Testosterone and Depression: Low T and Depression are more Closely related than You’d Think
This may come as a surprise, but low testosterone and depression seem to come together.
Low testosterone is linked to depression, and depression is linked to low testosterone. Got either one of them and it’s very likely that the other one will eventually follow. And what’s even more remarkable, testosterone seems to somewhat cure depression (of course there’s plenty of other big time factors to take in consideration, but testosterone does some crazy things so…).
Here’s what I’m talking about:
The Relationship between Depression and Low Testosterone
Scientists have never been that sure about what actually causes depression.
And quite frankly that’s not a thing easily measured in science, as depression really is a complex “disease”.
You can get depressed if a close relative or a friend passes away, if you don’t know what to do in life, if you’re single and can’t find a partner, after a divorce, etc. there’s gazillion of ways to end up depressed and most of them are a result of an emotional roller coaster.
But emotions and feelings aside, there seems to be some other causes to depression too, and this may explain why some men just get depressed without even knowing why.
And it seems to be testosterone, more accurately, the lack of it.
a) This study found out that when men become more older, their testosterone levels tend to decrease, which brings along the symptoms of depression and irritability. Might be that those grumpy old guys are just low testosterone wrecks?
b) This review study found similar results, men with low testosterone were much more likely to be depressed than men on the higher end of the spectrum.
c) This study found out that the age related testosterone decline may not be an inevitable part of the aging process, as I’ve said multiple times before. The researchers stated that it’s most often a direct causation of obesity and depression.
And if you’re not buying that, then take a look at these results:
d) This review study which examined 7 different studies, found out that testosterone replacement therapy has some strong anti-depressant like benefits. In other words, depressed men who get more testosterone into their serum, end up being much more happier.
e) This study conducted back in 2012 examined the reasons why testosterone relieves the symptoms of depression. The researchers used an animal model to find out that testosterone positively affects hippocampus, a part of the brain linked to memory and stress processing.
So as a take home message from those studies, we can conclude that low testosterone may worsen the feelings of depression, or even cause it, and that increases in serum testosterone usually come with depression relieving benefits.
These results really make SSRI’s and other depression medications look bad, as most of them are linked to lowered free testosterone levels, which in theory would lead to even deeper depression.
There’s clearly a strong link between low testosterone and depression. Which to me is not a surprise…
…I’ve personally felt the mood enhancing benenits that come with increased testosterone levels, and it’s not only general happiness that comes with T, motivation and determination are also some quite strong “side effects” that I’ve noted on a personal levels.
With that being said, depression is a complex condition and I’m no expert in it. All I can say is that testosterone might help relieve the symptoms.