Will have my testosterone levels lowered while I am on statins? This is the question many men ask. Here is the answer.
What Will I Learn
Can Taking Statins Reduce My Testosterone Levels
Medications that control lipids (cholesterol) in the blood are one of the most widely prescribed forms of medication in the US and in fact worldwide. The have been proven to help prevent the onset of cardiovascular related illnesses and also extend life expectancy for many patients.
But with the confirmed link between cholesterol and testosterone, can the taking of these drugs actually affect your testosterone production?
This article takes a look at statins and their effects on our hormonal health.
Must Read: Top natural testosterone booster supplements tried and tested. You’ll be surprised at these results.
What Are Statins
Statins are officially classed as HMG-CoA Reductase Inhibitors. They are a class of medication that reduces levels of harmful lipids in the blood, reducing the risks of cardiovascular related morbidity in patients that are suffering with coronary arterial disease.
IN the US, it is believed that 26% of all adults take statins in some form or another. From 2013 they have beeb recommended to most adults especially those over 55 to be taken alongside lifestyle changes to treat diseases caused by high cholesterol.
Of a large number of drugs on the market, the most commonly prescribed are:
Although one of the most commonly prescribed and used drugs, there have bene concerns and reports about certain side effects. Some of the more common ones being Drowsiness, headaches, sickness, diarrhoea and abdominal bloating.
There are some reports that these drugs can also cause something called myopathy (muscle pain), and in rare cases extreme muscle inflammation called rhabdomyolysis.
This condition can also lead to complications with the kidneys if left untreated.
Testosterone And Cholesterol
The main aim of statins is to reduce the levels of blood cholesterol, as this can reduce the chances of experiencing heart related illnesses.
There is thought however, that by reducing cholesterol in the blood, it could have a knock on effect and reduce the amount of testosterone being produced.
Testosterone and cholesterol are both classed as steroid hormones due to their structure. Also known as sterols. Cholesterol is one of the parent compounds responsible for the production of testosterone and other key sex hormones through a process called androgen synthesis.
So it has to be right that when you take satins to reduce cholesterol (for good reasons I might add) there could be not enough available to trigger production of testosterone. There have been animal studies carried out that have shown a defined reduction in hormone production in the testes when statins are also present in the blood.
In tests, Lab rats saw their testosterone production reduced by as much as 40% when the leidig cells in their testes was exposed to various HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors.
So could taking Statins cause your testosterone production to fall? I have also looked at other studies – lets check out the results:
Can Statins Affect Testosterone Production
There have been a huge number of studies carried out on Statins in recent years that look at the uses, risks and benefits of these drugs.
There has not been that many that looked at the link between them and testosterone, but here are some details of the most important ones.
One large study looked at 3484 men who were all suffering from erectile dysfunction. It was discovered that those who were taking statins showed significantly lower levels of both total and free testosterone in their blood.
Added to that, the group on statins also demonstrated smaller testes and reduced production of other key sex hormones.
The researchers behind this study concluded that the use of statins could be responsible for the onset of hypogonadism (low T) in these men.
The university of California also release details in a study paper about 1000 men and women who were given either statins or a placebo over a 6 month period.
The actual aim of the study was to monitor changes in aggression, but they also checked testosterone levels too.
Rather strangely, the women tests subjects saw increases in aggression, where as male test subjects saw significant reductions.
In the men who were given Pravastatin and Simvastatin, they also recorded reduced levels of total testosterone too.
A couple of years earlier, another study published in the journal Circulation detailed the effects of testosterone in relation to changes in cholesterol in men taking statins.
694 men were asked to take either statins or a placebo and were followed and checked over a 6 month period. The group taking Simvastatin recorded significantly lower levels of testosterone that those taking the placebo.
Finally Statins were found to reduce testosterone levels in men who had type 2 diabetes. One trial involving 344 men, the use of statins was found to be associated with lower levels of total testosterone.
The funny thing about this study was however that although total testosterone reduced, the amount of available testosterone in the blood remained the same.
What Do These Studies Tell Us?
The use of Statins to reduce cholesterol production is widespread, there are some possible mild side effects such as headaches, nausea and drowsiness. in rare cases muscle pain and even rhabdomyolysis can be a problem.
Studies have shown that taking cholesterol lowering medication may reduce testosterone production by the testes. This can have a direct effect on the the release of other sex hormones, testicular size, aggression and other ‘many’ attributes.
What Can I Do If I’m Worries about Statins Lowering My Testosterone?
If you are taking statins to reduce high cholesterol, you can make some changes to your lifestyle and diet to reduce the high cholesterol levels – taking regular exercise too is important.
Many men have actually been able to get off statins by eating really sensibly and taking regular exercise, safeguarding and boosting their natural testosterone production along the way.
If you are able to lower your cholesterol with drugs, you might consider then taking a natural T-booster to maximise your levels –
In a round about way this could actually help you further.
Optimum levels of testosterone are known to reduce the amount of body fat that is stored in your body, and the less overweight your are, the less likely you are to develop high cholesterol in the first place.