Specializing in Anti-Aging and Integrative Medicine

Why Is My Gut So Big?

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By Dr. John G. Alevizos

Of all my monthly articles, this is going to be the most important one that I hope everybody reading will research and explore, and definitely not ignore.

If we think back to junior high school, both boys and girls were built about the same. However, during puberty, something interesting happened. Boys became more lean and lost weight around their bellies, grew taller, got chiseled faces, developed muscles, gained a lot of strength and endurance, and developed an attitude of “I can accomplish anything.”

Those of us who rode dirt bikes at that time can remember how high our jumps were, and being on the road, weaving through traffic at high speeds was like playing a video game. Thank God we are still around and did not go crashing to our deaths!

Girls, on the other hand, actually added body fat and weight during puberty, and developed a somewhat different attitude from boys. That being said, I will focus on the aging process of men and the changes of our own bodies.

Our guts getting bigger is happening because we are aging. For the rest of this article, I will talk about aging, which is synonymous with our gut and has far broader implications than only the weight around our middle.

We must be aware that aging is a disease which can be prevented and reversed, and we are not prisoners of our genetic destiny. We age because our hormones decline, but our hormones don’t decline because we age.

Testosterone replacement therapy for the treatment of testosterone deficiency is safe and provides dramatic benefits in men and women. It should be noted that bioidentical estrogen and progesterone are safe and have dramatic benefits in women. What the drug companies push (Premarin and Provera) are both pro-inflammatory and contribute to the risk of cancer; they are not anti-inflammatory and prevent the risk of cancer as bioidentical hormones do.

Andropause (the male equivalent of a woman’s menopause) is a lethal disease. It contributes to diabetes, metabolic syndrome, dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease, frailty syndrome, osteoporosis, chronic inflammation, and even cancer. Yes, having low testosterone will contribute to getting cancer.

In the Journal of Circulation, 2007; 116; 2,694-2,701, a 10-year prospective study in 11,606 men age 40 to 79 years old showed that high endogenous testosterone equals low mortality from cardiovascular disease and cancer, while low testosterone predicts cardiovascular disease.

With high testosterone, there is no increase in the occurrence of prostate cancer. It should be noted that the fear of prostate cancer has kept men from testosterone treatment since 1941. In 1941, one study on one individual showed an increase in prostate cancer. Since that time, however, in tens of thousands of individuals, dozens of studies have shown that testosterone does not cause prostate cancer.

The Journal of the National Cancer Institute, 208, 100; 170-183, a study of 3,886 men with prostate cancer and 6,438 controls showed that there were no associations found between testosterone metabolized and the risk of prostate cancer. I could go on for several pages on this topic, and I understand that some of you have talked to your doctors about this and they have stated that it will increase the chances of cancer. However, if your doctor states this, your doctor is practicing in the 70’s and you should find a doctor who is more knowledgeable about the current standard of care.

Testosterone replacement therapy gives us benefits from head to toe:

 

  1. It improves mood, improves cognitive function and prevents Alzheimer’s disease.
  1. It improves body composition (more muscle and less fat) and reverses osteoporosis.
  1. It improves libido and erectile function.
  1. It reverses insulin resistance and Type 2 diabetes.
  1. It results in less inflammation and pain from osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, etc., etc., etc.

Please look up the benefits on the internet.

What about aggressive behavior? According to Citzmann M., testosterone in the brain, aging male, 2006; 9 195-199, men on testosterone replacement therapy are less likely to suffer from depression, are less moody, are more sociable and gregarious, and have more energy. Most of the bad press on “roid rage” is centered around men who abuse anabolic steroids. I can attest to this calmness personally. A couple of weeks ago, while riding to work on the toll road on my Screaming Eagle V-Rod (it’s the perfect mix between by Bandit and my Ultraglide), I looked in my rearview mirror and did not see anybody while I was traveling 80 miles per hour, so I proceeded to split the lanes under the toll cameras because there is no sensor there. As I was doing this, I felt pressure on my right leg, which was a two-seater BMW that must have been right on my tail at 80 miles per hour and decided to pass me just as I was splitting lanes.

In the old days, I would have chased him down and signaled for him to pull over so that we could fight. Now, with my new and improved model, I noticed my right hand hitting the throttle and at about 95 miles per hour, I backed off and decided it wasn’t worth a confrontation. However, as I was going by the BMW motorcycle, the rider pointed to his ears, indicating that my thunderheader is too loud, and his gesture seemed to state, “Any time, any place.” Motorcyclists are supposed to support one another – not indicate that my pipes are too loud. At least he had enough sense to move out of the way as he could hear me approaching (which is the whole idea behind the thunderheader.

Many people are surprised to hear that the heart has more testosterone receptors than any organ in the body. The walls of the heart vessels have the most testosterone receptors. These heart vessels can convert testosterone to estradiol, and estradiol is the most potent stimulator of nitrous oxide. Therefore, nitrous oxide opens up the blood vessels, as it does with the blood vessels in the penis.

The next organ with the most testosterone receptors is the brain, then the bones, then muscle, then fat. So why don’t doctors prescribe testosterone in men with problems with the knees, hips or low back? There is no reason why they shouldn’t measure it and use it. What about the penis? As stated above, testosterone has the same effect on the penis as it does on the walls of the coronary vessels. It stimulates nitrous oxide production. Thus, it works virtually the same way as Viagra.

For those of you who want to take this a step further, arginine is one of the most potent stimulators of nitrous oxide production. If you take arginine,it is converted to citrulline, and then nitric oxide is produced (for most of us, ignore this statement; however, there are some of us who really enjoy the very technical stuff…)

Before you go out and ask your doctor to check total testosterone, this is not what should be measured. There are many different ways to administer testosterone. Also, there are five natural ways to get higher testosterone without having to see your doctor. I will save the testing and treatment for my next article.

 

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