to those of men within the same age group. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want the testosterone levels of a 60-year-old. I’m not advocating abnormally high levels of testosterone, but I certainly want testosterone levels of a guy in his prime!

So who says you have to retire? Or turn into a Grumpy Old Man for that matter?

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Written By: Steven F. Hotze, M.D.

Steven F. Hotze, M.D., is the founder and CEO of the Hotze Health & Wellness Center, Hotze Vitamins and Physicians Preference Pharmacy International, LLC.


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