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low cortisol and low testosterone, body comp

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  • #16
    As someone (much older) than the OP, and who suffers from low Testosterone, sometimes the options can be very limited. First, if exogenous T is indicated, you need a doc who can legally prescribe it. Then, you need to find one willing to prescribe it, which can be really difficult. Then, even if the doc will prescribe it, they still need to know what they are doing, to get the levels up and steady, without wreaking havoc on the rest of the HPTA.

    It took me visits to a number of docs before I finally found someone willing to put in the time and effort to find a solution. This doc was outside of my insurance, but he's been worth every penny.

    But, the OP does need to see someone who can get to the root cause of the problem and determine a reasonable path back to health. Even though a total T of just over 300 is normal for some labs, it's definitely not normal for a young male, no matter what a doc might try to tell you.

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    • #17
      I'm going to go ahead and clarify some things, as it seems i may have started a little battle over here. OK, so yes, my doctor is a "naturopath," but please let me explain what this means. I feel for some of you, this may conjure an image up of a hippie trying to get me to eat raw herbs and meditate to fix my woes. However, this is completely false. She actually refused to give me any supplements or advice until we get back a more complete blood work lab. I asked her if I should start "testrovita" which is a medicinal supplement that aids your body in producing testosterone. Her response was "I could let you do that, but then how would we find out WHY you're having issues with low testosterone in the first place?" She had similar responses for my low cortisol issues. She's made it extremely clear that she isn't trying to treat symptoms, she's trying to figure out why all of this is happening in the first place and THEN see what she can do to fix the root cause. If she can't fix the root cause, that's when I'll start looking at "regular" doctors and endos. I have confidence she'll be just as effective if not more effective at figuring out the CAUSE behind this mess as any other doctor.

      Also, I've had so many bad experiences with MDs in the past that I'm hesitant to go that route just yet. This isn't to say that all doctors are a bad idea, but in my experience "Take this pill. If that pill does this to you, then take this one too" has been the norm. I hope I'm not offending anyone reading this, but its just my experience.

      Finally, I think this thread has been a little derailed, because my main question was whether or not low testosterone, and low cortisol, could negatively impact my body composition goals. Thanks to all those who have given their input, and to anyone else who would like to just further into this question.

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      • #18
        Back on topic...

        Testosterone is necessary to build muscle. So it seems logical to me that those who have issues with low testosterone would also have difficulty building muscle. Doesn't mean you should give up the lifting though, as that can certainly help your efforts to rebuild healthy testosterone levels tremendously.

        And since cortisol is catabolic, have lower cortisol might off-set the effect of the low testosterone to some extent? I'm no expert here, just going off of the limited info I know about muscle building as it relates to the two hormones in question.
        "The cling and a clang is the metal in my head when I walk. I hear a sort of, this tinging noise - cling clang. The cling clang. So many things happen while walking. The metal in my head clangs and clings as I walk - freaks my balance out. So the natural thought is just clogged up. Totally clogged up. So we need to unplug these dams, and make the the natural flow... It sort of freaks me out. We need to unplug the dams. You cannot stop the natural flow of thought with a cling and a clang..."

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        • #19
          Originally posted by Drumroll View Post
          Back on topic...

          Testosterone is necessary to build muscle. So it seems logical to me that those who have issues with low testosterone would also have difficulty building muscle. Doesn't mean you should give up the lifting though, as that can certainly help your efforts to rebuild healthy testosterone levels tremendously.

          And since cortisol is catabolic, have lower cortisol might off-set the effect of the low testosterone to some extent? I'm no expert here, just going off of the limited info I know about muscle building as it relates to the two hormones in question.
          Thanks Drumroll,
          No plans to quit lifting here, just frustration that I don't think I'm getting all that I should be out of the lifting I'm doing. Also, while cortisol is catabolic, low cortisol is actually just as bad as high cortisol. The symptoms are basically the same : difficulty losing fat, fatigue, mood swings, etc.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by Zach View Post
            You guys are off your rocker if you would send a 19 year old male with clinically low testosterone levels to a ND before a MD. Of course a GP wont di the prescriptions, he will send him to a Endo which is where he needs to go. I mean "nutrient absorption in gut causing weak adrenals"? That sounds pretty quacky to me. Plus if this kid has insurance, go get the real stuff instead of wasting thousands of dollars. NDs can be just as corrupt or worse when it comes to unnesseary prescriptions.
            You are going off a lot of assumptions instead of checking on facts. ND's are absolutely doctors. In many states, they can prescribe pharmaceuticals. Have you ever bothered to look at the ND curriculum? They have just as much A&P, organ systems, biochemistry, etc. as MD's, nearly as much training in pharmacology and hundreds of hours more in nutrition, neutraceuticals, and herbs. You can look at one college here. There are even ND's that special in endocrinology. If you actually read scientific literature, you'd know that leaky gut is accepted in conventional science. I'll do a kindergarten flow for you: leaky gut > high inflammation > high cortisol production > depleted adrenals and down regulated cortisol receptors.

            Now, OP, do I think this is the only cause of your low testosterone? No. You may have misunderstood your doc in that this may be baseline treatment to get your endocrine system back to optimal functioning and then see where your levels are.
            Last edited by jkr; 12-11-2012, 06:54 PM.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by jkr View Post
              You are going off a lot of assumptions instead of checking on facts. ND's are absolutely doctors. In many states, they can prescribe pharmaceuticals. Have you ever bothered to look at the ND curriculum? They have just as much A&P, organ systems, biochemistry, etc. as MD's, nearly as much training in pharmacology and hundreds of hours more in nutrition, neutraceuticals, and herbs. You can look at one college here. There are even ND's that special in endocrinology. If you actually read scientific literature, you'd know that leaky gut is accepted in conventional science. I'll do a kindergarten flow for you: leaky gut > high inflammation > high cortisol production > depleted adrenals and down regulated cortisol receptors.

              Now, OP, do I think this is the only cause of your low testosterone? No. You may have misunderstood your doc in that this may be baseline treatment to get your endocrine system back to optimal functioning and then see where your levels are.
              +1 to above and hes looking at this discussion through the same lense that the public sees the primal diet through...you're CRAZY healthy whole grains are a must! Lol im reading his comments with my primal smirk.

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              • #22
                People are obviously underestimating NDs, and I think most of America does. Its a shame because I think there are so many people currently seeing conventional doctors that would benefit so much from seeing NDs. I agree that for any kind of trauma, emergency, surgery, or whatever I would go to a conventional doctor. However, when it comes to hormones, lethargy, digestion, and other issues of the gut, I would far prefer a ND. I remember when I was younger going to multiple conventional doctors (gastroenterologists) for issues of constipation, and all three of them said threw fiber and laxatives at me which made me feel awefull. Sometimes, conventional doctors just don't have as wide of a range of knowledge as they need to really help everyone they see.

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                • #23
                  And I have a friend who went to a ND about digestive issues and was told to eat lots of fiber and never eat meat since it was, "so hard on the digestive system." A lot of NDs have drunk the vegan cool aid.

                  My point is not to bash one or the other or to say that all of one or the other are perfect, just that they need to be evaluated as individuals.

                  I have a great MD here who works for Kaiser and is fully supportive of PB eating and getting people off of as much medication as possible. I'm sorry the OP has had bad experiences with MDs.

                  Keep an open mind to all ways of healing. More options that way.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
                    My point is not to bash one or the other or to say that all of one or the other are perfect, just that they need to be evaluated as individuals..
                    Word

                    There is this list... Paleo Physicians Network

                    Its unfortunate that there are not more doctors on it.....YET!

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                    • #25
                      To the OP...all I can recommend is to make sure you are getting enough quality cholesterol foods like liver and eggs...precursors to hormones.

                      Of course low T and cortisol will effect your overall body comp, but there are plenty of female athletes for instance (sorry to use the other gender) that are quite well muscled and fit. Just keep working at it.

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