Men’s testosterone levels will remain higher for longer throughout life when compared to the hormonal changes of women. By age 40, men begin to experience a drop in testosterone, however these hormone levels decrease slowly by an average of 1% per year. By age 70, the average male testosterone level is only 30% lower than their peak level at age 20 (1).

Multiple studies have found that testosterone levels in American men are declining earlier in life. In 2007, The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism published a study reporting that male testosterone levels have been declining for the past 20 years, by approximately 1% each year (2). Symptoms of low testosterone include:
– fatigue
– low mood or depression
– lack of concentration
– sleep disturbance
– reduced strength
– muscle mass loss
– weight gain
– hair loss
– lowered libido
– sexual dysfunction / erectile dysfunction

Testosterone levels can be assessed through laboratory blood work. To assess the bigger picture of what could be causing low testosterone, naturopathic doctors (ND) often test: total testosterone, free testosterone, sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG), and dihydrotestosterone (DHT). Additional blood work can include LH, FSH, and Prolactin based on your symptom picture.
Note: Testosterone is best tested in the early morning (8:00am).

A naturopathic doctor may interpret your blood work results differently than other practitioners. Depending on the blood test, ND’s often look for an “optimal” level or range. This means, that although you can fit within the reference range, it may not be an optimal level for you (ie. your hormones are on the low end of the “normal range”). It is also important to interpret your hormone levels based on your age range. Many labs have a general reference range that accompanies all ages and does not provide a break down of ranges for men aged 25 compared to men aged 65.

If you suspect that your testosterone levels are low, talk with your health care practitioner.

Dr. Stephanie Liebrecht, BSc, ND
Naturopathic Doctor

1. Solan, M. (2019, August 9). Treating low testosterone levels. Retrieved from
2. Travis, T., et al. A population level decline in serum testosterone levels in American men. Retrieved from