Not sure if this is truly a nutrition topic - T-levels, diet, performance
Male, age 50, overweight but very active
Recent symptoms and long term symptoms that correlate well with low testosterone levels - added fat mass, long term depression getting worse, insomnia, night sweats, fatigue, lowered libido, general blahs. Work and family finances are very stressful, not helping things at all.
Diet: Through the summer, it was great. Since then, as depression seemed to get worse, I've been eating more carbs (mostly bread - a tough habit for me) and drinking alcohol regularly. So yes, I know two things I need to do.
I went to the local doc who specializes in male hypogonadism, and he agreed the symptons were there and tested me - T, free T, prolactin, thyroid panel. My total T came back at 386 (ref range 300-900) and free T at 8.0 (ref range for 50 year old was 7.2 to 24). So, I barely came in at the bottom of normal for free T. I got a letter indicating that I'm not a candidate for T replacement. This angers me in some ways, given my symptoms, and that my result for free T is 1/3 of the upper end value and about 10% above the minimum. I'm surprised that normal is normal and there is no leeway to treat symptoms rather than lab results.
I was hoping that something would pop up here, because I basically need to change my depression medication if I can't find some other way to ameliorate that problem. But, the depression meds all have side effects that I hate. I need to change that medication so that I'm not using alcohol as an adjunct to the medication. And yes, I know the alcohol is an issue.
Physically, I stay active. I do CrossFit 2-3x per week. In the winter, I teach skiing on the weekends. I do some occasional slow running and some sprint workouts. Once ski season is over, I add in a little more easy-pace running or hiking and a bike ride or two during the week.
My strength isn't bad (recent PRs in the dead at 405 and squat at 325), but my mood and body comp are issues. The low libido and low quality of sex life is not fun at all. I still think it's related to the somewhat low T levels. So, I can consider the organizations out there that bypass insurance and will more readily give you supplemental T or HCG or even HGH, but they are expensive, and I'm not sure they really care what's best for the patient.
I can try to fix all of this on my own. But, it seems that changing or augmenting my depression medication is going to make other things worse. But, maybe it's a starting point. Get my brain fixed, ditch the alcohol and bread, get my diet back in line, maybe consider some supplements that could help, but most seem to be scams or limited in usefulness.
Or, I could try to find a naturopath or other provider who would be more open to symptoms rather than just lab numbers.
In some ways, it feels like a downward spiral, and if I could just get something changed and moving in the right direction, everything would follow. Other times, I think that I'm just getting old and this is what I have to look forward to. But, I don't think of 50 as old, and I'm certainly not ready to give up of enjoying life quite yet.
Any thoughts or suggestions.