Everyone has the idea of what is testosterone. It is the primary sex hormone in males, and it is also produced in the female body. Males produce 20 times as much testosterone as females.
Testosterone is a produced in gonads (in males in testes and in ovaries in females) and also by the adrenal glands. Testosterone helps in developing male characteristics.
Types Of Testosterone:
There are three types of testosterone- namely Free testosterone, SHBG-Bound testosterone, and Albumin-bound testosterone.
Free testosterone is the purest form of testosterone. It is called “free” as it is not attached to any other proteins. Free testosterone comprises only 2-3% of the total testosterone levels and it is primarily responsible for sexual health benefits.
SHBG (Sex Hormone-Binding-Globulin)-bound testosterone constitutes 40-50% of the total testosterone levels. It is produced in the liver and regulates the amount of free testosterone. SHBG-bound testosterone does not contribute anything towards muscle growth or sexual health. It is considered to reduce the amount of SHBG-bound testosterone to increase the amount of free testosterone as too much of it shows effects like that of testosterone deficiency.
Albumin-bound testosterone constitutes the rest and is bound to the protein called Albumin. Its role is to stabilize extracellular fluid volumes. It is also biologically inactive, i.e. it doesn’t contribute towards sexual health, but it can be broken down into free testosterone whenever needed.
Process Of Testosterone Production:
About 95% of testosterone is produced in the testicles. The rest is made in the adrenal glands. Now without further adieu, let’s get into the depths of the process.
The hypothalamus (a part of our brain) gets a message that there is a need to produce testosterone. It secretes a hormone called gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GRH) to the pituitary glands (master gland, as it is also called).
The pituitary glands detect this hormone and secrete two more hormones called Follicle-Stimulating hormone (FSH) and Luteinizing hormone (LH). They both then get to the testicles through the bloodstream.
After they both reach the testicles, FSH starts sperm production and LH stimulates the Leydig cells to produce testosterone. The next step is of utmost importance.
The Leydig cells convert cholesterol into testosterone. They get this cholesterol from the bloodstream. That is why the first step in maximizing the testosterone level in your body is to eat fat. Although, too much of it could just do the opposite.
This is free testosterone. After the production, it is sent into the bloodstream where most of it immediately bind with proteins like Albumin and SHBG.
Once the hypothalamus detects that the level of testosterone is optimal, it stops secreting GRH, and in turn, the pituitary gland stops secreting FSH and LH and the production of testosterone declines.
The adrenal glands still continue to produce testosterone after the testicles have stopped.
This is exactly how testosterone is produced in the body of an average man.
There are several factors that could affect this process. The deficiency of testosterone can be detected using symptoms and blood tests.
Until then, eat healthy and exercise well.
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