Study: Drop in men’s testosterone levels ‘not part of normal ageing’

New research presented at The Endocrine Society’s 94th Annual Meeting in Houston, US, has found that a decline in men’s testosterone levels over time is “not an inevitable part” of ageing.

Gary Wittert, professor of medicine at Australia’s University of Adelaide, has co-authored the study and said the decline was “more likely” due to behavioural and health changes.

Obesity is among the factors believed to play a role in declining testosterone levels over time, following the research which involved more than 1,500 men.

The National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia supported the study, which analysed testosterone measurements from participants taken at two clinic visits five years apart.

After those showing abnormal lab values or who were taking medication were excluded, the results comprised data analysis from 1,382 men aged between 35- and 80-years-old.

On average, there was no significant decline over the five-year period but researchers uncovered certain factors linked to lower testosterone levels in the analysis of certain sub-groups.

Wittert said: “Men who had declines in testosterone were more likely to be those who became obese, had stopped smoking or were depressed at either clinic visit.

“It is critical that doctors understand that declining testosterone levels are not a natural part of ageing and that they are most likely due to health-related behaviours or health status itself.”

The findings were presented by Andre Araujo, a visiting professor at the University of Adelaide and who is the vice president of epidemiology at New England Research Institutes, US.

Details: (Endo 2012)

FIA signs-up 26 sites to participate in nationwide wellbeing research

The Fitness Industry Association (FIA) has announced that 26 member sites have agreed to participate in one of the UK’s largest fitness centre-based wellbeing studies.

The new nationwide research is designed to compare the effectiveness of structured exercise schemes with unstructured exercise and physical activity counselling among 3,000 people.

Each of the 26 fitness facilities taking part will receive an evidence-based programme, which will provide training, academic recognition and scientific equipment.

Two staff members from each site will be trained by the University of Greenwich in order to upskill them in the delivery of academic-level research.

It follows a successful pilot study completed last year with Impulse Leisure, which reported a 92 per cent retention rate and improved physiological outcomes among participants.

Sites taking part include Aquaterra’s Highbury Pool and Fitness Centre, London; DC Leisure sites in Harborne, New Malden and Taro; and Halo Leisure in Hereford.

FIA CEO David Stalker said: “Accurate and up to date academic research on this scale has never been previously achieved, so these sites will be part of ground breaking results.”


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