testosterone what is a healthy level and why it is so difficult to measure

Low-T: What are healthy levels of Testosterone and why is it difficult to measure?

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Testosterone is a critical male hormone for men and women; it is perhaps one of the most critical hormones in the endocrine system. But that being said, all hormones are essential and play a significant role in the symphony within your body.

It is responsible for strength, energy, a deep voice, strong bones, muscle development, libido (sex drive), body hair, mood, assertiveness ...and many more traits associated with masculinity. 

But there are more roles that testosterone plays in a man’s health.

Testosterone is vital in how men’s reproductive system (prostate gland health and testicles) develops and matures.

As important as the above-mentioned masculine characteristics are the protection that testosterone provides. Low testosterone levels (AKA “Low-T”) in men are associated with a broad range of health concerns, such as:


The above health afflictions demonstrate the importance of ensuring that a man’s testosterone is healthy and robust.

Testosterone Optimization: How do we determine the best Testosterone levels for men across their lifespan?

The importance of measuring testosterone cannot be overstated. But determining the right testosterone level is not as straightforward as it may seem.

Doctors measure testosterone in nanomoles per liter (nmol/l); males' standard “usual” healthy range is between 9.2 to 31.8 nmol/L.

Medical professionals from different societies, countries, or laboratories universally accept this range. But is this accurate for everyone? Not necessarily.

It is agreed that testosterone deficiency is responsible for many of the above-listed problems that men increasingly develop as they age. In fact, most of those symptoms are similar in women who also have low testosterone.

Recent research indicates that low testosterone can be a risk factor for developing heart disease, diabetes, and obesity in both men and women.

This raises a chicken-vs-egg question: is a lack of testosterone a leading cause of the health problems that men (and women) encounter? Or does the disease cause testosterone levels to plummet, which might cause Metabolic Syndrome and weight gain? Regardless, Low-T often shows up when diseases strike.

Women’s testosterone levels are somewhat more steady, without known daily or yearly changes. As with men, however, they also decline with age. And it is these descending levels that increase the risk of disease.

What Is The Golden Mean For Testosterone Levels

Elevated testosterone levels in men rarely occur naturally. But too much testosterone as used by athletes and bodybuilders for ascetic and performance purposes, may cause heart problems.

The same risk applies to women. This tells us that testosterone looks most beneficial when it remains in a specific range: not too high or low...the “Golden Mean.”

To add to the complexity of determining healthy testosterone ranges, consider that testosterone levels fluctuate from decade to decade, year to year, and even daily. A man’s testosterone peaks around 4-8 AM and drops approximately twelve hours later.

Even the change of seasons enters the testosterone equation. Seasonal fluctuations will differ depending on the country and continent and increase levels by as much as 20%.

To make things even more complicated, consider this: there is no “one-size-fits-all”; everyone is slightly different, especially in how they respond to testosterone.

Testosterone does its job when it latches on to a cell receptor. However, here is where genetics comes into play. Some people are genetically inclined to have highly efficient cell receptors. Other folks are not so lucky.

Therefore, a low level for one person may be adequate if they have more sensitive cell receptors capable of delivering testosterone in lesser amounts. This may explain why some men can have low testosterone levels and not be stricken with disease, and the reverse is also true.

Also, there are other financial, environmental, and social factors at work. Where a person lives, income levels, exposure to toxins, stress levels, and ability to eat healthily all play an additional role in defining a “normal” testosterone range.

Research is ongoing to determine accurate and universal healthy testosterone levels – not too high and especially not too low. But at best, individual considerations always preclude finding the golden mean that applies to everyone.

Contact Our Testosterone And HGH Replacement Therapy Medical Clinic

Obviously, testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) is not something to take lightly. It is also not something to experiment with on your own. It would be best if you had the supervision of experts in the field of hormones.

Our hormone replacement clinic is staffed with experienced, highly trained, and licensed professionals with decades of experience in hormone restoration.

When you contact us to begin testosterone replacement, our initial evaluation will consider all the above facts. Our recommendations for your treatment regime will be tailor-made for you and only you.

We will find your “golden mean” for your ideal testosterone level.

Contact us for a free, no-obligation consultation.


Evolution of Guidelines for Testosterone Replacement Therapy.

Harmonized Reference Ranges for Circulating Testosterone Levels in Men of Four Cohort Studies in the United States and Europe

Diurnal variations of plasma testosterone in men

Seasonal fluctuations in testosterone-estrogen ratio in men from the Southwest United States.

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