How Low Testosterone Affects Energy Levels

By The Vault Team

Testosterone is one of the body’s most important hormones. It’s an influencer within our system, and keeps us running at full speed. Specifically, testosterone stimulates the genes responsible for major elements of men’s health.

Having healthy testosterone levels benefits both your physical and mental energy. Your body sees:

  • Muscle growth

  • Better fat distribution

  • Increased strength

  • Improved mood

  • Stronger bones

  • Increased libido

Given this, it’s no surprise that low testosterone — something that affects up to 40% of men over 40 — can lead to reduced energy.

That diminished energy can show up in multiple ways. The American Urology Association (AUA) connects these symptoms with low testosterone: 

  • Fatigue

  • Reduced endurance

  • Diminished physical performance

  • Reduced motivation

  • Cognitive dysfunction 

"I look at testosterone as jet fuel. It keeps men running. Diminished mental clarity, motivation, drive -- all of these things can be related to low testosterone," Edmund Sabanegh, chair of the Urology Department and Director of the Center for Male Infertility at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio notes on WebMD.  Among the symptoms associated with low testosterone, fatigue can be a particular pain point. In fact, observational studies involving 4,426 men showed that men with low testosterone levels had a higher prevalence of fatigue than men with normal testosterone levels.

This correlation may be because the majority of men's testosterone levels are released during sleep. In one recent JAMA study, daytime testosterone levels decreased by 10-15% among healthy young men who restricted sleep to 5 hours per night for one week.   

Also worth noting is that testosterone deficiency may reduce energy expenditure and fat oxidation, which increases body fat. These changes in your body composition can contribute to reduced physical energy. In one observational study of 372 men 20-85 years old, for example, lower testosterone levels were associated with a higher proportion of body fat. 

Good news: Low testosterone is recognizable and safe treatment is available, such as the common method of testosterone replacement therapy (TRT). It helps restore testosterone to healthy levels and reverse symptoms like reduced energy. 

Furthermore, testosterone replacement studies have shown that, at therapeutic doses, testosterone creates subtle changes to mood. It does so primarily around reducing negative mood states related to fatigue, depression, and self-esteem. 

Vault is here to help you get started. We’re a modern men’s health company with a simple goal: to make it easier for men to identify and treat low testosterone. Customized treatments from Vault supported physician practices are built for you and your needs. 

This article was reviewed by Aaron Grotas, MD

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