As men age, hormonal balance is a significant aspect of their health that changes, specifically the gradual decline in testosterone levels. Testosterone is a pivotal male sex hormone that is key for maintaining muscle mass, bone density, and libido. This decline, typically starting in their 30s or 40s, can lead to reduced energy levels, diminished libido, and changes in mood. Keep reading to discover other changes in men’s health as they age.
Muscle and Strength
Ageing men often experience the gradual loss of muscle tissue, known as sarcopenia. This phenomenon results in decreased strength, coordination, and balance. To counteract this natural decline, engaging in regular strength training exercises becomes crucial. Additionally, ensuring an adequate intake of protein is essential to support muscle health.
As men age, the risk of osteoporosis, characterised by weakened and brittle bones, increases. It is vital to incorporate weight-bearing exercises into the routine to keep your bone density at an optimal level and reduce the risk of fractures. Having enough calcium and vitamin D is also crucial for supporting bone health.
Cardiovascular health becomes a critical concern as men age, with an increased risk of heart disease, hypertension, and related issues. Adopting a healthy lifestyle, that includes a balanced diet, regular exercise, and stress management, is pivotal in preventing and managing these conditions. Regular cardiovascular screenings and check-ups are essential for early detection and intervention.
The prostate, responsible for producing seminal fluid, changes as men age. Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), a non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate, is common and can lead to urinary symptoms. Regular prostate screenings and check-ups become crucial for monitoring and addressing prostate health concerns.
Metabolism tends to slow down, and body fat may increase with age, even without significant changes in diet or exercise. A healthy lifestyle, with a balanced diet and regular physical activity, is crucial for mitigating these changes and promoting weight management. The decline in testosterone as men age is known as the male menopause or andropause. One of the common signs of low testosterone in men is weight gain linked to metabolic changes. However, the good news is that this is easily treated with hormone replacement therapy. Speak to your GP or a men’s health specialist to learn more about this line of treatment.
Mental health is not immune to the ageing process. Men with lowered levels of testosterone can experience irritability, anxiety, and depression. On top of this, cognitive decline and an increased risk of neurodegenerative diseases may become more apparent. Engaging in mentally stimulating activities, maintaining social connections, and adopting a brain-healthy lifestyle can contribute to cognitive well-being.
The ageing process brings about various changes in men’s health, each with its own set of considerations. Proactive measures, such as a healthy lifestyle, regular exercise, and routine health screenings, are essential for promoting overall well-being and addressing potential health challenges with age. Understanding these changes empowers men to navigate the ageing process with greater awareness and a commitment to maintaining their health and vitality.