T Nation

Gyno, Hormones and Fat Storage

Hi, I’ve had what I’d call ‘mild’ gyno (puffy nipples) since I was about 13.

Around that time, I noticed I started to store more fat than when I was a child. I always put this down to puberty and adults holding more fat than kids but I’ve been thinking about it and around the same time, I noticed that I have had a tendency to hold fat in places you’d associate with women, rather than men, such as my buttocks and upper thighs.

In fact, my mates joke about the size of my ass - unfortunately it’s not all muscle from squats!

I had my test levels checked when I was still at uni (about 9 year ago) and was told that it was “well within” the normal range but I was thinking is my ‘feminine’ fat storage likely to be linked to gyno/ low test levels?

I know that a couple of contributing factors with regard to my buttocks, is that I am a bit overweight (I have a 36 inch waist) and I seem to have problems with my glutes contracting when I walk, for example. I do squats and deadlifts but that doesn’t seem to have fixed the problem.

Any advice would be appreciated.

Thanks

Get lab work, TT, FT, E2, TSH, fT3, fT4
Post results here.
Yes, E2 can change ones body composition, and mental state.
Read the stickies.

Hi there,

Right, I’ve finally got my results from the Doctor and I’ve been told that both my test and estradiol levels are pretty much smack bang in the middle of the ‘normal’ range. I know there’s a lot of criticism of Doctors’ readings of hormone levels and their definition of ‘normal’, so I’ll post the various tests results that they gave me, hopefully they will mean more to you guys than me.

Apologies for the amount of tests but it looks like they’ve been quite thorough, if you could give me your informed opinion as to whether my tests do in fact appear ‘normal’, then I would be really grateful.

  1. Thyroid function test- a) Serum free T4 level: 15.0 pmol/l (9.0 - 19.0 = normal according to report)
    b) Sereum TSH level: 1.54 mu/L (0.35 - 4.94 = normal)

  2. Serum testosterone test - 16.2 nmol/L (10.0-30.0 = normal range, according to the report)

  3. Serum oestradiol level test - a) Follicular phase: 77-921 pmol/L; (nb. not sure if this is just for reference but Midcycle: 139 -2382 pmol/L)
    b) Luteal phase:

                              Luteal phase: 77- 1145 pmol/L (then I think this is just for reference 'Postmenopausal (not on HRT): <57 -103 PMOL/l male 40-161')
    
  4. Liver function test:

                          Serum total protein - 73 g/L (64-83 normal range)
    
                          Serum albumin - 42 g/L (35-50 normal range)
    
                          Serum bilirubin level - 11 umol/L (3-21 normal)
    
                          Alk phos - 67 iu/L (40-150 normal)
    
                          ALT/SGPT serum level - 31 iu/L (< 55 normal)
    
                          Serum gamma GT level - 26 iu/L (12-64 normal)
    

Thanks

Dammit, I just realised that you guys in the states will have different measures, I think the measure I’ve been given are either in millilitres or litres. Google tells me that 1 millilitre equates to 0.033814 fluid ounces or 0.000264172051242 gallons, I hope that helps!

If you can tell me what you consider to be normal, I’m more than happy to do the calculations myself.

[quote]majicka wrote:
Dammit, I just realised that you guys in the states will have different measures, I think the measure I’ve been given are either in millilitres or litres. Google tells me that 1 millilitre equates to 0.033814 fluid ounces or 0.000264172051242 gallons, I hope that helps!

If you can tell me what you consider to be normal, I’m more than happy to do the calculations myself.

[/quote]

To get from nmol/L to ng/dL (yes, we do use Metric in the states sometimes) you divide by .0347. So 16.2nmol/L would be about 466ng/dL. Here’s a link that shows conversion factors for conventional to standard measurements and it has a list of many different items: http://www.globalrph.com/conv_si.htm

As for your T levels, I was at 405ng/dL when I got on TRT (my lowest T test was 285ng/dL though). I didn’t really look through your other test results, but I have a few questions that will help the discussion: 1) At what time of day was the test taken? 2) How old are you? 3) What symptoms do you have, aside from fat distribution? Sex drive? Any erectile issues? Ability to gain muscle? Energy levels? 4) What is your body/facial hair like? Light? Thick? Inability to grow stereotypical British Mutton Chops? 5) Where is your belly fat stored? Sides? Front? All in your butt/hips and not really in the middle?

The first four posts on this forum are Stickies. If you haven’t read through them I would highly recommend doing so. It will give you a lot of info and will likely generate more questions, which is a good thing: you can never ask too many questions about your health. If I have time later I’ll look through your test results and see if there’s anything going on.

Best of luck to you!

[quote]ctastrophe wrote:

To get from nmol/L to ng/dL (yes, we do use Metric in the states sometimes) you divide by .0347. So 16.2nmol/L would be about 466ng/dL. Here’s a link that shows conversion factors for conventional to standard measurements and it has a list of many different items: http://www.globalrph.com/conv_si.htm

As for your T levels, I was at 405ng/dL when I got on TRT (my lowest T test was 285ng/dL though). I didn’t really look through your other test results, but I have a few questions that will help the discussion: 1) At what time of day was the test taken? 2) How old are you? 3) What symptoms do you have, aside from fat distribution? Sex drive? Any erectile issues? Ability to gain muscle? Energy levels? 4) What is your body/facial hair like? Light? Thick? Inability to grow stereotypical British Mutton Chops? 5) Where is your belly fat stored? Sides? Front? All in your butt/hips and not really in the middle?

The first four posts on this forum are Stickies. If you haven’t read through them I would highly recommend doing so. It will give you a lot of info and will likely generate more questions, which is a good thing: you can never ask too many questions about your health. If I have time later I’ll look through your test results and see if there’s anything going on.

Best of luck to you! [/quote]

Thanks very much for such a comprehensive response!

In answer to your questions:

  1. From my recollection, the test was taken at about 9.30-10am. I was told not to eat for 12 hours beforehand but in fact, I hadn’t eaten for about 20 hours, as I was fasting. Not sure if that would have any bearing on the tests.

  2. I’m 31

  3. My sex drive is pretty high, though I noticed after I started my new job (after the test), it fell significantly but I attribute that to the initial stress of working longer hours and starting a new job.

I’ve always felt it’s been harder for me to gain muscle than the ‘average’ person. I’m not huge but before I started lifitng weights, I was definitely ‘skinny fat’ - 12.5 inch arms and a 35 inch waist.

My energy levels appear to ok to me. I work longish hours and have to wake at 6am but still seem to feel ok.

  1. I’d say I’m quite hairy generally, though more so on my body than facially and I wouldn’t say my body hair is the thickest.

With my facial hair, I’d say I don’t grow the best beards and it takes me perhaps a bit longer than some other people to thicken it out.

  1. Hmm, this is a bit more difficult but I reckon my belly looks largest from the side. Facing forwards in a mirror, it appears smaller, so I’d say most of the fat is stored at the front.

So what about diet what is your typical days worth of food?

[quote]iroczinoz wrote:
So what about diet what is your typical days worth of food?[/quote]

That’s pretty easy to answer. I have generally tried to keep my carbs reasonably low, except for my porridge for breakfast, however, since starting my new job I’ve had to eat low carb wraps for lunch, as there’s no microwave in the office.

Breakfast - porridge with skimmed milk, blueberries and a scoop of protein powder

Snack 1 - protein shake with a piece of fruit

Lunch - turkey, salad, cheese and egg low carb wrap

Snack 2 - protein shake with a piece of fruit

Dinner - chili with turkey mince and lots of vegetables(I was using minced beef until a few weeks ago).

In addition, I make sure to drink plenty of water (I’ve got a water filter at home) and take multi vitamins and omega 3 capsules.

Supplement-wise, I take creatine, BCAAs and protein powder (as mentioned).

I have the same body type as you. 43, 6’3 256lbs 25% BF & Moobs.
Had low test (280). I use androgel 4 pmpms a day and liqidex.
Followed low carb for years with mixed results.
I started using metformin about six months ago and it has allowed
me to use good carbs again daily. Went from 256 and 25% BF
to 225 17% BF in six months. Yes, I still have some moobs, but I
have dropped at least a cup and a half and the results are encouraging.
Search Metformin or Glucophage in the search box and get educated on it b4
you think about using it.
For me, it was the thing I needed.
Good Luck to you.

Thanks, I had about them and they sound good. Unfortunately as my readings came across as ‘normal’, I think getting my doctor to prescribe anything is going to to be nearly impossible.

[quote]majicka wrote:

[quote]iroczinoz wrote:
So what about diet what is your typical days worth of food?[/quote]

That’s pretty easy to answer. I have generally tried to keep my carbs reasonably low, except for my porridge for breakfast, however, since starting my new job I’ve had to eat low carb wraps for lunch, as there’s no microwave in the office.

Breakfast - porridge with skimmed milk, blueberries and a scoop of protein powder

Snack 1 - protein shake with a piece of fruit

Lunch - turkey, salad, cheese and egg low carb wrap

Snack 2 - protein shake with a piece of fruit

Dinner - chili with turkey mince and lots of vegetables(I was using minced beef until a few weeks ago).

In addition, I make sure to drink plenty of water (I’ve got a water filter at home) and take multi vitamins and omega 3 capsules.

Supplement-wise, I take creatine, BCAAs and protein powder (as mentioned).[/quote]

Well you surely don’t eat too much so it is surprising you find it easy to put on weight. But having said that I know people who eat very little and still gain so go figure…

You might just be more prone to adding the weight in those areas. Did we confirm that your E2 result was the 107pmol?

[quote]iroczinoz wrote:

Well you surely don’t eat too much so it is surprising you find it easy to put on weight. But having said that I know people who eat very little and still gain so go figure…

You might just be more prone to adding the weight in those areas. Did we confirm that your E2 result was the 107pmol?

[/quote]

Well, my porridge is pretty big. I guess I get around 800 cals when you include the milk and protein powder too and my chili has around half a pound of meat (although I’ve just switched to turkey), so they might be contributing factors.

But no, I don’t eat a huge amount for someone with my level of bodyfat. Perhaps I’m just unlucky to have a slow metabolism and low-ish test.

I think my E2 was actually 90pmol, which from what I’ve seen appears to be at the lower end of the scale, which surprised me.

All my blood work was fine and normal too. Glucose @90 after fasting. Seemed like nothing I did would
help me to drop weight.