T Nation

Raising T Levels

Okay, I want to get some opinions here…

Let’s say that you’re going to take a natural T booster like Alpha Male, TRIBEX, etc. What would you consider to be a “worthwhile” gain? A 10% increase in Free T? 20%? 100%?

Let’s further say that you are a man in his 40s, and have somewhat low - but still okay - T levels to begin with.

Discuss.

Over 150 views and no one has anything to say???

[quote]char-dawg wrote:
Over 150 views and no one has anything to say???[/quote]

Every one responds differently to such things. You diet and % body fat would also be part of the equation as well as health problems and medications.

You can try those products, a great deal of info has been posted about them on this site.

“ok” t levels do not mean too much if you have elevated levels of estrogen. Try posting your hormone levels, % BF, weight, fitness and you might get some suggestions.

Have you read the HRT/TRT postings?

[quote]char-dawg wrote:
Okay, I want to get some opinions here…

Let’s say that you’re going to take a natural T booster like Alpha Male, TRIBEX, etc. What would you consider to be a “worthwhile” gain? A 10% increase in Free T? 20%? 100%?

Let’s further say that you are a man in his 40s, and have somewhat low - but still okay - T levels to begin with.

Discuss.[/quote]

Char-dawg, it’s hard to pin a percentage on it. I for one and probably many others don’t go to the doc and have bloodwork done to correspond with our cycle of Alpha Male. So, that being the case I have to rely on other factors such as how I feel a week to two weeks after beginning my use of the product, my gains in the gym, my mood and motivation.

The first time I ever used TRIBEX some years ago was after a successful MAG-10 cycle. What surprised the heck out of me was how I continued to increase my strength and get more vascular after two weeks of the follow up on TRIBEX.

That made me a believer and I have continued to have similar results with Alpha Male when used. This is important approaching my 36th year and with natural decline of test production. I like the boost back to high production it gives me. I generally feel more upbeat and positive while “on” it.

D

[quote]char-dawg wrote:
Okay, I want to get some opinions here…

Let’s say that you’re going to take a natural T booster like Alpha Male, TRIBEX, etc. What would you consider to be a “worthwhile” gain? A 10% increase in Free T? 20%? 100%?

Let’s further say that you are a man in his 40s, and have somewhat low - but still okay - T levels to begin with.

Discuss.[/quote]

I am 50.

I feel the ONLY real way to know where you are, and if a supplement works is to get you blood tested. Having said that, I tried Alpha Male. My blood work before Alpha Male :

TESTOSTERONE TOTAL: 308 ng/dL (normal range 119-1104)
TESTOSTERONE FREE: 104 pg/mL (normal range 43.0-200.0)
TESTOSTERONE BIOAVAILABLE: 232 ng/dL (normal range 108.0-506.0)

New Values: one month later, 3 pills, 2x per day (the max dose)

TESTOSTERONE TOTAL: 387 ng/dL (normal range 119-1104)
TESTOSTERONE FREE: 98 pg/mL (normal range 43.0-200.0)
TESTOSTERONE BIOAVAILABLE: 226 ng/dL (normal range 108.0-506.0)

Questions?

[quote]t-guy69 wrote:
char-dawg wrote:
Okay, I want to get some opinions here…

Let’s say that you’re going to take a natural T booster like Alpha Male, TRIBEX, etc. What would you consider to be a “worthwhile” gain? A 10% increase in Free T? 20%? 100%?

Let’s further say that you are a man in his 40s, and have somewhat low - but still okay - T levels to begin with.

Discuss.

I am 50.

I feel the ONLY real way to know where you are, and if a supplement works is to get you blood tested. Having said that, I tried Alpha Male. My blood work before Alpha Male :

TESTOSTERONE TOTAL: 308 ng/dL (normal range 119-1104)
TESTOSTERONE FREE: 104 pg/mL (normal range 43.0-200.0)
TESTOSTERONE BIOAVAILABLE: 232 ng/dL (normal range 108.0-506.0)

New Values: one month later, 3 pills, 2x per day (the max dose)

TESTOSTERONE TOTAL: 387 ng/dL (normal range 119-1104)
TESTOSTERONE FREE: 98 pg/mL (normal range 43.0-200.0)
TESTOSTERONE BIOAVAILABLE: 226 ng/dL (normal range 108.0-506.0)

Questions?

[/quote]

Well, your total T went up 79 points and free slightly declined. What did you think as far as what you felt?

D

[quote]
Well, your total T went up 79 points and free slightly declined. What did you think as far as what you felt?

D[/quote]

I really felt no difference at the time. This makes sense as you do not care about your total testosterone. You are more interested in your free testosterone

[quote]t-guy69 wrote:

Well, your total T went up 79 points and free slightly declined. What did you think as far as what you felt?

D

I really felt no difference at the time. This makes sense as you do not care about your total testosterone. You are more interested in your free testosterone

[/quote]

Yes, I agree it is the free that counts. Looks like you may be a non responder. Has always worked on the feel factor for me.

Take care,

D

[quote]KSman wrote:Every one responds differently to such things. You diet and % body fat would also be part of the equation as well as health problems and medications.

You can try those products, a great deal of info has been posted about them on this site.

“ok” t levels do not mean too much if you have elevated levels of estrogen. Try posting your hormone levels, % BF, weight, fitness and you might get some suggestions.

Have you read the HRT/TRT postings?[/quote]

I was trying for more of a general discussion rather than my own particular case here. Yes, I’ve read the HRT threads, or at least a good portion of them. I didn’t see any that really addressed what I’m asking here. (Could have missed a few, though.)

As for assumptions about levels of fitness and so on, let’s say (for the sake of argument) that the person is in good health, a high level of fitness for his age, 12% BF or thereabouts, and low-normal hormone levels before taking the supp. Diet would obviously be the same before/after.

Just so everyone knows, I have taken Alpha Male and gotten bloodwork done, so I know what happens in my own case. However, I’d like more of a general opinion about what constitutes a worthwhile increase before I post anything specific.

To give an analogy, if one were to start weightlifting and after a year had gained 30lbs of muscle, that person would probably think that it was worthwhile continuing. On the other hand, if he’d only gianed three pounds, he might not think that all the time in the gym and expense was worth it.

[quote]
To give an analogy, if one were to start weightlifting and after a year had gained 30lbs of muscle, that person would probably think that it was worthwhile continuing. On the other hand, if he’d only gianed three pounds, he might not think that all the time in the gym and expense was worth it.[/quote]

I think I understand what you are asking. Unfortunately the answer will be very vague. You also have to remember your positing in an over 35 column. Having said that…

For Alpha Male to be worth it, you should see a sizable increase in your FREE testosterone.
By sizeable, I mean it would have to double. Understand, I work in a medical lab, get my blood work for free. Therefore I have the ability to draw my blood multiple times.

You can see huge shifts of Total testosterone. I have drawn my blood and had levels around 400 and then maybe over trained a bit, felt tired and redrew two weeks later only to find my level was half of what it was.

Diet, stress, food intake all affect them. So if your Free Testosterone is 100 (normal range 43.0-200.0) and you go to 110 or even 120, I would not think it is worth much as that would be in your body’s (and the labs) variation limit. Having said that if you went to 150, that would be extraordinary.

Your analogy uses body weight and gains in reference to pounds. New lifters gain very fast. Even us older lifters. My son is 17 and gained three inches around his chest in three months. Be he had never lifted before.

I am 52 and gains are VERY hard to come by as I have been lifting steady for 15 years. So if I found a supplement that made me gain three pounds of LEAN body weight in one year I would be happy. 30 pounds in one year, at my age, I doubt even steroids and Growth Hormone could do that. But I will never find out.

So, without knowing more about your specific age, level of fitness, blood work results, it is hard to keep talking in generalities and give you something useful.

Well, you did give me something useful. Basically, you’re saying that in your opinion a 10-20% increase wouldn’t be worth it - even if one could be sure that it was really an increase, and not just general lab/testing error.

As for the other questions, I’ve posted some specifics about our hypothetical guy. Yes, I am talking about myself (44, in good shape, have lifted for decades, diet is good, testing was done as much as possible on the same day/same time within the training cycle, etc.), but I am also interested in just a sort of general POV about what would and wouldn’t be worthwhile. And you read that exactly right.

Anyone else?

Well the T boosters sold here are only supposed to get a person to high normal. It won’t be beneficial to a person who already had high T, as they don’t have anywhere to go.

If a person is moderately high, and a 20 - 30% boost would take a person higher, it might be worth it.

I am not sure if it was worth it for t-guy69 though. A little drop in free testosterone does not sound good to me. I do know there are non-responders out there, and if I remember the effect of tribulus may not be as effective as a person’s age goes up. (But don’t quote me on that.)

For me, after they started tweaking the formula, I started getting a greasy forehead. Unfortunately I haven’t been able to take it as often as I would have liked, (soon to change,) but I do believe it has helped me when I have used it.

Now it was theorized that Avena Sativa freed up bound testosterone, but Biotest decided to remove it from their supplements. I believe Cy said there just wasn’t enough data to back it up. But I would think a person could add in this supplement and see if there is a difference.

“Now it was theorized that Avena Sativa freed up bound testosterone, but Biotest decided to remove it from their supplements. I believe Cy said there just wasn’t enough data to back it up. But I would think a person could add in this supplement and see if there is a difference.”

Eurycoma longfolia is now included in TRIBEX and was the primary ingredient in RED KAT. It’s main purpose is lowering sex hormone binding globulin (SHGB) which binds to test (bound test) rendering it useless. This is allowing for higher levels of free testosterone. It also found in Alpha Male.

D

In general, Char, I would say that the cost of OTC supplememts is going to be much higher and less effective than prescribed, and usually insurance covered, synthetic test boosters such as Androgel. Of course, you usually need to have a sub normal Test reading to get the real thing prescribed. If your natural T levels are in the average level, then you will have to stick with OTC products or go the generally more dangerous and illegal route of self medication.

I tried Tribulus many years ago and got a 50% boost in T levels and, when combined with M, a 50% decrease in catabolic factors. To me it was worth the money to get those percentage results but it merely took me to low normal. Therefore, I went off them and my reading went down to 79ng/dl. At that point I went on Androgel and my levels now run in the high normal range of about 750ng/dl and I feel a lot better. My only cost is the $25 per month insurance co-pay. OTC products could not get to that level and would be very expensive. However, if you are already in the average range, they may be beneficial.

Hey, Avoids. Long time no talk, dude. How you doing?

Yeah, I remember your posting your results back in the day. And I agree with your point about cost-effectiveness. Unfortunately, my own case is one where I’m low-normal, so I’m not quite ready for the patch therapy route yet. Plus, I still want to have some kids at some point. :wink:

Don’t bother with the kids. You can have mine! :slight_smile:

Since everyone is different, it really should be tested for YOU. I may get spectacular results from TRIBEX, while my brother gets nothing.

You really simply have to get a blood draw, take TRIBEX or Alpha Male for 3 months, then compare. Even then that’s only one comparison. It’d be better to do this over a 2 or 3 year time frame.

I would say that unless you saw a 20% or more increase in your free t levels, that it probably wouldn’t be worth it. Even then, if you’re not feeling better and gaining in the gym, it wouldn’t be worth it. I’d be interested to see your bloodwork – what it was before and after supplementation.

Has anybody else got their bloodwork done before and after supplementing with any of the natural test boosters? Perhaps it isn’t that some people are non-responders, maybe it’s just that these natural test boosting supps don’t really work to raise free t levels.

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[quote]Chushin wrote:
Hey Mr. Dawg,

Missed you at the show yesterday. Couple of impressive guest posers…

(Sorry for the hijack.) [/quote]

Yeah, sorry about that. Had to work. But I’ll see you on the 9th, if you’re up for that one. :wink: