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Low Testosterone Numbers


Wanted to get some thoughts around my low T numbers. So couple of years ago, we were planning to have a baby. Tried for 8-9 months but couldn’t succeed. At that time, doctor asked to get tested for Testosterone.

At that time (Aug 2015), my Total T came out to 255 ng/DL. Since the range at the lab was >= 240 ng/DL, doctor said it is normal though it is low for someone who is 32. My sperm count was in mid-normal range (don’t remember the numbers). About 9 months ago, we had a daughter naturally but I feel I have been suffering from lower libido.

Asked my doctor to get T tested again a few weeks ago as part of annual checkup. He ordered a test for free Testosterone. The test came back yesterday.

Free Testosterone Calculated: 56.7 pg/mL Range 59.0 - 166.0 pg/mL
Some other labs that doctor ordered as part of annual checkup
Cholesterol: 126 mg/dL (Dec 2017), 139 (Dec 2016)
HDL: 39 mg/dL (Dec 2017), 43 (Dec 2016)
LDL CALC: 69 mg/dL (Dec 2017), 79 (Dec 2016)
Triglyceride: 84 mg/dL (Dec 2017), 92 (Dec 2016)
HGBA1C%: 5.1% (Dec 2017), 5.6% (Dec 2016)
Estimated Avg. Glucose: 100 mg/dL (Dec 2017), 114 (Dec 2016)
Creatanine: 0.79 mg/dL (Dec 2017), 0.91 (Dec 2016)

Doctor said Free T is low and has ordered a re-test.

Some more background about me.
I am 34 y/o 188 pounds and from India living in US since last 7 years. I have been in decent shape my entire life (haven’t felt any loss of muscle mass in last 2-3 years). Have always played some sport (tennis, cricket, soccer) throughout my life. Have worked out in gym off and on since 21. Have been regularly going to gym since last 3 months. I focus mostly on compound lifts (currently Squat 225pounds 5-7 sets of 5-7 reps, Bench 165 pounds 5x5 and then some pull ups etc.). Have been seeing decent fat loss but very small muscle gain. In terms of hair have hair all over my arms, legs, chest and shoulders. I feel I had hit puberty at the right time. In terms of diet, focus on more fats and proteins and have reduced carbs intake. Try to keep protein intake to minimum of 80-100 gms naturally.

Is my Free T very low. Can it be increased naturally with strength training good diet. Anything can be deduced from the 2 numbers I posted or do I need to wait for more detailed test results from the doctor?


You need more blood work. Thyroid (TSH, FT3, FT4), CBC, CMP, LIPID profile, LH, FSH, prolactin, SHBG, E2, T and free T. check stickies in this forum for blood labs to do.
T is very low for your age, actually even for a 70 year old. After you get full blood work you can plan better on what to do.

Added to above labs:

  • fasting cholesterol
  • fasting glucose

Eval your overall thyroid function via oral body temperatures - see below.

Have you been using iodized salt in your home to support thyroid function. Very important during pregnancy and breast feeding. Mom would get that from pre-natal vitamins that supplement what she should be getting from iodized salt and other foods. Iodine also needed as kids develop.

What are your natural energy levels like now?
Are you vegetarian?

Please read the stickies found here: About the T Replacement Category

  • advice for new guys - need more info about you
  • things that damage your hormones
  • protocol for injections
  • finding a TRT doc

Evaluate your overall thyroid function by checking oral body temperatures as per the thyroid basics sticky. Thyroid hormone fT3 is what gets the job done and it regulates mitochondrial activity, the source of ATP which is the universal currency of cellular energy. This is part of the body’s temperature control loop. This can get messed up if you are iodine deficient. In many countries, you need to be using iodized salt. Other countries add iodine to dairy or bread.

KSman is simply a regular member on this site. Nothing more other than highly active.

I can be a bit abrupt in my replies and recommendations. I have a lot of ground to cover as this forum has become much more active in the last two years. I can’t follow threads that go deep over time. You need to respond to all of my points and requests as soon as possible before you fall off of my radar. The worse problems are guys who ignore issues re thyroid, body temperatures, history of iodized salt. Please do not piss people off saying that lab results are normal, we need lab number and ranges.

The value that you get out of this process and forum depends on your effort and performance. The bulk of your learning is reading/studying the suggested stickies.

Hi @KSman ,

Below are numbers for fasting Cholesterol and fasting Glucose

Cholesterol: 126 mg/dL (Dec 2017), 139 (Dec 2016)
HDL: 39 mg/dL (Dec 2017), 43 (Dec 2016)
LDL CALC: 69 mg/dL (Dec 2017), 79 (Dec 2016)
Triglyceride: 84 mg/dL (Dec 2017), 92 (Dec 2016)
HGBA1C%: 5.1% (Dec 2017), 5.6% (Dec 2016)
Estimated Avg. Glucose: 100 mg/dL (Dec 2017), 114 (Dec 2016)
Creatanine: 0.79 mg/dL (Dec 2017), 0.91 (Dec 2016)

I don’t have any testing done for AST/ALT. We always use iodized salt and make most of our meals at home and eat 1 or 2X/week outside. My energy levels are good. Don’t feel tired throughout the day (remain steady). Get 7-8 hours of sleep everyday. I am not vegetarian. Eat lot of eggs and some chicken.

Cholesterol is the foundation for making:

  • pregnenolone
  • DHEA
  • testosterone
  • estrogens
  • cortisol
  • Vit-D3
  • and more

Total cholesterol=180 would be idea, yours is too low. Perhaps you can shift diet. However some simply have low cholesterol.

Check body temperatures!

Glad to see that you and family are getting iodine.
If body temps are good, skip these labs: TSH, fT3, fT4 but do the rest that Charlie12 suggested.

Estimated average glucose is not the same as fasting glucose. The estimated number is calculated from your HbA1C. Based on your two HbA1C tests of 5.1 and 5.6% you have normal metabolism of carbohydrates. Based on this and your lipids numbers your metabolism/diet are working ok for you. The low cholesterol is odd, but could be hereditary as mentioned previously.