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Research Supports TRT for Men With Low-T-Related Obesity
“Men with hypogonadism and obesity receiving long-term testosterone therapy achieved progressive and sustained weight loss, while untreated controls gained,” said Karim Haider, MD, a urologist, andrologist, and researcher, who presented his research findings at ENDO 2019, the Endocrine Society’s annual conference.
Although we have previously highlighted research showing that low testosterone contributes to obesity, this research provides supporting evidence from the opposite angle, treatment.
Simply put, normalizing testosterone levels through TRT (Testosterone Replacement Therapy) was shown to successfully aid in the reduction of both body weight and body mass index (BMI).
Why Obesity Should Concern You
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), global obesity rates have nearly tripled since 1975, and 39% of adults aged 18 years and over were found to be overweight in 2016—13% were obese.
Health complications associated with obesity are costly in terms of health care expenses and loss of quality of life. Raised BMI (body mass index) is a major risk factor for diseases such as:
- Cardiovascular diseases, such as heart disease and stroke
- Musculoskeletal disorders, especially osteoarthritis
- Cancer, including:
The risk for these noncommunicable diseases increases as BMI increases.
TRT Could Reduce Obesity and Associated Health Risks—Research
Dr. Haider, a member of a private urology practice in Bremerhaven, Germany, and his research associates conducted an observational registry study of 462 men with both obesity and hypogonadism.
Among the cohort, 273 men with an average age of 60 took 1000 mg injections of testosterone undecanoate for 12 weeks, while the control group, comprising 189 men with an average age of 63 years, underwent no testosterone therapy.
Weight measurements were taken 1 to 4 times per year. The researchers found that over the course of 10 years, men who received testosterone therapy lost an average of 22.9 kg (a loss of 20.3%) compared with the control group, who saw a weight increase of 3.2 kg (an increase of 3.9%).
Those numbers represent a 24.3% difference in weight loss between the 2 groups at 10 years.
The testosterone therapy group experienced an average reduction of 12.5 cm in waist circumference compared to their baseline measurements, while the control group saw a 4.6-cm increase, which is a difference of 17.1 cm.
The average BMI measurement for men in the TRT group was 7.3 kg/m2 less than at baseline, while BMI measures increased by an average of 0.9 kg/m2 for men in the untreated control group. The difference between groups equals a significant 8.2 kg/m2.
The Positive Impact of TRT on Obesity and Health
In terms of adverse health events, there were more deaths in the control group than in the testosterone therapy group (30.2% vs. 4.4%) at 10 years—the hazards of untreated obesity related to low testosterone continue to be supported by research.
Dr. Haider, in a discussion of his research findings said:
“The favorable decreases in weight and waist circumference may have contributed to the observed reductions in mortality and major cardiovascular events.”
Research trends show that low testosterone contributes to increased fat production and obesity, and that restoring testosterone levels to normal through a regimented TRT (Testosterone Replacement Therapy) program could be a far more effective way to treat obesity and reduce the risk of associated life-threatening illnesses than lifestyle changes alone.
If you’re struggling with obesity, current research into the symptomatic health risks of low testosterone and effective treatment options should be a topic you’re addressing with your medical provider.
To learn more about the benefits of TRT and the specific treatment methods we use at Testosterone Centers of Texas, read our comprehensive guide. It covers the most common questions and presents the facts associated with the treatment of low testosterone.