I've lurked on the forum for a little while. Thanks to all of you who have invested time in gathering together information and experiences and sharing it with us.
I am a young (<40) patient on TRT. I initially responded well to a treatment of Testim 7.5g daily, experiencing little rise in Estradiol levels relative to Testosterone. This may be because I have always maintained pretty low bodyfat (< 12%) and an aggressive exercise regimen. After about six months of treatment I had Free Levels in the middle of the normal range and felt so-so.
About a year later the symptoms of hypogonadism are worse. Blood work seems to suggest that Estradiol is binding Testosterone:
Total T: 703 ng/dl (250-1100)
Free T: 105 ng/dl (46-224)
Estradiol 40 pg/ml (13-54)
SHBG: 30 nmol/l (7-49)
I understand from reading past threads that forum consensus is that TRT should often be accompanied by Arimidex to lower Estradiol. I am in the process of looking for a doctor who is interested in getting down into the weeds and adjusting levels even though I am within the normal reference range, but I have not yet find one. Moreover, I have determined that my insurance will not cover Arimidex, and that the cost is prohibitive ($300/month). I have three questions:
1) Are there other forms of Anastrozole that are less expensive than Arimidex? Do these require a prescription?
2) Is is possible that lowering SHBG could positively affect my hormone levels by freeing up Testosterone? Is Stinging Nettle Root a viable option to choose for this purpose?
3) What other ways are there to reduce estradiol and SHBG to positively affect Free T levels? I already take the following steps:
No drinking out of plastic/ heating or storing food in plastic
Daily Zinc, Magnesium, and B6 (~ZMA)
4000-5000 IUs Vitamin D daily
Little to no alcohol consumption; nicotine intake
Diet is Paleo with exceptions for dairy and peanut butter and fairly low carb intake (Is it possible that I might need more insulin to drive down SHBG?)
Thanks for your help,