Anxiety and Testosterone - My Journey
By Alex Hilton-Johnson | 0 Comments
You probably don’t know this about me, but for years I have been self-medicating with testosterone as a way of controlling my cortisol and hence my anxiety and stress levels.
How does this work? Testosterone is antagonistic to cortisol. What this means is that as testosterone increases, so cortisol levels are ‘forced’ downward. Not to a point of compromised physiology, but to a point where elevated cortisol and the unpleasant symptoms associated with it are suppressed. So for example, no more restless days (or nights) where you can feel your heart beating harder (not necessarily much faster, but harder, i.e. more ‘inotropic’) and your chest feels a little bit tighter as a result. No more falling out with good friends because you over-react and behave emotionally. No more tendency to break down muscle tissue and turn it into unwanted blood glucose, leading to central obesity and metabolic syndrome. No more cortisol-induced hardening of the arteries.
At least, that’s what I’ve noticed (in terms of satellite benefits) and to be honest I kind of lost sight of the primary reason (anxiety) until I recently let my testosterone drop too low and had to suffer 2 days (only 2 days - how do people deal with this for protracted periods? I used to know, because I was one of them, but not any more) of a hard-clenching heart, mild feelings of anxiety, stress and compromised sleep. It rocked me a little to be honest, because I’ve spent the last 15 years in a blissfully calm state of mind, brought about by intelligent hormonal control.
Summary: I elected to create a false state of hormonal homeostasis many years ago and my recent unwanted foray into ‘normalcy’ reminded me very sharply, why I do what I do.