I am a very matter a fact type person. I can tell a good story when I want. Yet some things I feel should be looked at from clinical thought process. Problem is who wants to read a boring somewhat sciency blog post unless it has something interesting to say. Here in lies my dilemma of how to presents facts with opinions of my own, when it comes to getting my insides fixed. At the same time, I work on the visible outside everyone sees.
Shoulda, Coulda, Woulda , three annoying people that pester and harass, they bring you down. Make you doubt yourself even when you know your doing the right things. They add in all those what “ifs” that can plague you to no end. Well today I am going over some of what they have been talking about to me, in the hopes you don’t have to hear from them in the future.
Shoulda has been telling me that I should have gotten checked out sooner, that I should have gotten a base line when I was younger of my hormones, that way as I age I have more information to work off of. Well exactly is Shoulda talking about, well four things you should be tracking.
- Testosterone (T)
- Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA)
- Estradiol (E2)
- Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG)
Now most men in this era have heard of Testosterone and that it is what is needed to be strong healthy men.
Now if you are like me you have a lot of misinformation about what it does what affects it and what the numbers really mean. Because many of your regular MDs only Check for T with out running any other tests. It is like telling a dog it is ok to run with only one leg. You can have numbers ranging from 264-916 and they all could be good or horrible. You could have a high count, but it could be counteracted by (here is the big one) SHBG, if you have a high count SHBG then your high T number really is negated. You would be better off with a low T count and low SHBG. This is where the science plays into everything and few places put two and two together.
There is a fancy chart you can use or simply look up on line a calculator to check your FREE TESTOSTERONE – ding ding Johnny we have a winner. This is the number your after. T and SHBG numbers will give you this number ranging between (6.8-21.5) this is what you need to know. Free T is the number you want to keep track of.
Now DHEA and E2 are important to track also, for I use them an identifier for food and supplements that I am taking. Both can change these drastically in a short time affecting your production of Free T.
Now Coulda and I have been chatting quite a bit, some things in life cannot be changed – decision made in past are final. I could have stayed in shape and not allowed myself to become obese. I could of ate correctly of good healthy food and practiced moderation. But I didn’t the only answers I have for Coulda is that I decided to make changes and then stick with them, I have lost my fat, eat cleaner, exercise. And as my friend Dennis says on twitter “Do Hard Things”
Woulda and I are going rounds. In my conversations with men I hear- I am young I don’t need to worry about it. Or I am great shape does it really matter than I know. Or I am too old to even care.
I feel all three of these thoughts are wrong, you should care, you should track it you should know what is going on. Knowing these numbers can answer all kinds of questions that concern your health. Besides knowing if you have enough T to be a strong go getter of a man.
I turned 45 this year and looking back of what I would do now.
- Get blood work checked when I turned 18
- Each year after that, unless a problem was found then more often
- At the age of 35 get checked every 6 months
- Controlled my diet better
- Kept up a regime of exercise and doing hard things.
Doing these simple things would of given me plenty of data over the years to track my internal progress along with what I can see externally. Taking much of guess work out of Shoulda, Coulda, and Woulda.
Agnitio Veritas Macto
Disclaimer: all ranges for hormones are based off Lab Corps testing ranges. Look at the ranges that are given with your tests.
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