- Pumping Irony -

PUMPING IRONY: Who Stole My Testosterone?

One happy consequence of aging is the decline in testosterone levels, though a new study suggests that age has nothing to do with it.

An interesting — I’m going to call it a benefit — of aging is how your body’s production of testosterone tends to decline, a phenomenon that tends to allow you just a bit more . . . how shall I say it . . . rationality when dealing with certain aspects of your primary intimate relationship.

Or at least that’s what I thought was the case, until I discovered a new study from Australia that suggests rather strongly that age has nothing to do with it. The study, led by Gary Wittert, MD, a professor of medicine at the University of Adelaide, tracked nearly 1,400 men over five years and concluded that it was changes in health status (especially the onset of obesity and depression) rather than age that caused men to gradually obsess over something other than certain bedroom-centered activities.

“Declining testosterone levels are not an inevitable part of the aging process, as many people think,” Wittert said in a statement released by the university on Saturday. “Testosterone changes are largely explained by smoking behavior [guys who quit smoking apparently stopped thinking about sex as a result] and changes in health status, particularly obesity and depression.”

The average age of the study participants was 54, and if I could remember where my testosterone levels were way back then I guess the study would have a bit more relevance, but I have to admit that I don’t think my health status has much changed a whole lot in the past six or seven years. I quit smoking when I was 22, my weight is actually a bit lower than what it was back then, and I sure don’t feel depressed (even when I wonder where all my testosterone went). So I have to say this latest research doesn’t align with my current reality.

But that’s OK. That’s a powerful hormone, one that governs a whole range of behaviors that don’t’ always reflect positively on their owner. No matter what causes our body to ratchet it back a notch or two is all right with me.

, an Experience Life deputy editor, explores the joys and challenges of aging well.

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