Business Solution Series: Fostering Business Resilience Through Workplace Wellness

Business Solution Series: Fostering Business Resilience Through Workplace Wellness

In conjunction with World Mental Wellness Day, MHC hosted an exclusive seminar with Singapore Business Federation (SBF), Fostering Business Resilience Through Workplace, on 11 October. This seminar featured Mr. Rui Savio Dass as the keynote speaker, who delivered an insightful speech on how business leaders plays a part in supporting their employee’s well-being during crisis. Additionally, Mr. Rui along with other panel speakers, Ms. Alyssa Stark and Dr. Maleena Suppiah Cavert, engaged in a fireside chat discussing the role of mental wellness in driving employee workplace performance with the session expertly moderated by our CEO, Ms Kabita Karthigeyan.

Members of SBF also had a fruitful session from the important key takeaways. The fireside chat highlighted the need for business leaders to actively foster a culture of mental wellness and coaching, promote diversity and inclusion, building empathetic connections and focus on meeting employee’s needs and wants beyond just pantries and gyms.

At MHC, we understand the importance of your employee’s well-being and your organisation’s health. Speak to us today on how we can help your organisation remain at the forefront of workplace wellness!

Find out more about MHC’s Mental Wellness Programme here https://mhcasia.com/mhc-mental-wellness-programme or contact us via mentalwellness@mhcasiagroup.com.

Preventing Hepatitis: A Comprehensive Guide for Health-Conscious Singaporeans

Preventing Hepatitis: A Comprehensive Guide for Health-Conscious Singaporeans

Hepatitis is a condition characterised by liver inflammation and can be caused by various factors, including viral infections, bacteria, and toxins. Acute Hepatitis is primarily driven by Hepatitis A, B, C, and E viruses, although other non-liver-specific viruses can also trigger it. As for chronic Hepatitis, the most common culprits are the Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C viruses. According to SingHealth, Hepatitis B is the leading cause of chronic viral Hepatitis in Singapore.

Hepatitis Symptoms

Hepatitis A symptoms usually develop within 15 to 50 days after exposure to the virus. They can include:

  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Dark urine
  • Light-coloured stools
  • Joint pain
  • Abdominal pain
  • Jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes)

Hepatitis B symptoms can develop anywhere from a few weeks to several months after exposure to the virus. They can be similar to the symptoms of hepatitis A, but they can also be more severe. Some people with hepatitis B may not have any symptoms at all.

Hepatitis C symptoms can develop for weeks, months, or even years. Many people with hepatitis C never develop any symptoms. When symptoms occur, they can be similar to the symptoms of hepatitis A or B.

Hepatitis D symptoms are the same as the symptoms of hepatitis B. However, hepatitis D can only occur in people infected with hepatitis B.

Hepatitis E symptoms are fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dark urine, pale stools, and jaundice.

Hepatitis Transmission

Hepatitis A is spread through the faecal-oral route which can be transmitted through stool contact with an infected person. This often happens from contaminated food or water or close personal contact, such as sexual contact or sharing needles.

Hepatitis B is spread by getting contact with infected blood or body fluids. This can happen through sharing needles, through sexual contact, from mother to child during childbirth, or through medical procedures involving using contaminated needles or equipment.

Hepatitis C is often spread through contact with infected blood. However, it is less easily transmitted than hepatitis B. At times, it is spread through sexual contact but is less common.

Hepatitis D can only occur in people already infected with hepatitis B. It is spread through the same routes as hepatitis B, including sharing needles, sexual contact, and from mother to child during childbirth.

Preventing Hepatitis

Hepatitis A Prevention

  • Get vaccinated against hepatitis A.
  • Practice good hygiene, including regular handwashing with soap and water.
  • Avoid consuming contaminated food or water.
  • Practice safe and protected sex and avoid sharing personal items like toothbrushes and razors.

Hepatitis B Prevention

  • Get vaccinated against hepatitis B.
  • Use barrier methods (condoms) during sexual activity.
  • Avoid sharing needles or personal items that may come into contact with blood or body fluids.
  • If pregnant, ensure prenatal screening and take appropriate measures to prevent transmission to the baby.

Hepatitis C Prevention

There is no vaccine for hepatitis C, so focus on prevention measures for hepatitis B and safe sex practices to reduce transmission risks.

Hepatitis D Prevention

As hepatitis D can only occur in individuals already infected with hepatitis B, preventing hepatitis B transmission is the primary preventive measure.

Hepatitis E Prevention

Avoid consuming contaminated water and practice good hygiene when handling food.

Diagnosing Hepatitis

Some diagnostic tests can detect Hepatitis. The type of test used will depend on the type of Hepatitis that is suspected:

Hepatitis A

The most common test for hepatitis A is an antibody test. This test measures the antibodies to the Hepatitis A virus in your blood. Antibodies are proteins your body produces as a response to an infection. If you have antibodies to hepatitis A, you have been infected with the virus at some point.

Hepatitis B

Many different tests can be used to diagnose hepatitis B. These tests include:

  • Hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg): This test measures the levels of HBsAg in the blood. HBsAg is a protein that is produced by the hepatitis B virus. If you have HBsAg in your blood, you are currently infected with the virus.
  • Hepatitis B core antibody (HBcAb): This test measures the levels of HBcAb in the blood. HBcAb is an antibody that the body produces in response to the hepatitis B core protein. If you have HBcAb in your blood, you have been infected with the virus at some point.
  • Hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg): This test measures the levels of HBeAg in the blood. HBeAg is a protein that is produced by the hepatitis B virus. If you have HBeAg in your blood, it means that you are currently infected with the virus and that the virus is actively replicating.
  • Hepatitis B DNA: This test measures the levels of hepatitis B DNA in the blood. Hepatitis B DNA is the genetic material of the hepatitis B virus. If you have hepatitis B DNA in your blood, you are currently infected with the virus.

Hepatitis C

The most common test for hepatitis C is an antibody test. This test measures the antibodies to the hepatitis C virus. Antibodies are proteins your body produces as a response to an infection. If you have antibodies to hepatitis C, you have been infected with the virus at some point.

Hepatitis D

The only way to diagnose hepatitis D is to test for both hepatitis B and hepatitis D. If you have hepatitis B, you can be tested for hepatitis D by measuring the levels of hepatitis D antigen (HDAg) in the blood. HDAg is a protein that is produced by the hepatitis D virus. If you have HDAg in your blood, it means that you are currently infected with both hepatitis B and hepatitis D.

Hepatitis E

The most common test for hepatitis E is an antibody test. This test measures the antibodies to the hepatitis E virus in the blood. Antibodies are proteins your body produces as a response to an infection. If you have antibodies to hepatitis E, you have been infected with the virus at some point.

Medical Tests for Hepatitis

Liver Function Tests

  • These tests measure liver enzymes and proteins in the blood to assess liver health and function.

Hepatitis Serology Tests

  • Serology tests detect antibodies specific to each hepatitis virus and help diagnose the type of hepatitis infection.

Liver Biopsy

  • A liver biopsy involves removing a small tissue sample from the liver for examination under a microscope to assess liver damage and inflammation.

Vaccinations for Hepatitis

Hepatitis A vaccine

Hepatitis A is a two-dose vaccine- the first dose is given as an injection, and the second dose is given 6-12 months later. The vaccine is about 95% effective in preventing hepatitis A.

Hepatitis B vaccine

The hepatitis B vaccine is a three-dose vaccine. The first dose is given as an injection, and the second and third doses are delivered 1-2 months and six months later. The vaccine is about 95% effective in preventing hepatitis B.

It is recommended to get vaccinated for all children at the following ages:

  • 12 months of age
  • 18 months of age
  • 4-6 years of age

The hepatitis A and B vaccines are also recommendable for adults who are at increased risk of infection, such as:

  • People who travel to countries where hepatitis A or B is common
  • People who work in healthcare or other settings where they may be exposed to blood or body fluids
  • People who have sex with multiple partners
  • People who use illegal drugs

If you are concerned about your risk of hepatitis A or B, talk to your doctor. They can recommend the appropriate vaccines for you.

Hepatitis C, D, and E

There is no vaccine available for hepatitis C, D, or E. However, there are treatments available for hepatitis C. If you are concerned about your risk of hepatitis C, our General Practitioners are available for consult. We can recommend appropriate testing and treatment options for you.

Where to Get Tested for Hepatitis in Singapore

MHC offers vaccinations for Hepatitis A and B in our clinics. You may book an appointment at Amara Medical Centre or Novena clinic. Alternatively, you may also contact our clinics for the latest update on the available vaccinations. Hepatitis is preventable through vaccination, safe practices, and good hygiene. Early detection through medical testing is crucial for effective treatment and preventing severe complications. Singaporeans should take proactive measures to safeguard their health by vaccinating, practising safe behaviours, and seeking medical attention promptly. By doing so, they can significantly reduce the risk of Hepatitis and maintain a healthy and fulfilling life.

For Corporate Healthcare programme enquiries, please contact our Corporate HQ for questions and enquiries about corporate healthcare programs, including Vaccinations, Executive Health Screenings, GP Services, or Weight management programmes

FWD HealthFirst provides free medical teleconsultations for customers

FWD HealthFirst provides free medical teleconsultations for customers

The service also entails healthcare services at affordable prices.

FWD Singapore has introduced a new value-added service named FWD HealthFirst, developed in collaboration with MHC Asia.

This service grants FWD protection plan policyholders and their families access to primary healthcare services at preferential rates and offers free teleconsultations.

The partnership aims to ease the 4.2% year-on-year price hike in healthcare, referencing Singapore’s consumer price index figures.

FWD HealthFirst is available to both new and existing customers of FWD protection plans, with no extra charges. Notably, this benefit extends to family members, encompassing spouses, children, parents, and grandparents.

By including family members, FWD intends to safeguard the overall well-being and financial security of customers and their dependents, attending to their insurance needs and beyond.

Through FWD HealthFirst, FWD introduces free medical teleconsultations, enhancing healthcare accessibility.

These virtual appointments, accessible around the clock, connect individuals with experienced healthcare professionals, eliminating the need for physical visits and lengthy waiting times. Additionally, medicine delivery is accessible at preferential rates.

Further, the program offers customers preferred rates for general practitioner (GP) and dental services at over 600 MHC GP and dental clinics. This ensures that healthcare expenses remain manageable.

For instance, a standard GP consultation, typically costing between S$20 and S$55, would be reduced to S$13 through FWD HealthFirst.

By substantially reducing healthcare costs, FWD aims to assist individuals and families to prioritise their well-being without compromising financial stability.

View SBR’s original article here: https://sbr.com.sg/insurance/news/fwd-healthfirst-provides-free-medical-teleconsultations-customers

Combating Fatty Liver: Healthy Habits for Health-Conscious Singaporeans

Combating Fatty Liver: Healthy Habits for Health-Conscious Singaporeans

The liver is vital as your body’s primary cleaning and processing hub.

One of the liver’s essential functions is detoxification, which eliminates toxins from the bloodstream from sources like contaminated food, alcohol, and medications. Moreover, a healthy liver regulates blood sugar (glucose) levels and filters out bilirubin from the bloodstream. Bilirubin is a by-product resulting from the normal breakdown of red blood
cells.

Furthermore, the liver is responsible for processing food, extracting essential nutrients, and producing bile necessary for digesting fatty foods. It also acts as a storage centre for any surplus nutrients.

Fatty liver is a condition when there is excessive fat in your liver. It is a silent disease, meaning it often does not cause symptoms in the early stages. However, if left untreated, fatty liver disease may often lead to serious health concerns, such as liver cirrhosis and liver cancer.

Causes of Fatty Liver Disease 

Here are some causes of fatty liver disease:
– Obesity
– Overweight
– Type 2 diabetes
– High blood cholesterol
– High triglycerides
– Alcohol abuse
– Certain medications
– Some medical conditions, such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)

Symptoms of Fatty Liver Disease

In the early stages, fatty liver disease often does not cause any symptoms. However, as the disease progresses, some people may experience the following symptoms:
– Fatigue
– Weight loss
– Pain in the upper right abdomen
– Jaundice
– Nausea and vomiting
– Dark urine

Treatment for Fatty Liver Disease

Fatty liver treatment depends on the disease’s severity and underlying cause. In some cases, no treatment is necessary. However, if the condition is more advanced, treatment may include:
– Weight loss
– Exercise
– A healthy diet
– Medications to lower cholesterol and triglycerides
– Alcohol cessation

Healthy Habits for Health-Conscious Singaporeans

  1. Eating a well-balanced Diet and Portion Control: A balanced diet is crucial in combating fatty liver. Aim to eat various vegetables, whole grains, fruits, lean protein, and healthy fat in your daily diet. Avoid too much consumption of sugary and processed foods, as they can contribute to fat accumulation in the liver. Additionally, practising portion control helps manage calorie intake and prevents overloading the liver with excessive fats and sugars.
  2. Have regular Physical Activity: It is essential for maintaining a healthy liver. As recommended by health experts, doing at least 2 hours of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise or at least 2 hours and a half of vigorous-intensity aerobic exercise per week may be helpful. Activities like brisk walking, jogging, cycling, and swimming can significantly improve liver function and reduce the risk of fatty liver disease.
  3. Limit Alcohol Consumption: Too much alcohol consumption is a leading cause of fatty liver disease. For those who consume alcohol, it is essential to do so in moderation. The recommended limits are one standard drink for women (per day) and up to two standard drinks for men (per day). Better yet, consider reducing alcohol intake or opting for non-alcoholic beverages altogether.
  4. Hydration: Staying well-hydrated is vital for overall health, including liver function. Water helps flush out toxins from the body and aids digestion, preventing unnecessary stress on the liver. Aim to drink an adequate amount of water daily and reduce the intake of sugary beverages.
  5. Avoid Smoking: Smoking harms your lungs and adversely affects liver health. Smoking increases oxidative stress, damaging the liver and impairing natural detoxification processes. If you are a smoker, seek support to quit and improve your liver’s overall well-being.
  6. Manage Stress: Chronic stress can hurt liver health. Do stress-reducing activities such as meditation, yoga, deep breathing exercises, or time in nature. Proper stress management promotes a healthy liver and overall well-being.
  7. Regular Health Check-ups: Regular health check-ups are essential for monitoring liver health and detecting potential issues early on. If you have a family history of liver disease or other risk factors, consider getting liver function tests and follow-up with your healthcare provider regularly.

Diagnosis of Fatty Liver Disease

Fatty liver disease is often diagnosed with blood tests, ultrasound, and liver biopsy.

  • Blood tests: can measure liver enzymes, which are proteins released when the liver is damaged. You may have fatty liver disease if you have high levels of liver enzymes. Blood testing is the most common way to diagnose fatty liver disease, including ALT, AST, and GGT.
    • Ultrasound: is a non-invasive imaging test that can be used to view the liver. Ultrasound can measure the amount of fat in the liver and look for signs of liver damage. Ultrasound is a commonly used imaging test used to diagnose fatty liver disease.
    • Liver biopsy: a procedure where they take a small sample of liver tissue and examine it under a microscope. This procedure can be used to confirm the diagnosis of fatty liver disease and to assess the severity of the disease. It is the most accurate test for diagnosing fatty liver disease but is also the most invasive.

MHC offers weight management programmes that combine injectable or oral treatments with a complimentary workout session. The goal of managing and treating weight gain is not simply to lose weight but to improve overall health and lower the risks of other health complications. From the initial consultation to follow-ups, our program will continue to help patients control and manage weight, a great way to avoid liver disease.

To book an appointment for weight management programme, you may book at Amara Clinic or contact our clinics for your Personal Health Screenings. For Corporate Healthcare programme enquiries, please contact our Corporate HQ for questions and enquiries about corporate healthcare programs, including Executive Health Screenings, GP Services, or Weight management programmes. Staying healthy and active helps promote a healthy liver.

Staying healthy and active helps promote a healthy liver. Please chat with us through
Whatsapp for more information.

President’s Certificate of Commendation for Covid-19

President’s Certificate of Commendation for Covid-19

On 18 June 2023, we were delighted to receive The President’s Certificate of Commendation for Covid-19, recognising our significant contributions alongside government agencies and private organizations that played vital roles during the pandemic.

Our efforts were praised for the positive impact we made, and we are proud to have contributed to our nation’s response to Covid-19. Congratulations to all the other recipients who also received this prestigious award!

The President’s Certificate of Commendation for Covid-19 is an award part of the National Awards (COVID-19). These awards acknowledge exceptional public spirit and remarkable contributions to Singapore’s efforts in combating the Covid-19 pandemic.

Find out more about the National Awards for Covid-19 here: https://www.pmo.gov.sg/National-Awards and the investiture here https://www.pmo.gov.sg/Newsroom/Investiture-of-the-National-Awards-COVID-19.

An Overview of Colorectal Cancer

An Overview of Colorectal Cancer 

With about 1500 newly diagnosed cases of Colorectal cancer in Singapore each year, the risk of a person getting colorectal cancer during his lifetime is 5.6%. Colorectal cancer comes out to be the most common cancer when considering both the male and female populations in Singapore. It is also the second leading cause of death in the USA.

What is Colorectal Cancer?

The term Colorectal Cancer refers to the cancer of parts of the large gut. i.e., either the colon or rectum. The colon and rectum make up the majority of the large gut. This cancer is most often characterized by the uncontrolled growth of the cells of the large gut lining known as epithelial cells.

Colorectal cancer is strongly linked to family history as well as other gastrointestinal disorders of the large gut such as colonic polyps. Polyps are the outgrowth in the inner lining of the large gut. In fact, most colorectal cancers start as polyps which then acquire the ability to divide indefinitely.

Colorectal cancer may grow outward into the wall of the gut and involve the outer layers from which it can spread to blood vessels or lymph nodes and ultimately to the other parts of the body.

What are the Signs and Symptoms of Colorectal Cancer?

Colorectal cancer in its early stages may be undetected due to being silent (having no symptoms at all) although there are certain alarming signs of colorectal cancer. These include;

Change in Bowel habits – Colorectal cancer might manifest as diarrhoea or constipation.
Unexplained Anaemia – When detected on routine investigation might warrant screening for colorectal cancer.
Blood in stools – Most often presenting as fresh blood mixed with stools.
Anorexia and weight loss.
Abdominal Mass – Manifesting as abdominal fullness and other mass effects.
● Abdominal Pain – Most often in the lower abdomen.

Clinically your physician may feel a mass on examination. The diagnosis of colorectal cancer is usually made after a colonoscopy either as a part of screening or on the doctor’s advice. A biopsy Is usually taken during colonoscopy for histopathological testing. A CT scan as well as a barium enema might be done to demarcate the extent of the spread of colorectal cancer.


What are the Risk Factors and Causes of Colorectal Cancer?

The risk factors of colorectal cancer include;

• Smoking.
• Having inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
• Being obese or overweight (Obesity is especially linked to colorectal cancer in men).
• A diet containing a greater amount of red meat or processed meat.
• Having low levels of Vitamin D.
• Sedentary lifestyle (limited physical activity).
• Alcohol consumption.
• Being older than 50.
• Family history of colorectal cancer or having adenomatous polyp of the colon.
• Having type 2 diabetes.

The causes of colorectal cancer are a bit unclear. It is shown to develop from a number of environmental as well as genetic factors.

According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), about 15% of colorectal cancers have been shown to have a strong genetic root. Some inherited genetic syndromes that predispose to colorectal cancer are;

• Familial Adenomatous Polyposis (FAP).
• Hereditary non-Polyposis colorectal cancer (HNPCC).
• Peutz-Jeghers Syndrome.
• MUTYH-associated polyposis (MAP).

Colorectal cancer may result from acquired genetic mutations as well. These involve DNA damage to the patient throughout his/her life. Certain risk factors play a role in these acquired mutations but the exact causes have not been determined yet.

How to prevent Colorectal Cancer?

Some of the preventive measures against the development of colorectal cancer are;

Screening for colorectal cancer – Regular screening can decrease the risk of the development of colorectal cancer. Polyps if found can be removed if indicated to prevent their transformation into malignant masses. Patients should have a colonoscopy every 10 years starting at the age of 50 years as routine screening. Those having a familial history of colorectal cancer or polyposis may start screening 10 years earlier than the age at which their family member developed the disease or the age of 40 years, whichever comes earlier.
Dietary measures – Diets having a high content of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains are linked with prevention against the development of colorectal cancer.
Regular physical activity – Increased physical activity has been linked to a lower risk of colorectal cancer and polyps while limiting the sitting time as well as time lying down also helps in prevention.
Limiting alcohol intake – Several studies have found an increased incidence of colorectal cancer with increased alcohol intake.
Maintain Bodyweight at healthy levels.
Cessation of smoking.
Taking multivitamins – Some studies suggest a reduced incidence of colorectal cancer with regular intake of multivitamins, calcium and magnesium.

 

References

1) https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/155598#causes-and-risk-factors
2) https://www.nuh.com.sg/Health-Information/Diseases-Conditions/Pages/Colorectal-Cancer.aspx#:~:text=In%20Singapore%2C%20the%20risk%20of,there%20is%20chance%20for%20cure.
3) https://www.cancer.org/cancer/colon-rectal-cancer/causes-risks-prevention.html

HR Challenge #3: How do I increase the productivity of my HR Team?

HR Challenge #3: How do I increase the productivity of my HR Team?

As leaders responsible for the employee experience, HR teams can play a significant role in increasing productivity by developing initiatives that focus on resources in a more efficient manner. An example for HR teams looking to support efficient operations is to create pre-populated forms and templates. Tools such as shared folders, leveraging on automation or using cloud solutions to submit documents for endorsements can help to save time for both HR personnel and staff.

Many of our clients have chosen our MHC web-based platform to manage their claims administration, which allows them to eliminate the hassle of dealing with physical claims administration, saving you and your team precious time. Employees can submit claims on the go via our mobile-application based platforms, while the HR team can access our web portal to gain an instant overview of the company’s overall benefits schemes and utilization. The members can experience cashless consultation upon clinic visits under the MHC Network, providing a seamless and fuss-free experience.

With claims administration hassle out of the way along with a highly customisable and robust claims system, you can focus on what you do best, thereby increasing both you and your employee’s productivity and giving you more time to focus on the important things.

Find out more about our MHC Programme and how we can help manage your corporate health benefits today.

To book an appointment with our MHC consultant, kindly email sales@MHCAsiaGroup.com.

WorkWell Leaders – Champion Member

Member Recogniton Award – Champion Member

MHC Asia Group is proud to announce that we have been recognized as a Champion Member by WorkWell Leaders.

This award is presented to organisations and leaders who have demonstrated a commitment to create a mentally healthy and thriving workplace for our people as a strategic priority. 

This is part of WorkWell Leader’s mission to effect structural and sustainable change in workplace mental health by changing workplace culture through leadership interventions and systemic influence, improving capability to support mental health challenges and increasing capacity for care and intervention for employees with mental health challenges.

 

 

How to increase Testosterone levels naturally – Testosterone Deficiency in Men

How to increase Testosterone levels naturally – Testosterone Deficiency in Men

According to a study by the European Association of Urology, there is a 20% prevalence of testosterone deficiency in adolescents and young males. Another study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism demonstrated the generational decline in testosterone levels in males. According to this, there was about a 0.4% cross-sectional decline per year of age. A more recent study revealed “a highly significant age-independent decline in total testosterone in the first and second decades of the 21st century. The decline was unlikely to be explained by increasing rates of obesity.”. In short, there is a great amount of research work indicating declining testosterone levels in men across various cultures.

What is Testosterone deficiency?

The inability of the body to produce enough testosterone is called testosterone deficiency. The production of testosterone is controlled by the testes as well as a part of the brain called the hypothalamus. Its production increases during puberty and is responsible for maintaining physiological and sexual well-being in men.

Broadly speaking, an individual having a blood serum testosterone level of less than 300ng/dL is said to be testosterone deficient. Although this is highly variable across different age groups and individuals, since a person having testosterone levels greater than the said threshold may still be testosterone deficient because of high SHBG (Sex hormone-binding globulin), a protein which binds free testosterone in the blood. This results in decreased levels of readily available testosterone.

Similarly, adolescents and young males have a higher testosterone requirement for their physiological well-being. In addition, the sensitivity for testosterone receptors varies across individuals resulting in a slightly variable potency of the effect of testosterone.

What are the Signs and Symptoms of Testosterone deficiency?

Testosterone deficiency has several health implications, some of which are;

  • Loss of libido (decreased sex drive).
  • Loss of lean muscle mass.
  • Tiredness and Chronic fatigue.
  • Difficulty losing weight (increased body fat content).
  • Erectile dysfunction.
  • Lack of motivation and symptoms of depression.
  • Decreased bone density leading to easy fractures.
  • As testosterone is essential for the adequate development of male gonads which in turn leads to further deficiency in testosterone production.
  • Decreased sperm count and fertility.
  • Difficulty concentrating.
  • Delayed puberty.
  • Lack of deepening of the voice.

What are the Causes of Testosterone deficiency?

Although a decrease in the level of testosterone is a normal part of the ageing process, it is influenced by several environmental factors as well as lifestyle choices. Some of the most important causes of lower testosterone levels include;

  • Obesity – Increased fat tissue in the body leads to increased aromatisation of testosterone which is a process that converts testosterone into oestrogen.
  • Environmental oestrogen mimicking molecules – Found in plastics and certain plant sources as well. These are classified as phytoestrogens and xenoestrogens.
  • Alcohol and drug abuse – Increase the levels of the female sex hormone estrogenic as well as the stress hormone cortisol.
  • Chronic stress – Increases the levels of cortisol which mostly counteracts the effects of testosterone.
  • Testicular injury or infection.
  • Varicocele.
  • Genetic conditions – Such as Klinefelter’s Syndrome can lead to lower testosterone levels as well.
  • Hormonal disorders – Pituitary gland disease or other hormonal disorders affecting the pituitary-gonadal hormone axis.
  • Lack of competition and a sedentary lifestyle – Also shown to be responsible for a significant decrease in testosterone levels.
  • Poor sleep hygiene.
  • Insulin resistance and diabetes – Also negatively impact testosterone levels.

How to increase testosterone levels naturally?

The best natural preventions against testosterone deficiency are;

  • Regular physical exercise – Studies show higher levels of testosterone achieved through exercises especially resistance training and heavy lifting. High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is also helpful in optimizing testosterone levels. At the same time, physical exercise can also impact levels of testosterone negatively as well if it is excessive or increases overall stress levels (higher cortisol).
  • Optimizing diet – A diet containing higher levels of fats, and fat-soluble vitamins especially vitamin D is highly effective in regulating testosterone levels. Similarly, certain minerals like zinc and magnesium are also highly effective. This involves a higher intake of red meats, fish, and oysters.
  • Taking plenty of sunlight – Studies have shown the positive impact of sunlight on vitamin D levels as well as a person’s overall mood. Both of which impact testosterone levels positively.
  • Take up sports – Competition has also been linked to higher levels of testosterone levels.
  • Adequate Sleep – Regular uninterrupted night’s sleep of at least 6 hours or more is also highly important and not stressed enough. It is important to note that regularity and quality of sleep is the most important aspect of sleep hygiene.
  • Address any medical conditions – Contact your doctor to optimally deal with medical issues resulting in testosterone deficiency.

 

References