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What is Testosterone?

Bodybuilding is a naturally occurring hormone produced in the testicles (for men) and in the ovaries of women. Testosterone is most often associated with male sex drive and sperm production, but also affects bone and muscle mass, the way your body stores fat, blood cell production, and your mood.

Testosterone levels are regulated in men by the hypothalamus and pituitary gland in the brain. The hypothalamus sends signals to the pituitary gland through chemicals and hormones in the bloodstream. These signals tell the pituitary gland how much testosterone to produce. The pituitary gland then sends luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone to the testicles to trigger testosterone production and sperm production, respectively. Testosterone then enters the bloodstream to act on cells and tissues throughout the body.

The ABCs of Testosterone: A Comprehensive Overview

In addition to its role in reproduction and sexual behavior, testosterone promotes secondary sexual characteristics in men, including the growth of body hair and enlarged prostate and penis, and increases libido. It also helps regulate your heart rate and blood pressure, and it plays a role in how the body uses fat.

Although there are many reasons for low testosterone, most of which can be treated, some people may need to get hormone replacement therapy. This can be done with an injection, patch, gel, pill, or pellets. It is important to talk to your doctor about whether or not this is the right treatment for you. If you decide to use testosterone, it is a good idea to use a condom when having sex because the hormone may interfere with your ability to get pregnant.

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