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Mar 29

The Best Fitness Apps and Home Workout Programs – WTOP

The lure of getting fit with an at-home exercise program almost sounds too good to be true, but with the

The lure of getting fit with an at-home exercise program almost sounds too good to be true, but with the help of fitness apps, its a definite possibility. Plus, you get all the benefits that come with exercise, including weight management, stronger muscles and improved mental health.

Benefits of Fitness Apps

If you didnt try a fitness app during the COVID pandemic, its not too late to do so. There are many advantages to trying a fitness app:

You have hundreds, even thousands of exercise classes at your fingertips at any time, says personal trainer and group fitness instructor Tami Smith, who is the owner of Fit Healthy Momma in St. Augustine, Florida. That makes fitting in a workout more convenient than ever.

You can use apps to track your progress. In fact, many apps will award digital medals or have other giveaways to motivate you to keep using them, says fitness app user Dominique Vonador, a board-certified acupuncture physician, founder and owner of Acupuncture and Herbal Solutions in Bradenton, Florida.

Apps make working out more accessible. When creating a new fitness routine, its important to lower the barriers of entry and keep things as simple as possible. Fitness apps are so effective because they do just that, says Sergio Pedemonte, personal trainer and CEO of Your House Fitness in Toronto.

In addition to fitness apps, you can conveniently squeeze in home workouts with online videos and other options.

[SEE: 7 Top-Recommended Personal Training Apps.]

Choosing the Right Fitness App for You

With so many fitness apps available, how can you choose the right one for you? There are a few things you should keep in mind:

Cost. Some apps are free, but others have a monthly subscription cost. Decide in advance how much youre willing to pay for an exercise routine app.

Personal enjoyment. Exercise you enjoy is exercise youre more likely to continue over time. The bottom line is, what is it you enjoy doing? says Toril Hinchman, director of fitness and wellness for Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia.

Classes. Do you think youll find live classes more motivating? Would you rather have a library of pre-recorded classes? Or, would you like both?

Class length. A mix of shorter and longer classes can help reach the sweet spot for many users. When apps only have longer classes, some people feel discouraged and will skip their workout that day because they dont have time to complete the whole class, Smith says. She likes apps that include 10- to 15-minute workouts in addition to longer workouts to encourage people to get moving with whatever time they have.

Community. Working out from home can feel isolating and boring, but so many apps have lively communities that can keep things feeling exciting, Smith says. The community via these apps is often similar to that on social media sites, so you can share goals and accomplishments and encourage each other. Some apps also have live group fitness classes so you can feel a sense of community even if youre not sharing the same sweaty space with others.

Equipment. Does the app require any specific equipment? Youll want to know that in advance before investing in the app.

Physical health. Some apps offer modified versions of workouts; others can be more advanced, Vonador says. If you have a specific injury or physical limitation, you may want to check whether the app has workouts with guided modifications for you. Of course, you should always check with your health care provider if youre not sure about your ability to exercise with a specific injury or physical limitation.

Tracking. Do you want an app that allows you to track exercise time, weights used, workouts completed or other information? Tracking your progress is often motivating.

[SEE: From Fat to Fit: Tips for How to Lose Fat Fast]

8 Best Fitness Apps

Here are eight of the best fitness apps around as recommended by fitness experts and via app stores. However, there are so many fitness apps available, its worth seeing what else is out there to find your best fitness fit. The apps featured here are:


Ob Fitness.

Nike Training Club.




Home Workout No Equipment.



Cost: $12.99/month, with a free trial available.

Although Peloton is famously associated with the home-workout bike of the same name, the workouts on the app dont all require you to have the bike or other equipment. Boxing, running, yoga and many more types of fitness workouts are available on the Peloton app.

Smith praises the workout variety and lovable instructors. However, she cautions that users may feel pressured to buy the Peloton branded bike, treadmill or rowing machine to take full advantage of the workouts.

Ob Fitness

Cost: $24.99/month, with a free trial available.

Ob Fitness offers an array of live and on-demand classes, including tailored workouts for prenatal fitness, dance and yoga sculpt. There also are training programs and, for those with an annual membership, access to food and nutrition classes. You can track your progress and feel a sense of community with the live classes.

Not everyone may want to pay the apps monthly fee. However, Ob costs less with an annual membership, and you can often find discount codes online to keep down the cost.

[READ: Tips to Spice Up Your Fitness Routine.]

Nike Training Club

Cost: free.

You dont need to wear a pair of Nikes to train on the companys app. This free app combines fitness, core/strength exercises and yoga workouts with healthy recipes to further support your goals. The app also has workouts that are under 20 minutes, so you can fit in a workout even if youre pressed for time. Some of the workouts are led by celebrity athletes.

The app doesnt have a way to track your progress, so youll have to do that on your own.


Cost: $59/year, free trial available.

Ready to jump some rope? Then check out Crossrope, which features short, medium and long cardio and body weight jump-rope workouts. The app also provides words of encouragement at varying times when you use the app, including after a workout. One feature Vonador likes is being able to listen to her own music while using the app.

Crossrope also has various jump-ropes for sale, but you could also use one of your own.


Cost: free, $7.99/month for additional features.

Strava, a running and cycling app, allows users to find new destinations to explore during workouts or revisit the routes theyve used before. Strava can connect with fitness watches to track progress, heart rate and other information. It can also track progress with more than 30 sports activities, not just running and cycling. If youre feeling competitive, you can take part in friendly competitions with other users. Strava also has workout training plans for running and cycling available for an extra monthly fee. For instance, you can use it to train for a 10K or a half marathon.


Cost: $19.99/month, free trial available.

If strength building is your priority, then Sweat is one of the most popular apps out there for it. Co-founded by Australian personal trainer Kayla Itsines, the app includes a variety of weight-lifting workouts in addition to some high-intensity interval training and Pilates workouts. Youll need to have the dumbbells or barbells ready to do these strength-based workouts, or use the app at the gym using the equipment there.

Home Workout No Equipment

Cost: $39.99/year, free trial available.

If you want to build strength but dont have the time, money or interest in weight-training equipment, then Home Workout No Equipment is an option worth considering. Instead of using equipment, youll complete bodyweight-based exercises to get stronger. Use the app to target specific areas of your body or for a full body workout. The app can also provide tailored recommendations for you based on your age and fitness goals.


Cost: $24/month, free seven-day trial.

Although Glo offers a variety of fitness classes, its best known for its yoga options. The app has various types of yoga classes available, including breathwork, kundalini yoga, hatha yoga and even tutorial/educational videos. The app also includes Pilates and meditation classes. Glo might be a good choice if you have an injury or limited mobility and want to avoid tougher workouts.

Users that are looking for workouts beyond floorwork and yoga may want to find another app.

Theres More to Fitness Than Working Out

Theres a lot more to fitness than just working out. Recovery, mindfulness and nutrition also are important, Pedemonte says. Popular apps that touch on these ancillary components of fitness include:

Calm, which provides guided meditations to help ease anxiety, manage stress and sleep more soundly. Calm also has music tracks for focus, sleep and relaxation.

MyFitnessPal, a nutrition app that allows you to track what youre eating and has a large food database along with a scanning feature that makes sure youre tracking your foods accurately, Pedemonte says. The app can also sync with other health apps you may use, including FitBit and Apple HealthKit.

Noom, which aims to help you understand your behavior around eating. After taking a short quiz, Noom provides short lessons on psychology and behavioral changes that you can complete within 16 weeks. The app also connects you to a coach who will check in and provide motivational messages.

More Home Workout Options

In addition to fitness apps, there are other ways you can get a good home workout:

Online workouts available via YouTube, social media and personal trainer websites. The options for online workouts are endless. Explore different workout options that meet your abilities, available time and workout interests. If you work with a personal trainer, they may have in-demand workouts available on their website, says Dani Singer, CEO and founder of Fit2Go Personal Training, based in Baltimore. Personal trainers also may offer virtual classes at specific times.

Live and on-demand workouts online from your gym. If you belong to a gym but cant make it there regularly, inquire about their online options. Some gyms now have on-demand or live virtual workouts.

Virtual reality workouts. A workout via virtual reality? Yes, indeed. Its another potential option in the quest to stay healthy and be fit. VZfit, Supernatural and FitXR are just some of the programs available for a VR workout.

Tips for Using Apps and Home Workout Programs

To get the most out of home workouts and apps, youll want to keep a few pointers in mind:

1. Give an app more than one try. Its not uncommon to try an app workout and not like it, leading you to think its not the app for you, Smith says. Instead of assuming that immediately, give the app and your body a little more time to find out what you really think of it, she advises.

2. Schedule your workouts. Some apps let you schedule live classes in advance within the app. This can be a huge help if you struggle with accountability, Smith says. Another option: Pick out your next workout ahead of time, and put your workout appointment on your calendar.

3. Take advantage of all the app has to offer. Features that allow you to log your workouts, count calories and customize information based on your needs, goals and habits are particularly helpful, Pedemonte says. Youll get more bang for your buck, so to speak, by using all the app has to offer, which is another reason why using the app more than once may give you the time you need to explore its options.

4. Dont become too reliant on an app, Vonador cautions. Sometimes, there will be technical glitches or updates that make it hard to finish a workout. Theres nothing wrong with going app-free to just enjoy a peaceful run or an impromptu weight routine, she says.

5. Stick with an app you enjoy, find challenging and can be consistent with, Hinchman recommends. Using an app daily, little by little and increasing slowly, can have huge benefits in the long term, Pedemonte adds.

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The Best Fitness Apps and Home Workout Programs originally appeared on

Update 03/23/23: This piece was previously published at an earlier date and has been updated with new information.

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Mar 29

Manhattan College Earns Gold Status Recognition for its Exercise is … – Manhattan College News

For the second consecutive year, Manhattan College has achieved gold status recognition for its Exercise is Medicine program, which provides students with the tools that are necessary to maintain healthy physical activity. Manhattan College is one of only 73 universities and colleges worldwide to earn this distinction for its efforts to create a culture of wellness and fitness on campus. The College was recognized by Exercise is Medicine on Campus (EIM-OC), an initiative launched by the American College of Sports Medicine in 2014. This year, EIM-OC also honored an additional 71 campuses with silver and bronze recognition.

To achieve gold status, colleges and universities create a referral system where campus health providers assess student physical activity and refer students as necessary to certified fitness professionals. The Exercise is Medicine program at Manhattan College brings together faculty, staff and students, all working to improve the health and well-being of the campus community.

The most significant aspect of this accomplishment centers on our ability to continue to provide additional health and wellness opportunities to everyone in our community, said Jeff Cherubini, professor of kinesiology. I am most grateful to all our student representatives and volunteers who help make our programs possible. I am also grateful to be in the position to lead this uniquely collaborative effort with the department of Kinesiology, Health Services, the Fitness Center and Student Life. I appreciate all the time and effort from everyone involved.

Cherubini said that Exercise is Medicine also helps develop future exercise scientists, physical educators and public health professionals. Students use what they learn in the classroom to help the local community and those on campus make healthier choices.

The Colleges School of Education and Health, Office of Health Services and Student Life division have created the following programs:

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Mar 29

High-Normal Blood Pressure in Young Adults – An Impending Risk … – Cityairnews

Authored by:Dr. Ameet Sattur, Consultant Interventional Cardiologist, HCG Suchirayu hospital Hubli

Cardiac health is a crucial aspect of overall well-being, and recent research has shown that even "high-normal" blood pressure in young adults can spell risk for heart failure later in life. High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is a leading risk factor for heart disease and stroke, and can lead to a host of serious health complications if left untreated. High-normal blood pressure is defined as a systolic blood pressure (the top number) between 130-139 mmHg or a diastolic blood pressure (the bottom number) between 85-89 mmHg. This is higher than the standard normal range of less than 120/80 mmHg, but not high enough to be classified as hypertension. This condition is becoming increasingly common among young adults and it is important to understand the symptoms, risk factors, treatment and prevention of high-normal blood pressure.Signs and risk factors of high-normal blood pressure

One can have high blood pressure (hypertension,) for years without any symptoms. Even without symptoms, damage to blood vessels and heart continues and can be detected. Uncontrolled high blood pressure increases the risk of serious health problems, including heart attack and stroke. It is often called the silent killer, as it does not usually cause any symptoms until it is at a more advanced stage. However, some people may experience signs such as headaches, fatigue, and shortness of breath.Risk factors of high-normal blood pressure include family history, obesity, smoking, unhealthy diet, lack of physical activity, stress, and excessive alcohol consumption. Individuals who are overweight or obese, have a family history of hypertension, or have an unhealthy diet, are at an increased risk of developing high-normal blood pressure.

High normal blood pressure and its impact on the young adultsYoung adults, particularly those in their 20s and 30s, may not consider themselves at risk for heart disease, but research has shown that high-normal blood pressure in this age group can lead to a much higher risk of heart failure later in life. High-normal blood pressure is considered to be related to the gradual damage to the heart and blood vessels over time. High blood pressure can lead to the thickening and stiffening of the heart, which can make it harder for the heart to pump blood effectively. It can also damage the blood vessels, making them more prone to blockages and ruptures.

Treating high-normal blood pressureTreatment of high-normal blood pressure is often focused on lifestyle changes, such as maintaining a healthy diet and regular exercise, which can help to lower blood pressure. Maintaining a healthy weight, reducing salt intake and increasing potassium intake, and limiting alcohol consumption can also help to lower blood pressure. Medications may also be prescribed by a doctor if lifestyle changes alone are not sufficient to lower blood pressure. Some common medications used to lower blood pressure include diuretics, ACE inhibitors, beta blockers, and calcium channel blockers.

Preventing high-normal blood pressure

Lifestyle changes, such as maintaining a healthy diet and regular exercise, can be effective in managing blood pressure. Maintaining a healthy weight, reducing salt intake and increasing potassium intake, and limiting alcohol consumption can also help to lower blood pressure. It's also important to note that regular check-ups with the doctor can help to monitor blood pressure, and any signs of hypertension. Early detection and treatment can prevent further health complications and can lead to a better quality of life.

In conclusion, high-normal blood pressure in young adults can spell risk for heart failure later in life. Young adults should be aware of the risks and take steps to lower their blood pressure to prevent heart failure later in life. By making healthy lifestyle choices and monitoring blood pressure regularly, individuals can reduce their risk of developing high-normal blood pressure and prevent further health complications.

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Mar 29

Shilajit for fitness: Boosting testosterone to collagen, perks of Himalayan herb – Hindustan Times

Shilajit, an Ayurvedic resin found in the Himalayan range, is known for its aphrodisiac properties but according to experts, what has yet to receive the limelight is its ability to offer a host of other health benefits that can help you maintain your fitness and wellness goals. Ayurveda experts insist that regular consumption of Shilajit can provide your body with essential minerals, vitamins, antioxidants and other nutrients that support your overall health and vitality.

Achieving the perfect fitness regime requires a combination of exercise and a balanced diet and identifying key ingredients that can boost physical performance is essential. In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr Kriti Soni, Head of R&D at Kapiva, shared, Shilajit, which has been used for centuries in Ayurvedic medicine as a rejuvenating and energising tonic, offers many health benefits that can support a fitness journey.

She highlighted the reasons why you should include Shilajit in your fitness regime:

Shilajit's efficacy as an energy booster in Ayurveda can be attributed to its high fulvic acid content, which is known to contain approximately 45% oxygen. During workouts, there is increased breathlessness and muscle soreness. However, the high oxygen content in fulvic acid may help alleviate these side effects of exercise. Research suggests that regular intake of fulvic acid can lead to a reduction in muscle soreness and an improvement in endurance.

2. Promotes protein and iron absorption

Another key benefit of Shilajit is its ability to promote better absorption of protein and iron. It is clinically proven that Shilajit can help with the absorption of protein and build muscle to boost energy levels. Iron deficiency is a common nutrient deficiency worldwide, and it can lead to anaemia and reduced physical performance. Shilajit is rich in iron, which is essential for forming red blood cells and carrying oxygen to the muscles during exercise. Consuming Shilajit before a workout can help maintain balanced energy levels and reduce muscle soreness and fatigue.

3. Boosts testosterone levels

Shilajit has the ability to boost testosterone levels in the body, making it an ideal supplement for those looking to enhance their workout sessions. Testosterone is a hormone that plays a crucial role in muscle development, bone density, and overall physical health in both men and women. In particular, testosterone levels are closely linked to muscle growth and strength, making it a critical component of any workout regimen. While synthetic steroids are commonly used to boost testosterone levels, they often come with a host of negative side effects, including liver damage, heart problems, and mood swings. Shilajit, on the other hand, is a natural and safe alternative that offers the same benefits without the harmful side effects.

4. Excellent Ayurvedic adaptogen

Shilajit is also considered an Ayurvedic adaptogen, which means that it helps the body respond to stress and restore balance. The effects of ayurvedic adaptogens vary from person to person, depending on their specific needs. Shilajit's ability to support mental focus, energy and stress reduction can be particularly beneficial for athletes and fitness enthusiasts.

5. Supports collagen production

Shilajit supports collagen production, which is essential for repairing bones and tendons and reducing swelling and pain. Collagen breakdown can be caused by factors such as smoking, ageing, excess sun exposure, anxiety, and stress. Consuming Shilajit before exercise can be a great addition to your workout routine as it has many benefits for recovery, strength, mental focus, energy, and stress reduction.

6. Rich in electrolytes

Shilajit's high mineral content makes it an excellent source of electrolytes, which are essential for regulating water balance, muscle contractions, nerve impulses, and metabolism. When we sweat during exercise, we lose these essential electrolytes, which can lead to muscle cramps, fatigue, and dehydration. Consuming Shilajit before a workout can help restore these electrolytes and support physical performance and endurance.

Dr Kriti Soni concluded, Consuming Shilajit before exercise can be a great addition to your fitness regime. Fitness enthusiasts have been consuming Shilajit for a long time. It is time for the masses to adopt the Himalayan Ayurvedic ingredient as a part of their routine and take the much-anticipated leap towards their fitness goals.

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Mar 29

6 Juices That Boost Testosterone – Add Them To Your Diet Today – NDTV Food

Anything we eat has both positive and negative effects on our bodies. This is why, it's critical to comprehend which foods are best for our bodies and why. Just like our general health, our sexual health is important and is influenced by our diet. Many of you may not be aware that certain juices and foods might help to raise the body's testosterone levels, which make them a great fertility food. Try incorporating foods and juice that will benefit you if you want to amp up your sex life. This is a list of the top 5 juices to include in your diet each day to increase testosterone levels.

Also Read:Liver Health: 5 Healthy Drinks To Cleanse Your Liver Naturally

Who would have thought that fresh pomegranate juice can benefit the sexual health of an individual! Pomegranate boosts testosterone levels as it helps in facilitating nitric oxide production. The compounds that are found in the pomegranate juice increase a particular component which is responsible for creating nitric oxide. So adding fresh pomegranate juice will be beneficial for your sexual health.

We all know that pineapple is rich in vitamin C, which makes it the most exotic citrus fruit. Besides this, you'll be surprised to know that it's also rich in vitamin B, which makes it a good food option to increase sexual health. Incorporate fresh pineapple juice with a dash of fresh pepper mint in your daily diet.

Also Read:Milk, Chamomile Tea And More: 7 Healthy Drinks To Induce Good Night Sleep

Beetroot is full of vitamins and antioxidants. Apart from these, it is also rich in dietary nitrates that boost testosterone count. Having beetroot juice 2-3 times a week can increase your sexual health. To make this, put chopped beetroot in the juicer and separate the pulp. Add black pepper and salt in your beet juice to enhance taste.

Beet is rich in vitamin B9.Photo Credit: istock

Many of you might not be a big fan of oat milk, because it doesn't taste like our regular cow milk. But you'll definitely want to add it to your diet, if you want to boost testosterone level. Oats increase the testosterone available in your bloodstream, which makes it a good for increasing one's sexual health. Have fresh oat milk for your breakfast and have a fun sex life.

Green vegetables like spinach, broccoli and avocados are full of nutrition. These have testosterone-boosting properties, which will benefit your sexual health. Just make this green smoothie at home by blending in the above veggies with a cup of plain yogurt. Within 5 minutes, your smoothie will be ready.

Make fresh green smoothie at home.Photo Credit: istock

Almonds have aphrodisiac qualities, which is why it's also called a fertility food. Also, for years, men have been eating dates to enrich their sexual health. Combining both of these fertility foods will make one testosterone-boosting drink. Just add a handful or soaked almonds and dates to milk and combine in a blender. Mix it well and make a healthy smoothie at home.

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.

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Mar 29

How Transgender Hormone Therapy Affects the Brain – Newsweek

In the wake of a mass shooting at a Nashville elementary school by someone police have described as a transgender ex-student, in which three children aged nine and three adults died, some people have claimed that hormone-replacement therapy could have been a driving factor for the attack.

The shooter, named Audrey Elizabeth Hale, was said by Nashville Police Chief John Drake at a press conference to be transgender, but he didn't clarify which gender Hale identified as. In online profiles, Hale used he/him pronouns and also went by the name Aiden, the New York Post reported. It is also not known whether Hale had undergone hormone replacement therapy.

Nevertheless, Marjorie Taylor Greene, a Republican representative for the state of Georgia, tweeted a statement regarding the shooting, implying that the shooter's testosterone level was a reason for the shootings.

"How much hormones like testosterone and medications for mental illness was the transgender Nashville school shooter taking?" she tweeted. "Everyone can stop blaming guns now."

Journalist Andy Ng also suggested that the hormones may have contributed to the crime.

"Was the #Nashville trans mass shooter on cross-sex hormones (in this case, testosterone)? Women committing mass shootings are exceptionally rare, but if Audrey "Aiden" Hale took testosterone, it could explain part of the male-typical mass violence the Christian school tragically experienced," he tweeted.

But can the impact of hormones on a person's brain really cause them to commit violent or deadly acts? The evidence is unclear.

One study published in the journal Psychoneuroendocrinology in 2016 looked into how hormone therapy for transgender people affected subcortical brain areas related to memory and emotion. The study analyzed the MRI results of 25 Female-to-Male (FtM) and 14 Male-to-Female (MtF) transgender people both before they started hormone treatment and four months into the treatment.

The results found that the hormone treatment did result in some changes to the brain: in the MtF trans people involved in the study, their taking of estradiol (artificial estrogen) and anti-androgens (testosterone blockers) was found to have reduced the volume of the hippocampus region of the brain. The hippocampus is a small part of the brain that is involved in regulating learning, memory, and spatial navigation, and also plays a role in anxiety and avoidance behaviors.

Additionally, differing progesterone levels were found to be correlated with changes in gray matter structures in MtF subjects. No effects were found in the brains of the FtM individuals.

"Our findings are also relevant for women undergoing hormone-replacement therapy and those receiving oral contraceptive treatment," co-author Rupert Lanzenberger, a psychiatry professor at the Medical University of Vienna, said in a Nature Reviews Endocrinology article discussing the findings of the study. "As oestrogen plus progestin therapy increases the risk of dementia in postmenopausal women aged [over] 65 years, our findings of pronounced decreases in the hippocampal region in response to oestradiol and anti-androgen treatment support a neurobiological underpinning of this phenomenon."

However, this study only uses a very small sample size, which means that its results are not as statistically significant or sound as an experiment that used many more results. Additionally, changes to the gray matter and hippocampus can also be triggered by yoga and meditation, or periods of stress.

While Hale wasn't confirmed as a trans man, the use of he/him pronouns on social media suggests that Hale identified as a male.

"It's not about their identity. It's the questions or this is what kind of hormones are they on? What kind of medications are they taking for mental illness? What is causing this aggression in this biological female who identifies as a male for them to go in and murder children?," Greene told the Independent in an interview regarding her tweets.

"But these are important things. It's important because what will testosterone do to a biological woman? She's taking tons of testosterone trying to make herself look like a man."

These comments do not follow the science of the Nature Reviews Endocrinology study, as there is no mention of testosterone having any effect on the brain. Additionally, the brain changes mentioned in the study are in MtF people, taking estradiol and testosterone-blockers.

However, testosterone itself has long been known to cause increased aggression in men, with one study published in the International Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism in 2012 stating that there is some evidence that testosterone levels are higher in individuals with aggressive behavior, including violent criminals. Some other studies have found that trans men taking testosterone hormones may experience increased aggression, including a 2018 study from The Journal of Sexual Medicine and a 2021 study in Hormones and Behavior.

The Hormones and Behavior paper states that in one of three trans men taking testosterone ended up less aggressive during treatment, and that all groups had no changes in aggression at a one-year follow-up. Additionally, an article in the British Medical Journal Open published in 2020 found that aggression may increase during initiation of testosterone treatment, but will return to baseline during long-term testosterone treatment.

Overall, scientists agree that more research needs to be done to determine the relationship between aggression and testosterone for trans men.

Trans people are over four times more likely than cisgender [identifying as sex you were born as] people to experience violent victimization, including rape, sexual assault, and aggravated or simple assault, a study by the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law found.

Biological women made up only around 3.6 percent of shootings in the U.S. between 2000 and 2017, according to the FBI, and while the data doesn't include people's gender identities, the Baltimore Sun reported in 2018 that it was "exceedingly uncommon for a transgender person to be the perpetrator of an active shooting."

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"Given how few women commit mass murder, it is even more rare for a woman planning to transition to be a man to commit mass murder. This might be the first," Laura Dugan, professor and associate chair of criminology and criminal justice at the University of Maryland, told the Baltimore Sun in 2018 in response to a mass shooting by a FtM trans man. "Keep in mind that thousands of transgender males take testosterone and do not mass murder anyone."

Some 45,222 people died from gun-related injuries in the U.S. in 2020, according to the Pew Research Center, a 14 percent rise from 2019, a 25 percent increase from 2015, and a 43 percent spike from 2010.

Data from the The Gun Violence Archive shows that 513 people died from mass shootings in 2020 alone, which are defined as incidents involving at least four people being shot. Between 2011 and 2020, there were 160 mass shootings in the U.S., compared to a mere 12 between 1966 and 1975, according to the Rockefeller Institute of Government.

Do you have a tip on a science story that Newsweek should be covering? Do you have a question about gun violence? Let us know via

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Mar 29

How Testosterone Affects Your Lifespan and Health – Men’s Health

Rowan Fee

This story is part of our annual Fit At Any Age seriesa guide to the innovations and breakthroughs in aging to help you live a stronger, longer life.

FOR A LONG TIME, we accepted certain changes as the price (and privilege) of getting older. Your hair turns gray. Your hearing starts towait, what was that you said? And, of course, your testosterone level drops. But with a boom in testosterone-replacement clinicsby this point, who hasnt gotten an ad for a service offering to test your T for under $100?and podcasts and influencers preaching the powers of hormone optimization, should guys over 40 think about winding back their T clocks? And by how much? Heres what to know.

A shortage of testosterone is associated with a shorter life. We now have several decades of high-quality research showing remarkable longevity and health benefits in men with normal testosterone levels compared with men with low levels, says Abraham Morgentaler, M.D., at Harvard Medical School and the author of Testosterone for Life. Thats true whether guys have healthy levels naturally or underwent testosterone-replacement therapy to bring their levels out of the low range.

Feeling young and alive often boils down to a few things, says Dr. Morgentaler: being strong, staying active, and having the energy to do the activities you enjoy. Men with low T often lose many of those things; people say they feel old, he adds. Not only do men feel better with normal testosterone levels, but for a whole variety of general medical and health issues, they actually are better. That means improvements in sexual function, physical function, and mood, according to a major study in The New England Journal of Medicine in 2016.

A mans testosterone level drops about 1 to 2 percent a year, starting around age 40. Docs generally dont prescribe T replacement unless a guys level is low (less than 300 ng/dL) and he has symptoms of testosterone deficiency: reduced libido, erectile dysfunction, fatigue, lack of motivation, insomnia, depression, reduced muscle mass, and weight gain.

Yet even without symptoms, men are clamoring to replace that age-related loss, because why wouldnt you want your level to be the same at 60 as it was at 30? Bradley Anawalt, M.D., a professor of medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine, echoes the reasoning of other top testosterone researchers when he says, The simple answer is that we do not know if it is beneficial or harmful to give testosterone to a man whose concentration drops with aging. If your T level is in the gigantic normal range (264 to 916 ng/dL) and youre not experiencing any low-T symptoms, its hard to argue that you need more of it.

Theres what I call a threshold effect. Once youre above it, youre just normal; its hard to be more normal than normal, says Dr. Morgentaler. For the most part, somebody who has normal testosterone levels will not notice anything if he takes some testosterone and goes into the upper range. Or as Dr. Anawalt puts it, The difference between a level of 450 or 445 is clinically nonsense. From day to day, you can have a variation of about 10 to 20 percent, and within the day, you can have a variation of about 5 to 35 percent. So wanting to correct for that 1 to 2 percent a year is understandable, but top researchers arent willing to encourage you to go for it yet.

Its true that you lose muscle fibers as you get older. While testosterone increases muscle strength and mass, hormone replacement might not be able to prevent muscle-fiber loss. It just makes the muscle fibers that remain bigger, says Dr. Anawalt, and its not certain that this has age-reversing benefits. But if you have a deficiency, T therapy can restore vitality and may help motivate you to do the workouts that will build muscle strength and mass.

Beware anyone telling you that you, at 30, 40, 50, or even 60, have the testosterone level of a 70-year-old. There is a giant reference range regardless of age, so at 70, normal remains within a 650-point span. If you take 10,000 men who are 20 years old, the average testosterone might be 550 or 500, says Dr. Anawalt. The average testosterone in 10,000 70-year-olds might be 380 or 400. But theyre both in the normal range. It doesnt mean you have the testosterone of a 70-year-old when you have a testosterone of 400 at age 20. You have a normal level for both ages.

Theres a movement by influencers and early adopters to stack up your level against yourself, not against other people your age. They advocate getting a baseline testosterone test early in life (or now, if you didnt do it in your 20s or 30s), so you can see how your levels compare later on. The test fee may or may not turn out to be a good investment. If you do choose to get one, be aware that all testosterone tests arent equal. Right now, different labs may give you different results when you have your testosterone level tested. The way to get an accurate number is kind of clunky, but you need to ask the test purveyor, Has this lab test been validated and certified by the CDC? Those that have been provide an accurate number and meet the most up-to-date standards of what low is.

Testosterone therapy isnt recommended if you hope to start a family. When youre on it, your body produces less T and, in turn, fewer or no sperm. Most of the time, when you stop T therapy, production returns, but not always like before.

Later this year, the results of a blockbuster testosterone trial should answer lingering questions about Ts cardiovascular safety and benefits. But doctors make it clear that if your level is low and youre suffering, you can benefit from increasing it. In other words, the benefit-to-risk ratio is favorable when you treat the right people (those with testosterone deficiency). Testosterone has a bad rap, says Dr. Morgentaler, as its been associated with bodybuilders and cheating athletes. Yet there are years of data on it; its been on the market since the 1930s.

Just make sure low T is whats causing your symptoms. Weight gain, fatigue, ED, and lack of motivation and concentration all have other causes. And obesity, smoking, excessive alcohol use, and a lack of sleep may also be responsible for low testosterone. Manage those and you may be able to naturally raise your testosterone level and improve the number and the quality of the years ahead. After all: If you have a garden with a bunch of overgrown weeds, planting more flowers is not necessarily going to make for a more beautiful garden, Dr. Anawalt says. You need to actually get rid of the problem.

This story originally appeared in the April 2023 issue of Men's Health.

Freelance Writer

Cassie Shortsleeve is a skilled freelance writer and editor with almost a decade of experience reporting on all things health, fitness, and travel. A former Shape and Mens Health editor, her work has also been published in Womens Health, SELF, Runners World, Mens Journal,, and other national print and digital publications. When shes not writing, youll find her drinking coffee or running around her hometown of Boston.

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Mar 29

Testosterone Therapy May Improve Measures in Men With … – Diabetes Self Management

Among men with prediabetes and low testosterone levels, taking testosterone may help improve blood lipid (cholesterol and triglyceride) levels and body composition, according to a new study published in the journal Andrology.

For many men, testosterone levels decline with age, and this decline may have an impact on several different aspects of health. Diabetes is one of these areas in fact, one study showed that for men with low testosterone, taking testosterone can lead to remission of type 2 diabetes (having normal blood glucose levels without taking any glucose-lowering drugs). Testosterone therapy has also been linked to a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes, and it may reduce the risk for certain types of cancer as well. Testosterone isnt a miracle elixir, though one study showed that when it came to blood vessel health in middle-aged men, exercise was found to be helpful, while testosterone therapy was not. While you may not be able to raise very low testosterone levels significantly without taking testosterone, one study showed that eating more fat may help boost borderline-low testosterone levels in men.

To get cutting-edge diabetes news, strategies for blood glucose management, nutrition tips, healthy recipes, and more delivered straight to your inbox,sign up for our free newsletter!

For the latest study, researchers used a number of different data sources to look at the relationship between low testosterone, prediabetes, and metabolic health and body composition. In one set of eight different studies that included a total of 3,625 participants with impaired fasting glucose (prediabetes) and 6,205 without impaired fasting glucose, they found that having impaired fasting glucose was linked to a 3 nmol/L lower average testosterone level and an 80% higher risk for low testosterone. When the researchers looked at various metabolic and body measurements, they found that participants waist size and body-mass index (BMI, a measure of body weight that takes height into account) were the best predictors of having reduced testosterone levels.

In a separate group of 229 men with prediabetes and low testosterone with an average age of 58.2, the researchers found that a form of testosterone therapy (called long-acting injectable T undecanoate) was linked to improved blood glucose control. While 90% of participant who received testosterone therapy reached normal blood glucose control as shown by an A1C level (a measure of long-term blood glucose control) below 5.7%, among those who didnt receive the therapy 40.2% went on to develop type 2 diabetes. Whats more, participants who received testosterone therapy showed significant improvement in waist size, BMI, and body weight, as well as fasting glucose, total cholesterol, HDL (high-density lipoprotein, or good) cholesterol, LDL (low-density lipoprotein, or bad) cholesterol, and triglyceride levels.

It is our opinion that the combined approach of [testosterone therapy] and lifestyle changes should be used in men with low testosterone and sexual dysfunction to better motivate patients to perform physical activity eventually resulting in weight loss and sexual function improvement, the researchers wrote. More studies are needed, though, to find out whether testosterone therapy can help prevent type 2 diabetes in men with prediabetes.

Want to learn more about prediabetes? ReadWhat Is Prediabetes? Symptoms, Treatment, and More,Prediabetes TreatmentandDiabetes Prevention: Eat to Beat Diabetes.

Living with type 2 diabetes?Check out our free type 2 e-course!

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Mar 29

Andropause and Hypogonadism Are Both Low Testosterone … – Giddy

Low testosterone is a condition that goes by many names. Learn about the important differences.

These days, the topic of low testosterone (low-T) is fully in the mainstream. TV ads feature former athletes talking about it and how they've overcome it with the help of product A or B. Specialty clinics have popped up with solutions that include testosterone replacement therapy (TRT). Low-T is everywhere.

Fair enough. But what, exactly, constitutes low testosterone? What are the conditions that cause it? What are the different types of low-T?

Here, we look at a couple of testosterone-related conditionsandropause and hypogonadismand discover what those terms mean, what they don't mean and how they fit into the bigger picture of true, clinically diagnosed low testosterone.

The term hypogonadism refers to men whose bodies don't produce enough of the hormone testosterone, a condition that data suggests may affect 2 percent to 8 percent of the male population, according to Cleveland Clinic.

It can lead to low sex drive and mood swings, although hypogonadism may not be the most common word for this condition anymore.

"There are a lot of terms people use," said Amy Pearlman, M.D., a men's health specialist and co-founder of Prime Institute in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. "The term that's used in the American Urological Association guidelines is 'testosterone deficiency,' so that's the term I use a lot more often."

The AUA guidelines state that a confirmatory test showing less than 300 nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL) of total testosterone is needed to support a diagnosis of low-T, but you must also have signs and symptoms.

"TRT is for people who have low testosterone levels on their blood test as well as symptoms or signs of it," Pearlman said. "Neither one alone would warrant someone being on therapy. So just a single testosterone level is not enough."

To understand how doctors assess your bloodwork when considering TRT, it helps to learn how testosterone production works in your body.

Testosterone is produced in the testicles, but the process actually begins in the hypothalamus, a structure deep within the brain. The hypothalamus sends out hormonal signals when testosterone levels in the body are low, communicating with the pituitary gland at the base of the brain. This pea-sized gland then sends out another signal called luteinizing hormone (LH) to the testicles, prompting them to produce more testosterone.

It's this signal pathway that helps healthcare providers determine what's really going on with your testosterone production.

"Whenever I have someone with lower testosterone, I order a confirmatory testosterone level in the morning, then also order some additional blood tests like LH, prolactin, a thyroid panel, prostate-specific antigen, those sort of things," said Neel Parekh, M.D., a men's fertility and sexual health specialist with Cleveland Clinic.

If the LH is elevated and testosterone is low, that indicates a condition called primary hypogonadism, he explained. The brain is sending the signal to make testosterone, but the testicle is not producing testosterone.

"This is one of the FDA-approved indications for prescribing testosterone or TRT," Parekh said.

Hypogonadism, or testosterone deficiency, can affect males of any age.

On the other hand, the condition that some people call andropause, or "male menopause," is meant to indicate older men and the natural decline in testosterone production that occurs with age. Since it is a natural, gradual change, even calling it a condition is a bit of a misnomer.

These changes are slight and incremental and may even go largely unnoticed.

"The thing is, testosterone levels don't actually go down that much due to age," Pearlman said. "They go down after about age 30, but it's only about 1 percent per year."

All else being equal, you can likely remain well above the clinical diagnosis level for low-T even into your 70s. The thing is, all else frequently isn't equal. That is to say, it's often not just aging that causes testosterone deficiency problems, it's other factors.

"A lot of what we see is actually related to other conditions a person has and not necessarily due to age," Pearlman said. "I see a lot of guys who are in their 60s, 70s and 80s who eat healthy and exercise, and their testosterone levels might be higher than guys in their 30s who have diabetes and who are obese."

So, yes, age is one of many factors. The other causes of low testosterone could impact people of any age, including the following:

"There are like 20 different causes of low testosterone, and age is only one of them," Pearlman said.

The other thing to keep in mind about the term andropause is that it's a bit of a loaded word. It's derived from menopause, the time in a woman's life when she stops ovulating and her estrogen levels plummet sharply. Menopause, though, as it typically happens to women, is a very different condition from men's gradual testosterone decline.

"I just usually talk about it as 'lower testosterone,'" Parekh said. "And that's something I tell patients every day: It's just a normal part of aging. Unless they're having symptoms, we don't just treat a lower testosterone level. We don't just treat a number."

Calibrating testosterone levels is a complex, multi-organ process that most male bodies manage to carry out quite well.

If you genuinely have testosterone deficiency symptoms and you get two or more tests to confirm low levels, of course, you should be treated for it.

Just make sure you talk with your family physician, a urologist or another trusted healthcare provider to get a clear understanding of how TRT works before you try to diagnose and treat yourself.

And if you don't have a regular physician, now is the time to find one. Giddy Telehealth takes the difficulty out of such a search, providing access to hundreds of healthcare professionals who offer video visits as a regular part of their practices. It is an easy-to-use online portal whose physicians, therapists and others have expertise across the full scope of medical care. Many have same-day appointments.

Editors note: Giddy welcomes first-person stories that break down stigmas and connect with readers to let them know they're not alone. Are you affected by low-T, or did you overcome it? Are you willing to share your story to help others in a similar situation? We'd like to hear from you. Send a message to Mike Werling at [emailprotected]

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Mar 29

Factor V Leiden doesnt prevent testosterone treatment – The Robesonian

DEAR DR. ROACH: I have Factor V Leiden, but I have been wanting to do testosterone replacement therapy. I have heard that testosterone causes blood clots. Obviously, with FVL, that would be a huge deal for me. Is this true? Does it cause clots, or is it safe for me to do? R.C.

ANSWER: Factor V Leiden is a common genetic variant that increases a persons risk for developing a blood clot. However, a person who has never had a blood clot, but who is identified as heterozygous (meaning they only have one copy of the gene) for factor V Leiden, is still not likely to have a blood clot during their lifetime and is not recommended for treatment to prevent a blood clot.

Testosterone replacement therapy in men with FVL does increase the risk of blood clots in some studies, but not in others. In the studies that have shown an increase in risk, the risk has been estimated as approximately one person per thousand treated with testosterone each year. However, the risk occurs mostly during the first three months, and after two years on treatment, there is no additional risk. Thus, roughly one man per 500 who has FVL and gets treated with testosterone will get a clot, according to the studies that show an increase in risk.

This is a small risk, but a blood clot is a significant potential problem. So, the risk of getting a clot should certainly go into the discussion about whether to give testosterone replacement to a man with FVL and symptomatic low testosterone levels. Most of the men I have seen with this issue have elected to take the replacement.

Ideas on Medium chain triglycerides

DEAR DR. ROACH: I would like to hear your views on the use of medium chain triglycerides (MCT) to slow down memory loss and dementia. Several articles I have read extol the biological process of MCTs, which when ingested by an individual are quickly converted into ketones that provide energy to brain cells. It seems logical to provide such neurobiological support to brain cells, to help keep the brain working longer. K.J.W.

ANSWER: There is some evidence that MCTs slow progression of dementia in people with Alzheimers disease, although the degree of benefit seen was small. There is no evidence that ingesting MCTs will prevent a person from getting dementia in the first place.

Not every treatment that is used to treat a condition will be effective at preventing it. My opinion, based on what is known about what causes Alzheimers and other forms of dementia, is that MCTs are not likely to prevent them, but they may be useful at slowing progression of the disease in people with existing dementia.

I want to emphasize that the benefit appears to be small. Of course, there arent any treatments right now (not even the prescription medications for Alzheimers disease) that dramatically improve Alzheimers, so MCTs may be worth trying. They are generally well-tolerated and can be taken as a powder or an oil, but may cause nausea or diarrhea in a few people who take them.

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